Newsletter: COVID-19 Update 4

Published on July 17, 2020

Happy Canada Day, Huron-Bruce! On behalf of my family and the Huron--Bruce Constituency Team...


Volume IV - June 30, 2020



Happy Canada Day, Huron--Bruce! On behalf of my family and the Huron--Bruce Constituency Team, I would like to wish you a safe and enjoyable Canada Day. While our celebrations are different this year, we have a lot to be proud of and a lot to look forward to as Canadians.

Huron-Bruce is heading in the right direction. Due to all levels of government working together, we are winning the fight against COVID-19, even though much work remains ahead of us. As you have begun to see, many workplaces and industries are carefully reopening - in the spirit of recovery, this is good news for our economic prosperity in our region, but also for our collective wellbeing as we see and feel a return to normalcy. Of course, none of this would have been possible without our outstanding frontline healthcare workers and first responders and all they have done to keep us safe and to flatten the curve of the pandemic. As we celebrate Canada Day, let us take a moment to celebrate our local heroes as well!

As we begin to enjoy the beautiful weather, I encourage all of you to make this a summer to explore your own backyard. While some of the places we like to visit or activities we normally undertake won't be happening this year, our counties of Huron and Bruce offer many local, safe activities to enjoy. Whether it's enjoying a sunset in Bayfield, eating on a patio in Port Elgin, hiking on a network of trails, touring a winery in Huron County or a craft brewery in Bruce County, or shopping in one of our many amazing main streets, please consider joining me in discovering Huron-Bruce and supporting our vibrant tourism sector. Visit  https://www.ontarioswestcoast.ca/  and  https://explorethebruce.com/  to help you make your to-do list!

As usual, the Huron--Bruce    constituency team and I remain available to help you. While our offices are physically closed to walk-in visits at this time, we are preparing to open to the public in the near future. In the meantime we can be reached by email at  lisa.thompsonco@pc.ola.org  or by calling  519-523-4251  (Blyth) or  519-396-3007 (Kincardine). All calls and emails are monitored and will be answered as soon as possible. We look forward to continuing to serve you.

Take care,

Lisa


Huron-Bruce moved to Stage 2 of Reopening

As of Friday, June 12th, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. the province has increased the limit on social gatherings from 5 to 10 people across the province. Additionally, all places of worship in Ontario are permitted to open with physical distancing in place and attendance limited to no more than 30 per cent of the building capacity to ensure the safety of faith communities. 

Furthermore, our local health units - Grey Bruce and Huron Perth - are among those who now moved to Stage 2 of reopening. Learn more about what that means here.




CECRA Program Now Available

 



Opening Up COVID-19 Testing

All commercial landlords in Ontario can now apply for rental assistance to help their small business tenants impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This initiative will keep more small businesses in operation and more people employed as the province gradually and safely restarts the economy.

The CECRA program is administered by the federal government, under the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and provides forgivable loans to eligible commercial landlords to help cover 50 per cent of commercial rent for tenants for the months of April, May and June 2020. The tenant will be responsible for covering up to 25 per cent of rent, so that up to 75 per cent of the rent is covered. The application portal is found here.
 
As the province continues to carefully and gradually reopen the economy, the government has implemented the next phase of its COVID-19 testing strategy to detect and quickly contain the spread of the virus.

As such, testing will now be available to more people in more locations across the province. People will no longer need a referral to go to any of the more than 130 assessment centres across Ontario. Information about the assessment centres is now easily accessible on Ontario.ca/coronavirus.

Learn more about the COVID-19 testing plan, Protecting Ontarians Through Enhanced Testing, here.

 



Huron-Bruce moved to Stage 2 of Reopening

The Government of Ontario has announced an updated Seniors Community Grant Program and an investment of up to $4 million, focusing on supporting projects that deliver remote programming such as phone or video conferencing. This year grants range from $1,000 to $100,000 and will help non-profit organizations develop programs for seniors that focus on combatting social isolation, promoting se niors’ safety and well-being, and making communities age-friendly. Eligible organizations are encouraged to visit the ministry’s website at: www.ontario.ca/seniors to learn more and to apply. Applications are due August 7, 2020 at 5PM. Read more here.


 



Child Care Reopening

 



Social Circles

The government has announced its plan to reopen child care centres across the province to support the next stage of the province's reopening framework.
The plan was developed in consultation with Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and medical experts, and will require child care operators to follow strict health protocols to ensure the safety of child care staff and children. Read more about the child care reopening here.


 
The Ontario government is encouraged all Ontarians to establish a social “circle” of no more than 10 people who can interact and come into close contact with one another without physical distancing.
Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, updated public health advice to come into effect immediately, province-wide to allow social circles of up to 10 members, including those outside the immediate household. Social circles will support the mental health and well-being of Ontarians and help reduce social isolation. Read more abou t this here.

 



Huron-Bruce moved to Stage 2 of Reopening

The Government of Ontario has announced an updated Seniors Community Grant Program and an investment of up to $4 million, focusing on supporting projects that deliver remote programming such as phone or video conferencing. This year grants range from $1,000 to $100,000 and will help non-profit organizations develop programs for seniors that focus on combatting social isolation, promoting se niors’ safety and well-being, and making communities age-friendly. Eligible organizations are encouraged to visit the ministry’s website at: www.ontario.ca/seniors to learn more and to apply. Applications are due August 7, 2020 at 5PM. Read more here.


 



Supporting Beef and Hog Farmers

 



Reducing in-person visits to Service Ontario

The Governments of Ontario and Canada are supporting Ontario’s beef and hog farmers by providing up to $10 million in emergency assistance to help cover increased costs of feeding market-ready cattle and hogs due to processing capacity interruptions caused by COVID-19. This includes a program to redirect surplus pork products to Ontario food banks to help those in need.
These support programs for both the beef and hog sectors are the latest in a series of investments to support Ontario’s agri-food sector, helping to ensure that Ontarians can continue to rely on a steady and safe food supply. Learn more about the Beef Set Aside Program and the Hog Sector Support Prograhere.


 
The government has extended the expiry date of several key products (including health cards and drivers licences),
introduced customer screening prior to entry, reduced hours of operations at various locations, deployed and promoted enhanc ed cleaning measures and have hired security to assist with the flow of customers. To learn more about extended validity, click here.
In addition to these new measures, the government has urged Ontarians to complete transactions online – where over 40 services, including the top most common transactions, are available. See this list of services here.




 



Small Businesses, Big Hearts Initiative

As Ontario comes together to combat COVID-19, small businesses are coming up with remarkable ways to support and express true #OntarioSpirit. The time, resources, and services dedicated to helping others during COVID-19 shows that Ontario's Small Businesses have Big Hearts.
The Small Businesses, Big Hearts Initiative seeks to identify those businesses and recognize them for the good work they're doing/have done for their communities. If you know a small business that has gone above and beyond, please share the story with our offices.
Read more here.





Worker Safety Guidelines

 



Reducing in-person visits to Service Ontario

The Ministry of Labour has released more safety guidelines to protect workers, customers and the general public from COVID-19 as we continue with the reopening of the province. These measures will provide direction to those working in dozens of sectors, workplaces and industries across the province.

Read these sector-specific documents here.