Here are today’s new developments:
- Both Trudeau and Ford avoided direct criticism of U.S. President Donald Trump during their respective press conferences today, where questions arose about Trump’s handling of protests across the States. Ford was also asked why his government cut anti-racism funding and has been resistant to take up calls for the collection of race-based data regarding COVID-19 – the Official Opposition has urged the government to collect race-based data, and today Horwath echoed a call from Black health leaders for government to declare anti-Black racism a public health crisis. Shockingly, Ford responded to media questions by declaring that “we don’t have the systemic deep roots” of racism in Canada.
- Canada has signed a contract to buy 37 million syringes in anticipation of an eventual COVID-19 vaccine, though a timeline for its delivery has not been provided.
- Ontario’s patient ombudsman today launched an investigation into long-term care, a day after the provincial ombudsman launched a similar investigation – Since March, the patient ombudsman has received 150 complaints about safety concerns for staff and residents in long-term care facilities.
Here are some concerns the Official Opposition is working on, and solutions we’re pushing for:
- Andrea Horwath held a virtual press conference today with a woman whose grandmother died of COVID-19 she contracted in a long-term care home. Horwath said families deserve transparency about homes in the high-risk "red" category, and urged Ford to tell families what is happening.
- In today's question period, Horwath called on Premier Ford to put a moratorium on issuing new licences to for-profit long-term care operators, at least until all investigations and inquires into the sector are completed.
- Official Opposition Workplace Health and Safety critic Wayne Gates and Ethics critic Taras Natyshak urged the government to rush support to migrant and agricultural workers amid COVID-19 outbreaks in the sector in Niagara Region, Windsor-Essex, Chatham-Kent, Norfolk County and Elgin County - Gates stressed that the province should have already addressed the dangerously crowded bunk-housing conditions, and that Ford must deploy mobile testing, PPE and local motel or hotel facilities for those who need to self-isolate.