July 30 Office of the Mayor and Council Update
Safe return to school, child care announced today
The Provincial Government today announced that Ontario students will return to school after Labour Day. The plan has been released in conjunction with an announcement that a safe reopening of child care will also be in place for September.

This is likely welcome yet still somewhat concerning news for parents as more of Canada’s big banks announce that work from home options will be extended to employees into 2021. Read more about all of this below, along with links to catch my weekly CHCH Morning Live appearance and more new and information that you may find useful.

With our Civic Long Weekend starting tomorrow I remind you to continue to follow the advice of public health to stay home if you’re unwell, wash and sanitize your hands often, cover coughs and sneezes and keep your distance from others. Don’t forget to wear your mask in public indoor spaces and be kind to others. Please also remember that my three Cs of COVID-caution can help us continue to crush the curve: Avoid closed spaces, crowded places and close-contact settings.

For an updated timeline of how far we’ve come through the pandemic, please scroll to the end of this email.
Items in this update:

  • COVID case counts
  • The second wave is coming. Here's what public health experts say to expect
  • Coronavirus cases hit 17 million worldwide
  • COVID-19's impact on the heart
  • First minor admitted to an Ottawa hospital with COVID-19
  • Yesterday's announcements discussed on CHCH Morning Live
  • In support of Kerr Street Mission
  • Provincial Government announcements
  • Ontario releases plan for safe reopening of schools in September
  • Ontario to gradually and safely reopen child care
  • Ontario building a safer, stronger long-term care system
  • Ontario commemorating the sacrifices of Canadian service members
  • Ontario movie theatres allowed to dramatically increase capacity
  • Government of Canada announcements
  • Travel restrictions remain in place for August long weekend
  • Most B.C. students to return to school full time in September
  • China records highest new-case count in three months
  • U.S. records a coronavirus death every minute
  • California, Texas, Florida set new daily records for COVID-19 deaths
  • In related news
  • Getting a COVID-19 test to see family or friends? Good intentions come with risks, experts warn
  • Masks more important than disinfectant for COVID-19 prevention, experts say
  • Young children less likely to spread coronavirus, McMaster review shows
  • Toronto makes masks mandatory in common areas of residential buildings
  • TD and RBC extend work from home policy for most staff until 2021
  • Toronto city council votes to legally challenge Bill 184. Here's what that means
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Ward News
Oakville Town Council represents seven wards with a Town and Regional and Town Councillor in each riding.

Find and connect with your Councillor by clicking the link below.
COVID case counts
Halton's case count remains at 827 today while Oakville has + 1 new case to 271. The region total remains the same thanks to one false positive previously counted in Burlington.
 
There are currently 2 COVID-19 patient being cared for at OTMH and 10 active cases in Oakville.
 
There were 0 reported recoveries in Oakville, total remains at 286 and +2 recoveries in Halton Region, from 859 to 861
In Ontario there are 89 news cases today, bringing the total to 39,075, 34,906 of which are resolved. There have been 2,772 deaths in the province. Currently there are 84 COVID patients in Ontario hospitals, 27 of whom are in ICU with 16 of those on a ventilator.

As of today, Canada had 115,617 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 100,630 of the cases as recovered or resolved.
Visit https://art-bd.shinyapps.io/covid19canada/ for the U of T COVID-19 data aggregation map
COVID-19 deaths per million
The second wave is coming. Here's what public health experts say we should expect
CBC asked dozens of physicians, epidemiologists and public health experts what to expect from a second wave of COVID-19 infections. Most said the severity of a second wave will depend on what infection-control measures governments put in place and whether or not people adhere to public health guidelines.

Coronavirus cases hit 17 million worldwide
after setting new single-day record
Several countries reported their highest ever daily totals Wednesday, including Brazil, India, Japan, Australia, Uzbekistan, and Morocco.

COVID-19's impact on the heart: Two new studies suggest 'the plot thickening'
Since the coronavirus pandemic first began, evidence has emerged showing that COVID-19 can damage more than the lungs.

The disease caused by the novel coronavirus can  harm other organs in the body  -- including the heart -- and now two separate studies, published in the journal JAMA Cardiology on Monday, provide more insight into how COVID-19 may have a prolonged impact on heart health in those who have recovered from illness and may have caused cardiac infection in those who died.

First minor admitted to an
Ottawa hospital with COVID-19
Ottawa Public Health's "COVID-19 Epidemiology Weekly Supplement" report shows a 16-year-old was admitted to the ICU over the past week due to COVID-19.

Read the full story
Oakville and Halton
Yesterday’s announcements discussed today on CHCH Morning Live
During my weekly appearance on CHCH Morning Live I talked about yesterday’s transit and education funding announcements, as well as the COVID funding municipalities are expecting.

In support of the Kerr Street Mission
A few weeks ago would have been the 13th annual Mayor’s invitational Softball Tournament, which unfortunately had to be cancelled due to the social restrictions in place. This has always been an important event for Kerr Street Mission (KSM), as it raises much needed funds for programs and services, but it also serves as a way for the community to come together.

KSM’s two title sponsors (Mattmany Homes and Trinison Management Corp) generously donated their sponsorship fees, so that they could be used during this time of crisis. A few other team sponsors also followed suit.

Click to watch the short video thanking the organization’s special sponsors. 
Ontario
Provincial Government announcements
The Ontario government is announcing the safe reopening of schools for in-class instruction beginning this September. The government has unveiled a plan that prioritizes the health and safety of students and staff, and provides school boards with unprecedented resources and flexibility, while accommodating regional differences in trends of key public health indicators. This plan was developed in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the COVID-19 Command Table and paediatric experts.

Details on the safe restart of the 2020-2021 school year were provided today by Premier Doug Ford, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education, and Dr. Barbara Yaffe, Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Elementary schools (Kindergarten to Grade 8) will reopen provincewide, with in-class instruction five days a week. Secondary schools with lower risk will reopen with a normal daily schedule, five days a week, while most secondary schools will start the school year in an adapted model of part-time attendance with class cohorts of up to 15 students alternating between attending in-person and online. Students from Grade 4-12 and school staff will be required to wear masks.

"It's been hard on families to balance work and child care, while kids have been separated from friends and other kids their own age. We want to get our kids back to school, but it has to be done safely," said Premier Ford. "That's why we've worked with our public health experts, Ontario Health and the medical experts at SickKids to develop a plan that ensures students can return to the classroom five days a week in a way that protects the health and safety of our children, teachers, and school staff."

Parents will continue to have the option to enroll their children in remote delivery, which respects their fundamental role in making the final determination of whether they feel safe with their children returning to school.

Based on the best medical advice available, the province is implementing additional public health protocols to keep students and staff safe when they return to school in September. To support the implementation of these protocols, the government is providing over $300 million in targeted, immediate, and evidence-informed investments, including:
  •  $60 million in procurement of medical and cloth masks for students and staff, with direction to boards to ensure that students who cannot afford a mask are provided one;
  •  $30 million for teacher staffing to support supervision, keeping classes small and other safety related measures;
  •  $50 million to hire up to 500 additional school-focused nurses in public health units to provide rapid-response support to schools and boards in facilitating public health and preventative measures, including screening, testing, tracing and mitigation strategies;
  • Over $23 million to provide testing capacity to help keep schools safe;
  •  $75 million in funding to hire over 900 additional custodians and purchase cleaning supplies for schools;
  • $40 million to clean school buses, to ensure that students are in a thoroughly cleaned transportation environment;
  •  $10 million for health and safety training for occasional teachers, who have historically not been covered by professional development that is offered to permanent teachers;
  • $10 million to support special needs students in the classroom; and
  •  $10 million to support student mental health.

This funding is in addition to a $25 million investment in mental health and technology, which will see an additional $10 million dedicated to mental health staff, resources, and programs, as well as $15 million in technology funding to support the procurement of over 35,000 devices for Ontario's students to support their synchronous learning in-school and beyond.

"This plan reflects the best medical and scientific advice with a single aim: to keep your child safe," added Minister Lecce. "While this plan will continue to evolve to respond to the changing threat of COVID-19, we will remain constant and consistent in investing in the resources, staffing, and cleaning supports, and strict health and safety protocols to keep our communities and our classrooms safe."

The Ministry of Education has received clear and compelling public health guidance to inform the delivery of instruction for boards for the 2020-2021 school year. These decisions are adaptable to changing public health situations and were based on the rigorous and data-informed guidance of leading medical, epidemiological, and paediatric leaders in the province.

"Based on the current data, we are seeing that overall instances of COVID-19 are declining in Ontario. When considering the health of the whole child, and as long as this trend continues, we believe that with the appropriate measures and strategies in place to handle potential outbreaks and prevent spread, schools are expected to be a safe place for Ontario's students and staff who attend in person," said Dr. David Williams, Chief Medical Officer of Health. "We will continue to closely monitor the situation to ensure the safety of students and staff and will be prepared to transition to alternative options should circumstances change."

"As a society, we've made an important shift in the dialogue about our children and the adverse health impacts of school closures," says Dr. Ronald Cohn, President and CEO of SickKids. "While we recognize that COVID-19 will be with us for some time, continuing to stay home from school has become untenable for many children, youth and families. Effective, evidence-based strategies can help promote the safety of students, teachers, school staff and families as they return to school."

The Ministry of Education will continue working closely with public health and school boards to monitor and report on the health status of school communities, which is part of the government's outbreak management plan. This plan, which was developed with the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of the Solicitor General and the Ministry of Health, outlines clear protocols and authorities of the multiple agencies and organizations involved in the public health landscape. In the event of positive cases of COVID-19 among students, parents, teachers, or other staff, these protocols will enable immediate action by health and education sector officials to identify, track, and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the education system. Every school board will have communication protocols in place to keep families informed.
Today, the Ontario government announced its plan to allow licensed child care centres across Ontario to open at full capacity starting September 1, 2020. This decision was made in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and the COVID-19 Command Table. As a result, parents will be able to return to work knowing their children are in a safe and supportive care setting.

EarlyON Child and Family Centres will also be permitted to reopen with in-person programming along with before- and after-school programs for school aged children which will be permitted to operate with standard ratios and maximum group size requirements. All of these programs will be subject to health and safety protocols in order to keep kids safe.

"Our government is gradually and safely supporting child care expansion to ensure moms and dads across the province can return to work with confidence," said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. "We will continue to ensure strict health and safety protocols remain in place, to keep our youngest learners safe." 

The Ministry of Education will continue to work closely with municipal service managers, First Nations, and childcare operators to maximize capacity and access for families over the coming weeks. This includes revised health and safety operational guidance, additional funding parameters, and direction on providing notice to parents for placements. Licensees will continue to be required to maintain ratios and group sizes as set out under the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014 (CCEYA).

The government will continue to follow the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health and the COVID-19 Command Table to ensure the health and safety of the children and staff is never compromised as childcare capacity expands to 100%. The enhanced health and safety procedures that were put in place as part of our re-opening plan, will remain in place, and in some instances strengthened, to protect children, staff and families, including:
  • Requiring all child care staff to wear masks at all times, effective September 1;
  • Ensuring frequent cleaning of child care centres;
  • Screening of children and staff before entering a childcare facility;
  • Maintaining attendance records for rigorous contact tracing and coordination with local public health authorities;
  • Ensuring frequent hand washing and proper hand hygiene for children and staff; and
  • Establishing clear and rigid case management protocols in the event a staff member or child becomes ill, or tests positive for COVID-19.

"Our commitment to the health and safety of the children and staff, will never waver," continued Minister Lecce. "Child care and early years programs will operate with additional health and safety procedures in place upon fully reopening. And rest assured, if at any time the health and safety of the children is jeopardized, we will take action immediately."

Ontario will also provide additional funding, with support from the federal government through the Safe Restart Agreement, to help child care operators and EarlyON Child and Family Centres purchase cleaning supplies, PPE and support staffing needs related to new procedures.
Today, Ontario released two reports and announced new initiatives that further deliver on recommendations made by the Honourable Eileen E. Gillese, Commissioner of the Long-Term Care Homes Public Inquiry, that will make long-term care safer and stronger, now and in the future.

The " Report Back on the Gillese Inquiry " provides an update on accomplishments in four key areas recommended by Justice Gillese: increasing awareness, prevention, deterrence and detection of intentional harm in long-term care homes. The Gillese Inquiry provided a thorough analysis and recommendations for making the long-term care system safer, and to date, 80 per cent of the recommendations are complete or underway.

"My heart goes out to the victims, the victims' families that have been affected, and the surviving victim," said Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care. "Our government's efforts follow Justice Gillese's clear roadmap to achieve 21st century safety standards in long-term care and we will continue to build on and deliver the high-quality of care our residents deserve."

As part of Ontario's long-term care modernization, the " Long-Term Care Staffing Study Report ," was released as well. This study will inform the development of a comprehensive staffing strategy to be released later this year. The study was informed by an external Long-Term Care Staffing Study Advisory Group composed of resident and family advocates, operators, academics and other industry thought-leaders. This group provided the government with advice on staffing in the long-term care sector in response to a key recommendation in Justice Gillese's report.

The province is investing in a $10 million annual training fund to help frontline care staff acquire new skills, including the flexibility and resiliency needed to adapt to changing practices.

Delivering on Justice Gillese's recommendations, Ontario has entered into a three-year, $1.8 million partnership with the Institute for Safe Medication Practices Canada to help long-term care homes strengthen medication safety practices. Ontario also plans to launch a Medication Safety Technology program next spring to help homes adopt new technologies to strengthen medication dispensing safety and consistency.

"Our actions today are part of a broader modernization plan to build a safer and stronger long-term care system for our loved ones," said Minister Fullerton. "I want to thank my Parliamentary Assistant, MPP Effie Triantafilopoulos for her leadership and tireless work on this staffing report, which will lead us into our staffing strategy later this year."
The Ontario government is honouring members of the Canadian Armed Forces who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country by providing $1 million to plant additional trees along the Highway of Heroes. Funding in support of this living tribute was announced today by Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation.

"This project commemorates the bravery, commitment and sacrifice of all the Canadian military personnel who lost their lives serving their country," said Minister Mulroney. "Each tree planted along the Highway of Heroes will not only benefit the environment, but will be a growing reminder that will inspire people for generations to come."

In partnership with the Highway of Heroes Tree Campaign , the province is providing the funding to support the goal of planting 117,000 trees along the highway, which represents one tree for every soldier who died serving Canada since Confederation.

Highway 401 between Glen Miller Road in Trenton and Keele Street in Toronto is recognized as the Highway of Heroes, representing the final journey of Canadian Armed Forces members who died in service to their country. Over 52,000 trees have been planted under this initiative since planting began in 2016.
Ontario movie theatres will be allowed
to dramatically increase capacity this week
Movie theaters in Ontario will be able to dramatically increase capacity this week, CTV News Toronto has learned, allowing up to 50 people per showing, rather than the entire building.

Canada
Government of Canada announcements
Travel restrictions to Canada remain in place for August long weekend
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is reminding all travellers ahead of the upcoming August 3, 2020, Civic Holiday and long weekend, travel restrictions are still in place at all Canadian international border crossings.

These measures remain in place until at least August 21, 2020, at 11:59 pm EDT and may be extended.

The Government of Canada remains committed to protecting the health and safety of Canadians and reducing the spread of COVID-19 in Canada.

All travel of an optional or discretionary nature, including tourism, recreation and entertainment, is covered by these measures across all ports of entry in all modes of transportation – land, marine, air and rail.

With the travel restrictions still in place, foreign nationals, including United States (U.S.) citizens, will not be allowed to enter Canada for any of the following examples of discretionary travel:
  • opening or checking on a cottage or seasonal home
  • sightseeing and hiking
  • boating across the border
  • fishing or hunting
  • visiting friends or partners (outside of spouses or common-law)
  • attending a party or celebration
  • picking up a pet

Asymptomatic immediate family members, spouses or  common-law partners  of Canadian citizens and permanent residents who meet the  immediate family member definition  and are coming to Canada for a minimum of 15 days will be exempt from the prohibition from entering Canada for a discretionary purpose. Read more information about  foreign nationals who are immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents .

Unless exempt, boaters cannot currently enter Canadian waters (territorial sea and internal waters) or boundary waters for discretionary reasons. These reasons include: touring, sightseeing and pleasure fishing. Read more  Information for foreign boaters .

The CBSA has temporarily suspended or reduced service at certain small vessel reporting sites, small airports of entry, ferry terminals and to the Remote Area Border Crossing program. Travellers should review the list of  CBSA locations that remain open  during this temporary service suspension.
Most B.C. students to return
to school full time in September
Most B.C. students from kindergarten to Grade 12 will return to class full time in September, Education Minister Rob Fleming announced Wednesday.

International news
China records highest new-case count in three months
China reported 101 new coronavirus cases Wednesday, its highest single-day figure in three months, as gyms, bars and museums closed in infection hotspots.

Of the new cases, 98 were domestic infections, mostly in the northwestern region of Xinjiang, where a growing cluster first discovered earlier this month has prompted mass testing and restrictions.

U.S. records a coronavirus death every minute as total rises above 150,000 
One person in the United States died about every minute from COVID-19 on Wednesday as the national death toll surpassed 150,000, the highest in the world.

California, Texas, Florida set new
daily records for COVID-19 deaths
The United States has registered 10,000 deaths over the last 11 days, the fastest surge since early June, prompting heated debates between the American public and its leaders over the best course forward.

In other COVID-related news:
Getting a COVID-19 test to see family or friends? Good intentions come with risks, experts warn
Many Canadians are now able to get tested even without symptoms,even if it's just to see friends and loved ones. Ontario's health minister says it's a "responsible" approach, but public health experts warn it comes with risks.

Masks more important than disinfectant for COVID-19 prevention, experts say
We might be focusing too much on cleaning to prevent coronavirus, experts say.

Young children less likely to spread coronavirus, McMaster review shows
Primary schools and daycare centres have not been major sources of coronavirus transmission, according to  an analysis  of the international evidence released as two of Canada’s  largest provinces  prepare to unveil their back-to-school plans.

Temperature screening now mandatory at Toronto Pearson Airport
Starting Thursday, temperature screening is beginning in phases at Canada's 15 busiest airports, including Toronto’s Pearson Airport, in response to COVID-19.

Toronto makes masks mandatory in common areas of residential buildings
"We have heard from tenants and condo dwellers asking for this measure to be mandated," Toronto Mayor John Tory said.

TD and RBC extend work from home policy for most staff until 2021
Royal Bank of Canada and TD Bank Group say most of their staff will work from home until next year to further stop the spread of COVID-19.
 
Toronto city council votes to legally challenge Bill 184. Here's what that means
Toronto city council has voted Wednesday evening in favour of legally challenging the province’s contentious Bill 184.
The council voted 22-2 to fight the bill known as Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, which housing advocates say would weaken tenants’ rights after the pandemic and make it easier to evict them.
Upcoming events:
Halton Environmental Network is launching Pop-up Clean-ups! The socially distanced clean-ups are a safe and fun way to enjoy the outdoors while making a difference in your community. Not only will you be cleaning up litter, but you’ll be tracking the waste you find. The collected data will empower our community to make informed decisions on how to protect our environment.
 
You can either lead a clean-up or take part in one! Students also have the opportunity to gain volunteer hours for school credit with each clean-up they do. If you are interested, please register   here .  
Sign the CN intermodal e-Petition now
This e-Petition is a collaborative effort between Milton RAIL, Milton Says No and Halton Region, to serve as the response from Halton residents during this last, vital public consultation period in the environmental assessment process.

The Review Panel Report states that the Project (CN intermodal terminal AKA Milton Logistics Hub) is likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects on human health caused by air quality.

The Federal Government can still determine that the environmental effects to human health - 1,600 transport trucks on the roads every day plus the operation of a dangerous industrial facility - are justified. This would be set a devastating precedent for Canadian municipalities.

This petition is meant to ensure the Federal Government understands that significant adverse effects to human health cannot be justified.

Instructions:

1. Sign the petition
  • There is no minimum age to sign
  • Every signature, however, must have a unique email address (an email address may only be used once on the petition).

2. Watch for an email from the House of Commons! You must verify and confirm your signature, it will not count unless you complete this step.

Food Banks experiencing record demand
Oakville's food banks are in record-breaking demand. If you can donate anything, please do. Your help is needed.

Fareshare Food Bank Oakville: 905-847-3988 or email  oakvillefoodbank@gmail.com

Kerr Street Mission: 905-845-7485 or donate online at kerrstreet.com

The Salvation Army Oakville: Donate online https://salvationarmy.ca/
Oakville Meals on Wheels continues to operate

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Oakville Meals on Wheels continues to operate under increased safety measures.

Testing in Oakville
Call the COVID-19 hotline
For the duration of the pandemic, if a member of the public wishes to report an incident of non-compliance with the emergency orders, they may contact the Halton Regional Police Service COVID-19 Hotline: 905-825-4722

It is critical that our residents use 911 for emergencies only.
Coronavirus timeline