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Mayor’s Message on COVID-19 – September 29, 2020

Mayor’s Message on COVID-19 – September 29, 2020

Hello everyone, week 28 for my messages.

A lot can happen in a week and in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec in particular the news around new infections has gone from bad to worse. Both provinces have now declared through their Premiers that they have entered the second wave of this pandemic. In Ontario yesterday we saw 700 new cases which is roughly a doubling of the daily numbers from the previous week. Quebec saw 750 new cases which has prompted, as of this Thursday, a return to more restrictions in 3 large urban centres: Montreal, Quebec City and the Chaudiere-Appalaches area. In these “red zones”, bars, casinos, movie theatres, museums, and libraries will all be closed for the next 28 days and no private gatherings in homes.

It is widely acknowledged in both Ontario and Quebec however that the greatest risks for transmission is outside of businesses and more related to spending unprotected time with people you know, not necessarily strangers.

COVID-19 guideline fatigue is very real and particularly in areas where the known infections are low, complacency has taken hold.

Within our own bubbles, we know what we’ve done and whom we have had regular contact with. The moment we allow a friend or family member from outside our bubble into ours, it becomes, at a minimum, risk management.

Later today, Ontario’s Premier Doug Ford may be announcing further restrictions in the province. It will be a difficult task and perhaps the most challenging aspect will be finding a way to deliver the message to the 40-years-and-under crowd as to the seriousness of the situation (at least potentially). 60% of all of Ontario’s new cases (or more) have been with this sector of our population for weeks. Something as simple as maintaining distance, wearing a mask, hand washing and a little common sense and your chances of infection are greatly reduced.

The most recent bad example at Wasaga Beach where nearly 200 tickets were issued is a shining case of what not to do during a pandemic. What were they thinking? The answer is obvious – they were not!

I thank everyone for continuing to keep our community safe.