What to Know
With further acceleration in the number of cases of COVID-19 in the United States and Spain, there are now 1,076,017 cases globally. Canada’s cases have grown to 12,360.
Ontario now reports 3,255 cases of COVID-19. The province has now tested 66,753 individuals and reports 1,245 tests are currently under investigation.
The Province’s public health officials revealed that between 3,000 and 15,000 Ontarians could die of COVID-19, even with public health measures in place. At the current trajectory, the Province is anticipating up to 1,600 deaths by the end of the month.
Prime Minister Trudeau issued a warning to the United States administration after news broke that the United States government has requested medical manufacturer 3M halt exports of its respirators manufactured in the United States to the Canadian and Latin American markets. During his news conference the Prime Minister said: The level of integration between our economies goes both ways across the border…It would be a mistake to create blockages or reduce the amount of back-and-forth trade in essential goods and services, including medical goods, across our border.
In a news release, 3M also pushed back on the request noting the “significant humanitarian implications” of such an action, as well as the likelihood that “the net number of respirators being made available to the United States” as a result of retaliation by other countries.
The Prime Minister also announced $100 million to help food banks and local food organizations deliver food. CTV reports:
- $50 million is going to Food Banks Canada;
- $20 million will be divided up between the Salvation Army, Second Harvest, Community Food Centres Canada, and Breakfast Club of Canada; and
- $30 million will go to local-level organizations focused on food insecurity.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, François-Philippe Champagne, spoke with his Chinese counterpart yesterday. A readout of the conversation is here.
In response to the provincial modelling information released today, Premier Ford reduced the list of businesses classified as essential and ordered more workplaces to close. The government is ordering all businesses not covered by the updated Emergency Order to close effective as of Saturday, April 4, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. This closure will be in effect for 14 days, with the possibility of an extension as the situation evolves. Teleworking, online commerce and other innovative ways of working remotely are permitted at all times and are strongly encouraged for all businesses. All supply chains necessary for the production of vital food and healthcare supplies are being protected and remain intact. The updated list of essential businesses can be found here.
For the construction industry, only critical construction projects will continue, including industrial projects such as refineries and petrochemical plants and infrastructure projects such as new hospitals, roads and bridges. New starts in residential projects will stop, while residential construction that is near completion will continue. Business-owners with questions concerning their essential business status are encouraged to call the Stop the Spread hotline at 1-888-444-3659. The hotline is available from 8:30 a.m.― 9:00 p.m. Monday to Friday and 8:30 a.m.— 5:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. More information on business closures is available here.
The City of Toronto announced a new bylaw Thursday, prohibiting people from standing within two metres of each other. Those who fail to comply could be fined up to $5,000. The by-law is in effect for 30 days and is limited to interactions in city parks and squares.
The City has assembled a COVID-19 financial impact working group to focus on stabilization and rebuilding. The working group is assessing the implications of COVID-19 on the City of Toronto budget, as well as the financial impacts that could result from this emergency continuing for an extended period of time. More information here.
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