July 6 Office of the Mayor and Council Update
Evidence for and against mandatory mask-wearing orders to be considered Wednesday
As first reported here last week, I’ve called a Special Meeting of Council for 7 p.m. this Wednesday, July 8 to consider evidence for and against mandatory mask-wearing orders.

My recommendation, as outlined in my report to Council is: T hat Council determine whether and where and on what conditions it wants to require or encourage wearing of masks by residents.
During this meeting, which you can watch live at Oakville.ca, the public will be invited to delegate. Information about how to do so will be available during the live stream online.

In the meantime, I strongly encourage everyone to wear masks in public indoor settings and follow the public health guidelines of washing and sanitizing your hands, covering coughs and sneezes and maintaining a physical distance of two metres from others. I encourage you to also follow my three Cs of COVID-caution: avoid closed spaces, crowded places and close-contact settings. Information about this virus continues to evolve, but what we know for certain is that following the public health measures and not gathering are the keys to keeping our curve flat.

As always, please scroll to the end of this email to an updated timeline of the pandemic and a glimpse into our recovery.
Items in this update:

  • COVID case counts
  • Ontario records no new COVID-related deaths for first time in months
  • Canada weeks away from first glimpse at true rate of COVID-19 infections
  • WHO reports record level of new coronavirus cases
  • Loss of smell, taste can linger longer than other COVID-19 symptoms
  • Coronavirus could be airborne, scientists warn the WHO
  • Ontario Mayors and Chairs issue emergency call for financial support
  • Province announces $450,000 in Halton tourism
  • OCF awards grants through Emergency Support Fund
  • Provincial Government announcements
  • Government proposes made-in-Ontario plan for growth, renewal and economic recovery
  • Government of Canada announcements
  • Competition Bureau's year ahead
  • Canadian seniors to receive one time tax-free payment this week
  • Spain locks down county over outbreaks
  • Mexico's COVID deaths pass 30,000
  • Australia to close border between two largest states as cases spike
  • Harvard announces all classes in 2020-21 academic year to be held online
  • In other COVID-related news
  • Canadian Broadway actor dies from coronavirus complications
  • Parents, provinces call on Ottawa to help ensure schools open in the fall
  • G4 swing flue not a new virus says China
  • Reopening schools is our only sensible option
  • Canadian support closing businesses again if cases spike
  • How to use PPE properly
  • Ontario boards eye partial back-to-school plan that worries working parents
  • 'Resilient' kids will be alright after COVID-19
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COVID case counts
Total confirmed cases in Halton increased by +9 from 762 to 771 with +2 new confirmed cases in Oakville, from 253 to 255.

There were +5 reported recoveries in Oakville, from 262 to 267 and +16 recoveries in Halton Region from 762 to 778 .

There are currently 0 COVID-19 patients being cared for at OTMH and 11 active cases in Oakville.
Ontario reported 154 new cases of COVID-19 Today, with the majority concentrated in Toronto and Peel Region. 

Canada had 105,764 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 69,431 of the cases as recovered or resolved. A CBC News tally of deaths based on provincial reports, regional health information and CBC's reporting stood at 8,732. 
Visit https://art-bd.shinyapps.io/covid19canada/ for the U of T COVID-19 data aggregation map
COVID-19 deaths per million
Ontario records no new COVID-19-related deaths for first time in months
Ontario health officials are reporting no new COVID-19-related deaths in the province for the first time in months.

Canada weeks away from first glimpse at true rate of COVID-19 infections
The national immunity task force has started testing thousands of blood samples for COVID-19 antibodies and should be able to produce a more detailed picture of how many Canadians have been infected with the novel coronavirus within a couple of weeks.

WHO reports record level of new coronavirus cases, largest single-day increase
The World Health Organization said its member nations reported more than 212,000 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, the  highest single-day total and increase  since the start of the pandemic.

Loss of smell, taste can linger longer than other COVID-19 symptoms: study
The loss of the sense of smell and/or taste experienced by many COVID-19 patients can linger even after all other symptoms have disappeared, a new study finds.

Coronavirus could be airborne, scientists warn the World Health Organization
Hundreds of scientists say there is evidence that the novel coronavirus in smaller particles in the air can infect people and are calling for the World Health Organization to revise recommendations, the New York Times reported.

Oakville and Halton
Ontario Mayors and Chairs issue emergency call for financial support
Standing together municipal leaders today have called for immediate provincial and federal support to cover lost revenue and additional costs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in order to protect municipal services that people depend on for their daily lives.

AMO, LUMCO, MARCO and the City of Toronto, representing all municipal governments in the province, are calling for at least $10 billion dollars in emergency relief for Canadian municipalities to be funded 100% by the federal and provincial governments. This call supports the national funding call led by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).

The FCM proposal would provide approximately $4 billion to Ontario municipalities to offset lost transit revenues and added service costs, but there has been no clear signal on the timing and level of a joint federal-provincial financial assistance program yet. Municipal leaders have been patient so far for this expected funding relief but the time for a commitment from the senior orders of government is running out.

Without these federal-provincial emergency funds now, municipal governments may have to significantly increase property taxes and/or make harmful cuts to frontline municipal services. Such cuts or property tax increases will unfairly hurt the very same people that the federal and provincial governments have spent billions helping during the pandemic.
Province announces $450,000 investment in Halton tourism
On Friday, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries Lisa MacLeod visited Oakville’s Bronte waterfront to announce a $450,000 investment in tourism in Halton.

While the specifics on how the investment will be administered have not yet been provided, $100,000 has been delegated to Burlington’s Sound of Music Festival and the Regional Tourism Organization will play a key role in delegating the remainder – working closely with destination market organization such as Visit Oakville.

Oakville Community Foundation awards $502,500 in grants through Emergency Community Support Fund
Last week the Oakville Community Foundation announced it has awarded $502,500 in grants to 18 local charities for 19 projects. The grants announced today are part of the Emergency Community Support Fund (ECSF), funded by the Government of Canada. 
The following charities received full funding for their projects and their work in the Oakville community:
  • Acclaim Health
Virtually Continuing Care and Support for Seniors –  $11,000
  • Canadian Caribbean Association of Halton
Beat the COVID-19 Blues –  $45,500
  •  Central West Specialized Developmental Services
Virtually Together! –  $38,123
  •  CNIB
Virtual Programming: Addressing Isolation During COVID-19 –  $5,000
  • Community Living Oakville
Stay Connected –  $56,200
  •  Easter Seals Ontario
Equipment Funding Program (Oakville clients) –  $11,500
  •  Fare Share Food Bank
Financial Support to Purchase Food for a Larger Client Base –  $50,000
  •  Food For Life
Leading the Pack –  $29,925
  •  Front Line Outreach
Food Supply Preparation and Summer Day Camp –  $15,000
  • Let’s Talk Science
The Horizon Project –  $824
  • Oakville Meals on Wheels
Rising to the Challenge to Meet the Need –  $25,000
  • Safetynet Children and Youth Charities
Expansion of Safetynet Charities Furniture Program in Response to COVID-19 –  $34,000
  • Salaheddin Islamic Centre Inc.
DAR Foundation Community Support –  $67,600
·      The Salvation Army Lighthouse Shelter
Expediting Discharge from Homelessness into Housing Stability and Community Reintegration –  $34,715
  • Shaarei-Beth El Synagogue Congregation of Halton
Supporting Isolated Seniors in Our Community –  $21,112
Increasing Remote Technology Capacity to Deliver Programs –  $2,000
  • St. Jude’s Anglican Church
Connecting With the Vulnerable –  $7,500
  • Starlight Children’s Foundation
Play From Home Packs (Oakville clients) –  $10,000
  • ·STRIDE (Supported Training and Rehabilitation in Diverse Environments)
Hire Intake Specialist to Address Influx of Referrals –  $37,500

All of these charities are working to support vulnerable populations in our community including older persons, children and youth, persons with disabilities and persons experiencing low income.  For more information about each project, please see below .
The Foundation has also donated 9,550 personal protective masks to organizations in need in our community, including more than 7,500 masks to charities also receiving funds from the ECSF.

The ECSF is a $350 million fund that is being implemented with  Community Foundations of Canada , the  Canadian Red Cross , and  United Way Centraide Canada , in partnership with local foundations across the country. Its goal is to provide support to charities and non-profit organizations serving vulnerable Canadians. 
For a full list of grants awarded through Community Foundations of Canada’s network, visit the CFC  website
Provincial Government announcements
The Government of Ontario has developed a made-in-Ontario plan for growth, renewal and economic recovery. This plan includes measures that would make it easier and faster to build provincial highways, major transit infrastructure projects and quality, affordable housing, while ensuring there are meaningful opportunities for community consultation and input.

As part of the government's plan, the province is proposing to accelerate key provincial highway construction and priority transit projects by establishing an exemption from the Hearing of Necessity process. Provincial Hearings of Necessity occur approximately 5-10 times per year on average for provincial highway projects. Each hearing adds months of red tape and construction delays for critical provincial infrastructure, costing up to five months for transit projects and up to 12 months for provincial highway projects.

As part of this plan, the government would also enter into new commercial agreements with partners to build transit-oriented communities. This would allow for the development of more housing around transit in an integrated manner and put more job opportunities within the reach of more people. The measures would also save taxpayers money by having the development industry make direct, significant contributions to the cost of building transit for the benefit of communities, all transit riders, and Ontario taxpayers.

These measures would allow the province to more quickly undertake important technical investigations and prepare construction sites, while ensuring meaningful consultation with landowners.
Government of Canada announcements
Competition Bureau's year ahead: protect Canadians during these uncertain times
The Competition Bureau has published its  Annual Plan 2020-2021 . The Plan outlines the steps the Bureau will take in the coming year to protect Canadians in these uncertain times.

Protecting and promoting competitive markets in Canada is more important than ever, and the Bureau’s work will focus on sectors of the economy that matter to Canadians, including the digital economy, telecommunications, health and infrastructure. 

Through its enforcement work, the Bureau will use all the tools at its disposal to put a stop to anti-competitive conduct across Canada. On the advocacy side, the Bureau will work with policymakers at all levels of government to encourage pro-competitive policies and regulations, particularly as they relate to Canada’s economic recovery. In addition, the Bureau will host its Digital Enforcement Summit Series. The 2020 edition will bring together domestic and international thought leaders who will share information on new enforcement tools, best practices, and emerging issues.

Through this work, the Bureau will take significant steps to deliver on its new  2020-2024 Strategic Vision , to become a world-leading competition agency that is at the forefront of the digital economy and champions a culture of competition for Canadians.

Canadian seniors to receive one time tax-free payment this week
This weekend, the Honourable Deb Schulte, Minister of Seniors, highlighted that seniors eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension, the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS), or Allowances will receive their one-time, tax-free payment this week without needing to apply. Seniors who reside in Canada can expect to receive the payment by direct deposit or cheque this week, whereas seniors who reside outside Canada can expect this one-time payment in July for those on direct deposit, or by cheque with delays given international postal disruptions.

Through several measures, the Government is providing about $900 for low-income single seniors and more than $1,500 for low-income senior couples, in addition to their existing benefits, to help with extra costs during the pandemic.

Seniors eligible for the OAS pension will receive a payment of $300, and those seniors 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 investment in financial support will help Canadian seniors cover increased costs caused by COVID-19.

As we carefully and gradually re-open the economy, the Government of Canada will continue to support seniors and respond to COVID-19 health, social, and economic impacts.
International news
Coronavirus: Spain locks down county of 200,000 people over COVID-19 outbreaks
Authorities in northeastern Spain on Saturday ordered the lockdown of a county around the city of Lleida due to worrying outbreaks of the COVID-19 virus.

Mexico's COVID deaths pass 30,000, world's fifth highest total
Mexico topped 30,000 COVID-19 deaths Saturday, overtaking France as the country with the fifth-highest death toll since the coronavirus outbreak began.

Australia to close border between two largest states as coronavirus cases spike
The border between the states of New South Wales — home to Sydney — and Victoria — home to Melbourne — is due to be shut late Tuesday.

Harvard announces all classes in 2020-21 academic year to be held online
Harvard University's freshman class will be invited to live on campus this fall, while most other undergraduates will be required to learn remotely from home, the Ivy League school announced Monday.

University officials decided to allow only 40 per cent of undergraduates on campus in an effort to reduce density and prevent the spread of COVID-19. All freshmen will be invited, along with some other students who face challenges learning from afar.

All classes will be taught online, however, regardless of where students live. Students living on campus would live in dorm rooms but continue taking their classes remotely, the university said.

In other COVID-related news:
Canadian Broadway actor Nick Cordero, 41, dies from coronavirus complications
Tony Award-nominated actor Nick Cordero, who specialized in playing tough guys on Broadway in such shows as Waitress, A Bronx Tale and Bullets Over Broadway, has died in Los Angeles after suffering severe medical complications after contracting the coronavirus. He was 41.
Karina Roman: Parents, provinces call on Ottawa to help ensure schools open in the fall
Children, Families and Social Development Minister Ahmed Hussen says that while he understands the burden working parents have been carrying for months since schools closed due to the pandemic, Ottawa's ability to help provinces fully reopen their schools this fall is limited.

G4 swine flu not a new virus, does not infect humans easily: China
China's agriculture ministry said in a statement that the study has been interpreted by the media "in an exaggerated and nonfactual way."
Chris Selley: Reopening schools is our only sensible option. Now politicians need to admit it
One of the sadder non-medical spectacles of the COVID-19 pandemic has been watching Canadians who place great trust and value in official expertise struggle to cope with shifting, inscrutable and often downright baffling advice.

Two-thirds of Canadians support closing businesses again if COVID-19 cases spike: survey
As scientists and policy-makers anticipate a second wave of COVID-19 later this year, a new survey from Nanos Research suggests a majority of Canadians support closing non-essential businesses again if cases spike.

You might be wearing your mask, gloves wrong. How to use PPE properly
Public health officials highly recommend that you wear a mask when you leave the house if you're not going to be able to practice physical distancing.

Ontario boards eye partial back to school plan that worries working parents
"What am I going to do without some kind of a consistent model of school?"
Why our ‘resilient’ kids will be alright after COVID-19, despite being isolated from peers
Upcoming events:
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. I f you know or are aware of someone who is struggling, call 211 and get help to navigate the network of health, community and social service programs. This service is offered 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and has interpretation for over 150 languages. And, if you are able, please consider supporting the Meals on Wheels effort by making a donation.

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