COVID-19 - June 22 Update

As a City and a community, we have been working very hard together to do the things we need to so that we could reduce the spread of Covid-19 and in doing prepare to re-open our restaurants, hair salons, barbers, swimming pools and many of the other things we've had to do without in the interest of public health. We were pleased to hear today that the province has announced that the City of Toronto will be moving to Stage 2 (the Restart stage) of re-opening on Wednesday.

In Stage 2, additional restrictions will be loosened while emphasizing public health advice, workplace health and safety guidance, and personal and collective responsibility. More businesses and services will be permitted to open, as well as community, recreational and outdoor spaces. Included in this list, as noted, are personal care services, restaurants and bars and recreational facilities. You can find the complete list here. It is important to note that while facilities are able to open, it is only recommended if they are able to meet the new public health measures to keep their employees and customers safe.

To help our restaurants and bars, the City has been proactive in creating the CafeTO program, which will allow them to expand patios onto sidewalks and curb lanes where possible. To continue moving this project forward for the patio season, at Executive Committee today we approved recommendations to establish this program and allow for it to operate from July 1 until mid-November. Registration has already begun. While this is an important program, I want to be sure that on Bloor Street specifically, it is done with proper coordination with the Bikeway extension. I spoke on this particular matter at Committee and will be coordinating with City staff to ensure both of these vital projects are completed in a manner that facilitates both.

Click to watch Councillor Bailao speaking about CafeTO and Bloor Bikeway extension

Also, at Executive Committee, we discussed a number of additional important items including expanding eligibility for the City’s Property Tax, Water and Solid Waste Relief and Rebate Programs, reviewing the TTC’s Anti-Racism Strategy, and providing monthly BikeShare data updates publicly through the City’s Open Data Portal.

This year, the City will be marking Canada Day through a livestream celebration! The show will engage local residents, connect diverse communities and honour COVID-19 frontline workers. You can find the program details here.

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.

Is it true there is no longer a 30-day limit on prescriptions renewals in Ontario?
Yes, this is correct. Beginning June 15th, Ontarians were permitted to renew their prescriptions for 100 days. There had been a limit of 30 days put in place at the beginning of the public health emergency due to concerns that there could be shortages and that not everyone would then be able to access the medications they required. As noted, this thirty day limit has been lifted as supplies have stabilized and now prescriptions and renewals can be filled for up to 100 days. More information is in the link below.
https://news.ontario.ca/mohltc/en/2020/06/ontario-lifting-30-day-supply-limit-on-prescriptions.html

Will Canada open its borders to air travel and tourist on June 30th?
The federal government has currently in place an international travel ban that is indeed set to expire on June 30th.  The ban on cross border ground travel between Canada and the United States has been extended to July 21st with possible further renewals. With respect to the international June 30th date, the Prime Minister has been clear that the federal government will have an announcement prior to June 30th on this restriction. He has been very clear that while he acknowledges the importance of tourism to Canada's economy, decisions about extending the international restriction, and the July 21st Canada-US land crossing closure, will be made primarily with consideration to public health issues. It seems likely in this context that the June 30th restriction will be extended. Again, the Prime Minister has indicated that an announcement will be forthcoming. Details on this are found in the link below.
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/latest-travel-health-advice.html

Local Updates

Green Line Public Meeting
Finding new parkland in the built-up downtown core is a challenge. The Hydro corridor that runs from Davenport and Macpherson Ave west and northwest towards Earlscourt Park presents a rare opportunity to create a linear open space amenity within a rapidly intensifying city.

A public meeting will be happening on July 7th at 6:30PM. Visit http://toronto.ca/greenline to register and for more details.

Dupont Street Beautification
Before the pandemic, I worked with many engaged residents on Dupont Street to find ways to beautify the community. Today, a resident informed me that one of the measures, the planting of new trees along the street was well underway. I am happy to see progress being made on this initiative!

Regal Heights Village Residents Association – Canada Day Parade
On Wednesday, July 1, at 11:30am the Regal Heights Village Residents Association will be hosting a Canada Day Parade and invite the community to step onto their porches or on the sidewalk to make some noise for our nation.

Recent Announcements

Municipal

City of Toronto preparing residents and businesses for Stage 2 reopening on Wednesday
The City of Toronto is preparing to oversee the safe restart of some services and partial reopening of many businesses following today’s Province of Ontario announcement that Toronto can join the rest of the province in Stage 2 of the provincial reopening on June 24.

Canada Day goes virtual to bring Torontonians together
Today, Mayor John Tory announced that the City of Toronto will help Torontonians mark Canada’s 153rd birthday virtually on Wednesday, July 1 through a livestream show, Canada Day 2020. The show will engage local residents, connect diverse communities and honour COVID-19 frontline workers.

Lifeguards return to six Toronto beaches today
As of 11:30 a.m. today, lifeguards are on duty at six of Toronto’s swimming beaches. Lifeguards will supervise swim areas from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. daily. With the hot summer weather and extended closure of indoor public spaces, it’s important for Torontonians to have opportunities to cool down outdoors.

City of Toronto resumes marriage licence service
Mayor John Tory announced today that the City of Toronto is resuming the issuance of marriage licences on an appointment-only basis beginning Monday, June 22.

City of Toronto update on COVID-19
There are 13,893 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 37 cases since yesterday. There are 248 people hospitalized, with 62 in ICU. In total 11,879 people have recovered from COVID-19, an increase of 62 cases since yesterday. To date, there have been 1,044 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.

Provincial

Ontario Moving Toronto and Peel Region into Stage 2
The Ontario government is allowing more businesses and services to re-open and in so doing getting more people back to work by moving the City of Toronto and Peel Region into Stage 2 on Wednesday. This decision was made in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and the local medical officers of health. It is based on positive local trends of key public health indicators, including lower transmission of COVID-19, ongoing hospital capacity, public health capacity to do rapid case and contact management, and a significant increase in testing.

Ontario Prepares for the Safe Reopening of Schools
The Ontario government released its safety plan for the resumption of classes for the 2020-21 school year, outlining scenarios for how students, teachers and staff can safely return to classrooms in September. The plan also provides choice to parents, enhanced online learning, and additional funding. While the decision to return to the normal school day routine will continue to be based on medical advice, boards and schools are being asked to plan for alternative scenarios that may need to be implemented in September depending on the province's COVID-19 situation.

Federal

Federal Government Outlines Return to Work Plan for federal public servants
The federal government today outlined its return to work plan for federal public servants. The President of the Treasury Board, Jean-Yves Duclos, indicated that the return process will be gradual and will be different depending on each federal department. Most public servants have been working from home and only essential staff have been working in federal buildings.

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