COVID-19 - June 11 Update

To the Portuguese community of Davenport, I hope everyone had an amazing Portugual Day yesterday. Although we unfortunately did not get to gather in person as a community this year, I had the privilege of attending a flag-raising yesterday at City Hall. I am glad we could still have this important recognition.

There have been a number of important updates in the last few days that I wish to share with you. In our Ward, have City has introduced the modular housing project at 150 Harrison Street. Due to current public health regulations we are unable to have a traditional public meeting(s) but we are having virtual sessions to provide you with answers to your questions and updates on the project. You can also submit your questions in advance to modularhousing@toronto.ca. If you would like to learn more about this project, please visit here. You can learn more about the City's modular housing initiative here.

The TTC announced that (pending TTC board approval), face coverings will be made mandatory on the TTC as of July 2. If the TTC Board approves this item on June 17, there will be an education campaign to inform riders, and the City will work to provide 1 million masks to riders, with a focus on communities with greater needs.

This week, with the announcement of Bike Share's expansion, I am happy to share that we have 9 new BikeShare stations located across our Ward! With this expansion, BikeShare has grown to 6,850 bikes & 625 stations and has expanded into 30 new neighbourhoods!

The Province has come forward with a plan for further reopening, including child care facilities. While we need to implement measures that keep children and families safe, it is also important that we keep child care affordable. The City of Toronto supports thousands of families each year with their child care expenses, but for all families, it remains a considerable cost. As these new measures add to the financial pressures of families, I am urging the province to work to provide families additional support to cover child care expenses.

Our office continues to work to serve you remotely. If we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at councillor_bailao@toronto.ca or by phone at 416.392.7012.

In community,

Ana

Questions from the Community!

Each day, we are working to answer important questions from our community. To keep you all informed, we will feature some of these questions each newsletter. Have a question you think would be good to share? Reach out to us at councillor_bailao@toronto.ca.

I have heard that Toronto beaches are open, is it okay to swim?
Toronto's beaches have been open as parks are for walking and exercise.  However, the City is strongly recommending against swimming at this time as testing of the water has not taken place.  The Mayor announced yesterday the SwimTO program that will see lifeguards begin supervision of six of Toronto's beaches beginning on Monday June 22nd with the rest being supervised from July 1st

The six that will be supervised from June 22nd are:

  • Bluffer's Park Beach (Blue Flag)
  • Cherry/Clarke Beach (Blue Flag)
  • Kew-Balmy Beach (Blue Flag)
  • Marie Curtis Park East Beach
  • Sunnyside Beach
  • Woodbine Beach (Blue Flag)

Under SwimTO, the City is also preparing outdoor pools, wading pools and splash pads for re-opening once the province has indicated that Toronto can move to stage 2 of the re-opening process.  It is possible that this could occur on June 19th, but again the City is awaiting direction from the provincial government.  As always, residents in all circumstances should continue to following physical distancing guidelines and other public health directives. More information here.

I understand that some parts of the province are re-opening in stage 2 this weekend.  Are we allowed to travel to these areas?
Yes, certain parts of the province are re-opening this weekend under stage 2 of the provincial government's recovery strategy.  Areas such as the Greater Toronto Area are not moving to stage 2 this weekend but the province has indicated this decision will be coming soon and further announcements will be made next week.  In terms of the question of whether anyone from the GTA can travel to areas that are open, the answer is yes.  The provincial government under their announced re-opening for certain parts of the province has indicated that there will be no restrictions on travelling to these areas.  Of course, those who do travel to these areas are strongly advised to maintain public health directions such as practicing physical distancing.  Details on the provincial stage 2 directions for some areas of the province are available here.

Local Updates

Toronto Board of Health Recognize Anti-Black Racism as Public Health Crisis
The Toronto Board of Heath determines and sets public health policy and advises City Council on a broad range of health issues and services that include Health Assessment, Health Protection, Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. This week, they unanimously voted on an important recognition, that anti-black racisms is a public health crisis. This is an important step in the larger conversation we are having about how to create a more equitable city. This motion recognizes that there are many factors that contribute to inequality.

Regal Heights Residents' Association Virtual Garden Tour
The Regal Heights Residents' Association will be hosting their garden tour virtually this year. Click the link above to see the beautiful gardens in our community. Submit photos of your garden here.

St. Clair West Oral History
The Wychwood Barns Community Association has launched this amazing St. Clair West Oral History website. It is a great way for your whole family to learn a bit more about the history of this community.

SwimTO and CampTO
The City has announced further plans on CampTO and SwimTO, in preparation for the province easing restrictions on summer camps and outdoor swimming and water facilities. CampTO will be offered in roughly 150 locations across Toronto, offering more than 32,000 spaces for kids.

In the coming days, more information will be shared with residents and families about CampTO. Programs will be available for viewing on June 13 at http://toronto.ca/camps and registration will take place on June 24 and 25.

SwimTO is a quick start program to ensure our beaches, outdoor pools, and water features can open quickly once permitted. Both programs are being organized to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19.

AdviceTO
Get business support and mentoring with entrepreneurs and industry experts with the City of Toronto's Business AdviceTO program - a series of free, weekly online events for tech, retail & women-owned businesses.

Trillium Gift of Life Be a Donor Campaign
We wear masks to protect and save others. Registering for organ donation also saves others. 1 organ donor can save 8 lives. Take 2 minutes to register to become an organ and tissue donor now.

Recent Announcements

Municipal

Federal and Provincial governments partner to expand City of Toronto’s Digital Main Street program across Ontario to help more local businesses during COVID-19 pandemic
Today, the federal and provincial governments announced a $57 million investment to help small businesses across Ontario go digital by building on Toronto’s investments into Digital Main Street and, most recently, ShopHERE powered by Google.

City of Toronto launches SwimTO plan to help Torontonians cool down this summer
Today, Mayor John Tory announced SwimTO – a quick-start program that will expedite the opening of the City’s beaches, outdoor pools, wading pools and splash pads. City staff are preparing now so that outdoor aquatic amenities can be opened when Toronto enters Stage 2, to help people cool down during hot summer temperatures.

City of Toronto to offer CampTO programs starting July 13
The City of Toronto will begin to offer summer camps across the city starting on July 13 as part of its CampTO initiative, following the Province of Ontario announcement that summer day camps can operate during the Province’s Stage 2 reopening.

ActiveTO delivers 65 kilometres of Quiet Streets along 32 neighbourhood routes across Toronto
Mayor John Tory announced today that the City of Toronto, through ActiveTO, has now delivered 65 kilometres of Quiet Streets along 32 neighbourhood routes across Toronto.

City of Toronto update on COVID-19
There are 13,063 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 114 cases since yesterday. There are 306 people hospitalized, with 72 in ICU. In total 10,558 people have recovered from COVID-19, an increase of 248 cases since yesterday. To date, there have been 965 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.

Provincial

Ontario to Resume Family Visits in Long-Term Care Homes, Retirement Homes, and Other Residential Care Settings
In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government announced the gradual resumption of visits to long-term care homes, retirement homes, and other residential care settings. 

Ontario Appoints New Patient Ombudsman
The Ontario government has appointed Cathy Fooks as Ontario's new Patient Ombudsman to help improve the quality of care and supports people receive in hospitals, long-term care homes and in their own homes through home and community care.

Ontario Unveils a Plan to Reopen Postsecondary Education
The Ontario government has developed a plan for the gradual and safe resumption of in-person instruction at postsecondary institutions across the province for the summer term. The plan was developed in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Ontario Introduces Public Transit Safety Guidance
Today, Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation and Kinga Surma, Associate Minister of Transportation, released comprehensive safety guidance for public transit agencies as the province reopens and more people return to work. This guidance, developed in consultation with health and transit officials, provides transit agencies with the information they need to help protect employees and passengers during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Federal

Supporting communities across Ontario
Today, Infrastructure and Communities Minister Catherine McKenna announced that Ontario has received more than $816 million through the federal Gas Tax Fund (GTF) for the 2020–21 fiscal year to fund its most pressing infrastructure needs.

FedDev Ontario and partners to assist nearly 23,000 Ontario businesses in embracing online commerce
The Government of Canada invests $50 million towards helping businesses across the region adopt digital technologies to recover from the pandemic and emerge stronger.

Minister Ng announces government partnership with private sector campaign to help businesses reopen safely amid COVID-19
Small businesses are facing unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government of Canada has introduced a wide range of supports to help businesses pay and retain their employees and keep up with their operating expenses during this difficult time.

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