Halton Region pleas with Ontario Government to advance COVID-19 reopening plan

Published June 15, 2020 at 12:20 pm

Halton Region pleas with Ontario Government to advance COVID-19 reopening plan

Halton’s Regional Chair along with the mayors of Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton, and Oakville sent a letter to Ontario Premier Doug Ford and his staff, asking that the region be allowed to move o

Halton’s Regional Chair along with the mayors of Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton, and Oakville sent a letter to Ontario Premier Doug Ford and his staff, asking that the region be allowed to move on to Stage 2 of the provincial COVID-19 reopening strategy.

The joint letter reads, “the Halton region does not have the same issues as other municipalities in the Greater Toronto Area and Greater Golden Horseshoe, and given this should be allowed to move to Stage 2”.

About 78 per cent of all active cases in the province are in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area; however, Halton (which has been lumped in with Greater Toronto and Hamilton due to being geographically sandwiched between the two) currently has seven COVD-19 cases per 100,000 residents—compared to Toronto (40 per 100,000), Peel (49 per 100,000), and Hamilton (12 per 100,000).

The rest of Ontario was allowed to open more businesses and activities last week; including restaurant patios, hair salons, and swimming pools as the province takes a regional approach to reopening.

Halton’s leaders argued that the region should be allowed the same opportunities given the relatively low number of active cases, coupled with no known institutional outbreaks, local hospitals sustaining adequate capacity, 90 per cent of new COVID-19 contacts being reached by Halton Region Public Health within one day, and “strong adherence to physical distancing and public health measures within our community”.

“As the focus turns to recovery both locally and across Ontario, the Halton Municipalities will continue to protect residents from COVID-19 and support our local economy”, added the letter; signed by Gary Carr (Regional Chair), Marianne Meed Ward (Burlington), Rick Bonnette (Halton Hills), Gord Krantz (Milton), and Rob Burton (Oakville). 

Ontario reported 197 new cases of COVID-19 and 12 new deaths related to the virus on Sunday.

The total number of confirmed cases now stands at 32,189, which includes 2,519 deaths.

The Ministry of Health says 26,961 cases are marked as resolved, which is more than 83 per cent of the total case count.

The province was able to complete more than 23,000 tests Saturday, which is a drop from the previous report, although the province generally completes fewer tests on weekends.

There are currently 438 people in hospital with the coronavirus.

Of them, 103 are in intensive care and 77 are on a ventilator.

With files from The Canadian Press

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