Ward 1 News from Councillor Kelvin Galbraith
March 2020 Edition
IN THIS ISSUE:
  • Greetings from Councillor Galbraith
  • COVID-19 Updates from City, Region, Province and Federal
  • Community Resources, News & Links
  • Local Boards and Community Involvement
  • Stay Connected
Dear friends and neighbours, welcome to the March 2020 edition of Ward 1 News

I hope everyone is keeping well and managing during these unprecedented times. It is hard to comprehend how much life has changed since the last time I produced a newsletter only one month ago.

The content of this newsletter will be much different from previous publications, as city business has changed drastically.  Staff and council have been working from home for the past 2 weeks and only meeting over conference call. Because information is changing/updating at a very rapid pace, rather than filling this newsletter with paragraphs of perhaps outdated information, we will be providing links where you can visit to get the most up to date information.

There are many helpful apps that can be used on smartphones and ipads to help communicate with people during these times of isolation. I have personally used the app Zoom, 8 times this week alone for various meetings and webinars. Whether using Zoom, Skype, Facetime, or other methods, I highly encourage residents to both practice physical distancing but also maintain virtual contact with friends and loved ones.

Not only have I had to begin a new way of life working from home but also had to make the very difficult choice to close my personal business and lay off all employees. I have been learning about the government subsidies this week and plan to help as many small business owners as I can to navigate through the government applications once available. 
 
There are many helpful connections in our community that are there to help people get food or whatever they may need. Please reach out to me if you need something and I will do my best to steer you in the right direction or make a connection with an organization that is there for you.
 
Please listen to the governments request for social and physical distancing at this time so that we can all get through this Pandemic together as fast as possible.
 
Stay safe and thank you.

** Because of the shut down of City Hall, I and my staff are working remotely - we are online every day and ready to take your questions and concerns. Please email ward1@burlington.ca, noting that staff are focussing on urgent service requests at this time.

There is much information in this newsletter but if you feel that I have missed something or you would like an update on anything else in Ward 1, please don't hesitate to reach out to me at ward1@burlington.ca

If you would like to stay up to date on news from both at City Hall and in and around Burlington, be sure to Like our Facebook Page , Follow on Twitter or Instagram .

As always, you can contact my office with Ward 1 related issues. We'd be happy to help.

Kelvin Galbraith
Ward 1 City and Regional Councillor
City Of Burlington
kelvin.galbraith@burlington.ca

Assistant: Tara at ward1@burlington.ca
COVID 19 UPDATES FROM CITY OF BURLINGTON/REGION OF HALTON/PROVINCE OF ONTARIO
City of Burlington Council, Senior Management and Communications are updating the city's COVID-19 webpage multiple times a day. Many answers can be found regarding city services and outside resources. Residents are highly encouraged to visit and subscribe to this page to receive updates: https://www.burlington.ca/en/your-city/corona-virus.asp

OVERVIEW:
  • Effective Monday, March 16, public access to all City facilities, including City Hall, will be closed until at least Monday April 6. This includes the cancellation of Citizen Advisory Committee meetings and other public meetings.
  • Essential services including Burlington Fire, Burlington Transit including Handi-Van, Halton Court Services, Traffic Services, By-Law Enforcement, Roads, Parks and Forestry Operations, Animal Control Services and POA Courts will continue to operate as usual to support our community. Cemetery services will be by appointment.

CITY FACILITIES:
Why are city recreation facilities closing?
  • To aid efforts in reducing the spread of the COVID-19 virus in the community, the City of Burlington has made the decision to close all City recreation facilities for a minimum of three weeks, as of the evening of Friday, March 13, 2020.

How long will recreational facilities be closed? Can I get a refund?
  • A minimum of three weeks, as of the evening of Friday, March 13, 2020. Further operations decisions about City services will be made based on the most up-to-date information and advice from our healthcare partners. The health and well-being of our community and staff is the top priority for everyone at the City of Burlington.
  • For facility rentals: organizations and residents with upcoming rentals may cancel or rebook at a future date (pending availability) with no penalty. Please contact rentals@burlington.ca
  • For registrations: to withdraw from an upcoming course without penalty, or to withdraw from a course in progress to receive a prorated refund, please email liveandplay@burlington.ca

What programs and services are impacted?
  • With the recreation facility closures, the following services will be suspended: Arenas, pools and community centres, including the Seniors Centre. 
  • All City organized large public meetings and gatherings are also cancelled.

GIVING/GETTING HELP:
  • The best thing you can do is continue to look after your health, follow the advice of healthcare professionals and check in on neighbours that may need support.
  • Facebook page for Burlington: If you're in need of anything, or if you have extra, please post on the page of Public Group: CareMonerging Burlington: Share/Swap/Help Covid-19
  • Facebook page for GTA: For the vulnerable in our community that require delivery assistance for supplies and groceries visit the Public Group: Good Neighbour Project - GTA
  • Facebook Fundraiser page for raising money for Food4kids Halton
  • For information about assistance in the community, please follow the link to COVID-19 Assistance Programs https://halton.cioc.ca/record/OAK0007
  • For more information on community food banks please visit www.burlingtonfoodbank.ca
  • If you can supply emergency products to help fight coronavirus such as ventilators, masks, sanitization, eye protection, etc., click here.
  • If you have an innovative solution that can help with the impacts of coronavirus, such as virtual mental healthcare options or other specific scenarios, click here.
  • If you have other solutions, products or services that could help our COVID-19 response effort, click here.
  • The Government of Canada also has a similar coordinated website for suppliers and services to help in this manner. More details and how to submit your product or service for consideration can be found here.

GETTING INFORMATION
Where should I go for the most up to date information about COVID-19 in Halton?

Other resources to contact:
  • Government of Ontario: www.ontario.ca/coronavirus
  • Government of Canada: www.canada.ca/coronavirus
  • World Health Organization: www.who.int
  • For information on Ontario's social, health, community and government services: 211.ca
  • For those whose second language is English, the province has provided COVID-19 information in multiple languages at the bottom of their webpage https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus
  • Burlington.ca/coronavirus
  • For a full list of Regional Services and to access services and programs follow this link
  • COVID-19 Information (Municipal, Regional, Provincial, Federal) https://halton.cioc.ca/record/OAK0003
  • COVID-19 Community Support (Food Banks, Community Outreach, Mental Health) https://halton.cioc.ca/record/OAK0007
  • COVID-19 Financial Relief  https://halton.cioc.ca/record/OAK0083
  • COVID-19 Youth Isolation Activities https://halton.cioc.ca/record/OAK0006
  • Halton Women's Place: Continue to provide shelter for those seeking assistance and counselling for those who need it online. If you or someone you know need assistance please visit their website. Their shelters are currently at capacity and they are in need of more resources to support their hundreds of clients. If you can, please donate here.
  • SAVIS of Halton: All counselling and programming is online - Resources are still needed, to donate please click here. For those who need immediate help please call their emergency line: 905-875-1555 or visit their website.
  • Halton Distress Centre: Still operating all services online and over the phone. Please visit their website for more information.
  • Oakville: 905-849-4541
  • Burlington: 905-681-1488
  • North Halton: 905-877-1211
  • Blood Services - Many people are still in need of blood at this time. To book an appointment to donate please visit their website or call (1-888-236-6283)
  • Kids Help Phone - Remains open and accessible to all Canadians – youth, in particular – 24/7 via phone and text uninterrupted. Have increased texting services to manage the bulk of the volume increase. Many volunteers are still needed, if you would like to volunteer your time please click here. If you are in need of their support please call: 1-800-668-6868 or visit their website for more information. 
  • Centre for Addiction And Mental Health Foundation - Creating a knowledge hub that will answer all common COVID-19 concerns and questions as well as tops for coping with stress and anxiety. Once this knowledge hub is launched we will be sure to share with you the link to access it. Please contact CAMH if you need help coping with anxiety while in isolation or quarantine here

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

The recreation closures mean that I can’t get out for exercise, how do we stay healthy and active?
  • In light of the current situation with COVID-19 and the rapidly changing updates from healthcare professionals and our partners across all levels of government, we certainly understand and share the concerns of residents. In light of the multiple requests for residents to avoid congregating in open spaces and particularly on playground equipment/picnic tables, we ask that you make your way through these spaces, respecting social distancing from other groups, but that you do not stay. Some city park spaces have been completely closed to prevent groups from visiting, but many are ignoring pylons and blocked equipment, putting themselves and their families at risk.
  • In addition, because city staff resources have been allocated to more emergent issues, garbage receptacles at these facilities are not being maintained as often as they normally would be. For this reason, all visitors to these parks and open spaces are asked to take any garbage they bring (including dog waste) home with them for disposal. We understand residents are concerned with the continued behaviour of park visitors that does not follow the repeated requests to not use facilities in parks. Messaging continues to be pushed through social media that facilities in parks are not to be used.
  • Complaints about blatant disregards for public safety can be sent to HRPS by calling their non-emergency line at 905-825-4747. They are making an effort to visit sites and educate the public.

Will there be more cancellations of City programs and services?
  • Further operations decisions about City services will be made based on the most up-to-date information and advice from our healthcare partners. The health and well-being of our community and staff is the top priority for everyone at the City of Burlington.
  • City of Burlington essential services inlcude Burlington Fire, Burlington Transit including Handi-Van, Halton Court Services, Traffic Services, Roads, Parks and Forestry Operations, Animal Control Services will continue to operate as needed to support urgent needs our community.
  • With social distancing measures in place, Burlington Transit will reduce its service and operate on a modified schedule beginning Sunday March 29, 2020. The new schedule will provide transit service for essential service only.
  • With the modified schedule, Burlington Transit will operate Monday to Saturday, from 5:50 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. and on Sundays from 6:14 a.m. to 9:55 p.m. A complete schedule is available at www.burlingtontransit.ca/schedules and Burlington Transit customer service can be reached at contactbt@burlington.ca, 905-639-0550 or on Twitter @BurlONTransit. 

PREVENTION:
  • Please visit halton.ca/coronavirus for the most up to date information.
  • The best way residents can prevent the spread of respiratory viruses including COVID-19:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don't have a tissue, cough into upper sleeve, not hand.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • If you believe an individual or business is slowing efforts to ‘flatten the curve,’ use the OPP online reporting tool at opp.ca/reporting or call 1-888-310-1122. As a result of the state of emergency in Ontario the following establishments are expected to remain closed until further notice: all bars and restaurants, except to the extent that such facilities provide takeout and food delivery; all facilities providing indoor recreational programs; all public libraries; all private schools; all licensed child care centres; all movie cinemas and all theatres, including those offering live performances of music, dance and other art forms; all concert venues.
  • Otherwise contact local Halton police using the non-emergency line at 905-825-4747, to report a concern under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act as they can issue a fine to businesses and individuals who defy the Act.

IMPORTANT:
Anyone who thinks they may have COVID-19 is asked to self-isolate and seek advice over the phone. You are asked to contact Telehealth Ontario (1-866-797-0000).

Social or physical distancing can help the spread. You are asked to consider the following options to help protect the safety and health of you, your family and friends, and the community:
  • Avoid non-essential trips in the community.
  • Cancel or limit group gatherings.
  • Work from home, where possible.
  • Participate in virtual meetings rather than meeting in person.
  • Keep your children at home.
  • Avoid visits to long-term care homes, retirement homes, supportive housing, hospices and other care settings unless the visit is absolutely essential.
  • When spending time outside, try to be in settings where you can maintain a 2 metre (6 feet) distance from others.
  • If you need groceries, go to the store but be cautious and follow public health direction. While outside, avoid crowds and maintain a distance of 1-2 metres (3-6 feet) from those around you.
 
How can I receive updates?

PROVINCE'S LIST OF ESSENTIAL SERVICES
Essential businesses include, but are not limited to grocery stores and pharmacies, telecommunications and IT infrastructure service providers, and businesses that support power generation, natural gas distribution and clean drinking water. Essential businesses are being asked to put into place any and all measures to safeguard the wellbeing of their employees on the front-lines.
For a complete list, please refer to Ontario’s website

To submit general questions and comments visit the government web page: https://www.canada.ca/en/contact/questions.html

The province has launched a toll-free line 1-888-444-3659 to provide support to Ontario businesses who have questions about the province's recent emergency order to close at-risk workplaces following recommendations by Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health.

If you are looking for a link to the federal benefits and services that will be available to Canadians, go here: https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/corporate/notices/coronavirus.html

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has posted useful Resources Toolkits and Guides for businesses to help them prepare for COVID-19 escalation and to prevent the spread, which can be accessed  through this link.
Team Burlington has put together the following resources for businesses during this time. Please visit here
News From City Hall
To stay up to date on all City of Burlington Media Releases, please visit https://bit.ly/2xxoVFr Be sure to subscribe to this page to be alerted of any new releases.
Ward 1 Community News & Resources
Aldershot Food Collection Committee Update:
A big Thank you to those who brought food to the well attended Drive- through, Drop-off Food Blitz at St. Matthews Church on this week.
Unfortunately, the Compassion Society has had to close this week, so the Burlington Food Bank is now the only Food Hamper distribution location in Aldershot. For safety, they have stopped receiving food, instead are requesting people to bring their food to the circular driveway at St. Matthews, 12 noon – 3pm, on Mondays and Wednesdays.

What we’re able to collect is imperative to the Food Bank, as it is what, after its 2 week quarantine, will be added to the Food Hampers when the current food supply will be gone. Because of our proven safe collection system, the Aldershot Food Collection Committee, consisting of Representatives of the Food Bank, Partnering Aldershot, St. Matthew’s Church and Ward 1 ECoB, has been affirmed by the City as an Essential Service, so is allowed to continue to operate for the good of the community.

Be aware also, Monetary Donations can be made at www.burlingtonfoodbank.ca so that the Food Bank can purchase items they are low on, if they can find them.

The Burlington Food Bank has gone to a delivery model, and ask that anyone in need of assistance email their name address and phone number to info@burlingtonfoodbank.ca or call 905-637-2273 and they will make arrangements to have both non-perishables and perishables delivered to the door. 

Be cautious, live safely and PLEASE CONTINUE TO CONTRIBUTE!
Aldershot Food Collection Committee
PR - Connie Price, Partnering Aldershot, cepriceless@gmail.com
Transportation - Jim Young, Ward 1 ECoB, jyoung101@cogeco.ca
Facility - Grace Wilbur, St. Matthews’ Outreach Chair, graciewilbur@gmail.com
Distribution – Robin Bailey, Burlington Food Bank, r.bailey@burlingtonfoodbank.ca
BURLINGTON PUBLIC LIBRARY -
FREE Books – Movies – TV Shows—Online, All the Time
Use Burlington Public Library online, anytime, anywhere. Find 1000s of free eBooks, audiobooks, magazines, newspapers, movies, and TV shows to download or stream: bpl.on.ca/resources.
All you need is a FREE library card. No card? Apply for a card online now.
Our branches are closed until further notice, but we are open online to serve your library needs. Visit bpl.on.ca for helpful information: activities for kids at home, community support services during the COVID-19 outbreak, eBooks booklists, library closure updates.
PLEASE NOTE:
The following Aldershot Community Service Groups are closed/suspended services for the time being:
  • Aldershot Lions Club Garage Sales
  • Compassion Society
  • Next Door Social Space
On behalf of the ACHR Committee, please note that the deadline for nominations has been extended to April 15th. Updates on this event will be shared in future newsletters
UPDATE TO THE ALDERSHOT BUSINESS COMMUNITY

Team Burlington is taking a unified approach to support the Burlington business community during these challenging times. We understand the implications COVID-19 has, and will continue to have, on the Burlington business community. As this situation unfolds rapidly we are coordinating with the federal, provincial, regional and local governments to ensure businesses are equipped with the latest information.  
 
Earlier this week,  Premier Ford announced  the closure of all non-essential businesses in the province to fight the spread of COVID-19. This order will come into effect March 24th at 11:59 pm, and will be in place for at least 14 days. The decision whether a business is  essential/non-essential  can only be confirmed by the Provincial Government. During these uncertain times we encourage you to contact the Ontario Government if you have any questions about the status of your business.    
 
Team Burlington is here to support you and help you during these uncertain times. Visit our one-stop-shop webpage to view support programs available to your business or contact us with specific questions. Thank you for your continued support. Stay safe, we are all in this together.   
 
Team Burlington


Shopping Local in Challenging Times 
During this time of uncertainty, most agree that the local economy will be weighed down by the impact of COVID-19. The impacts on small businesses and independents can be particularly heavy as we practice social distancing. 

Small businesses are the heartbeat of our local economy; they invest in our community and our neighbourhoods with the hope that the community will give back to them with the same vigor. These are the entrepreneurs that hire our children, sponsor our sports teams and community groups - they are your neighbours.

Shopping locally during this challenging time for Burlington business is more than a “good idea” it is a necessity to help keep these small businesses flourishing.
Our small business community has proven to be a resilient and adaptable group that champions innovation. Now it is up to the people of Aldershot to create innovative ways to support them with many products & essentials available at our local merchants.

Here are ways to support small businesses:
• Buy meals from local restaurants for delivery or takeout
• Shop small businesses online
• Use shipping, door-to-door and delivery services available
• Purchase coffee grounds from your local coffee shop
• Pick up bread or baked goods from your local bakery
• Consider purchasing gift cards for future use – they’ll receive the revenue now while foot traffic is down and you’ll have something to look forward to!
• Share, tweet, post about your favourite small business – let’s spread some positivity!
• Purchase your personal items, shampoo, soaps, face wash, creams etc. from local businesses instead of busy box stores

For further information, please also contact Aldershot Village BIA at:
Ward 1 Community Links
Local Boards & Community Involvement
In addition to serving as Ward 1 City and Regional Councillor, I have the opportunity to sit on a few other local boards and committees:
Royal Botanical Gardens Board
As a member of the Board of Directors for Ward 1's own Royal Botanical Gardens, I meet with a team of dedicated individuals, aimed at serving Burlington and beyond.
We meet roughly every 3 months, with the Annual General Meeting occurring in June.
For more information on the Royal Botanical Gardens, please visit www.rbg.ca
Tourism Burlington Board
Tourism Burlington is overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors who represent various sectors of the Tourism, Industry and Business sectors in the City of Burlington. The Board meets September to November and February to May on the 3rd Thursday of the month, with the Annual General Meeting held in May of each year.
For more information on Tourism Burlington, please visit www.tourismburlington.com
Aldershot Village BIA (Business Improvement Area)
The Aldershot Village BIA identifies Aldershot as a distinct community for shopping, dining and for doing business. The BIA contributes to a variety of initiatives including the completion of a full interchange at Waterdown Road and revitalization and development along the Plains Road corridor.
The BIA partners with several other Aldershot groups including the Aldershot Community Honour Roll, Plains Road Village Vision Group, Partnering Aldershot, Alderfest Community Festival and others to build support for approximately 250 retailers and service professionals.
For more information on Aldershot Village BIA, please visit www.aldershotbia.com
Stay Connected
I have committed to sharing frequent updates via social media channels. I would love to connect with you there to be able to share day to day information. If there are specific items you would like me to address, send me a note!
You can find me at the links below. If you would like to pick up a paper copy of this newsletter, copies are available at The Fitness Firm, 15 Plains Rd. West, or Aldershot BIA office 193 Plains Rd E Unit 6. We can also mail a copy to you - to request please call my office at 905-335-7600 x7863 or email ward1@burlington.ca
Let's Keep In Touch
In compliance with Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation, recipients of this newsletter may unsubscribe at any time. Please feel free to forward this newsletter on to friends, family, neighbours and colleagues so that they can sign up as well.
Please add kelvin.galbraith@burlington.ca to your address book so that this correspondence will be sure to arrive in your inbox.
As always, you can contact my office at any time through email, telephone, social media or by attending neighbourhood and public open house meetings.
City of Burlington & Region of Halton
Ward 1 Councillor
905-335-7600 x7587
fax: 905-335-7881