Today, Ontario has reported another 1258 cases of COVID-19, another increase in cases after 1138 cases were reported yesterday.
It should not be lost on anyone that the increase in cases is coming following the Ford government’s decision to loosen restrictions in most regions of Ontario, without making any adjustments to make the reopening safer.
So, this weekend, please make sure that you are taking all the necessary precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19. That means wearing your mask, maintaining your physical distancing, washing your hands frequently, and only leaving your home for essential purposes.
In other COVID-19 related news today, it has been announced that AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine has now been approved for use by Health Canada. While trials on the new vaccine have shown that the vaccine only has a 62% efficacy rate in preventing infections, more importantly, it has been shown to practically eliminate severe outcomes of COVID-19, with Health Canada reporting it to be 100% effective at limiting these outcomes, notably including severe illnesses and deaths.
This is certainly a positive development, and I will be sure to keep our community updated regularly as further information around vaccines, and vaccine distribution emerges.
Looking forward to next week, I will be back in the Legislature and be sure to check out next week's newsletters for key updates on what is being debated in the House.
I believe that it’s always important to recognize members of our community who are making a difference, and today I want to take a moment to acknowledge the great work of Seeds of Hope and One2Give, who are doing incredibly important work to support those in our city who are currently experiencing homelessness.
Right now, they are working on a campaign to collect socks to be delivered to those living in encampments in Toronto, and I want to encourage anyone who is reading this - and able to - to chip into their campaign. They have already been able to bring in thousands of pairs, but they still need more.
If you’re able to help out, you can find out how you can give here.
I also want to take a moment today to send a message of thanks to the many BIAs in our community who are doing incredible work, day-in and day-out to support our local businesses through the unprecedented trials and tribulations of COVID-19. I want you to know that our entire community values the work that you have been doing, and I will continue to fight for better supports for small businesses in our community!
Finally, today, I want to invite you to tune in right now for an Education Workers Town Hall that will be happening on Facebook Live from 7-8PM tonight! If you are reading this after 8PM – don’t worry it’s not too late, you can catch the replay on my Facebook page by clicking here.