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Government funds suicide-prevention programs for Indigenous youth, post-secondary students – Times Colonist

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The B.C. government will spend $2.3 million to expand mental-health supports and suicide-prevention programs for First Nations and Métis youth and post-secondary students who are at risk of mental-health decline amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding comes as new data released by the Canadian Mental Health Association and the University of British Columbia show that British Columbians are struggling with stress, anxiety, suicidal thoughts and hopelessness during the second wave of the pandemic.

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Indigenous youth, who are disproportionately affected by suicide, will receive more help through the First Nations Health Authority, which will be given $800,000 to expanded suicide-prevention and life-promotion activities in First Nations communities across the province.

The funding will also allow the health authority’s youth advisory committees to expand to more regions. Another $200,000 will support Métis Nation B.C., which will develop Métis-specific online mental health support courses, as well as anti-stigma and awareness campaigns.

Dr. Nel Wieman, acting deputy chief medical officer for the First Nations Health Authority, said in a statement that First Nations youth suicide has been a longstanding concern and more funding for suicide-prevention programs is critical to build on the work the health authority is doing.

“It is often said our youth are our future, but they are also our present and their mental health needs are urgent,” he said.

The remaining $1.3 million will support the B.C. branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association, which will expand suicide-prevention programs.

The CMHA will also distribute grants to post-secondary institutions that will engage students at risk and offer new treatment, supports and referral programs. The expanded programs will include training for students, teachers and other members of the school community, to increase awareness of the supports available for students struggling with their mental health.

“Expanding the reach of suicide-prevention programs for students and Indigenous youth gets more young people access to the tools, skills and community supports they need to cope in challenging times,” Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Sheila Malcolmson said in a statement.

The CMHA on Monday released the results of a nationwide survey showing 42 per cent of British Columbians reported that their mental health has deteriorated since the beginning of the pandemic.

The report found that 69 per cent of British Columbians were worried about the second wave of the virus, 55 per cent were worried about a loved one or family member dying or contracting the virus themselves, and 51 per cent were worried about being separated from family and friends. About 13 per cent of B.C. residents said they have increased the use of substances such as alcohol or cannabis as a coping mechanism.

The survey, carried out from Sept. 14 to 21, heard from 3,027 Canadians, including 445 British Columbians.

Anyone who is struggling with their mental health or experiencing experiencing suicidal thoughts can contact the Vancouver Island Crisis Line at 1-888-494-3888.

Post-secondary students can access Here2Talk, a free province-wide mental health and counselling referral service that is available 24-7 via online chat and telephone.

kderosa@timescolonist.com

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Coronavirus: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on Jan. 17 – Global News

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Here are the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Sunday.

COVID-19 vaccination clinic to open at Metro Toronto Convention Centre on Monday

A COVID-19 vaccination clinic is set to open at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre on Monday.

Premier Doug Ford and Toronto Mayor John Tory toured the facility on Sunday.

The clinic will help to test and adjust COVID-19 vaccination sites in non-hospital settings, officials said.

After around six to eight weeks after the clinic begins operating, the city will provide a “thoroughly evaluated” playbook for setting up vaccination clinics throughout the rest of the city and the province as officials prepare for mass vaccinations.

The clinic at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre will initially administer the Moderna vaccine to a select group of health-care workers. The goal is to administer 250 vaccines per day.

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The first vial used will be added into the City of Toronto’s artefact collection as part of the city’s “effort to document the pandemic and preserve our response to it for future generations,” officials said.

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Ontario to expand inspection blitz targeting big-box stores

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Ontario hasn’t seen the last of inspectors who fanned out across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Areas this weekend and reportedly uncovered dozens of COVID-19-related violations at big-box stores.

Labour Minister Monte McNaughton says the province will expand and continue its blitz, which is meant to get the virus under control.

Read more:
Ontario to expand big-box retail blitz amid widespread rule violations, labour minister says

Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported a total of 3,422 new cases on Sunday.

Of those:

  • 1,035 were in Toronto
  • 585 were in Peel Region
  • 246 were in York Region
  • 97 were in Durham Region
  • 59 were in Halton Region

Ontario reports more than 3,400 new cases, 69 deaths

Ontario reported 3,422 new cases of the novel coronavirus Sunday, bringing the total number of cases in the province to 237,786.

Sixty-nine more deaths were also reported Sunday, bringing the provincial death toll to 5,409.

A total of 203,484 COVID-19 cases are considered resolved, which is 85.6 per cent of all confirmed cases.

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The province indicated that the positivity rate for the last day was 5.2 per cent, which is up from Saturday’s report, when it was 4.9 per cent, and down from last Sunday’s when it was 6.2 per cent.

Read more:
Ontario reports more than 3,400 new coronavirus cases, 69 deaths

Ministry of Long-Term Care reports 11 more deaths

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,123 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario, which is an increase of 11.

There are currently 246 outbreaks in long-term care homes.

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— With files from The Canadian Press

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Saturday COVID update: Two deaths, 180 cases – The Brandon Sun

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The province announced two more COVID-related deaths and 180 cases on Saturday.

The province announced two more COVID-related deaths and 180 cases on Saturday.

The province announced two more COVID-related deaths and 180 cases on Saturday.

The dead include a Southern Health-Santé Sud man in his 70s and a Winnipeg health region man in his 80s. 

New cases include 83 in the Winnipeg heath region, followed by 69 in Northern, 10 cases in both Interlake-Eastern and Southern Health, and eight cases in Prairie Mountain Health.

There are now 2,986 active cases in Manitoba, of which 219 are in Prairie Mountain Health.

A total of 283 people are in hospital with COVID-19, of whom 161 are no longer infectious. Of those in hospital, 36 are in intensive care.

In Prairie Mountain Health, a total of 14 people are in hospital, of whom one is in intensive care. 

The current test positivity rate is 10.2 per cent provincially and seven per cent in Winnipeg. 

 

» The Brandon Sun

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One of Canada's oldest seniors, at 110 years old, gets COVID-19 vaccine at Surrey care home – Prince Rupert Northern View

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JaHyung Lee, a resident at a Newton care home, received his COVID-19 vaccine at the age of 110.

Amenida Seniors Community said in a news release that residents at the facility received the first dose of their vaccines on Thursday (Jan. 14). JaHyung Lee is one of Canada’s oldest seniors to be inoculated.

The second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine will be administered “in the coming weeks.”

“We are extremely lucky that we have received enough supplies to vaccinate all of our residents in care,” said Rosa Park, general manager at Amenida.

“As many of our seniors are elderly and require complex care, we can feel safer knowing that the virus won’t be spreading within our community.”

A reporter with the Now-Leader attended Lee’s 109th birthday in 2019. He was born on Aug. 27, 1910.

RELATED: 109th birthday party for ‘amazing’ Surrey man who still shops on his own and plays bingo, Sept. 23, 2019

Meantime, Fraser Health says it has completed 151 vaccine clinics for long-term care and assisted living in the health region.



lauren.collins@surreynowleader.com

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