COVID-19 - June 4 Update

Restaurants and bars across the City have been responsible by following Public Health directives and keeping their doors closed except for delivery and take-out orders.  It is important that we all work together as we begin to support their recovery. This morning, Mayor John Tory announced CafeTO, to help our bars and restaurants restart from COVID-19 shut-down. This program will make it easier to open and expand patios, and to access additional space for physical distancing. To get this right, the City has created an action team to address any challenges. Conversations continue with the province on the liquor licensing aspects and so far they have been supportive.

Mayor Tory also spoke out today calling on the province to put an end to commercial evictions. With only 1.3% of small business landlords having applied for CECRA, we need a provincial ban on commercial rent evictions now. Over the last two months, stories about businesses in our community and across the City pleading for their landlords to apply for support have been repeating themselves daily.  I have also written to the federal Minister of Finance and the Provincial Minister of Finance on this very issue demanding that action be taken to ban evictions and alter the federal program to support commercial tenants directly.

This afternoon, I joined former UN Special Rapporteur Lilani Farha and the Canadian Urban Institute as they brought together municipalities from across the country to discuss housing, homelessness and COVID-19. It is important that we hear our shared experiences and ideas so we can work together to find the best ways to support our communities.

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.

Are there posters or advertisements available from the City regarding public health issues related to Covid-19?
Yes, the City maintains a web page where there is a wide collection of posters and advertisements covering a wide range of issues related to the public health emergency.  The link below features all of this material.

https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-how-you-can-help/covid-19-spread-the-word/

Where can I find information online regarding the recovery plan and what is happening now with respect to re-opening the economy?
There are number of online resources available from both the City and the provincial government that deal with the plans for re-opening.  The provincial government is leading in terms of when we move to the next phase (currently in stage one of three).  The provincial government also indicated that they will have further updates next week on re-opening.

https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-latest-city-of-toronto-news/recovery-rebuild/

https://www.ontario.ca/page/reopening-ontario-stages

https://www.ontario.ca/page/reopening-ontario-after-covid-19

Local Updates

 Show Your Support for Toronto Seniors!
The Toronto Challenge event was cancelled this year, but community agencies still need your support! Funds are used to support projects and groups that improve the quality of life for seniors in many different ways: by providing home support and independent living, renovation of a seniors’ facility, providing transportation services, offering wellness programs, home library services, and more.

See the list of agencies that need your support at http://www.toronto.ca/challenge. This fantastic program has raised over $14,000 for Reconnect Community Health Services in our community.

Black Resilience Resources and Supports
The Centre for Research and Innovation for Black Survivors of Homicide Victims will be hosting a discussion on Coping with the Impact of Racial Trauma on Wednesday, June 3 at 7 pm. You can register at:  https://linktr.ee/TheCRIB 

Additional resources for Black community members can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1de4xePkB6WzYqSWDaadJcujqNtN4X-T8_tkvWV1_FDM/mobilebasic?urp=gmail_link

United Nations 2020 World Environment Day: Time for Nature, Biodiversity in the City
ClimateFast Webcast on Friday, June 5th
On Friday, June 5 at 7:00PM, register to hear speakers share information on Indigenous knowledge, gardening, urban agriculture, trees and protecting our green spaces for a post-COVID world.

Register here on Eventbrite!


Shaping a Just Recovery in Davenport: A Community Conversation
On Thursday, June 11 from 7:00PM-8:15PM, join St. Anne's Anglican Church, Green Wave West and Davenport Mutual Aid Network for their free community conversation on shaping a just recovery.

Register here through Eventbrite and help them promote the facebook event.  

Lansdowne Cone Article
Yesterday, I wrote about the Lansdowne Cone, which despite our best efforts is being evicted from their Bloordale home. I wanted to share this article today which provides a good history of their situation.

Recent Announcements

Municipal

City of Toronto launches CaféTO plan to help create more outdoor space for local restaurants and bars
Today, Mayor John Tory launched CaféTO a quick-start program that will make it easier for restaurant and bar owners to open patios, to expand them, and to access additional space for physical distancing and for that matter revenue generation during the summer months ahead.

City of Toronto update on COVID-19
There are 11,835 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 183 cases since yesterday. There are 365 people hospitalized, with 82 in ICU. In total 9,131 people have recovered from COVID-19, an increase of 183 cases since yesterday. To date, there have been 883 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.

Provincial

Ontario Creates Premier's Council on Equality of Opportunity
Today, the Ontario government announced the Premier's Council on Equality of Opportunity, a new advisory group that will provide advice on how young people can overcome social and economic barriers and achieve success. The council will also advise the government on long-term actions that can be taken to support youth during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Ontario Appoints Special Advisor to Develop Health Data Platform
The Ontario government has appointed Dr. Jane Philpott as the special advisor to support the design and implementation of the new Ontario Health Data Platform (formerly known as PANTHR). This data platform will provide recognized researchers and health system partners with access to anonymized health data that will allow them to better detect, plan, and respond to COVID-19. As well, this platform will support projects from the Ontario COVID-19 Rapid Research Fund.

Federal

Canadian seniors to receive special payment in early July
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced that seniors eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension and the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) will receive their special one-time, tax-free payment during the week of July 6. Through this measure and others, the government is providing nearly $900 more for single seniors and more than $1,500 for senior couples, on top of their existing benefits, to help these vulnerable Canadians with extra costs during the pandemic.  

Seniors eligible for the OAS pension will receive a payment of $300, and those also eligible for the GIS will receive an additional $200, for a total of $500. Allowance recipients will also receive $500. This $2.5 billion in financial support will help Canadian seniors cover increased costs caused by COVID-19, and give them greater financial security in this time of crisis.

Youth leaders from across Canada help build more inclusive and accessible communities and workplaces
Today, the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, launched a call for expressions of interest under the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) youth innovation component, a Government of Canada grants and contributions program. This EAF component engages and challenges youth to volunteer and collaborate with local community-based organizations, and apply for funding of up to $10,000 for accessibility projects.

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