Peggy Sattler MPP, London West

Government of Ontario
 
 
Dear Neighbour,

Since my last update, things have been changing rapidly with the government and community response to COVID-19, including the declaration of a state of emergency in Ontario and in London

Yesterday the Ontario legislature unanimously passed two pieces of emergency legislation to address the COVID-19 crisis. I was privileged to be one of the 26 MPPs who attended the debate. 

The first bill provides unpaid, job-protected leave to workers who are in self-isolation or quarantine, or those who need to take time off work to care for their children or other relatives. It also eliminates the requirement for workers to provide sick notes.

The second bill allows for 24/7 delivery to grocery stores to allow shelves to be restocked overnight, temporarily waiving noise bylaws that may impact the delivery of goods. It also gives municipalities the ability to conduct council, local board and committee meetings electronically in these exceptional circumstances.

While our Official Opposition caucus supported both pieces of legislation, we know that so much more needs to be done. We’ve heard from constituents who are concerned about paying their bills, utilities, mortgages or rent when their shifts are cancelled and their employer shuts down. We've heard from parents who can't work from home and don't know where to find childcare. We've heard from bar and restaurant owners who fear they will not be able to re-open, and businesses that can't make payroll or loan repayments.

We will continue to urge the government to move quickly to provide people and small businesses with immediate financial relief and the support people need to get through this crisis.

In the face of such anxiety and uncertainty, there are so many people to thank. We are profoundly grateful for the health care workers who are working selflessly and tirelessly on the front lines (even while grappling with a shortage of Personal Protective Equipment); the grocery store clerks, pharmacy cashiers, and other service workers who are making sure we can access essential goods and services; and all those who are staying home, avoiding physical contact, and washing hands frequently to limit the spread. 

It has been incredible to see our community coming together to support one another. Neighbours are picking up groceries for vulnerable seniors or those who are isolating, and sharing essentials with others who can't find them. Local artists are offering free online shows to keep people entertained and connected, and people are pledging to support local businesses who have voluntarily limited their operations to help flatten the curve. 

If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact my office. Although we are closed to in-person meetings, staff remain available to help by phone (519-657-3120) and email (psattler-co@ndp.on.ca). 

All the best,

 

Concerned you may have COVID-19?


The Middlesex-London Health Unit and its partners recommend the following steps to assess your symptoms:

  1. Use the Ontario Ministry of Health’s online self-assessment tool at www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-self-assessment.
     
  2. Call Telehealth at 1-866-797-0000 for a telephone assessment if you have symptoms that include fever and/or cough AND any of the following within 14 days prior to the onset of illness:
  • Travel outside of Canada
  • Close contact with a confirmed or probable case
  • Close contact with a person with Acute Respiratory Illness, who has been to an affected area
  1. If you are not able to assess your symptoms, consider visiting a COVID-19 Assessment Centre for further information. (Please note that there is no medication or treatment available at assessment centres.

Anyone with severe respiratory illness, or a medical emergency should go to hospital or call 9-1-1 if necessary.

Signs of severe respiratory illness include:

  • Shortness of breath/unable to catch your breath
  • Severe fever that does not come down with Tylenol/acetaminophen
  • Energy so low that you are physically unable to get out of bed or barely able and must rest again immediately

IF YOU ARE SICK, STAY HOME!

 

ontario.ca/coronavirus

Find information about COVID-19 symptoms, how to protect yourself, and an information sheet that is available in multiple languages.

The Ministry of Health also provides updates on the status of authorized tests, results, and confirmed cases in Ontario every day at 10:30 am and 5:30 pm.

 

Middlesex-London Health Unit

Find local information about COVID-19 and what is being done locally to prevent and prepare for a potential outbreak in London.

 

Canada.ca/coronavirus

Information from the Public Health Agency of Canada, and updates on the national response, travel advice and preparedness.

 

travel.gc.ca

Important travel updates regarding Coronavirus around the world.

 

COVID-19 Updates

The response to COVID-19 is evolving rapidly, so please refer to linked sources for the most up-to-date information about these and other initiatives.

State of Emergency

On Tuesday, March 17, the provincial government made an order declaring an emergency under s 7.0.1 (1) the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act

As a result of this declaration and its associated orders, the following establishments are legally required to close immediately:

  • All facilities providing indoor recreational programs;
  • All public libraries;
  • All private schools as defined in the Education Act;
  • All licensed child care centres;
  • All bars and restaurants, except to the extent that such facilities provide takeout food and delivery;
  • All theatres including those offering live performances of music, dance, and other art forms, as well as cinemas that show movies; and
  • Concert venues.

Further, all organized public events of over fifty people are also prohibited, including parades and events and communal services within places of worship. These orders were approved by the Lieutenant Governor in Council and will remain in place until March 31, 2020, at which point they will be reassessed and considered for extension, unless this order is terminated earlier.

More info here: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/03/ontario-enacts-declaration-of-emergency-to-protect-the-public.html

Job Protection Legislation

This emergency legislation provides job-protected leave to workers who are in self-isolation or quarantine, or those who need to take time off work to care for their children or other relatives. It also eliminates the requirement for workers to provide sick notes. It does not require employers to pay workers for time off. Please click here for more details.

OHIP 3-Month Waiting Period Will Be Waived

The Government of Ontario is working on regulatory changes to waive the 3-month waiting period for OHIP coverage for Canadians returning to Ontario after an extended absence. Waiting periods for new residents remain unchanged.

Driver's License and Health Cards Extended

Driver's licenses, license plates, health cards, and a number of other products that expire on or after March 1, 2020, will remain valid until further notice. This is to reduce the number of people visiting Service Ontario locations. You may still renew many products online.

Eviction Freeze

No new eviction orders will be issued by the Landlord and Tenant Board, and no eviction orders will be enforced until further notice. Please note that at this time, there is no change to a landlord's ability to serve a notice to terminate a tenancy.

Federal Income Support

The federal government announced a package of measures to support families and businesses. Click here for more information on when and how to apply for these benefits, and whether or not you are eligible. Available support includes the following:

Worker Support - A new Emergency Care Benefit and Emergency COVID Self Benefit will provide income support to many people who would not otherwise have qualified for Employment Insurance. 

Small Businesses - Wage subsidy grants to small businesses for three months equal to 10% of workers salaries.

Income Taxes - If you owe after you file your taxes, you have until August 2020 to make payment.

Family Support - Parents will get a top up of Canada Child Benefit of $300 per child, and low-income Canadians will receive increased GST credit for $400 for single adults; $600 for couples; $150 for every additional child.

Students - 6-month student loan repayment deferral, no accrual of interest 

 

COVID Kindness

Caremongering London
Londoners are offering each other help and support through this Facebook group.

London Volunteer Task Force
Offering a matching service between requesting individuals and volunteers to organize non-contact drop-off grocery delivery. 

Med Students for Healthcare Workers
Western Medical students offering to help healthcare workers with childcare, errands, and grocery shopping.

Donations of Personal Protective Equipment
Businesses that have extra boxes of masks, gloves, and other PPE, are donating them for use by frontline healthcare workers, whose stock is running low.

Support London Businesses
This is a list of local businesses that have gift cards available online. Many of them have limited their operations to help stop the spread of COVID-19. 
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