Alberta to distribute 20 million face masks at A&W, McDonald's and Tim Hortons drive-thrus
• As of today, 6218 Albertan’s have now recovered leaving only 612 active cases in the province
• Currently there are 55 people hospitalized with 4 in the ICU
• In the last 24 hours AHS has confirmed 22 new cases and no new deaths
• Several outbreaks have also now ended, including the Horizon Work Camp
• In preparation for stage 2 AHS will be expanding testing. Effective immediately, anyone in Alberta, with symptoms and without will be able to get tested. This will provide data of the impact of moving to stage 2, as well has help understand undetected positive cases and prevention of spread
• If you would like to be tested simply fill out the online assessment. Calgarians will be able to get tested immediately, Province wide testing will begin Monday
• Priority will be given to symptomatic people and those in close contact of confirmed cases
• There has been a downward trend in the number of cases in Calgary and Brooks, and final stage one step will move forward Monday. This means day camps, summer schools and places of worship can resume in person. While respecting limits on capacity up to no more than 50 people
Alberta reports 25 COVID-19 cases; province investigating first case of rare virus-related disease in children
• 6106 Albertan’s have now recovered from COVID-19, leaving only 679 active cases in the province
• This is the fewest number of active cases in the province since March 30th
• There are currently 43 people hospitalized, with 4 in the ICU
• AHS has confirmed 25 new cases in the past 24 hours
• There have been 2 new deaths
• MIS-C, a condition That causes rashes and in sever cases can lead to heart damage, similar to Kawasaki disease is now being investigated in Alberta. It is most commonly found in children after an infection.
PM wants employers to re-hire, cites 'enormous financial pressure' being felt
New Alberta COVID-19 update Monday afternoon
• 5979 Albertan’s have now recovered, leaving 762 active cases in the province
• There are currently 45 people in hospitals, with 5 in the ICU
• Over the past 24 hours, AHS has confirmed 19 new cases
• Unfortunately there has also been 3 new deaths reported in the past 24 hours
• More information on non-medical masks being distributed to the general public will be coming
Feds to push for 10 days of paid sick leave for workers
Restaurants, pubs, hair salons and barbershops will reopen May 25 in Calgary and Brooks
Restaurants, bars, pubs, cafes, hair salons and barbershops in Calgary and Brooks will be allowed to resume operating May 25 with limits on capacity.
Bars, restaurants, pubs and cafes will be limited to 50 per cent capacity.
Feds readying to recommend contact tracing app
Alberta reports 4 COVID-19 deaths, 33 new cases
• AHS has confirmed 33 new cases in the past 24 hours, meaning there are now 926 active cases in the province. 5710 Albertan’s have now recovered
• There are currently 59 people hospitalized with 6 in the ICU
• Unfortunately, there has been 4 new deaths, all from Calgary Continuing care facilities
• AHS continues to see a downward trend in active cases in the province and though it is too soon to see the results of the relaunch the numbers are holding steady
COVID-19 remains 'very serious health threat': Trudeau
Alberta reports 33 new COVID-19 cases
• AHS has confirmed 33 new cases in the past 24 hours. There are currently 1004 active cases in the province with now 5584 people now recovered
• There are currently 65 people hospitalized with 8 in the ICU, there have been no new deaths in the past 24 hours
• It is still too early to see what the impact of the relaunch is, but so far the number of cases have been holding steady
• The Government of Alberta announced new funding directed towards helping protect people and staff in Continuing Care Facilities. These residents are at the hgiehst risk of contacting Covid-19. Funding of more than $14 million per month will be given to the operators. This funding will be retroactive to March 15th, and hopes to help these facilities comply to the Public Health orders, including staffing, cleaning supplies and loss of revenue
Canada-U.S. border to remain closed to non-essential travel for another month, PM says it's the 'right thing'
Alberta reports 4 deaths, 58 new cases of COVID-19
• AHS has confirmed 58 new cases in the last 24 hours. At this time there are 1073 active cases in the province with 5317 Albertans now recovered
• There are currently 62 people hospitalized with 9 in the ICU
• Unfortunately, there have been 4 additional deaths, all from the Calgary Zone from Continuing Care facilities. Bringing the total amount of lives lost in Alberta to 125
• There have been some early results with the asymptomatic testing in Calgary, from Monday there has been 50 cases of Covid having no symptoms. That being said, the full investigation is not yet complete, and more information will be shared next week
• As of today, outdoor gathering limits have been increased to a maximum of 50 people, if physical distancing of at least 2 meters is kept between households, and all attendees follow proper hygiene protocols
• Indoor gatherings are still limited to fewer than 15 people
• Non-Essential travel outside the province should still be limited, and should you ravel please respect the health and safety of those along the way. Travel without stopping for gas or food where possible
• After the weekend there will be a reduction of media availability updates. As of next week, they will be on Tuesday and Thursday, the following week they are scheduled for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. If an event of significance happens, an update will be scheduled to share with Albertans. Case information will still be posted online daily.
PM says cross-border separation of loved ones 'difficult' but necessary to curb COVID-19
Alberta reports 50 new cases of COVID-19, one death
• 5205 Albertans have now recovered, leaving only 1131 active cases in the province. Of these cases 65 people have been hospitalized and 10 are in the ICU.
• AHS has confirmed 50 new cases in the past 24 hours.
• Unfortunately, there has been 1 additional death. This brings the total Covid-19 Related lives lost to 121.
• There are currently 100 active cases in Continuing care facilities with 569 residents now fully recovered. AHS is currently monitoring all outbreaks, working with operators to contain spread and make sure all public health measures are taken seriously.
Trudeau says feds chose speed over scrutiny in sending benefit cheques
Businesses in Calgary and Brooks to reopen more slowly than rest of the province: Premier Kenney
• 5076 recoveries with 1211 active cases in Alberta
• 70 people are hospitalized with 11 in ICU
• AHS has confirmed 62 new cases in the last 24 hours
• An outbreak is now declared at the Horizon Workcamp. There have been 5 confirmed cases linked to the camp and the operator is working with AHS to limit the spread
• As of Tomorrow, May 14th, Alberta will move forward with Stage 1 in all areas of the province except for Calgary & Brooks
• Stage one includes the opening of retail businesses (Clothing, furniture, bookstores etc.) Museums and Art galleries and daycares and out of school care with limits on occupancy
• Calgary and Brooks continue to see a disproportionate number of cases so they will experience a slower phased relaunch
• In Calgary and Brooks on May 14th retail businesses will be allowed to open as well as vendors at farmers markets and museums and art galleries. Daycares and out of school care can open with limits on occupancy. May 25th Calgary and Brooks will be allowed to open Personal services such as hairstyling and barber shops, cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars table service at 50% capacity. June 1st will allow the remainder of stage 1 opening, including summer camps, post secondary institutions and places of worship and funeral service under guidelines
Here's what students need to know to apply for the emergency benefit
Second Cargill worker in High River, Alta. who died of COVID-19 identified by union
• AHS has confirmed 45 new cases in the past 24 hours. This brings the active number of cases in the province to 1361, meaning 4866 people have recovered
• There are currently 73 people in the hospital with 12 in the ICU
• Unfortunately, there has been 1 more death, bringing the total deaths in the province to 118
• There are currently 105 active cases in Continuing care facilities, with 559 residents of these facilities now recovered
• At the Cargill Plant, there are 25 active cases in workers with 582 now recovered
• At the JBS plant there are 44 active cases in workers with 582 now recovered
• At Harmony Beef there are 12 Active cases in workers with 28 recoveries
• Official announcement on reopening confirmation due to happen tomorrow
Seniors being sent one-time payment of up to $500: PM
Alberta reports 49 new cases of COVID-19, two deaths
• AHS has confirmed 49 new cases in the past 24 hours. Unfortunately, there have been 2 additional deaths, however 2 previous deaths reported have been ruled unrelated to Covid-19 so the total Albertan lives lost remains at 117
• There are currently 73 people hospitalized across the province with 12 in the ICU. There have been a total of 4659 recovered Albertans leaving just 1524 active cases in the province
• There are currently 102 cases in breakouts in Continuing Care facilities across the province. 542 Residents in Continuing Care Facilities have recovered
• There are 36 Active cases in Workers in the Cargill plant, 911 workers have recovered. There has been 1 death connected to Cargill reported over the weekend
• There are 58 active cases in workers from the JBS plant in brooks, 548 have now recovered
• There are 16 active cases in workers at the Harmony beef plant, 22 have now recovered
• There has been 1 additional case at the Calgary remand centre through the admission process. This is not related to the first case
• There has also been 3 confirmed cases in workers in 2 unrelated Calgary Daycares. These cases are isolated and the daycares are currently closed though there is no evidence that spread happened in the facilities
• Starting today, for the week, AHS will be testing asymptomatic people who work outside the home in the Calgary Zone. There will be 1000 test a day for any asymptomatic Calgary Zone person. If you are interested in being tested please register online on the AHS online assessment tool. Testing will be given on a first case basis
• The Government of Alberta has launched a new biz Connect website to help businesses learn more about the public heath measures that businesses need to have in place before reopening. This website can be found at Alberta.ca
Large firms offered millions in loans to stay afloat: PM
Inmate at Calgary Remand Centre tests positive for COVID-19
• AHS has confirmed 81 new cases in the past 24 hours. We currently have 1963 active cases in Alberta, meaning 4020 have recovered
• We have 80 people in hospitals with 17 of these cases in ICU, these numbers have been reducing in the past weeks
• Unfortunately, we have had 1 additional death bringing the total to 115 Albertan lives lost
• There are currently 678 cases in Continuing Care Facilities through the province
• At the Cargill Facility there are 95 active cases in workers with 849 workers who have recovered.
• There are 96 Active cases in workers at the JBS Plant in brooks with 497 have now recovered
• At Harmony Beef there are 21 active cases in workers with 16 recovered
• Public health officials continue to work with operators to contain the spread and ensure that all public health measures are enforced and taken seriously
• There has been the first case in the province at a correction facility. The inmate in the Calgary Zone has tested positive, this inmate was newly admitted and exposed before they arrived. They have been quarantined and AHS is working with Corrections to ensure prevention of spread
Emergency wage subsidy extending into summer: PM
Alberta surpasses 6,000 cases of COVID-19
• AHS has confirmed 54 new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours bringing the provincial total to 6017. Of these cases, 3809 have now recovered
• Unfortunately, there has been 2 more deaths bringing the total of lives lost in Alberta to 114
• There are currently 632 cases in Continuing Care Facilities across the province
• For more information on the Relaunch plan, as well as Guidance for businesses please visit the Alberta.ca website
'You deserve a raise': PM says deal reached to top up wages for essential COVID-19 workers
• An agreement has been reached within all provinces and territories to top up the wages of some essential front-line workers
• The boost to wages will be done through a cost-sharing initiative between the federal government and the provinces and territories. The federal government is budgeting up to $3 billion to be doled out across the country
• It will be up to each province and territory to determine exactly who will be eligible to in each region
Alberta reports 6 deaths connected to COVID-19, 70 new cases
• AHS has confirmed 70 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the provincial total to 5963. Of these 3552 have now recovered
• Unfortunately, there have been 6 more deaths, bringing the total to 112
• There are 632 cases in Continuing care facilities in Alberta. Cargill cases now sit at 946 with 798 now recovered. 566 cases in JBS, and 434 have now recovered. In Harmony Beef there are 38 confirmed cases with 12 now recovered
• AHS is monitoring each of these outbreaks carefully and working with operators to contain the spread
Alberta reports more recovered than active cases of COVID-19
• AHS has confirmed 57 new cases of COVID-1 over the past 24 hours. Bringing the provincial total to 5893. Of these cases, 3219 have now recovered
• AHS has also confirmed 2 additional deaths in the provincial total to 106 lives lost
• There are currently 622 outbreak cases in Continuing care facilities across the province
• 949 cases in Cargill meat packing plant, though 810 have recovered
• 487 confirmed at the JBS plant in brooks
• 36 confirmed cases at the Harmony meat packing plant
• With an investment from Calgary Health Trust and their investors, AHS will be Investing $4.5 mil to purchase new equip and technology that will expand testing capacity. Testing is a critical element to defeating covid-19 and essential for Alberta’s relaunch strategy
Feds spending $252 million to address food supply issues, safety at processing plants
Alberta surpasses 100 deaths as a result of COVID-19 with 9 more
• AHS has confirmed 70 new cases of Covid-19 over the past 24 hours, bringing the provincial total to 5836. Of these 2942 have recovered
• AHS has also confirmed 9 additional deaths, bringing the total to 104 lives lost. 4 of these deaths are from the past 24 hours, the others were from past days as it does take time to confirm deaths due to Covid
• There are 621 cases in outbreaks in Continuing care facilities across the province. 936 cases from the Cargill plant in High river, 210 have now recovered. 469 cases from the JBS plant in Brooks as well as 998 total confirmed cases in the city of brooks noting that this is not an outbreak limited to a workplace
• AHS will be expanding testing to all close contacts of confirmed cases, whether or not they are filling sick due to the rise in asymptomatic spread
• Today as part of the Government relaunch strategy, AHS will be lifting restrictions of non-urgent scheduled surgeries. Those patience at greater risk will receive care first. Risk of lifting these restrictions will be monitored and moving forward or pulling back will depend on the amount of Covid-19 cases
• Independent allied health professions such as Chiro and Physio, will be permitted to resume operations. AHS is working with professional colleges on the guidelines, including distancing, screening, use of PPE and cleaning procedures. It is important to note that the decision to reopen clinics is up to the operator
As provinces gradually reopen, PM says don't go out 'unless you absolutely have to'
Alberta reports 218 new COVID-19 cases, three deaths
• AHS has confirmed 218 new cases in the last 24 hours. This brings the case total in Alberta to 5573. Of these 2359 people have now recovered
• Unfortunately, there has been 3 additional deaths bringing the provincial total to 92. All 3 deaths were in continuing care facilities currently experiencing outbreaks
• Amazon facility in Balzac is now experiencing an outbreak with 5 cases. Confirmation was just done today so it will not be reflected yet on the website
• Today AHS is launching the Alberta Trace Together App. This is a voluntary secure mobile tracing application to help prevent and track the spread of Covid-19. The app is now available in the apple and google app stores. ABTraceTogether
ABTraceTogether: Province unveils new COVID-19 contact tracing app
Golf courses to open with restrictions next week, province also allows camping
• AHS has confirmed 190 new cases in the last 24 hours, bringing Alberta’s total to 5355 cases. Of these cases 2161 have recovered.
• Unfortunately, there has been 3 additional deaths.
• The Government of Alberta has announced the Alberta Relaunch strategy, though we are still months from anything that may feel like “normal”, we have begun to achieve the goal of flattening the curve.
• A full return to normal will not come until a successful vaccine or treatment has been found, so the province will need to remain vigilant, and public health requirements will be around for some time
• There is a 3 stage approach to gradually re-opening the economy. Stage 1, which may come into effect as soon as May 14th would be the reopening of some businesses and services while ensuring protection from resurgence of Covid-19. This may include some retail businesses, hair and barbering, daycares, restaurants and cafes with occupancy limits, museums and art galleries, outdoor recreation spots and additional allied health services
• Stage 2 is further reopening of business and services with continued protection, and restrictions of public gatherings. This may include personal services, massage and reflexology, summer camps, secondary institutions, k-12 schools with restrictions, movie theatres with restrictions and additional elective surgeries
• Stage 3 would allow for reopening of other businesses and services with some restrictions. This would include swimming pools and gyms, and arenas with restrictions, nightclubs with restrictions, industry conferences, arts and cultural festivals all with restrictions, and major sporting events with restrictions
• Albertan’s will be required to wear masks in public locations where social distancing is not able to be done. Alberta is launching a program to help Albertan’s to have and wear masks.
• If all remains stable, we may be seeing the launch of stage 1 as soon as May 14th
• There will be evaluation and mentoring periods at each stage to determine if restrictions should be moved up or down. This would depend on Hospitalizations, percentage of ICU beds occupied and new case numbers and rate of infection.
• To help us move forward Alberta will be increasing testing capacity, contact tracing, support those who test positive, border controls, mask wearing and rules, as well as protecting the vulnerable and outbreak response
• As we move forward, some dental and other health providers will be able to resume as of May 4th, as long as they follow special guidelines. The online Alberta parks campsite website will be open for booking May the 4th, and campsites will be available with restrictions and spacing requirements. Vehicle access will be allowed in some provincial parks and boat launches will be open as early as this Friday (Tomorrow). Gold courses allowed to open as early as this weekend but pro shops and clubhouses must remain closed until we hit stage 1.
• AHS will constantly be reviewing public health guidelines as we begin to reopen. Expect to see changes and updates as these plans unfold
Seven new deaths, 315 additional COVID-19 cases in Alberta
• AHS has confirmed 315 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the provincial total to 5165. Of these cases 1953 have recovered
• Sadly, there have been 7 new deaths bringing the total of Albertan lives lost to 87
• These 7 deaths come from long term care facilities in Calgary
• New public health orders for continuing care facilities, anyone with the mildest symptoms such as a hoarse voice or muscle ache must immediately be tested and remain isolated until results come back
• As soon as a case of Covid-19 is identified all residents in the same unit are tested even if they are feeling fine and show no symptoms
• These new orders are in coordination with all preciously issued orders
• Second new order is to allow residents in these facilities who are not in isolation can enjoy outdoor visits with designated visitors and 1 other person must still have physical distancing and all visitors must wear masks or face covering. Visitors are still restricted from visiting inside these facilities
• New standards are being issued for Residential addiction treatment facilities. Previously they were under the same standards as continuing care facilities, but addiction treatment facilities needs are unique
Emergency student benefit gets boost as part of deal to fast-track $9B aid package
Five deaths, 154 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta
• AHS has confirmed 154 new cases in the past 24 hours bringing the Alberta total to 4850. Of these cases82 are hospitalized, 21 in ICU and 1800 recoveries
• Unfortunately, there have been 5 more deaths, bringing the total Albertan lives lost to 80
• Calgary Zone is considered a hot spot in the province, with the majority of cases in this zone
• Alberta remains well below the previously modeled numbers that were issued a few weeks ago, which means the precautions in place have been working. Though this is good news we must stay vigilant to continue being successful
• For daily updates of various statistics please visit covid19stats.alberta.ca
• AHS will continue to refine the modeling as more data becomes available
• Thought we are not yet at the point of returning to our normal life, the province is working on a phased approach to relaunching our economy, and more details will be released later this week
Trudeau and premiers agree: This is what's necessary for provinces to start reopening
• The measures Canadians have taken so far are working. This afternoon updated modeling will be released to give Canada an update on where the country currently sits and what we might expect with the new information
• Later today the Federal Government will be sharing the “shared principles” that have been agreed on by the federal, provincial and territorial governments on restarting the economy. These are not the specifics as to when it will be over, but more of a framework of things that need to happen before we can take any next steps. Restarting the economy will be a slow and careful processed guided by science
• This will include things such as controlling transmission, making sure there is enough capacity to test and track any new spread, as well as measures put in place to ensure employees are safe when they return to work. It’s important to note that those groups considered high risk such as seniors or those in long-term care facilities will have stronger measures in place longer
Alberta reports two new deaths, 216 more COVID-19 cases
• AHS has confirmed 216 new cases in the past 24 hours. This brings Alberta’s total number of cases to 4696. Out of this amount of cases 87 people are hospitalized with 20 in the ICU. 1664 people have recovered
• Unfortunately, there have been 2 additional deaths in the province, bringing the total amount of lives lost in the province to 75
• There are 458 cases in Alberta Continuing care facilities, and outbreaks in these facilities are a major concern
• 4 confirmed cases in the Calgary homeless population and testing of this group has increased
• 13 confirmed cases in the Bearspaw First Nation in Southern Alberta
• There are currently 2 investigations in the Edmonton zone in relation to small hospital outbreaks, which were quickly taken control of
Waiting for life to return to pre-pandemic normal? 'It won't,' PM says
• As of today, employers can now submit applications through the CRA for the Emergency Wage Subsidy benefit. This application portal can be reached through the Canada.ca website. First payments can be expected by May 11th
• It is important to note that you cannot receive both wage subsidy and the Canada Emergency Response benefit. It is one or the other, not both
• Parliament will have its first virtual sitting tomorrow to help pass the help proposed for students, there will also be an in person sitting on Wednesday. The Federal Government is also in discussion with the provinces and territories to get plans for more help for essential workers. More updates in the coming days
• Discussions for shared guidelines for reopening the economy once the time comes. It’s important to remember that different provinces and territories will be able to move at a different pace
Five more deaths, 297 new COVID-19 cases as Alberta total surpasses 4,000
• AHS has confirmed 297 new cases in the last 24 hours. This brings the provincial total to 4017
• Of these total cases 1397 Albertan’s have recovered. Unfortunately, there has been 5 additional deaths meaning there have now been 72 lives lost in Alberta
• Though many are upset about summer festivals and events being cancelled the decision was not made lightly. It is an important step to stop the spread. This virus will not go away in the summer months and will be with us for some time to come. The current preventative measures are helping us flatten the curve and we cannot stop now
Ban on public events in Calgary extended until Aug. 31
Feds establishing guidelines to reopening economy, won't be as easy as 'flipping a switch': PM
• The Federal Government has reached agreements with all provinces and territories regarding the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance. This will mean rent for small businesses who spend less than 50K a month on rent, and non-profits and charitable organizations, will be able to have their rent lowered by 75% for the months of April, May, and June. The Government will cover 50% of the reduction with the property owners covering the rest. There will be information in the coming days for support for large businesses
• Later today Trudeau will speak with the premiers, and one of the main topics is the gradual reopening of parts of the economy. It is clear that some regions have been hit harder than others, but it is important to remember that the opening of the economy will take time and be done in steps that will need to be in coordination across the country
319 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Alberta
• ASH has confirmed 319 new cases in the last 24 hours, this brings Albertas total case numbers to 3720, of these cases 1357 people have now recovered
• AHS also confirms 2 additional deaths, bringing the total to 68 lives lost
• The mass gathering public health restrictions are applicable to all summer festivals and events. No more than 15 people in one location
• AHS is in final stages of developing a contact tracing app. This app will use Bluetooth to see if you have come in contact with someone who has confirmed positive for Covid-19. This is a voluntary app and Albertan’s will be able to choose whether to download it. Should be available to all Albertan’s in the coming weeks
Calgary Stampede officially cancels 2020 edition of The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth
Feds commit $1.1B for COVID-19 vaccine, clinical trials, immunity research
• 1.1 billion towards National Medical and Research Strategy, this has three pillars Research on vaccine and treatment, support for clinical trials and expanding national testing and modeling
• $115 Million is being invested for research into vaccines and treatments being developed across the country, this money is on top of funding previously promised
• $662 Million is being invested for Clinical trials lead by Canada, a vaccine is the long-term solution to the virus and this will take time
• $350 Million for expanding national testing and modeling of Covid-19. This includes the creation of the Covid-19 immunity task force to trace and understand immunity to Covid, such as if you are immune once you have had it and for how long. This will mean testing of over 1 million Canadians during this time to get relevant valid information
Five deaths, 306 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta
• AHS has confirmed 306 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing Alberta’s total number to 3401. Unfortunately, there have been 5 more deaths, bringing the provincial total to 66
• 1310 cases have recovered, the vast majority have recovered at home
• Currently there are 70 people in hospital, and from that 18 in the ICU
• First case on Alberta First Nation. Disclosure of this case is at the request of the Sucker Creek First Nation
• The Government of Alberta will launch the Alberta Cares Connector, a new website connecting Albertans with local volunteer opportunities in cooperation with the Volunteer Centre of Calgary
• Alberta government is also launching the Northern Lights Award to recognize Albertans doing amazing things in their communities to help their fellow Albertans. The first recipient of the Northern Lights Award is a young boy from Okotoks who, with the helps of others, printing protective face shields on his 3D printer
• Later this week Alberta will be sending 20K procedural masks to the Northwest territories, as well a providing 25 ventilators to Quebec. These ventilators are to be returned to Alberta once the need for them has passed in Quebec
PM Trudeau announces new COVID-19 emergency benefit for students
• The Government of Canada announced the Canada Emergency Student Benefit to provide immediately help to Students, as well as creating new student jobs and doubling student grants, this plan will mean $9 billion dollars for students
• The Canada Emergency Student Benefit will mean if you are a post-secondary student right now, starting in September or graduated in December 2019 you are eligible for $1250 a month from May to August. If you are taking care of someone else or have a disability this amount will be raised to $1750 each month. Those with jobs will also qualify if you are making $1000 or less a month. Payments will be retroactive to May 1st and be paid through the CRA. More information on application dates will come as they are still working with the opposition to adopt the bill
• Federal government is also creating 76K jobs for young people in addition to summer job program, these jobs will be in sectors that need help and/or work directly in helping the fight against this COVID-19 pandemic
• There will also be a Canada Student Service grant for students volunteering in positions that are to directly fight against COVID-19. The amounts vary from $1000 - $5000 depending on hours and more details on how to apply for these grants are to come
• Doubling the student grants that the Government gives out for the 2020-20201 school year
• $75 million will be given to increase support specifically for indigenous students
187 new COVID-19 cases and two additional deaths in Alberta
• AHS has confirmed 187 new cases over the last 24 hours, this brings Alberta’s total to 3095. 1273 people have recovered. unfortunately, there have been 2 additional deaths bringing the total for Alberta to 61
• 367 of these cases are in continuing care facilities in Alberta from 29 active outbreaks
• AHS will post the locations of all Continuing Care Facility outbreak sites starting today
• Goal is to expand to other settings in the weeks to come
New funds for COVID-19 community programs coming, wage subsidy launching April 27: PM
• Federal Government is setting up a $350 million Emergency Community Support Fund to help charities and non-profits keep up their work assisting the vulnerable during this pandemic
• There will be a calculator launched on the CRA website so employers can calculate the amount they can claim through the wage subsidy
• Applications for the Wage Subsidy will open Monday, April 27th
Alberta reports four more deaths, 105 new COVID-19 cases
• AHS has confirmed 105 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing Alberta’s total number to 2908
• 1230 of these cases has recovered
• Unfortunately, there have been 4 more deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 59
• New measures are being brought in specifically for Continuing Care facilities
• Increase funding to hire addition staff to address higher workloads and respond to outbreaks
• A wage supplement of $2 an hour to compensate health care aids
• Fast tracking health care aid students using paid practicums to get more paid staff into care facilities. This could mean up to 1000 student placement
Alberta reports one COVID-19 death, 165 new cases
• AHS has confirmed 165 new cases in the past 24 hours. This brings Alberta’s total number of cases to 2562. There has unfortunately been one new death
• 4092 tests have been completed in the last 24 hours and a total of 96897 tests performed by the lab
• Agriculture and Forestry, the Canadian food Inspection Agency and AHS have developed a plan to protect workers while ensuring limited impact to our essential food supply during this pandemic. For more information please visit alberta.ca
• Truck drivers can now use an interactive map on 511 Alberta to find open restaurants, restrooms, and showers on Alberta highways
• A fire ban is in place inside the forest protection area of Alberta and Alberta Provincial parks and protected areas until future notice.
Canada-U.S. border restrictions extended for another 30 days: PM
• The Canada – US border will remain closed to non-essential travel for another 30 days, they were originally due to expiry on April 21
• The federal government will allocate more than $306 million to support indigenous businesses that are struggling during the pandemic. This money will help Indigenous companies to access short term interest free loans and non-repayable contributions. The money is to be provided through Aboriginal financial institutions and administered by the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association
Alberta reports 239 more COVID-19 cases as province ramps up testing
• 239 new cases in the last 24 hours bringing Alberta’s total number of cases to 2397
• 1124 total recovered cases
• No new deaths have been reported meaning total deaths remain at 50 within Alberta
• Testing access was expanded, and an increase of cases was expected
• AHS will now be testing all residents and staff living and working in continuing care facilities that are experiencing outbreak whether they show symptoms or not
Netflix Expands Hardship Fund to $150 Million as Crews Remain Anxious About Coronavirus Shutdown
PM Trudeau announces targeted help for some hard-hit sectors, provinces
• The Government of Canada will be investing $1.7 billion to clean up orphan and inactive wells in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia, creating immediate jobs in these provinces and help energy companies avoid going bankrupt. It is estimated that this will maintain 5200 jobs in Alberta alone
• They will also be establishing a $750 million dollar emission reduction fund with a focus on pollution caused by methane from this amount $75 million will be designated to offshore industry to cut emissions in Newfoundland and Labrador
• With these two investments it is estimated that it will maintain 10K jobs across the country
• Government of Canada is also working with BDC and EDC to expand credit support for medium sized energy businesses that are at risk
• $962 Million dollars is to be invested in regional development agencies and community future network, to ensure more businesses such as rural neighbourhood businesses and those that eligible for the already announced help are getting support. There will also be $270 Mill to Futurpreneur Canada and programs for industrial workers to support innovators and other start up firms that do not qualify for the wage subsidy but still need help
• Arts and culture and sports sector $500 million will be allocated to Heritage Canada to support our artists, creators, Culture, and rising stars in the world of sports. With these funds there will be wage support and organizations struggling with cash flow will be able to access funds
Alberta surpasses 2,000 cases of COVID-19, reaches 50 deaths
• In the last 24 hours AHS has confirmed 162 new cases. This brings the total cases in Alberta to 2158. Unfortunately, there has also been 2 additional deaths related to COVID-19
• Staff on maternity ward in Calgary Foothills hospital have been diagnosed with COVID-19, though AHS assures that no patients effected by this and no more staff members have become infected
PM Trudeau unveils new business rent assistance, loosened loan qualifications
• Canadian Government is increasing and decreasing the eligibility threshold for the Canada emergency business account. Those businesses or companies have spent between $20K to $105 Million in total payroll in 2019 will now be eligible for the Canada Emergency Business account. This money is to cover operations costs and other immediate needs
• The creation of Canada emergency commercial rent assistance program, This will be support for small businesses for coverage of rent for April May and June. This program does have to be worked out with the provinces and territories directly, so more details will hopefully be available very soon
Alberta reports 126 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths
• The cases in Alberta have increased by 126 over last 24 hours. Bringing the total number of cases in Alberta to 1996. No new deaths since yesterday
• 44 in hospitals, and 10 in intensive care units, these numbers have been stable for the past few days and are well below the projected modelling presented a week ago
• As testing is now open to all Albertan’s who have any symptoms of COVID-19 the numbers of cases are expected to rise
• Taking care of your mental wellness should be a priority now. Help is available, Alberta’s government understands the mental health impact of this crisis. The Government of Alberta is Investing $53 Million additional dollars into mental health support to help Albertans cope with the COVID-19 crisis
• This investment is on top of the $140 Million dollars of additional spending that the government begun implementing last year after the election. This will help Albertan’s access online and virtual health and addiction services support and resources. Expanding capacity of existing helplines, and online platforms that provide advice and support and help connect people directly to counseling. As well as expand access to the person to person online community and be Albertan’s will be able to access support 24 hours a day 7 days a week from clinicians when it’s needed
• later this spring a new online platform providing mental health screening and self-help guides and direct support from councilors when needed
• Alberta mental health helpline is 1-877-303-2642
More Canadians are now eligible for emergency benefit, PM Trudeau says
• In Tomorrows weekly meeting with provincial and territorial leaders they will be discussing how to get a wage boost for essential workers in place as soon as possible. This wage boost will be for those essential workers making under $2500 a month, and are working in long term care facilities, helping seniors and those with disabilities
• Government will also be expanding CERB to include people who are making $1000 a month or less, seasonal workers and people whose EI has recently run out, the date given was January 1st
• The Government of Canada has launched a mental health portal at Canada.ca and through the Canada Covid app, where you can find all the help available
Alberta reports 138 new COVID-19 cases; single-largest day yet for new infections
• 138 new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the past 24 hours. The Vast majority of these cases are in the Calgary zone, where testing has been increased
• This brings Alberta’s total number of cases to 1870, but 914 of these cases has recovered, that is 37 more than yesterday
• Though there is a steady rise of recoveries in the province we should also expect a rise in cases as well that comes with the rising testing in Alberta
• There has unfortunately been 2 additional deaths in the past 24 hours
• There are now 214 cases, including 30 deaths in Continuing Care Facilities in this Province which is why the new measures coming into practice this week are so important
• The government of Alberta is giving a $3 million dollar grant to Care Givers Alberta, which will help a province wide inventory of care giver supports for more information please visit caregiversalberta.ca
Feds imposing tougher quarantine rules on returning travellers, PM Trudeau says
• Canadian government is investing nearly $130 million dollars to the northern communities to help fight COVID-19 $72.6mil to Yukon, North West Territories and Nunavut specifically for healthcare and community preparedness and will be giving more money to the Nutrition North Canada to keep families healthy. In order to keep groceries and medical equipment in stock there will also be funding for northern air carriers to continue transporting these supplies
• Canadian Government will be strengthening measures for returning travelers. As of midnight tonight, anyone who is asymptomatic and returning to Canada from abroad will have to have and explain a credible quarantine plan or they will be required to quarantine in a hotel
• $20 million in funding will be going towards the Canadian food inspection agency to boost staffing and hours
• More announcements are expected this week for help for students, essential workers, businesses commercial rent and sectors that have been particularly hard hit
Alberta records 81 new cases of COVID-19 and 2 more deaths
• 81 New cases confirmed over the past 24 hours in Alberta, bringing the provinces total to 1732. There have also been 2 more deaths.
• As of today there have also been 877 people confirmed as recovered
Nearly half of known COVID-19 deaths in Canada linked to long-term care homes: Tam
Alberta to send PPE to Ontario, Quebec and B.C.
• 69 New Cases confirmed in Alberta over the past 24 hours, and 1 more death. This brings Alberta’s total numbers to 1569. Out of the total cases there have been 744 recoveries
• Alberta Government is to send Personal Protective Equipment and ventilators to Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia. Alberta Health Experts are very confident in the modeling and data and the expected need for PPE and ventilators, and are assuring Albertans that Alberta has ample supply while helping the other provinces
'All called to serve': PM Trudeau says as COVID-19 wage subsidy bill passes House
• The house of commons has passed Bill C-14, The $73 billion wage subsidy program, which is the second piece of emergency legislation of the COVID-19 pandemic and is now before the senate. Is due to pass before days end
7 more deaths and 49 new cases of COVID-19 announced in Alberta
• AHS has confirmed 49 new cases of COVID-19 in Alberta, bringing the total number of cases to 1500. 121 new recoveries have also been reported, bringing the total number of recovered cases to 713. Sadly, we have had 7 new deaths
• Over 6000 people have been referred to testing in the past 24 hours, so it is expected for our numbers to grow
• New requirements for continuing care facilities are being brought forward. This means all workers will need to wear masks at all times. AHS is also requirement all continuing care facility workers only work at one site. This is to help prevent spread between facilities. These requirements are already in effect at outbreak locations, but will now be implemented at all locations late next week
• Effective immediately, all health care workers who provide patient care contact or are in patient care areas are required to wear a surgical mask at all times in all facilities
Trudeau to join weekend House of Commons sitting on COVID-19 wage subsidy bill
Alberta reports 3 more deaths, 28 new cases of COVID-19
• 28 new cases in Alberta over the past 24 hours, this bring Alberta total number of cases to 1451 cases. Out of this total 592 have recovered, which is 74 more than yesterday and 192 total may be community transmission. Unfortunately, there has been an additional 3 deaths.
'No easy path': PM Trudeau on national COVID-19 death projections
• More than 1 Million Jobs lost in March
• Federal projections released by Heath Canada detailed the overall best and worst-case scenarios 22000 to 50000 deaths 5% - 10% of the population to be infected. Numbers based on controls now in place, events cancelled, business closed and social distancing. These are the long-term predictions To see the pdf of the COVID-19 Predictions please click here
Alberta to fare better than other provinces in COVID-19 projections
• As of this afternoon, 1423 Albertans have tested positive for COVI-19. Currently there are 44 cases hospitalize, 16 in the ICU and 29 fatalities
• Though the numbers have grown by 50 over the past 24 hours, the number of recovered cases has also increased by 72 to bring the total recoveries to 519 here in Alberta
• Additional changes to testing criteria, effective immediately all residents of Calgary zone who have cough fever runny nose sore throat or shortness of breath are eligible for testing. AHS is also opening testing to all essential workers, across the province. This includes anyone who’s worksite has not been closed to public access by public access. Testing will also now include anyone who has the above symptoms and lives with a person 65 years of age or older
• If you are in the above categories, or suspect you may have COVID-19, please use the online health assessment tool as a way to access testing. With a new process now in place, anyone who goes through the assessment does not need to also call 811
• You can view the Alberta COVID-19 modelling document on the alberta.ca website
• Modelling is intended to show expected trends it is not a day to day forecast. These scenarios should not be considered concrete as the situation is constantly evolving and as new data becomes available, the situations may change
• Current situation: Kenney says that Alberta is doing very well in terms of slope compared to other jurisdictions. Alberta’s slope is more closely resembling South Korea, Japan and Taiwan instead of Italy Spain or even the USA
• It is important to remember we are still fairly early into this, which is why continued vigilance is necessary. This data is encouraging but it cannot be taken for granted
• Most important stat to follow is how many people infected with COVID-19 will be hospitalized and in particular the ICU
Calgary Parking Authority to give 30 minute grace periods to allow for deliveries
• The City of Calgary will be renewing state of emergency this afternoon for an additional 7 days
• Use of non-medical masks or face coverings, you can take those measures to protect others around you. Masks are recommended in crowded places and locations where you cannot maintain the 2-meter distancing. Covering your face does not mean you do not need to practice all of the other measures. ALL Public health measures must be followed
• Please make sure you are disposing of your gloves and mask if you wear them out, stop littering
• Effective this week households may have seen change in collection schedule. This was a previously planned change, just happened to fall during this pandemic. Please visit Calgary.ca/collection to know your schedule. You can sign up for free reminders through the website or download garbage day app. If you are having any trouble, please contact 311
• Due to staffing challenges green bins will remain on every other week winter schedule and drivers will not picking up extra bags of garbage or extra bags of yard waste to protect health of the driver
• Many non-profits and charities that usually take donations are closed or do not have the staff to take care of the donation bins located across the city. Please do not leave items outside the bins right now. Hold on to them for later for donation afterwards
• City landfill are available Monday to Saturday. Accepting credit and debit payments only
PM Trudeau returns to the Hill, says 'normal' life still a ways off
• Cabinet will be meeting this afternoon; most will be joining on the phone to discuss next steps including the wage subsidy
• Initially businesses would have to prove a dip in revenues of 30%, in the month of March this year, versus March of last year. Discussions with small businesses and non-profits helped this program adapt to include those that may not meet that criteria. This will help businesses such as charities, non-profits, start ups and brand-new businesses. They will have to show a dip of 15% in revenue, businesses will also have the ability to use January and February as reference periods to demonstrate the 30% dip. Non-Profits and charity organizations will have the choice to include or exclude government funding when calculating the loss of revenue. Meeting these requirements will mean the government could give a business up to $847 per week, per employee retroactive to March 15th
• The eligibility of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit is being discussed to expand and include freelancers, home-care professionals and those who have had their hours reduced to 10 hours or less
• There have been changes made to the Canada Summer Jobs Program. Canada Summer Job program employers can receive a subsidy of up to %100, to cover the cost of hiring a student. The job placement start date has also been extended until the winter due to some jobs starting later. CSJ employers will also be able to hire students part time
• Half a million N95 masks from 3M were received over night and will be distributed where they are most needed across the country
One-in-six Albertans could contract COVID-19, new projections show
• AHS has confirmed 25 new cases of COVID-19 over the past 24 hrs, bringing the Alberta total to 1373. Of these 447 people have recovered, and 199 may be community transmission. Sadly, we have had 2 more deaths, bringing Alberta’s total to 26
• Jason Kenney addresses Alberta: Protecting the health of Albertans is our first priority, but we must focus on both the pandemic and the economy at the same time. The more we do to stop the pandemic now the faster we can restart our economy and pave a path to recovery, the economy and the pandemic are intertwined
• Our high level of testing has given us the numbers to make creating the following scenarios possible, and though so far, our hospitalized number are low it is warned that things could get much worse if we do not follow the Alberta Health recommendations
• Probable Scenario has a projected peak hitting in mid-May, meaning we could see possibly 800,000 infections and 400 – 3100 deaths
• Elevated Scenario projected to see 1 million infections and 500 – 6600 deaths
• These numbers can be overwhelming, but these models are not a done deal, Kenney has asked Albertan’s to see them as a challenge, and that they are not inevitable. How this actually plays out depends on us, and our choices. We all need to rigorously follow simple basic rules: Wash your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds. Sneeze or cough into your elbow. When you can stay home, stay home. Stay 6 feet away from other people outside of your home. Stay home for 2 weeks if you are sick or returning from out of the country and wear a covering over your nose and mouth if going into a crowded area
• The scenario for if Alberta decides to let it run its course, if Albertan’s choose not to follow social distancing or public heath recommendation means we could see up to 1.6 million infections and 32,000 deaths. Our heath system would collapse, and it is clear that we cannot let that happen
• The current strategy is to push down the peak of infections as much as we can while pulling up the health capacity to cope. Thanks to front line workers we are expanding capacity of hospitals, opening more ICU spaces, beds and ventilators
• More details to come tomorrow
• Needless to say, Alberta and Albertan’s are under huge financial stress, it’s important to remember that this will not continue indefinitely. The public heath orders may remain in place until the end of May, but it is the most ethical course
• Once we are past the peak we can begin relaxing the rules, and the Government of Alberta will launch the Economic relaunch strategy. This will mean opening the economy while preventing the recourse of virus
• Key elements of this relaunch strategy: Aggressive system of mass testing, using new tests being develop and approved. A Goal to turn around 20K test a day, determined to continue leading the world in testing. More precise tracking of close contacts of those infected, to be expanded. Strong border screening, rigorous approach in screening and quarantining international arrivals. Strictly enforce quarantine orders, Will encourage and facilitate usage of masks in public spaces like transit, these and other focused measures will allow us to relaunch the economy while protecting us from future outbreaks
• AHS already participating in trials and will do everything to accelerate effective testing, drugs and vaccines
• The end of pandemic will not be end of economy downturn, while we can expect global economy recovery later this year, crash in energy prices means Alberta will be in deeper and economic recovery will be harder. With Western Canadian oil as $3.00 a barrel., there is a very real possibility global inventory overflow and our energy will hit negative prices
• Alberta budget deficit may triple to $20 billion
With demand on the rise, PM says thousands of companies offering to make COVID-19 supplies
• Health Canada is still recruiting volunteers to help our front line workers, please check out Canada.ca/Coronavirus
• Almost 5000 Canadian Companies have stepped forward to help fight COVID-19. It is clear we require a stable production of personal protective equipment, which means we need them made at home. The Government will be working with Canadian companies to make 30K made in Canada Ventilators, as well as things like masks, hand sanitizers and medical gowns
• While the Government works with local companies, they are remaining In touch with suppliers around the world that want to sell to Canada. 500K masks are expected from 3M tomorrow, and the government is working as fast as possible to get them to our front line workers
• The legislation for the wage subsidy has been shared with the opposition, in hopes for a quick passage through the house, with more details coming soon
• 788,000 applications for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit were received yesterday. If you were born in April May or June you should apply today
Alberta reports 98 new cases of COVID-19
• As of today, AHS has confirmed 98 new cases and 1 death over the past 24 hours. Bringing Alberta’s total number of cases to 1348, with 361 of those total cases having recovered
• Hospitalization in the province remains low and manageable with a total of 40, with 16 in the Intensive Care unit
• Alberta Health’s success is a tribute to swift implementation of effective measures and an effective pandemic response plan
• Testing measures must allow AHS to diagnose and treat those at greatest rick of severe outcome, allow AHS to trace spread of the virus with priority with those at greatest risk, and provide AHS with accurate information, testing is being expanded. Eligibility of who can be tested now extends to those at high risk, like firemen, police officers, public heath officials, those working in group home and similar settings, as well as anyone 65 years or older who may be showing symptoms such as cough, fever, runny nose, sore throat or shortness of breath
• Asymptomatic spread is far more prevalent than initially thought, the Canadian Special Advisory committee would like to extend their advice in using face masks for the general public. For those Albertan’s who find themselves in situations where they are unable to keep the 2-meter distance between themselves and others could wear a non-medical cloth mask
• The Average Alberta who in their day to day activities is able to keep that 2-meter distance between themselves and others wearing a mask would not provide any added benefit
• Wearing mask is not to protect the person wearing it, it is to protect those around the person wearing the face covering
• If you choose to wear a non-medical mask or cloth face covering it should be well fitted and not gape at the sides. Hands should be washed before putting the mask or covering on and washed before and after removing the mask. Cloth masks can become contaminated as soon as damp, so should only be worn a short period as time. May be prudent to carry a bag with several clean masks within it, and a plastic bag to store masks in once worn until they can be washed at home. Non-medical and cloth masks can be washed with other times at high heat and dried in the highest heat setting as well
• Use masks and face coverings carefully as to prevent spread
• The Government of Alberta is working on procurement of non-medical masks for future use of the general public
• The Government gave an update on the Bits and Pieces Program that was officially launched Friday. Since the launching the offers and donations have tripled to over 3000
• The Government of Alberta is planning well ahead and will be announcing measures to ensure we have adequate supply of the main 3 masks used. The N95 masks critical for frontline workers dealing with COVID-19 patience – currently have approximately 1-month supply but are constantly seeking more. AHS has an adequate supply of the ordinary medical setting masks, and are currently looking into homemade, cloth or store bought dusk masks
• Wednesday evening there will be a briefing on models and projections done by Alberta Health Services, more details to come
• Government of Alberta announced some temporary changes to Employment Standards legislation. Effective immediately, employees that need to care for children effected by school or daycare closures or need to care for sick loved ones are entitled to unpaid job protected family leave with a waiving of the required 90 day employment standard, as well as increasing the 60 day temporary lay off window to 120 days, this is back dated to March 17th to allow employers the flexibility to make it through the pandemic, and help with the recovery of the economy after this. Employers are now allowed to give notice of a shift of schedule change as soon as possible. If staff needs to be reduced by 50 employees or more the 8-16-week notice is removed. Government of Alberta is also streamlining approvals for modifying employment standards. These changes take effect immediately and will remain as long as needed through this state of emergency
More aid coming for those who don’t qualify for current COVID-19 benefits: PM
• The Canada Emergency Response Benefit, or CERB, is for those with pay cheques lost, or are taking care of someone sick, have been laid off or living with a disability. This benefit is available starting today. If your birthday is in January February or March, you can go to Canada.ca and apply online. If you cannot apply online, please call 1800-959-2041 call to apply
• As of the time of Trudeau’s address, over 240 thousand people have already successfully applied
• There are some people who don’t yet qualify CERB. If you have had your hours reduced to 10 hours or less a week, the Government of Canada will soon announce how you will be able to qualify, this will apply to gig workers or contract workers. Help will also be coming soon for those who are still working but are making less than the benefit pays, as well as for students who are wondering what kind of job they may have this summer. Help is on the way
• More updates are to come soon for businesses in regard to the 75% wage subsidy
• Six major banks and some credit unions have cut credit card interest rates in almost in half for people in financial difficulty because of the pandemic. Please contact your bank or credit union for more details on how they can help you
Trudeau addresses Canadians day before Ottawa's COVID-19 benefits program launches
• Canada Emergency Response Benefit applications go live tomorrow. You can register at Canada/ca. If you sign up for Direct Deposit the first payment will be received in 3-5 days, if you choose Cheque it can be expected in 10 days
• The program will be live Monday, but Canadians are being asked to register based on their birth month. January to March can register on April 6th, April to June can register April 7th, July though September can register on April 8th and Canadians born October through December can register up April 9th
• Health Canada is building an inventory of specialized volunteers that provinces and territories can draw on to help their frontline workers. This work could be anything from tracking cases and collecting contact information to and collect data. If you would like to register you can do so at Canada.ca/coronavirus. Applications will be open until the 24th
• The Government is Canada is offering full time jobs to all the reservists. They are being contacted to see if they are interested and offered the same pay and benefits as regular military personnel
• 233 Canadians have lost their lives due to COVID-19
• Very best thing you can do to fight this pandemic is to follow public health recommendations, wash your hands and stay at home. Try to make grocery trips once a week and if you do have to go out keep a safe distance of 2 meters between yourself and others
Canada to receive ‘millions’ of masks from China, Trudeau says
• For the most reliable and accurate information on COVID-19 including stats can be found Canada/ca/coronavirus. This information is updated regularly, and the Government gathers more information from provinces and territories it will get more accurate. Regardless of what the numbers tell us, the measures already taken are saving lives
• Government of Canada is putting forward $40 million dollars for women’s shelters and sexual assault centers to help with their capacity and to manage and prevent outbreaks, as well as $10 Million for Indigenous Women and Children’s shelters, and $157 Million for the homeless
• In 48 hrs Canada will be receiving a shipment of millions of masks by a chartered cargo flight. These are vital supplies for essential workers on the front lines and are key to our success. The Government of Canada has also leased a warehouse in china to collect and distribute these items as quickly as possible and the flights bringing these items home are Canadian companies cargo jet and Air Canada
• Tomorrow, there will be a video Conference with Trudeau and Doctor Tam directed towards children. Astronaut Jeremy Hansen will also be live on YouTube to take questions
Alberta surpasses 1,000 cases of COVID-19; 5 more deaths confirmed
• Over the past 24 hours AHS has confirmed 107 New cases, which brings the provincial total to 1075. Unfortunately, there have also been 5 Additional deaths, which makes Alberta’s total lost 18
• AHS has confirmed that 22 more people have recovered since yesterday, making the total number 196
• What the numbers tell us is that Albertas heath system is heading the pandemic better than most, but it is important to remember that this is just a snapshot in time, however it does reflect where Alberta is today relative to the rest of the world
• The infections and deaths will rise in the days and weeks to come however so will the recoveries
• As of today, AHS will be limiting visitors to hospitals, patients in hospital will no longer be able to have any visitors in person. Please plan to support love ones in hospitals with virtual visits instead
• AHS is reaching the point where there will be enough data to render potential modeling for an outlook of this pandemic, and they hope to deliver by next week
• AHS is confident they have the equipment, personnel and supplies needed to cope with all possible hospitalizations
• Government of Alberta is launching the “bits and pieces program” – Which is a call back to the program the Minister of munitions and supplies launched during the Second World War. It is a call to all Canadians, to do what they can through innovation, production and donations to support the province during this time. This program has only been up and running in a preliminary phase for about a week and has received over 1000 offers already
• A special shout out to several organizations and businesses, but one in particular was IATSE and Costume Alchemy for the work they have been doing making gowns for essential workers!
• If you are interested in helping or would like more information on the Bits and Pieces program please visit the Alberta.ca/covid19 web site, where you will find a link to the program, which will be up and running later tonight. The Government will look at every submission and respond to the one that have the potential to meet a need
All public events cancelled in Calgary until June 30 due to COVID-19
• City of Calgary is Cancelling all public events up until June 30th, to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The City has also cancelled any permits that were in place for parks or city facilities where gatherings were due to happen. This includes City walks and runs
• Thought Neighbour day in June cannot happen due to social distancing restrictions, Mayor Nenshi is requesting anyone who has idea’s how it can still go ahead to please tweet, or Instagram using the hash tag #yycneighbourday
• Plus 15 system is now closed as well, due to being unable to keep the social distancing recommendations within them
• City operated playgrounds remain closed, and though parkways and green spaces are still open you are still required to keep 2 meters away from other people
• Few road closures will happen this weekend to help with Social distancing along pathways and park spaces. Information on which roadways will be issues soon
• Currently, the City of Calgary is still in agreement with CDC and Dr. Hinshaw’s recommendation that you do not need to wear a mask in public unless you have symptoms or are around someone with symptoms
• Some more information on Social and Financial support for Calgarians can be found at the Calgary.ca COVID-19 pages. The City has added new web resources which can be found on the left-hand side under the tables for supports for Individuals, and Support for Community Partners
• Please visit Cagary.ca or call 311 if you’d like to request service that has not yet been offered, or that you might need
• As of April 6, some Calgarians might see changes in pick up of blue green and black bins, info will be coming to Calgary.ca.
• Calgary fire department – kicking off today, the Calgary Fire Department has now formalized a program called Calgary Birthday Surprise. This program will apply to children 4-12 years old, and 75 years and up. If you go to Calgary.ca/birthdaysurprise. And complete a form, they will do their best to get a fire truck out there on the birthday around 2 in the afternoon. This may include putting on the sirens or lights and announcing or singing happy birthday over the speaker. This program will be available until the end of May and could be extended. Please keep in mind the Calgary Fire Department is still providing services to Calgarians, so time frame may be change.
Military heading to Quebec, $100M coming for food banks: PM
• Our government has signed an agreement with Amazon Canada to manage distribution of Personal Protective equipment to provinces and Territories, this includes masks, face shields, gowns, ventilators and test kits
• A request from Quebec for the Armed Forces intervene and support the northern communities and isolated communities was receives. The armed force members are ready to help fight covid-19 armed forces will be there for those north communities in Quebec and all Canadians
• Food banks across Canada are facing new challenges because of this pandemic. Fewer volunteers and fewer donations than they normally would while demand rises. The work being done by food banks and their volunteers is essential, they need more support, if you have the time and ability to help reach out and offer to help your local food Bank
• The Government of Canada is designating $100 million to meet urgent food needs to vulnerable Canadians. This money will support Food banks Canada, breakfast club, salvation army and many more
• Thank all volunteers and organizers, thank you for feeding our communities we see you and we are grateful for the tireless work you do
• Child tax benefit will be raised in April instead of May with $300 + $150 per qualifying child
• People should visit their banks website for info on how to enroll into Direct deposit if they haven’t already as these emergency funds will be quickly dispersed over Direct Deposit
• Sharing of testing data and Projections was discussed with the Premiers of the provinces and Territories, this information is being gathered and will be available on Canada.ca/Coronavirus
• In reply to N95 masks asked not to be sent to Canada from 3M by Trump Administration, Canada is working with American Administration to highlight what Canadians know very well, the integration of our economies go both ways. Essential products flow across the border both ways, including health care workers who cross every day into Detroit to work in the American Health system. It would be a mistake to limit what gets across or create blockages
• Government of Canada remains confident that we will receive needed equipment still, we are still receiving shipments from other countries
Alberta reports 96 COVID-19 cases, two deaths
• AHS has confirmed 96 new cases over the past 24 hours. Alberta’s total cases now sit at 968
• 174 people have now recovered, that is 32 more than yesterday, and out of the total cases AHS believes that 108 may be community spread, that’s up 14 from yesterday
• AHS conducted over 4000 tests in last 24 hrs. Lab continues to work at max capacity
• 98% of these tests came back negative
• 2 addition deaths, related to Covid-19
• 74 Confirmed cases in continuing care facilities, suspect more to be confirmed in coming days
• AHS is now, as a precaution calling 9 Outbreaks at continuing care facilities across the province, due to staff who tested positive from one of the initial confirmed facilities, also working in these new facilities
• Deeming them outbreaks now allows Public Health to implement stricter rules and regulations
• There has also been confirmed cases at a women’s shelter in the Calgary zone, this is a serious issue. Residents and families are concerned. Please know that AHS id doing everything possible to protect them
• Effective today new standards, that Operators and staff of these facilities must follow in event of suspected or confirmed Covid outbreak. These are enforceable by law, to help ensure those living in congregate settings are kept as safe as possible. Under the new order staff and operators are required to notify public health as soon as a case is suspected or confirmed, and if two or more residents exhibit symptoms. Staff is also required to inform superiors if they have worked at a facility with a suspected case
PM Trudeau to update on COVID-19 efforts, speak with premiers
• Trudeau is chairing a first minister meeting with the premiers this evening, in order to coordinate efforts and the sharing of data
• Last night Canada received over a million masks to a Hamilton warehouse, this is in addition to the 10 million masks that have come in over the past few days and are currently being delivered as quickly as possible
• Canada.ca/coronavirus for latest info on cases growth and spread
• There is more info coming in every day and trying to estimate how much longer this will last is nearly impossible. The biggest variable to shape predictions is the behaviours of Canadian Citizens. Canadian’s need to listen to the world class doctors who are sharing the best information and best advice. While many are staying home and limiting trips out, too many still are not. We must do everything we can today and tomorrow to set us on the right path for next week and next month. It’s going to take distancing and time to flatten the curve. Save lives together by staying apart
Two more deaths, 117 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta after test backlog: premier
• We now have 142 recovered cases in Alberta so far. Over the past 24 hours AHS has confirmed 117 new cases, bringing Alberta’s total number of cases to 871. Recovered cases are included in this total
• The large number of cases is due to the processing of backlogged tests over the past 24 hours, a record number in a single day
• AHS confirms 2 more Albertan’s have passed away as a result of COVID-19. This bring Alberta’s total to 11
• AHS suspects 94 of the total cases may be community spread
• The most important focus of AHS will now be the heath and care of those in continuing care facilities. We now have outbreaks in 4 locations across the province
• Alberta continues to lead all provinces in per capita testing, having processed over 50K tests
• The vast majority of people will only experience mild illness and experience a full recovery
• AHS feels confident that Alberta has the health care personal and equipment we will need to deal with this pandemic in the coming days
• Stay home if you are sick, clean your hands regularly, practice physical distancing, help and support those around you
• Roadside stops have now been reopened for Truckers who continue to work through this pandemic, a special thanks to them continuing to keep shelves full
• Government of Alberta is expanding the eligibility of Childcare for all essential workers. Facilities will still be limited to 30 people including staff and must adhere to strict cleanliness guidelines. More details are to come
• Government is working on additional measures to support landlords and renters both residential and commercial
• Government of Alberta is working to expand enforcement authorities to enforce public health orders, they will now be including municipal by-law officers
Calgary Transit reducing frequency of buses and trains in response to COVID-19
• Still in a state of emergency and the City of Calgary will be renewing the state of emergency later today
• Beginning April 6th there will be changes to most of Calgary Transit services. Transit is essential and services will be maintained, however ridership his down and so the following changes are being made:
• As of Monday, April 6th, service levels will change in both Bus and LRT services. While the over all coverage will be maintained with both Bus and LRT Service, tome frequencies will be decreased. A bus that may come very 4 minutes will instead come every 10 so service may take longer
• Improve safety for passengers, by allowing greater physical. Reducing capacity to about 50% with seat closures, such as allowing 1 person per double seat, signs and decals will be up to inform riders
• Regarding Low income passes and senior passes, the city is extending the grace period, passes bought in March will be valid all of May as well
• Tips for riding elevators given were to step into the elevator and face the wall, limit the amount of people in an elevator to 3 and to try avoiding hitting the button with your hand, and do not touch your face if you do
• Playgrounds and skateparks remain closed. Please respect those closures. Signs should not be ripped down or fences opened
Trudeau looking to recall Parliament once again to consider expanded COVID-19 aid
• 3-point economic plan: to Protect jobs, Help Those Laid off and support businesses
• Canada Emergency wage subsidy is to support jobs. There will be an update later today about this subsidy. What can be said, is it’s going to be available to businesses big and small who are not publicly funded, from bars to restaurants to charities and non-profits. Applications will open through the CRA soon and Employers will need to attest they’re doing everything they can to pay the remaining 25% of peoples wages
• Government approved loans have been introduced to help businesses owners who are worried about rent and other bills
• Canada emergency response benefit to help people. Starting April 6th if you haven’t already applied for EI, you will be able to complete an application for the Canadian emergency benefit. However, if you are getting the Salary Subsidy you cannot apply for the Canada Emergency Repose Benefit. It is one or the other. You can register online at canada.ca You will have an option to get the benefit payment by mail or by direct deposit. If you choose Direct Deposit you can expect payment within 3 to 5 days. If you choose mail, the cheque can be expected within 10 days. Once you have been approved all you have to do to continue receiving the support is to check in once a month to say that you are still out of work
• More info on eligibility of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit is coming later today, this information will include information on applying to getting your cheque
• This is the largest economic program in Canada’s history. We haven’t seen this kind of mobilization since the second world war. These historic measures will support Canadians to stay home to defeat COVID-19
• Staying home is your way to serve your country.
26 New Recoveries confirmed in Alberta in the past 24 hours
• In the past 24 hours, AHS has confirmed 64 new cases, making the total amount of Cases in Alberta 754. This total includes 77 cases involving health care or continuing care facility workers. The vast majority of confirmed cases were returning travelers or those who attended the bonspiel event. Sadly, we have one additional death in Calgary Zone.
• AHS believes that 75 of all 754 cases are result of community transmission This is concerning number, and a reminder to continue practicing the Public Health requirements, such as Social distancing, self-isolation and practicing proper hand washing is important.
• AHS is currently tracking outbreaks in 3 continuing care facilities, 2 in Calgary zone 1 in Edmonton Zone
• Continue Volunteering if you can, places like Meals on Wheels still needs support. Donate blood if you are able to. Those continuing to respect Alberta Public health recommendations can still be of help during these truing times
Support for Individuals and Families
• Increasing the Canada Child Benefit
• Special Goods and Services Tax Credit Payment
• Extra Time to File Income Tax returns
• Mortgage Supports
• The New Canada Emergency Benefit
• Apply for Employment Insurance
• The New Canada Emergency Response Benefit
•Improved access to Employment Insurance Sickness Benefits
• A New Indigenous Community Support Fund
• Enhancing the Reaching Home Initiative
• Support for Women’s Shelters and Sexual Assault Centres
• Reduced Minimal Withdrawals for Registered Retirement Income Funds
• Practical Services: delivery of items and personal outreach
• A moratorium on the repayment of Canada Student Loans
• Mental Health Support for Youth
• To Access Local Support Services Please Call 211
• For Help with Workplace issues Like Employment Insurance please phone 403 264 8100
• To Learn more about the United Way of Calgary’s Community Response Fund
• Albertans can access the emergency isolation one time payment
• Utility Payment Deferral
Trudeau gives update on Canada's plan to secure medical supplies
• Government of Canada has heard from more than 3000 companies willing to help pivot their production lines to supply various medical supplies. They have now signed procurement contracts with 5 Canadian companies to make medical supplies such as ventilators, masks and testing kits. The demand for supplies will grow in the next few weeks, so we need a stable made in Canada solutions
• The Government has also shifted the country’s entire industrial policy to focus on COVID-19 supplies, including reprioritizing existing innovation and research programs
• There is $2 Billion dollars going towards the procurement of protective personal equipment for front line workers, this includes more masks, face shields, gowns, ventilators, test kits, swabs and hand sanitizer. Government is coordinating with provinces and territories to make sure our health care workers get everything they need.
Alberta health officials to update province’s COVID-19 situation Monday afternoon
• 29 new cases in Alberta, bringing Alberta total to 690. In addition to the death reported yesterday, 5 additional deaths have been reported today, bringing Alberta’s total death count to 8
• 65 of the total cases are likely community transmission, and this number is concerning
• 94 cases are recovered
• These deaths speak to the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic and why it is important we take such strong measures
• Though the numbers have been low the past few days, this is due to no longer testing travelers, the daily tests have also been decreased in lab processing due to supplies challenges
• By the end of the week, AHS will have a better sense of the risk in Alberta
• Following public health guidance will save lives
• If you quarantined due to illness, or close contact to someone with confirmed COVID-19 you must remain on your own properly, deck, yard, or balcony. No longer are you allowed to leave until the 14 days of self-isolation is over. Meaning you can no longer go for walks in your neighbourhood until the quarantine period ends
PM announces eligibility for wage subsidy, as domestic travel restrictions begin
• The Government of Canada announced salary benefit last week to encourage to employers to keep employees on the payroll for qualifying businesses. It is the Canadian emergency wage subsidy. If a businesses revenue has reduced by at least 30%, they will be eligible for this subsidy program. The number of employees’ does not determine the eligibility. This will apply to non-profit businesses. Charities, and companies big and small
• This Emergency Wage Subsidy will cover up to 75% of employees’ wages on the first $58,700 that an Employee earns, that’s up to $847 a week that will be covered. This will be back dated to March 15th
• The Government is working hard to give companies background documents explaining technical details on this measure which will hopefully be available soon
• Word of Caution to business to not misuse this program, if they can continue to pay their staff, to do so. There will be serious consequences if this program is misused, ever dollar should go to employees
• Canadian armed forces are planning to respond should they be called in to aid in pandemic response efforts, but there is no official call to do so yet
• Follow public health recommendations, stay home, wash your hands and keep at least 2 meters from each other.
Canada to provide more funding for seniors, vulnerable amid coronavirus pandemic: Trudeau
• This week the Government announced new measures for families, workers and companies, even with this help it is understood that this remains a tough situation
• $7.5 Million dollars is being invested into the Kids help phone program. For youth who need this service please text 686868 call 1800-668-6868 or go online at kidshelpphone.ca They are there for you. 24 hrs a day 7 days a week in French and English. The money is going into the program for more councilors and trained volunteers
• Minister for Seniors announced $9 million to the United Way’s New Horizons Program for Elders. This program will offer help from health check ins to grocery delivery
• Earlier this week $200 million was designated for shelters, for those who don’t have a home, those fleeing domestic violence or violence because of gender. This new funding is already having a huge impact for support. They will continue working with charities and non-profit organizations, and more help is on the way
79 new cases of COVID-19 announced in Alberta March 28th
What's considered essential? Follow this link and find out!
Canadians with COVID-19 symptoms to be denied boarding on domestic flights, trains
• Taking effect Monday at noon, if a person shows any signs or symptoms of having COVID-19 they will be denied boarding on all domestic flights and any Transport Canada governed trains. Travel for any non-essential reason is not recommended.
• Many youth will be supported through the Canadian Emergency fund, and be helped through payroll subsidy for businesses, but there’s always going to be more to do. The Government of Canada will continue working on ways to support youth and other vulnerable peoples
• For those that will be applying to the Canadian Emergency fund can pre-register. To do so, please visit the Canada Revenue Agency site and sign up through the “My Account” links. Once you do that you will have a head start once the application portal is open. The recommendation is to please sign up for the direct deposit option as well to ensure the money gets to you as soon as possible.
New landlord restrictions announced in Alberta as COVID-19 pandemic continues
• 33 Albertans can now be confirmed as recovered; this is an increase of 6 from yesterday’s numbers.
• Alberta confirms 56 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 542 cases in Alberta. The number of recovered Albertan’s is included in the total cases.
• Several new measures to strengthen protection of Albertans:
• As of today, the maximum size of group gathering reduces from 50 to NO more than 15 people. This includes family gatherings such as weddings funerals and religious celebrations. It is still important to get outdoors, but this also must not occur in groups of more than 15 people. The 2-meter social distancing recommendation must be observed in all these situations.
• Government of Alberta is closing vehicle access to all provincial parks. This includes parking lots and staging areas. This is only for recreations purposes. Businesses and residents who live or work inside parkland will not be subject to this. People who choose to access parks should only do so by non-motorized means. Enforcement officers will be doing checks beginning this weekend and have the ability to issue tickets for those not complying.
• Immediate closure of non-essential businesses, this includes all close contact businesses, tattoo and piercing studios, nail salons, hair salons and barbers, as well as wellness studios and clinics. All non-emergency and non-critical health services, including dentist, physio, podiatry, chiro and optometry are to close.
• All dine in restaurants must close for dine in service but can continue offering takeout and delivery services
All non-essential retail, clothing, gaming, hobby and toy stores, furniture and specialty stores must close at this time
• All closures will be subject to penalties announced yesterday.
• As of today, the Government of Alberta has received and processed over 16K applications for the Emergency Isolation support fund, and $18.5 Million dollars have been dispersed
• Important measures to protect renters were announced as well. No one will be evicted April 1 for nonpayment of rent. Any Civil enforcement of evictions currently under way for tenants for nonpayment of rent will be suspended until April 30
• No one will see rent increase while state of public heath emergency remains in effect including rent increases for notice already given
• No one will pay late fees for missing rent payment over the next 3 months
• For as long as state of public health emergency remains, landlords will be obliged to coordinate payment plans, and renters will be obliged to pay rent as fully and as consistently as possible. Both will be obliged to take in support they are receiving from government into consideration
• All of these protections will be voided for any renter who damages property or is doing anything illegal inside a rented property.
• Alberta Health Services is postponing all non essential diagnostic imaging.
• All Non-essential and routine laboratory testing have now be called to stop until further notice.
City of Calgary Provides Friday afternoon update on COVID-19 response
Its been 2 weeks since announcing the state of emergency, which has been extended. There are two new orders for the City of Calgary as of today:
• Effective as of 1800 March 27th 2020 all personal service businesses, personal care businesses (Such as Spa’s Tattoo Parlors, hair salons, aesthetic salons etc.), body rub businesses and all non-emergency critical health services (such as Physio or massage) are hereby closed. These businesses cannot maintain the physical distance required. The City of Calgary recognizes the impact this will have on these businesses and the decision was not taken lightly.
• Effective as of 1800 March 27th 2020 closures of all play fields, park fields, tennis courts, basketball courts and skate parks are ordered closed. No organized or team sports are allowed to take place. While the activities are reduced, the fields will remain open, along with outdoor parks and pathways, as long as users remain practicing the social distancing of at least 2 meters. Park staff will be out monitoring city parks and reporting back.
• The City also would like to remind retailers to be kind to their patrons and keep prices reasonable during this hard time.
Alberta Health Services – Complaint website.
Contact your local public health inspector to:
• Make a complaint about a facility, business or rental home
• Comment about EPH programs or services
• Ask a question about things like water sampling or education courses
Trudeau announces major wage subsidy hike for small businesses
• New measures introduced for small and medium businesses, last week the Government announced 10 % wage coverage, that percentage is being raised up to 75% for qualifying businesses to help companies keep people on the payroll. More to say on this very soon, but this subsidy for medium to small businesses will back date to March 15
• The Government is launching the Canada Emergency Business Account, specifically for Small businesses that are struggling with cash flow. This account will allow banks to soon offer $40 loans, guaranteed by government, to qualifying business which will be interest free for the 1st year. Small businesses who meet special critical could qualify for $10 K of the loan to be forgivable.
• A Deferral for businesses, of GST and HST payments as well as duties and taxes on imports till June.
• Announcement of additional measures in the coming days to help the most vulnerable such as youth, those marginalized and those living in poverty.
Bank of Canada makes another emergency cut to interest rate
The Bank of Canada has made a second unscheduled cut to its benchmark interest rate, lowering it to 0.25 per cent amid the COVID-19 crisis.
The International has launched C.A.R.E.S. (Coronavirus Active Response and Engagement Service), a new initiative to organize mutual aid for the most vulnerable of our sisters and brothers. The effort is centered around a new website: iatsecares.org
The initiative establishes a “Buddy System” Where members in need may request for a volunteer to call them at the frequency of their choice. It also establishes a delivery system where members in need can have a trusted volunteer deliver groceries, prescriptions, and other necessary supplies within 72 hours.
For this to work, we need volunteers to help! You can register to volunteer on the new site, or by clicking this link here: Volunteer
Alberta confirms new cases, and new recoveries
• As of today, there have been 27 recovered cases of Covid-19 recorded. 67 new cases, putting Alberta at 486 total cases. 34 considered community transmission, 21 hospitalized and 10 in the ICU
• The number of recovered cases is expected to increase in the coming days
• There are still challenges coming in the net few weeks, and we all need to continue doing our part to flatten the curve
• A new online tool has been developed specifically for health care workers. This Health Care Workers assessment tool will become available on the AHS website, and is in addition to the public assessment tool already online
Trudeau emphasizes global collaboration to combat impact of COVID-19
• The Government of Canada is taking greater action on those not Self-isolating upon returning to Canada. A 14 day quarantine will now be mandatory for ALL Canadians returning home. The Quarantine Act is being implemented to keep all Canadians safe. Those who do not comply could face serious fines and even prison time
• Yesterday the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit, to help workers who have lost their revenues due to this pandemic, was adopted by parliament. This means those who apply and are approved will received $2000 a month, every month for 4 months. An online application portal will launch soon
• This is on top of the Canada Child Benefit temporary increase in May, the supplementing the GST credit and Student loan interest free moratorium. Please check out Canada.ca for more details
• There already appears to be a text scam going out regarding the New Emergency Fund, Trudeau reminds people that the Canada.ca website is the only place to get information that is trusted
• Trudeau had a call with G20 leaders and will remain in constant communication with our international partners who are all facing the same crisis. One thing is clear, we can only overcome COVID-19 if we take action together as a global community.
Alberta's film industry faces 'devastating' historic shut down over coronavirus
Alberta law enforcement agencies get new powers to enforce public health orders, issue fines
• We are staring to record recoveries in Alberta, Canada and around the world
• 61 new cases in Alberta 419 total
• We all have a role to pay in limiting the spread of the disease. There are now further measures to contain Covid-19. Public heath measures are now enforced by law to protect the heath and safety of Albertans. Community peace officers and private health inspectors along with police will now be able to issues tickets up to $1000 per violation. This includes the limiting of mass gatherings up to 50 attendees, mandatory self-isolation for anyone diagnosed, or exhibiting symptoms such as cough or fever, anyone returning to Alberta from outside of Canada and all who have had close contact with a confirmed or probably case of COVID-19. Legally binding rules include operational daycares (ones opened to care for health care worker and essential service children are exempt) Recreational facilities and bars and night clubs, as well as non essential visitors to long term care facilities
• These are stringent penalties and fines with rigorous enforcement behind them
• There is a possibility this will open to bylaw officers as well
• Courts can administer fines up to 100K for first offenders or half a million for subsequent for business or companies not following these guidelines
• Enforcement is to take place in the coming days, and the Government will be heading to legislation in the near future to make the necessary amendments for this new measure.
Albertans can now apply for provincial COVID-19 emergency aid
Trudeau vows more aid coming for Canadians as COVID-19 pandemic wages on
• The House has adopted the Emergency plan and it is now before the senate, more details will be announced this week, and more measures to be announced
• The new Canadian Response Fund replaces the 2 allocations that were announced last week. They are hopeful it will be up and running by April 6th with funds to hit accounts 10 days after applications are received. The fund is $2000 per month.
• This new Canadian Response fund helps those who have no pay cheque due to Covid-19, those who lost their jobs, full time, part time, contract work or self-employed, those who are sick, quarantine, or home to take care of someone effected by Covid-19 and those who still have a job but have no salary coming in.
• The new fund with be given through an online portal, and the government is working to get it up and running as quickly as possible
• The Government has boosted staff to 13 thousand people to take calls and process claims. The Emergency care and support benefit will be administered by CRA and not service Canada
• There have been 143 thousand EI claims since Monday
• The Government has been in collaboration with the provinces and territories to coordinate their efforts for testing. They realize wait time vary and are addressing the issues to try and speed up results
• Journalists are recognized for continuing to give vital information dally, and the government will be releasing additional measures to support reporters, details are to be given later today.
MP’s pass emergency aid bill after overnight compromise
• The modifications include removing the Liberal’s ability to raise taxes unilaterally and shortening the period in which the government can take emergency spending measures without Parliament’s approval from two years to six months
• The bill will not go to the Senate, which is expected to pass it later in the day, A royal assent ceremony is also expected to happen before the end of the day
Alberta Health Update on Covid-19
• 57 New cases of Covid-19 within Alberta, 3 recovered cases and second death due to the disease was reported. This unfortunate news comes from a Long-Term Care facility in Southern Calgary, the people directly involved have been isolated and new practices are being brought in to try and prevent any further spread
• New self-isolation guidelines were reiterated. If you have mild symptoms, such as cough, runny nose, sore throat, you should isolate for 10 days from start of symptoms. If your symptoms have completely resolved and it’s been 10 days, it is believed the possibility to spread the virus is low to none. However, if you remain ill after those ten days, you must remain on self-isolation.
• Additional measures could still be taken when it makes sense for the province with the quickly changing situation
• At this time, it is too early to determine whether summer events, such as the Calgary Stampede, should go on or not. AHS knows that this pandemic will persist for several months, but there is no way to know how the summer will look so there is no recommendations at this time
Momentum: Financial supports for people impacted by Covid-19
Opposition pushing for changes to emergency aid bill before agreeing to pass
Bank and Credit union information:
The big six Canadian banks are offering mortgage deferrals. All other financial help, and details on the mortgage deferrals are to be made on a case by case basis. Those in need of this help need to contact their banks directly.
First Calgary: (Mountain view financial, Legacy Financial and Chinook financial) Offering loan payment relief, including mortgage, line of credit, loan and car payments, for up to three months for almost all members including commercial small business and retail.
ATB: Also offering personal banking customers to apply for deferred payments for mortgages, personal and business loans.
Servus Credit Union: Offering mortgage and loan payment deferral program in place and will work with personal and business members to meet individual needs.
Trudeau call on house to pass emergency aid bill quickly.
• Today’s emergency recall of house of commons is to pass the Covid-19 Emergency response fund
• It is expected to be fast tracked through all stages and sent to senate by days end
• The legislation contains amendments needed to enact the $82 billion response package and to get money out the door and to Canadian’s as quickly as possible
• There will likely be lively debate, but it is expected to be passed by all parties
• The Federal Emergencies act is still not off the table, but it is not deemed required at this time.
• 1 million Canadian’s have returned home this week, a reminder for all travelers to go directly home and self-isolate.
Telephone Townhall for IA 212 members scheduled for Wednesday March 25th at 10:00 AM please watch your emails for important information.
42 new cases of Covid-19, making Alberta’s total number 301
• The new recommended self isolation timeline for those showing even mild symptoms is 10 days after the symptoms have been resolved. A mild sore throat or runny nose could be a symptom of Covid-19. Social distancing is important, stay home when you're not feeling well not matter the symptom.
• 11 of the 47 health care workers who attended an Edmonton Curling Bonspiel earlier this month have tested positive
• Alberta Heath services has started a free text based program that will send subscribers messages of support and encouragement. Those interested in receiving daily texts should text Covid 19 Hope to 393939
Premier Jason Kenney to snowbirds: Go straight home
• Government of Alberta is immediately reversing the increase in education property tax announced in budget 2020, Alberta property tax level will remain the same as the 2019 amount
• The Government of Alberta will also defer its portion of 6 months worth of the education prop tax on non-residential properties. These payments will be delayed into October 2020. That will amount to 50% of the education property tax that businesses would have owed. The amount will need to be repaid in subsequent years and payment plans are being developed
• The Alberta government has been in contact with Alberta Mayors in regards with ways local municipalities can help with property tax assistance. The final decisions are up to the mayors and local government themselves
• With the above measures, it’s estimated that $458 Million dollars will remain with employers to help them pay employees and continue operations
• WCB premiums can now be deferred for private sector employers to the end of the year. This will not affect benefits, WCB coverages will remain, and anyone currently on a WCB claim will continue receiving their benefits.
• Small and medium size businesses will only pay for half the 2020 WCB premiums, the Alberta government will cover the rest. Employers who have already paid will be refunded by request or have the amount credited to their accounts.
• The above is all in addition to the previous relief plans brought forward last week. Such as the bi-weekly emergency isolation payments, which will become available this week on alberta.ca
• Alberta Government is prepared if necessary, to use strong legal tools and higher penalties for anyone not following the self isolation orders. Legal quarantine orders, to ensure no ambiguity of this obligation, are being considered
Calgary playgrounds closed amid COVID-19 pandemic
Ontario orders all non-essential businesses to shut down
The order will come into effect on March 24 at 11:59 p.m. and will remain in place for at least two weeks.
Trudeau admonishes those not keeping distance, commits funds for COVID-19 vaccine
• The Canadian Government will spend $192 million on the development and production of vaccines and treatments for Covid-19.
• $5 Billion in lending capacity for farmers and producers, as well as a six-month extension on loan payments to keep money in farmer’s pockets.
• Starting today there will be an advertising campaign to spread the message of Social Distancing and Self Isolation to all Canadians.
• Trudeau has a meeting this evening with the premiers to discuss further measures to help families and small businesses.
• More flights have been secured to bring home Canadians. Any Canadian abroad is urged to register with the Government of Canada in order to get updates and details on getting home.
High risk cases, not travellers, focus of Alberta's new COVID-19 testing policy
• Testing will now focus on groups most at risk such as people who are hospitalized with respiratory illness, people who returned from travelling before the self-isolation protocols in place, residents of continuing care facilities and healthcare workers with respiratory symptoms
• Those with mild symptoms, and those who returned to Alberta after March 12th are advised to self-quarantine for a minimum of 10 days instead of seeking testing.
Trudeau says Parliament will resume Tuesday to pass emergency measures
Its sole focus will be on passing emergency legislation to implement the measures the government announced this week, including benefits for Canadians who are out of work, an enhanced Canada Child Benefit, and new funding for research into the novel coronavirus.
Legislation is expected to be passed within days and to be followed by further measures.
33 new cases Confirmed in Alberta on Sunday.
31 new cases of COVID-19 in Alberta brings total to 226
• Officials believe up to 16 of the total cases are due to community spread and urge people to practice social distancing
• One of the new cases is in a seniors home
• Alberta Health Services will never ask for your Credit card information, Banking information or SIN number. Please watch out for these phone/email scams
• Details are to be rolled out next week to grant power to Police and AHS Inspectors to verify social distancing measures are being kept in large groups, restaurants etc.. with the possibility of using fines to make sure these recommendations are followed.
• There will not be a press conference on Sunday, but a new total number of cases will be provided.
Alberta launches ‘prevent the spread’ COVID-19 video featuring Gretzky, Kenney, Nenshi and Iveson
Edmonton nurses refuse to perform COVID-19 swabs without N95 masks
We continue to face an unprecedented global pandemic which has caused almost all Stage and Motion Picture production work North America-wide to cease for the foreseeable future. I am frequently asked when a resumption to “normal” production levels will take place, I cannot provide an accurate answer but knowing what I know now, any meaningful resumption of the work does not seem not likely in the second or third quarters of this year.
On Wednesday, with very short notice we held a teleconference town hall and answered live, emailed and texted questions. About 125 Members participated and a full range of issues was addressed. The line has capacity for 300 callers (we are looking at expanding that) and the response from the members who participated was that the call was very useful and we should do another, this time with more notice.
Another Local 212 informational town hall teleconference will be scheduled for Wednesday March 25th at 10:00 AM. Please watch your inboxes tomorrow for details as the dial in information will not be shared on our website.
In addition to the waiving of all penalties for Dues, the Local 212 Executive Board has unanimously voted to defer all remaining dues payments for the remaining three quarters of 2020 until first quarter 2021. The idea is to immediately ease the pressure of paying Union Dues and pickup on Dues collection once work has resumed. The International IATSE Board has voted to allow for this delay of Quarterly remittances from the Locals.
The Local 212 office continues to operate but in a very, very different way with staff working from home and minimal office activity. Members who call the main line 403 250-2199 and leave a message will receive a call back during office hours (usually within 5 minutes) and should allow more time after office hours. Members are advised not to visit the office as it is closed to all visitors.
Dee Picciano firstname.lastname@example.org, Sarah McKenzie email@example.com, and I firstname.lastname@example.org are focused on communications and Member services and have full time workloads currently. Our social media is still running with Sebastian Salazar operating part time from home. Communications and Member services are ramped up and ongoing. We have an amazing staff and they are all stepping up.
I am in constant contact with our Executive Board who are exercising the Constitutional authority to make decisions between membership meetings.
Please also be advised that the new building project has been paused indefinitely. We will revisit that project’s viability in the new year.
Tom Benz, our Film BA is now on a reduced schedule dealing with a number of lingering issues on the motion picture side. Tom hopes to tie up many loose ends next week. Trish Weeks our Education Coordinator has ceased almost all training for at least the next quarter but we are looking at offering some additional online training opportunities in the months ahead. Ruben Calazan (reception) and Ian Wilson have been asked to stay away from the office but Ian is still participating in phone calls and stage teleconference calls and tying up loose ends on the stage side. Film dispatch remains vacant at this point.
Please know the landing page of our website www.iatse212.com has become a primary source of information updated twice daily with all sorts of announcements ranging from relief fund and Government aid packages as well as Health Plan and IATSE international relief efforts. IATSE Canada launched a COVID-19 information page at www.iatsecanada.net
These are trying times indeed and I ask members to be patient as details of relief packages become available. I encourage all of you who are able to take very long walks each day this helps with cabin fever and anxiety issues, but please remember to practice social distancing.
We will get through this together!
Netflix has announced a US$100 Million global relief fund to support workers in the creative community, including Canada’s, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Netflix says the global relief fund is in addition to the two weeks pay it has already committed to the crew and cast on productions the company was forced to suspend next week.
49 new cases 195 cases total in Alberta
• One of the new restrictions for Albertan’s is that only one single pre-approved, designated person can visit a single person at senior homes. They may have to have a temperature check or complete questionnaire.
• Farmers markets are in the same category as grocery stores and may remain open, but please make sure to practice social distancing and do not go out if you are feeling sick.
• 17K Albertans tested to date testing over 2000 a day, by far highest per capita in North America.
• Next week they will begin reopening select licensed childcare centres for core service providers such as doctors, nurses, emergency services. These centres will be decided upon by things like proximity to heath care facilities and opened in a phased approach. They will not be allowed to have more than 30 occupants including staff and must adhere to strict guidelines. Parents will be notified through their employer if they qualify for these childcare centres. All other licensed childcare centres are to remain closed. Day homes may remain open limited to 6 kids.
• Additional support and protection for the homeless. There will be support of an expansion of network of homeless shelters across Alberta to help cope safety with COVID-19. The Mustard seed and Drop In Centre are seeking additional sites to meet the short fall of social distancing.
• To protect and sustain our economy in this crisis, actions are being announced today, and in the coming days such as extending the term of mineral agreements expiring in 2020 by one year. As well as the formation of an Economic Recovery Council, who’s job it will be to think and provide practical advice to the Alberta Government to pave a path through this economic crisis.
Canada’s big six banks will allow mortgage payment deferrals for up to six months as part of extraordinary measures to help customers struggling with the financial impacts of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
The international’s Canadian Department has created a distinct website so that Canadian members can find Covid-19 resources and information in one place.
You will find information about financial support through the Actors Fund of Canada, benefit information on our national health and retirement plans, information on available government support benefits, links to the federal and provincial government announcement pages, what the IATSE has been doing and what you as a member and entertainment industry worker can do. Iatsecanada.net
Trudeau unveils new measures to mobilize industry in COVID-19 fight.
Canadians are generous, kind and compassionate.
• Canada US border closing to all non-essential travel as of midnight tonight. There is a mutual agreement in place to send back any irregular migrants who may try and cross the border. Canadians over the border still can return once the border closes.
• The Canadian Government is working on an initiative to help Canadian businesses to mobilize in the help to fight Covid-19. Including helping those companies who have already shifted to produce Masks, Ventilators and hand sanitizers scale up and help retool those who wish to shift production. More to come on this.
• Service Canada has had a historic number of calls, over 500K applications submitted this week. The Government is working as fast as possible, and has people working around the clock.
Two patients recover from COVID-19 in Alberta
• Social distancing tips can be found at alberta.ca
• Cases continue to grow within Alberta, and though the first provincial death has been announced there has also been at least two cases fully recovered.
City of Calgary Update:
• The 2020 Census is being postponed for later into the year, or if needed into 2021
• A few changes from Waste & Recycling, Green and Black bins will be picked up every other week and no extra bags of waste will be picked up. Blue carts will continue being picked up weekly.
• City of Calgary landfills remain open, but debit and credit payments will be accepted only.
• City of Calgary would also like to remind people that the drinking water is safe, the treatment facilities remain open.
• The city of Calgary is partnering with United Way and Alberta Health Services to create the Calgary Covid-19 Community response fund, they will accept donations to support vulnerable Calgarians impacted by Covid-19. More information can be found at calgaryunitedway.org
• City of Calgary Utility payments through the months of April, May and June do not need to be paid if you are unable. Any unpaid amounts will be rolled over into the final 6 payments of the year.
PM Trudeau: Canada-U.S. border likely shut by the weekend
• The USA Canada border agreement will be finalized soon and closure can be expected the evening of Friday in Saturday this week.
• Canadians are advised to check out the Canada.ca website for the latest information on the federal relief.
• $25 Million is going to 49 research teams across the country for research on virus spread, vaccination and treatment, as well as detection, management and reducing spread of Covid-19.
• 50K Canadians have been swabbed since the beginning and lab test kits are to be expedited.
• Blood donors are needed, if you are able to give reach out to blood.ca or call 1-888-236-6283
• The Government has been working directly with Air Canada and West Jet to get Canadians abroad home. A mass text message has been sent with a link offering Canadians help.
All training and non-essential meetings have now been postponed or cancelled and the staff is now working from home. We are still here to support you.
Please call 403 250-2199 or email the office.
Damian Petti – email@example.com phone extension 280
Dee Picciano – firstname.lastname@example.org phone extension 320
Sarah McKenzie – email@example.com phone extension 290
The Government of Alberta released the following support for Albertans:
• Emergency Isolation support of $50 million. This is a temporary program for working adult Albertans who must self-isolate. It will be distributed in one payment installment and bridge the gap until the federal emergency payments begin in April. Will be available through Alberta.ca next week. More information to come.
• Utility payment holiday was announced, residential customers can defer electricity and natural gas bill payments for the next 90 days, regardless of the service provider.
• Student loans repayment holiday, a six-month interest free moratorium on Alberta student loan payments beginning March 30th, 2020. Students do not need to apply for the repayment pause.
• ATB financial customers can apply for a deferral on their ATB loans, lines of credit and mortgages for up to 6 months.
• Alberta credit union members will have access to a variety of programs and solutions designed to ease difficulties with loan payments and short-term cash flow, contact your credit union to work out a plan for your personal situation.
The Government of Alberta released the following support for Employers and Employees:
• Corporate income tax balances and installment payments will be deferred form March 19th until August 31st, 2020.
• Farm and Commercial customers can defer electricity and natural gas bill payments for the next 90 days.
• ATB small business customers can apply for a payment deferral on loans and lines of credit for up to 6 months and access addition working capital, and other businesses and agriculture customers can access support on a one-on-one basis.
• Job protected leave – a change of the Employment Standards code will allow full and part time employees to take 14 days of job protected leave if they are required to self-isolate, or caring for a child or dependent adult that is required to self-isolate. Employees will not be required to have a medical note and do not need to have worked for an employer for 90 days. This leave does not apply to self-employed individuals or contractors.
• Employers and employees may consider using other available leaves, such as vacation pay or banked over time – Employers are not required to grant the request. Employers can request employees voluntarily take vacation leave and/or use their vacation pay or banked overtime but cannot force them to do so.
March 18th Update
Telephone Townhall for IA 212 members scheduled for today at 2:00 pm, please watch your emails for important information.
Trudeau unveils funding package for Canadians
• 27 Billion to directly support workers & Businesses
• 55 Billion for business liquidity needs through tax deferrals
• This total $82 Billion is more than 3% of the Canada's GDP
• Employment Insurance Sickness benefits, pay comparable to EI, and a payout of 15 weeks, for those who are ill, quarantined, isolated or taking care of a family member w/ Covid-19. For more information on EI sickness benefits please visit the Government of Canada Website. or call Toll Free at 1-833-381-2725
• Introducing Covid-19 Emergency support benefit, for those who are self-employed are not able to qualify for regular EI. Comparable to EI, and a payout of 15 weeks. For more information on this please visit the Government of Canada Website.
• An additional program to support businesses and prevent layoffs with a subsidy equal to 10% of employee wages.
• Taxes due date extended to June 1 and allowing taxpayers to defer tax payments until after August 2020
• Temporary boosting of the Canada Child Benefit Payments.
• Double the maximum annual goods and service tax credit.
• A six-month interest-free reprieve on student loan payments
IATSE Committs $2.5 Million to Entertainment charities amid Coronavirus Crisis
Matthew D. Loeb, International President of the IATSE said, “These charities have been assisting and supporting IATSE members and entertainment industry workers for a very long time. They understand the needs of these workers, and are perfectly situated to act as our partners to help those experiencing hardship caused by the current health crisis.”
Charities include the Actors Fund, the Motion Picture and Television Fund, and the Actors Fund of Canada.
March 17th Update
Prime Minister Trudeau is expected to reveal some detail on the Federal relief package for Canadian Workers. This will not be a wage replacement program but rather an assistance package. We are also expecting to learn about Employment Insurance Reforms.
The Canadian office of IATSE is developing a micro site for Canadian IA Members. The Idea is to have a space where all relevant information will be available in one place this blog will be updated to include a link to that site onnce it is up and running.
March 16th update.
On March 16th, Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau announced that a major federal relief program will be announced within the next few days. He stated that all Canadian Families should be able to: "pay rent, buy groceries and afford Child Care"
Those details will be posted here as an update to this blog they become available.
The Prime Minister also announced that non-essential travel is not recommended and a Travel ban from all nations except the United States will be imposed on Wednesday March 18th. All Canadians who are abroad have been asked to return to Canada ASAP. A recommendation to work from home and "social distance" as much as possible was also put forward.
As of March 16th, we are also awaiting a response from major Canadian Banks who are have been asked by the federal Government and many Canadians to waive interest on Credit cards, car loans and missed mortgage payments in the short term. On March 13th, the Bank of Canada lowered the key lending rate by half a point to begin relief efforts.
These are very difficult times for Entertainment Workers!
COVID-19 is an unprecedented event that has delivered job losses to tens of thousands of IATSE workers. The good news is that across the IATSE, measures are being taken to mitigate the effects of the massive temporary unemployment and economic impacts our members face.
The IATSE International Boardand the Disaster Response Committee have been holding emergency meetings to address immediate concerns raised as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Thursday March 12, Broadway theatres closed, sports teams postponed their seasons, massive trade shows were cancelled and dozens of motion picture productions paused their productions throwing thousands of IATSE members into temporary unemployment.
In British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec, sweeping restrictions on public gatherings and cross border travel have created unemployment for entertainment workers in Canada and the United States.
On March 13th, it became evident that Ontario and the rest of a Canada would also be subject to the same restrictions through federally pronounced recommendations.
The Canadian Federal Government is in the process of rolling out a relief package for the week of March 16th-20th. Prime Minister Trudeau has stated: No Canadian should have to worry about paying rent amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
These efforts, across North America, are trying to mitigate risk as they do their part to "flatten the curve"
As these film sets, ballparks, arenas, auditoriums, museums and tradeshow floors close down North America-wide it has become clear that entertainment workers, many of whom already have precarious freelance employment, are paying a very high price for this crisis. On March 13th CBS, NBC and Disney had suspended all of their productions and other studios appeared to be following suit. We also learned that Netflix was taking a two week pause for all of their productions. Some early reports are promising in terms of the Studios covering weekly employees for the two week period. Other workers are not so lucky.
In the United States our International President, Matthew D. Loeb leads the entertainment industry by calling on Congress to pass a relief package that incudes entertainment workers.
He states in his March 13th press release:
“Along with the other entertainment unions and the labor movement at large, we call on the Federal government to pass a relief package that prioritizes workers whose incomes have been lost as a result of this crisis. Strong measures like ensuring continuity of health benefits, providing enhanced and extended unemployment, disability, and workers compensation insurance are necessary for ensuring the financial stability of entertainment workers and their families. Additionally, the government should enact a special emergency paid leave benefit geared to include our members.”
Employers and workers have also been accessing the COVID-19 update Portal through the IATSE main page.
In extreme cases of hardship help may be available through the Actors Fund of a Canada (AFC)
• The AFC can provide financial or other compassionate support when an unforeseen emergency causes urgent financial need
• The AFC can provide short-term charitable assistance with basic living and medical needs that cannot otherwise be met
Note: The AFC does not provide income replacement
• The AFC can help people in need to identify and access appropriate resources (EI, health insurance, community and government services)
Note: The AFC does not provide crisis services or assist with emergency travel planning/repatriation
• If you are in need of financial or other support, start by contacting The AFC. We will connect with you to find out more about your situation and advise on how we can best help you.
• The AFC encourage everyone to stay informed, know what resources are available.
Given the weakened state of the financial markets, it is not a good time to be redeeming retirement savings, however for Canadian Entertainment Industry Retirement Plan In very extreme cases where retirement plan members have exhausted all options such as The Actors Fund of Canada and Federal relief and cannot weather the storm to meet immediate food and shelter needs, contact your plan administrator to determine next steps.
Through the IATSE Canadian office, lobbying is underway to convince Federal and Provincial Government's to mitigate the effects these restrictions have placed on the employment of Entertainment workers. In particular, an immediate easement of employment insurance restrictions is being pursued actively and immmediately.
This is is a time of high anxiety for entertainment workers and many may need psychological help. Most Union and Guild members have free and confidential counselling services available to them. You are not alone and it is OK to seek advice or even have someone to listen while you have to deal with this temporary reality. If you are worried about interacting with others at this time, these services are often available over the phone. Contact your Local for more information on their Employee and Family Assistance Program.
I shall continue to update this blog as things change. There is hope and this terrible situation will eventually pass. Stay safe and be well my friends.