Office of the Mayor and Council Update
Wednesday, June 17 COVID-19 emergency
The Ontario government is finally banning commercial evictions.

The move, announced today, will protect commercial tenants from being locked out or having their assets seized due to the negative impacts of COVID-19.

This is something my Economic Task Force has been advocating for since early May when we wrote to Finance Minister Bill Morneau suggesting changes to the the Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program.

Those changes, which were determined in collaboration with local Oakville businesses, included:
  1. Suspend evictions of commercial tenants for a minimum of 6 months
  2. Allow tenants to make an application for the rent assistance if the property owner does not want to apply or is ineligible
  3. Allow property owners to make one application for all of their properties rather than individual application
  4. Lower the 70% revenue decline threshold for tenants

And later in May, Town and Regional Councillor Jeff Knoll brought forward a resolution in Halton Regional Council to freeze commercial evictions in Ontario and update the Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (OCECRA) program. The resolution, seconded by me, was unanimously supported by Regional Council.

The resolution called on the Province of Ontario to freeze commercial evictions for a period up to and including 30 days following the conclusion of the Provincial order declaring an emergency and today's announcement confirms the ban will take effect for evictions on or after June 3 and last until August 31.

Premier Ford has blasted what he calls "greedy landlords" for not signing up for the federal and provincial subsidies designed to help commercial tenants and I'm glad to see his government is following through on measures that will surely help many Oakville businesses and more across Ontario.

Each day we are making progress as we move through recovery from the pandemic. For a reminder of how far we've come and where we're headed, scroll to the end of this email for an updated timeline.
Items in this update:

  • COVID case counts
  • A single case could spark an outbreak
  • Ontario won't make masks mandatory
  • Doctor debunks claims wearing a mask more harmful than COVID-19
  • More than a quarter of Canadians at a higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness
  • Private clinic to offer antibody testing
  • Coronavirus: Dexamethasone proves first life-saving drug
  • Oakville Transit food donation
  • The latest COVID-19 disease rate in each Oakville neighbourhood ranked from highest to lowest
  • Fitness icon and Oakville resident Hal Johnson recalls racist incidents that led to Body Break creation
  • Oakville students awarded university scholarships
  • SIU clears Halton police officer in man's fall from second-storey balcony
  • Provincial Government announcements
  • Ontario extends emergency orders
  • Ontario Supports Ontario's Beverage Alcohol Sector During COVID-19 
  • Canada and Ontario support beef and hog farmers during COVID-19 
  • SickKids doctors expect safe return to school in September for Ontario students
  • Military leaves Ontario long-term care home after facility 'remains COVID-19 free'
  • Federal Government announcements
  • Camping to resume gradually at some national parks and historic sites
  • Inflation pulled back in May
  • Quebec coroner's office orders inquiry into nursing home deaths
  • Spain to honour coronavirus victims
  • Friends test positive after visiting Florida bar
  • In other COVID-related news
  • Study says coronavirus particles could be spread by toilet 'plumes'
  • Tourism operators warn hospitality experience will be different post COVID-19
  • If my kid gets sick at daycare, do I have to quarantine?
  • Pandemic should mean $150 in annual insurance savings for motorists,
  • Toronto is one of the last places in North America still largely closed
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COVID case counts
Total confirmed cases in Halton increased by 1 from 711 to 712 with -1 new confirmed cases in Oakville, from 239 to 238.

There was 1 reported recovery in Oakville, from 229 to 230 and 8 recoveries in Halton Region from 663 to 671 .
As of 11 a.m., Ontario’s regional health units are reporting a total of 34,454 confirmed and probable cases, including 2,595 deaths — up a total of 184 new cases since the same time Tuesday morning.

There are 99,467 confirmed and presumptive cases in Canada as of 4 a.m. on June 17, 2020, according to The Canadian Press, (including 8,213 deaths, 61,443 resolved).
Visit for the U of T COVID-19 data aggregation map
COVID-19 deaths per million
A single case could spark a new COVID-19 outbreak, Tam warns
All it could take for Canada’s current COVID-19 progress to be thrown off course is a single new case that prompts an outbreak, Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam warned on Tuesday.

Ontario will not make it mandatory to wear masks or face coverings
As more businesses prepare to reopen their doors on Friday, the Ontario government says it will not make it mandatory to wear masks or face coverings—although they remain recommended by health officials.

Doctor debunks claims that wearing a face mask is more harmful than COVID-19
Despite public health officials around the world urging individuals to wear face masks to prevent further spread of COVID-19, there have been several claims posted on social media and printed on posters that suggest wearing a face mask is more dangerous to the wearer’s health than contracting the virus. But a Canadian doctor says those claims are easily debunked.

More than a quarter of Canadians at higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness: study
More than one-quarter of Canadians have an underlying health condition that would increase the possibility of severe COVID-19 symptoms, according to a new study out of the U.K.

Researchers estimated that nearly 27 per cent of people in the country -- or more than nine million Canadians -- have a chronic condition identified as a risk factor for severe infection, including such ailments as cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Private clinic to offer antibody testing
Executive health-care clinic Medcan plans to provide a COVID-19 antibody test to clients next month, at a price, the Toronto-based company says.

Unlike swab tests that determine if someone has an active infection, these blood tests show whether people have developed antibodies that suggest they’ve already had  COVID-19  and could be protected from getting it again.

But experts have urged caution. There are concerns with accuracy and false positives. And scientists think but haven’t yet proven with strong evidence, that if you have the antibodies you are immune from getting the disease again.
Coronavirus: Dexamethasone proves first life-saving drug
A cheap and widely available drug can help save the lives of patients seriously ill with coronavirus.

The low-dose steroid treatment dexamethasone is a major breakthrough in the fight against the deadly virus, UK experts say.

The drug is part of  the world's biggest trial testing existing treatments  to see if they also work for coronavirus.

It cut the risk of death by a third for patients on ventilators. For those on oxygen, it cut deaths by a fifth.

Oakville and Halton
Thank you, Oakville Transit
Today, Ward 7 Town and Regional Councillor Pavan Parmar and I joined members from the Zumin Group and the Lakeshore Banquet and Convention Centre in delivering 130 meals to our dedicated staff at Oakville Transit.
The latest COVID-19 disease rate in each Oakville neighbourhood ranked from highest to lowest
A new report from Halton Region shows the number of COVID-19 cases per neighbourhood across the region's municipalities, including each community in Oakville.

The crude incidence rates, which examine unusual events such as the spreads of coronavirus disease, are confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases per 10,000 people not associated with institutional or "congregate care setting" outbreaks, according to Halton region.

The overall Halton average is 11.4 per 10,000 people.

Fitness icon and Oakville resident Hal Johnson recalls racist incidents that led to Body Break creation
For 32 years, Hal Johnson, co-creator and host of Body Break along with Joanne McLeod, have inspired Canadians to live a healthy and fit lifestyle.

What many didn’t know is that his personal brushes with racism was the reason how the popular fitness television series came to be.

“It was started to combat racism,” he said in a video posted to YouTube. “It was the number one reason that we started Body Break.”

Oakville students awarded university scholarships
Congratulations to the following Grade 12 students who have been awarded significant scholarships at Canadian universities based on their outstanding academic performance, leadership, involvement in extracurricular activities, or commitment to community service:

Yash Mulki, Abbey Park HS: Schulich Leader Scholarship to the University of Waterloo

Anya Sarma, Iroquois Ridge HS: Western University National President’s Scholarship

Rohan Atal, Iroquois Ridge HS: Queen’s University Chancellor’s Scholarship

Nicholas Chronis, Iroquois Ridge HS: Queen’s University Chancellor’s Scholarship

Cole Sweet, White Oaks SS: Schulich Leader Scholarship to Western University

Eric Xu, White Oaks SS: Western University National Scholarship

Madeleine King, Georgetown District HS: University of Toronto National Scholarship

Ahmed Raja, Craig Kielburger SS: Schulich Leaders Scholarship to McMaster University (along with other scholarships from McMaster)

Urmi Sheth, Oakville Trafalgar HS: York University Governors’ Awards of Distinction: Betty-Jean and John M. Bankes Scholarship.
SIU clears Halton police officer in man's fall from second-storey balcony
Ontario's police watchdog has cleared a Halton police officer who was alleged to have thrown a man from a second-floor balcony in Oakville while responding to a call about taxi fraud.

Provincial Government announcements
Ontario extends emergency orders
The Ontario government has extended all emergency orders currently in force under s.7.0.2 (4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act. This extension will be in effect until June 30, 2020 to ensure the government continues to have the necessary tools to safely and gradually reopen the province, while continuing to support frontline health care workers and protect vulnerable populations from COVID-19.

"Extending these emergency orders gives our frontline health care providers the necessary flexibility to rapidly respond to urgent needs and protect our most vulnerable," said Premier Ford. "Even though we're seeing decreasing infection rates with increased testing levels, we can't let our guard down just yet. We need to keep these emergency measures in place to support our frontline heroes and we must all continue following the public health advice, so we can reopen more of the province safely and gradually."

While current emergency orders will remain in place until the end of the month, the government will continue to review each one on an ongoing, case-by-case basis to determine when and if they can safely be adjusted or lifted, as part of the province's framework to safely reopen the province.

Over the past week, the government announced 31 public health unit regions across the province may proceed to Stage 2 of its  Framework for Reopening the Province . This will allow additional businesses and services to reopen and more people to return to work.

In addition, larger social gatherings of up to 10 people are now allowed in all parts of the province, and people are encouraged to create or join a social circle. Social circles are different from social gatherings. Social gatherings of people from outside your household are limited to 10 people. A social circle is voluntary, but if adopted should include all household members, and can include family and friends outside the household up to a maximum of 10 people in the social circle, who can interact and come into close contact with one another without physical distancing. To learn how to create a social circle, please see the  step-by-step guide .

To help stop the spread, people should continue to follow public health guidelines, including practising physical distancing, wearing a face covering where physical distancing is a challenge and washing their hands thoroughly and frequently. Anyone who is worried they may have COVID-19, or who may have been exposed to the virus, is encouraged to go for testing.

A full list of emergency orders can be found on the  e-Laws website  under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and at
Ontario Supports Ontario's Beverage Alcohol Sector During COVID-19 
The Ontario government is encouraging consumers to mark Ontario Craft Beer Week and Ontario Wine Week by supporting local beverage alcohol producers as the province takes additional steps to help the sector recover from the impacts of COVID-19.

The government is increasing choice and convenience for consumers by working to expand made-in-Ontario options at the LCBO. This includes increased marketing, converting available shelf space to profile Ontario products, and making more products available for sale, including bag-in-box wine and those made in the province. The supports are effective June 21 until October 2020.

This initiative is part of a number of ways the government is supporting Ontario's beverage alcohol sector, including:
  • Pausing increases to beer and wine taxes, previously scheduled to take effect in spring 2020;
  • Temporarily allowing licensed restaurants and bars to sell alcohol with food takeout and delivery orders between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m.;
  • Temporarily allowing licensed restaurants and bars to sell spirits at a lower price with food takeout and delivery orders;
  • Allowing restaurants and bars to temporarily create or extend outdoor patio spaces to safely accommodate patrons and staff once licensed establishments are permitted to reopen for business;
  • Making it easier for cideries to sell directly to consumers by temporarily removing the requirement for cideries to have five acres of planted fruit to qualify for an on-site store;
  • Extending the Ontario Wine and Grape Strategy to 2021-22, providing $7.5 million annually for VQA Support, $4.8 million annually for marketing and promotion, $250,000 for research and $250,000 for benchmarking; and
  • Extending the Small Cidery and Small Distillery Support Program to 2021-22, providing $2.6 million annually to help eligible businesses grow and scale up their operations.

With most of the province in stage two of Ontario's Framework to Reopen Our Province, many people can now enjoy Ontario-made beverage alcohol on patios of their local bars and restaurants.

The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing up to $10 million in emergency assistance for beef and hog farmers. The funding will help cover the increased costs of feeding market ready cattle and hogs due to COVID-19 related processing delays, while redirecting surplus pork products to help those in need. This program will help ensure the country's food supply chain will remain strong and ready to recover as the economy gradually and safely reopens.

The beef cattle set-aside program will provide beef farmers with up to $5 million in support. Farmers can claim $2 per head of cattle per day to help pay for additional maintenance costs should they have to keep their market-ready animals on their farms for extended periods of time.

The hog sector support program will also provide hog farmers with up to $5 million to help cover additional maintenance costs. Ontario is also providing up to $1.5 million to process and package surplus pork for food banks, to provide those in need with fresh, locally produced pork products. This will assist the pork processing industry with managing capacity while helping those in need.

Both the beef cattle set-aside and hog sector support programs are being offered through AgriRecovery initiatives, under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. The provincial contributions are part of Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19 .
SickKids doctors expect safe return to school in September for Ontario students
Medical experts from Toronto’s SickKids Hospital say children in Ontario should be able to return to school in September even though the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 likely won’t be eradicated by then.

SickKids says it has worked closely with Ontario’s Ministry of Education to provide guidance on how to safely reopen schools.

A team of doctors released their recommendations Wednesday, putting more emphasis on hand hygiene than wearing masks or physical distancing.

Dr. Michelle Science says steps should be taken to ensure some distancing in school settings — such as separating desks and putting students into “cohorts” — but trying to enforce safe distances among kids is impractical.

She said face masks are only “potentially beneficial” when worn properly and incorrect use can lead to an increased risk in infection.

The experts also say that according to recent data, children are not the superspreaders of COVID-19 they initially believed they would be.
Military leaves Ontario long-term care home after facility 'remains COVID-19 free'
After about a month and a half, the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) will be leaving one of six Ontario long-term care homes after no new COVID-19 cases have been reported.

Federal Government announcements
Camping will resume gradually at a number of national parks and national historic sites
Today, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, announced that starting June 22, 2020, Parks Canada will begin to offer some camping services at select national parks and national historic sites across the country in alignment with the guidance of national, provincial, territorial, and local health authorities. Initially, camping will be available only to visitors with existing reservations. Parks Canada will gradually begin to accept new online reservations for some campgrounds over the coming weeks. Visitors should check the Parks Canada website regularly for updates and information on services available and reservation windows.
Given current limitations on international travel, existing reservations from international visitors, including visitors from the United States of America, will be cancelled and automatically refunded in full up to and including August 7, 2020. Parks Canada will monitor international travel restrictions and may adjust this date in the future. Canadians who plan to travel outside of their home province to camp at or visit a Parks Canada destination must follow the applicable provincial or territorial travel restrictions. Some provinces and territories allow only essential inbound travel at this time. Others require that outside visitors follow a self-isolation protocol. It is not possible to self-isolate at Parks Canada campgrounds.

The camping experience at Parks Canada will be different than in previous years. Visitors are required to have a reservation in order to camp at a Parks Canada place. Roofed accommodations such as yurts and oTENTiks will only become available at select locations later in the season. Visitors will have access to some trails, day use areas, green spaces, and some recreational boating.

Visitors are encouraged to visit the Parks Canada website, plan ahead and be well-prepared for their visit.

The Parks Canada website provides detailed information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available. It also provides advice on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while at Parks Canada places, including guidance on physical distancing, hygiene and other safety measures.

Starting on June 22, 2020, the Agency will begin to gradually offer camping at some national parks and national historic sites.
Ontario sites:
  • Thousand Islands National Park
  • Bruce Peninsula National Park & Flowerpot Island (Fathom Five National Marine Park)
  • Point Pelee National Park
  • Pukaskwa National Park

Quebec's chief coroner has ordered a wide-ranging public inquiry into deaths that have occurred in the province's long-term care homes, private seniors' residences and other residential institutions for vulnerable people in the first six weeks of the pandemic.

Inflation pulled back in May
Statistics Canada says inflation pulled back even further in May as businesses shut due to the COVID-19 pandemic began to reopen slowly.

The agency says the consumer price index fell 0.4 per cent compared with a year ago, making it the second month in a row for negative inflation after a 0.2 per cent drop for April.

Prices rose in four of the eight major components on a year-over-year basis.
International news
Spain to honour coronavirus victims
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez says a state ceremony will be held on July 16 to honour more than 27,000 people who have died in the pandemic.

Speaking to lawmakers, Sánchez said Wednesday that the ceremony will be presided over by King Felipe VI, Spain’s head of state, and attended by top officials from the European Union and the World Health Organization.

It will take place four months after Spain imposed one of the strictest lockdowns. Confining the population at home and halting most of the economic activity, it took nearly two months to curb the outbreak.

Spain has had more than 244,000 confirmed cases. Although daily deaths are believed to have dropped to a single digit, the government has kept the fatality toll at 27,136 for two weeks as it revises inconsistencies on reporting from different regional authorities.
A group of 16 friends all tested positive for coronavirus after a night out at a recently reopened Florida bar.

In other COVID-related news:
Flush with caution: study says coronavirus particles could be spread by toilet 'plumes'
To stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, we’ve strapped on face masks, washed our hands with diligence and sanitized common surfaces again and again.
Now, we might need to add a new prevention method to the list: putting the toilet seat down before you flush.

Tourism operators warn hospitality experience will be different post COVID-19
As Ontario regions slowly ease into various phases of reopening, hospitality-industry operators are warning tourists and customers that things will just not look the same anymore.

If my kid gets sick at daycare, do I have to quarantine? A pediatric infectious disease specialist explains
If your child is sick — even with a cold — should they be kept home from daycare? And what does that mean for parents who are heading back to work?

COVID-19 pandemic should mean $150 in annual insurance savings for motorists, government document says
Most Ontario motorists should save $150 in annual auto insurance premiums due to the  COVID-19  pandemic, according to a confidential government document obtained by the Star.
The internal briefing note to Finance Minister Rod Phillips from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA), an independent regulator, calculates that insurance companies should be passing along $685 million in reductions.

Toronto is one of the last places in North America still largely closed due to COVID-19
If you were thinking that Toronto feels like one of the last places in North America mostly under lockdown, you’d be right.
Just for fun:
Peanut butter bread anyone?
A Canadian Depression-era recipe went viral during the 2020 pandemic when the recipe leapt from the pages of a vintage Canadian cookbook to internet fame thanks to Torontonian Glen Powell, star of the YouTube channel Glen & Friends Cooking.

Read the full story
Upcoming events:
Celebrate Pride
June is Pride Month, and OPL is teaming up with other Halton region libraries to virtually celebrate our 2SLGBTQ+ community!

Share with OPL your artwork, poems, stories or videos that showcase what Pride means to you on Facebook , Twitter or Instagram and tag #OakvilleLibrary and #HaltonPrideExpo.
We're bringing the party to you, eh
The Town of Oakville is excited to bring you a full day of virtual entertainment and activities you can do from the comfort of your home on July 1, 2020.

We invite you to enjoy musical performances, Canada Day themed challenges, a town-wide singing of O Canada, virtual fireworks display, and more!
Sunset Cinema @ Home: June 19

Stay home, stay healthy, and support Oakville Hospital healthcare heroes! Join  the Oakville Hospital Foundation  for Sunset Cinema @ Home, the perfect summer movie night on Friday, June 19 at 7pm.

Walk to end ALS
The virtual edition of the Walk to End ALS event will take place June 21. ALS partner, Brain Canada, is offering a dollar for dollar match of up to $1 million to invest in promising ALS research.

What's on at the OPL
Oakville Public Library is now offering contactless holds pickups and the ability to return borrowed library materials at select locations. Details at

Branches: Glen Abbey – Iroquois Ridge - Woodside

Library Take-out and materials return will be available from 11:30-7 on Tuesday and Thursday and 9:30-5 on Saturday.

The materials return process follows the same after-hours process as pre-COVID19.
Library Take-Out holds pick-up process:

Customers can place holds as usual from , or
  • calling one of the open branches during open hours
                                              i.    GA - (905) 815-2039)
                                            ii.    IR - (905) 338-4247
                                           iii.    WS - (905) 815-2036

Once their hold is available, customers will be contacted either by email or phone to select a pick-up slot. Each time slot is 30 minutes and has limited spots available.

On their selected date/time, customers can arrive at their indicated branch and pick-up their hold(s) from the vestibule.

Customers enjoy their new materials
Monday, June 15 12 pm
Let's Talk About Books, Movies & More: Local Authors
This week, we'll discuss our favourite books, movies and more that relate to local authors. "Let's Talk About" are weekly, virtual sessions that explore different themes in arts, culture and literature.
Join us on Zoom (Meeting ID: 974 0002 2387) or call 1-647-558-0588.
Tuesdays & Thursdays • 10 am
Family Storytime on Instagram Live
Get moving with stories, songs and fun during Family Storytime! Hosted virtually on Instagram Live. Follow @oakvillelibrary on Instagram .

Tuesdays & Thursdays • 2 pm
Kids Library Club
Join us on Tuesdays and Thursdays as we explore fun activities in the fields of science, technology, art and more! Tuesday's session will be Storytelling and Thursday is Photography . Limited spaces.

Thursday, June 18 11 am
Let's Talk About Books, Movies & More: Guilty Pleasures
This week, we'll discuss our favourite books, movies and more that relate to guilty pleasures . "Let's Talk About" are weekly, virtual sessions that explore different themes in arts, culture and literature.
Join us on Zoom (Meeting ID: 986 6422 2815) or call 1-647-558-0588.

Friday, June 19 • 10 am
An informal, weekly craft meetup to share what you’re working on, and gather inspiration from fellow craft enthusiasts.
Join us on  Zoom  (Meeting ID: 936 5905 6875, Password: 756445) or call 1-647 374 4685. 

Fridays and Saturdays • 10 am
Family Storytime on YouTube 
Follow OPL on YouTube and enjoy pre-recorded Family Storytime on Fridays and Saturdays at 10 am. Remember to subscribe to our YouTube page so you don't miss out!

Monday, Wednesday and Friday
Staff Book Recommendations on YouTube
Listen to over 100 short book reviews from OPL staff, uploaded weekly on YouTube .

Virtual Tech Help
Book a virtual one-on-one session for basic technology assistance. Limited sessions.
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

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

The Salvation Army Oakville: Donate online
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.

Downtown Oakville Instagram live series
On Wednesday, May 6 Downtown Oakville will be launching a weekly Instagram Live Series hosted by different Downtown businesses. The live events will allow you to purchase products, participate in fitness classes, attend workshops, and more!

Follow @oakvilledowntown on Instagram to learn more and tune in. 

June 24 at 7 p.m. - Dr. Adrienne, Naturopathic Doctor 
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