Friday, 16 April, 2021

Ford declares province-wide 'emergency brake' due to COVID-19

Province wide lockdown to begin Saturday Ontario Premier Doug Ford announcing a lockdown on Thursday
Gustavo Carr | 05 April, 2021, 07:53

COVID-19 cases could fall to between 1,000 to 1,500 a day by the end of April if the province activates a shutdown for four weeks, the table said. "Today, I must make one of those tough decisions", Ford said.

Ontario has also reported more than 2,000 new infections for the past seven consecutive days.

Ford said that hospitalizations due to COVID-19 was up by 14 per cent, and that there were more Ontarians in Intensive Care Units (ICU) s was higher than it has ever been. "The cost of inaction is simply too high".

People in live in Ontario were also quick to express significant disapproval in the actions being taken by Ford himself and his government.

During the emergency shutdown, schools will remain open for in-person learning with strict safety measures in place.

"What we are introducing is an emergency brake shutdown that allows some activities to be carried out but the lockdown, we know, with the warmer weather coming, with all that we've asked Ontarians to sacrifice, is too hard to do".

Indoor and outdoor sports and recreation facilities will be closed with very limited exceptions.

A full list of what you can and cannot do can be found here.

In fact, high-level provincial health advisors are saying the third wave of the pandemic is here and it is being driven by Variants of Concern, newer strains of the COVID-19 virus that have originated in the United Kingdom, in Brazil and in South Africa.

"This is a new pandemic". The processes we now have in place to protect staff and members of the public are in compliance with the new measures announced by the Province, and will ensure ongoing business continuity as we continue to deliver the essential municipal services on which our community relies.

The new data shows the risk of ICU admissions is two times higher and the risk of death is 1.5 times higher with the B.1.1.7 variant, which was first discovered in the United Kingdom. Younger people are ending up in the hospital.

Aoun Voices Support for Jordan after Security Sweep
Jordan also has strong ties with the U.S. , supporting it during the Iraq War as well as its efforts against the Islamic State. King Abdullah has ruled the country since the death of his father, King Hussein, in 1999.

The Premier's change in the course shows just how much of a threat the variants of concern pose on the province's ability to limit and control a third wave of the virus.

"We're into a third wave of COVID-19", Ford said.

Ford says more time is also needed to continue the roll out of the province's the vaccination plan.

Unlike back in December, the province is not issuing a stay-at-home order for Ontarians.

New variants of the virus risk overwhelming ICUs and threaten the care of all patients, warned Dr. Steini Brown, co-chair of the province's science advisory table.

That means physicians would have to determine who is most likely to survive their illness for 12 months and allocate care accordingly, leaving those who don't meet the criteria without care. I'm the one who has to make the tough decisions. It is estimated that over 245,000 surgeries have been delayed, cancelled or postponed throughout the pandemic.

Leading up to Ford's announcement, Brown and Williams had advocated for a stay-at-home order lasting at least two weeks, preferably four.

It wasn't immediately clear if the shutdown would include a stay-at home order.

Health officials reported 3,089 new COVID-19 on Friday and 3,009 on Saturday.

Since March 16, the region's case rate per 100,000 population has increased from 23.1 to 42.0, the latter qualifying the region for the red level on the province's COVID-19 framework. "The risk of death is 1.5 times higher".

For the Easter Weekend, Ford said that religious institutions would remain open, but will be limited to 15 per cent capacity and asked that residents only gather with their immediate households.