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Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Wednesday – CBC.ca

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The latest:

The World Health Organization says the number of coronavirus cases ticked up worldwide last week even as the weekly count of COVID-19 deaths dropped to the lowest level since October.

The UN health agency, in its latest weekly epidemiological report on the pandemic, also said on Wednesday that its 53-country European region reported a “sharp increase” — 30 per cent — in infection incidence, while Africa registered a 23 per cent rise in mortality from COVID-19 during the period.

All WHO regions except the Americas — one of the hardest-hit regions — and Southeast Asia posted an increase in deaths over the last week, the agency said in a statement.

More than 2.6 million new COVID-19 cases were reported between June 28 and July 4, a slight increase on the previous week, while the tally of deaths registered over the week declined seven per cent to 54,000, WHO said. That was the lowest such weekly figure since October.

WHO said most new cases were reported in Brazil and India — though weekly case counts in those two countries were declining — as well as Colombia, followed by Indonesia and Britain, which each tallied a weekly increase in cases.

When asked at a briefing about reopening efforts around the world, WHO official Dr. Mike Ryan urged governments to open up “very carefully” to avoid losing the gains made in slowing the spread of COVID-19.

The virus is changing, Ryan said, and “we need to be very, very careful at this moment.”

-From The Associated Press and CBC News, last updated at 11:10 a.m. ET


What’s happening across Canada

WATCH | COVID-19 vaccine booster being considered for the most vulnerable: 

As more Canadians get vaccinated against COVID-19, now the discussion is turning toward a possible third dose. A booster shot, not necessarily for everyone, could potentially help control the spread of variants of concern, including delta. 2:01

As of 12:25 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Canada had reported 1,418,388 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 5,463 considered active. National deaths stood at 26,382. More than 40.3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country, according to CBC’s vaccine tracker.

Across the North on Wednesday, there were no new cases of COVID-19 reported in Nunavut. Health officials in the Northwest Territories and Yukon had not provided any updated information for the day.

In Quebec, health officials on Wednesday reported one additional death and 103 new cases of COVID-19.

Ontario on Wednesday reported 194 new cases of COVID-19 and no additional deaths. The update came a day after the province’s top doctor called for all eligible young people to be vaccinated against COVID-19 ahead of school’s return in September. Dr. Kieran Moore said Tuesday that classes in Ontario schools are due to pick up in less than two months with the goal of holding more in-person classes.

In Manitoba, which had not yet announced updated figures on Wednesday, the government said new COVID-19 public health orders will come next week. The announcement comes after Manitoba surpassed vaccination targets, including 50 per cent of people aged 12 and up having both doses of a vaccine.

Premier Brian Pallister also announced a plan for widespread walk-in vaccine clinics next week.

In Atlantic Canada, there were eight new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, with seven in Nova Scotia and one in Prince Edward Island. There were no new cases reported in Newfoundland and Labrador or New Brunswick.

Saskatchewan reported one death Tuesday and 14 additional cases of COVID-19. 

In Alberta, health officials reported two additional deaths and 33 new cases of COVID-19.

In British Columbia, there were no new deaths reported on Tuesday. Health officials said there were 46 new cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated at 12:25 p.m. ET


What’s happening around the world

People study in the Rose Main Reading Room of the New York Public Library on Tuesday in New York City. The New York Public Library reopened for in-person visitors for the first time since the pandemic shut down its branches in March 2020. (Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

As of early Wednesday morning, more than 184.6 million COVID-19 cases had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tracking tool. The reported global death toll stood at more than 3.9 million.

In the Americas, President Joe Biden said the rise of a more transmissible COVID-19 variant in the U.S. “should cause everybody to think twice.” Speaking Tuesday at the White House as he outlined his administration’s summer plans to boost vaccinations, Biden said the delta variant first identified in India is now responsible for a majority of new virus cases in much of the country.

“It seems to me it should cause everybody to think twice, and it should cause reconsideration especially among young people,” he said, referencing the demographic least at risk of negative outcomes from the virus.

The people who helped get New York City through the coronavirus pandemic will be honoured with a parade. City officials say the event Wednesday will honour a range of people, including workers in health care, transportation, education and infrastructure. The parade is kicking off at Battery Park and will travel up Broadway in lower Manhattan, the iconic stretch known as the Canyon of Heroes.

Mexican health authorities, meanwhile, reported on Tuesday the biggest jump in new daily coronavirus infections since late February.

In Africa, Zimbabwe has returned to strict lockdown measures to combat a resurgence of COVID-19 amid vaccine shortages. Infections have dramatically increased in recent weeks despite a night curfew, reduced business hours, localized lockdowns in hot spot areas and bans on inter-city travel.

The country’s information minister announced the virus has spread to rural areas, which have sparse health facilities. Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa announced after a cabinet meeting that most people must stay at home, similar to restrictions on movement adopted in March last year when towns and cities became almost deserted.

Zimbabwe is one of more than 14 African countries where the delta variant is quickly spreading.

In the Asia-Pacific region, 12 Indian government ministers resigned Wednesday, hours ahead of an expected reshuffle of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet aimed at refurbishing its image after widespread criticism of its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

India has recorded 400,000 coronavirus deaths since the pandemic began — the third most of any country. New cases are on the decline after exceeding 400,000 a day in May, but authorities are preparing for another possible wave and are trying to ramp up vaccinations.

A two-week-old pandemic lockdown in Australia’s biggest city is being extended for another week due to the vulnerability of a population largely unvaccinated against the coronavirus.

New South Wales state Premier Gladys Berejiklian said Wednesday that health experts recommended pushing the lockdown in Sydney on to midnight July 16. Only nine per cent of Australian adults are fully vaccinated, heightening fears that the delta variant of the coronavirus could quickly spread beyond control.

People wait in a queue outside a COVID-19 vaccination centre in a suburb of Sydney on Wednesday as the city extends a coronavirus lockdown for at least another week. (Saeed Khan/AFP/Getty Images)

Authorities in China’s southwestern province of Yunnan reported 15 new confirmed locally transmitted coronavirus cases for July 6, with all cases in the city of Ruili, bordering Myanmar.

South Korea reported its second-highest number of daily new COVID-19 cases ever on Wednesday, just days after it began easing physical distancing restrictions in some parts of the country.

In the Middle East, health officials in Kuwait on Tuesday reported 1,993 new cases of COVID-19 and 20 additional deaths — including 19 deaths in people who were unvaccinated, local media reported.

In Europe, fully vaccinated travellers arriving from countries on Britain’s “amber list” are set to avoid quarantine from as early as July 19, British media reported.

-From Reuters, The Associated Press and CBC News, last updated at 9 a.m. ET

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Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Thursday – CBC.ca

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The latest:

Tokyo reported 5,042 new daily coronavirus cases on Thursday, hitting a record since the pandemic began as the infections surge in the Japanese capital hosting the Olympics.

The additional cases brought the total for Tokyo to 236,138, about a quarter of the national total. Japan reported more than 14,000 cases on Wednesday for a total of 970,000.

Tokyo has been under a state of emergency since mid-July, and four other areas have since been added and extended until Aug. 31. But the measures, basically a ban on alcohol in restaurants and bars and their shorter hours, are increasingly ignored by the public, which has become tired of restrictions.

“We need to tackle the situation as we now have a stronger sense of urgency,” Prime Minister Yosihide Suga told reporters, referring to Tokyo’s new record exceeding 5,000 cases for the first time. “The infections are expanding at the pace we have never experienced before.”

Suga, who has been criticized for insisting on hosting the Olympics despite the coronavirus spreading, says there is no evidence linking the surge in cases to the July 23-Aug. 8 Games. He urged people to firmly stick to the emergency requests and stay home despite the summer vacation.

A protester calling for the cancellation of the Olympic Games stands with a sign urging officials to choose the ‘shine of our lives’ over the shine of medals. (Yuichi Yamazaki/Getty Images)

Alarmed by the pace of the spread, some experts have called for a current state of emergency in Tokyo and five other areas to be expanded nationwide.

Instead, Suga on Thursday announced a milder version of the emergency measures in eight prefectures, including Fukushima in the east and Kumamoto in the south, expanding the areas to 13 prefectures. The less-stringent measures allow prefectural heads to target specific towns but cannot order business closures.

Suga also pledged to “prevent the further spread of the virus by firmly carrying out vaccinations.”

Experts say people are not cooperating because many feel less of a sense of urgency about the pandemic while the Olympics are going ahead and Suga’s government keeps issuing the same requests for people to stay at home.

-From The Associated Press, last updated at 7:30 a.m. ET


What’s happening in Canada

WATCH | Ontario won’t mandate COVID-19 vaccines for teachers, kids in September: 

Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce said Wednesday there are still no plans to require COVID-19 vaccinations from educators, staff and students when in-person learning resumes in September. 1:47


What’s happening around the world

People wait to be vaccinated against COVID-19 a day before stricter lockdown measures are implemented in Manila on Thursday. (Lisa Marie David/Reuters)

As of early Thursday morning, more than 200.3 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to a case tracking tool maintained by U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University. The reported global death toll stood at more than 4.2 million.

In the Asia-Pacific region, the Philippines will extend tighter coronavirus restrictions to include three areas, including a province adjoining the capital region, to prevent the spread of the delta variant, the president’s office said on Thursday. The tougher restrictions, already due to take effect in metropolitan Manila from Aug. 6, will also be imposed in Laguna province and the cities of Cagayan De Oro and Iloilo, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement

In Africa, the director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says he came down with COVID-19 last week and if he had not been vaccinated earlier, “I would not be here by now.” An audibly ill John Nkengasong told reporters that despite his vaccination in April, “the severity of the attack is unbearable.” He cited his experience to push back against vaccine hesitancy.

African Union officials said on Thursday that the body had begun shipping COVID-19 vaccine doses acquired through a Johnson & Johnson deal, but they raised alarm at the pace of total deliveries to a region where only 1.5 per cent of people are vaccinated.

WATCH | U.S. extension on eviction ban still leaves some out in the cold: 

The Biden administration’s new ban on evictions only applies in areas of the U.S. where COVID-19 cases are surging, leaving millions of Americans unable to pay rent at risk of losing their homes. 2:02

In the Americas, the delta variant is “highly worrisome” as the mutation has spread to nearly two dozen countries across the Americas, officials with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) told reporters.

Mexico’s Health Ministry on Wednesday reported 20,685 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, the highest daily jump since late January, and 611 fatalities.

In the Middle East, Iran again reported a fresh single-day high on Wednesday, with 39,357 new cases of COVID-19. The country reported 409 additional deaths, bringing the reported COVID-related death toll to 92,194.

In Europe, Britain will scrap quarantine for fully vaccinated travelers returning to England and Scotland from France, rowing back on a rule that had infuriated French politicians and thrown millions of holidays into confusion.

-From Reuters, The Associated Press and CBC News, last updated at 9 a.m. ET

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Here's what Canada did while you were sleeping on day 13 of Tokyo Olympics – CTV News

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HALIBURTON, ONT. —
Canada added two medals to its collection overnight on day 13, bringing home silver in women’s canoe sprint and a bronze in women’s cycling.

Here’s a look at some of the 2020 Summer Olympic events you may have missed overnight.

Cycling

Lauriane Genest

Lauriane Genest won Canada’s first-ever medal in the keirin, capturing bronze in the event. New Zealand’s Ellesse Andrews took silver while Shanne Braspennincx of the Netherlands captured gold.

The keirin is an eight-lap race amongst six cyclists who start the race following behind a motorized pace bike, as it accelerates to top speed of 50 km/hr. The pace bike moves off the track with two laps to go before cyclists jockey for positions to finish the race.

On the water

Canada's Laurence Vincent-Lapointe

Canada’s Laurence Vincent-Lapointe captured canoe sprint silver in the women’s C-1 200-metre race on Thursday, taking second place in 46.786 seconds. American Nevin Harrison took the gold with a time of 45.932, while Ukraine’s Liudmyla Luzan claimed bronze at Sea Forest Waterway. Canadian teammate Katie Vincent finished eighth in 47.834 seconds.

Decathlon

Canada's Damian Warner

Damian Warner is inching closer to the top of the podium, continuing to hold a commanding lead in the decathlon with only two events left to complete. The Canadian posted an Olympic decathlon record of 13.46 seconds in the 110-metre hurdles before going on to place third in discus. Warner also tied a personal best in pole vault after clearing 4.90 metres on Thursday.

Warner leads with just javelin and the 1,500 metre left in the competition. Australian Ashley Moloney sits in second place while fellow Canadian Pierce LePage rounds out the top three. The last two events are set for later Thursday.

Diving

Canada's Meaghan Benfeito

Canada’s medal chances were dashed after Meaghan Benfeito failed to qualify for 10-metre platform diving final. The 32-year-old missed the 12th and final qualifying spot on her fourth dive of the day, finishing in the 13th spot, wrapping up her time at the Tokyo Olympics.

On the track

Canada's Andre De Grasse

The Canadian men’s 4×100-metre relay team is off to the finals after sprinter Andre De Grasse made a late comeback for the team, crossing the finish line in second place, just hours after winning himself a gold medal in the 200-metre sprint.

Golf

Brooke Henderson

Canada’s Brooke Henderson had a better day on the course, bouncing back to shoot a 3-under 68 in the second round of the women’s golf tournament. Henderson is currently tied for the 34th spot, sitting at even par.

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The cost of down payments in Canadian cities skyrocketed in 2021, new data shows – CTV News

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TORONTO —
Skyrocketing housing prices in 2021 are driving up how long it would take for homebuyers to save for a down payment, new data shows.

The National Bank of Canada (NBC)’s latest report found that during the second quarter of 2021, housing affordability has worsened by the widest margin in 27 years. The report examined housing and mortgage trends in 10 cities across the country.

To save up enough for a down payment for an average home in Canada, it would take just short of six years – or 69 months – if you saved at a rate of 10 per cent of their median pre-tax household income.

This marked a notable jump compared to the 57 months of saving at that same rate this time last year.

And, if you live in Vancouver, Victoria and Toronto, it could take decades – assuming you put away 10 per cent of your before-tax household income.

Here’s a breakdown of how much time it would take to save up for a down payment for an average home or condo, if you saved a tenth of your pre-tax income:

Vancouver

  • Standing head and shoulders above the other cities, it would take a staggering 34 years – or 411 months – of saving to be able to afford a home here.
  • The average home here costs $1.47 million.
  • It would take just under five years – 57 months — to save up enough for a down payment on an average condo in Vancouver.

Victoria

  • An estimated 28 years, or 338 months, of saving to make a down payment for a non-condo home, with the total price of a representative home set at $1.03M.
  • It would take 47 months of saving to afford a condo down payment.

Toronto,

Toronto

  • To save enough for a down payment for a home here would take 26.5 years – or 318 months.
  • The average home here costs approximately $1.2 million.
  • To afford a condo down payment here would take just under five years, or 56 months.

Hamilton

  • At a 10-per-cent saving rate, you’re looking at 6.5 years of saving up to afford a down payment for a home — and around four years to afford a condo in this city.

Ottawa/Gatineau

  • Trying to save up a home down payment in Canada’s capital could take a little over four years.

Montreal

Montreal

  • Saving up a tenth of your pre-tax earnings for 3.5 years would mean you could afford a down payment on a representative home in Montreal
  • The total price tag of a non-condo home sits at $492,777.
  • Trying to afford a condo here could take you just a little more than two and a half years of saving.

Calgary

  • You’d need to save up for just under three years – or 34 months – to afford a home here, or about half that time to afford a condo.

Edmonton

  • Potential homebuyers were looking at 2.5 years – or 30 months – of saving if you’re looking to make a down payment on a non-condo home.
  • The average total cost of a non-condo home was $428,600.

Winnipeg

Winnipeg

  • Affording a down payment on a $370,000 home could take homebuyers about 2.3 years worth of saving.
  • Home buyers needed 18 months to save up a down payment on a condo.

Quebec City

  • The price of a representative home in Quebec’s capital is $330 742 and it would take the average Canadian household just over two years – or 28 months — to save up a down payment.

Researchers also found mortgage payments now make up 45 per cent of the income for a representative household, slightly above the average amount (43 per cent of income) needed in 1980.

NBC noted that during most of the past two years, income growth and lower interest rates have been conducive to improving affordability.

But 2021 has been a stark contrast, the bank said, with home price increases outpacing income growth and mortgage interest rates also rising.

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