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Restrictions lifted in Quebec despite Canada's top doctors warning of a fourth wave – CTV News Montreal

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MONTREAL —
At a minute past midnight Sunday, more COVID-19 restrictions in Quebec were lifted including how late bars and restaurants could serve alcohol and festival capacities.

Bars and restaurants are now permitted to serve alcohol until 1 a.m. with closing time pushed to 2 a.m.

Ten people or three private residences can share a table and tables must remain two metres apart indoors when there are no partitions between them. Outdoor terrasses can seat 20 per table, and those tables must be a metre apart.

In indoor auditoriums and stadiums, the capacity is now 7,500 people with assigned seating (with one empty seat between people from different households), with sections divided into a maximum of 250 people per section. Mask-wearing is still mandatory inside while not seated.

For outdoor festivals, 15,000 people are now permitted to attend in pre-assigned seats or standing in 500-people sections. Two-metre distancing is required, and mask-wearing is recommended by public health when people are circulating. A monitor is required to keep an eye on all participants. For complete rules on festivals and events, visit the Quebec public health site.

The sports community was quick to respond.

In soccer, CF Montreal announced that it will be able to receive fans in all sections of Saputo Stadium (in compliance with physical distance rules) as of next Wednesday, Aug. 4, during its game against Atlanta United.

The CFL’s Montreal Alouettes play its first game in Montreal on Aug. 27 against the Hamilton Tiger Cats.

The team said it was “extremely happy” with the new relaxations.

The Alouettes announced that individual tickets will be sold to the general public starting Monday morning.

Tennis Canada said that the National Bank Open, which will be held from Aug. 7 to 15 at the IGA Stadium, is maintaining a maximum capacity of 5,000 spectators per match in Montreal. The centre court can usually accommodate up to 12,000 people. 

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, released modelling on Friday that indicates cases are beginning to rise as a result of the more contagious Delta variant, but there is still time to flatten the curve.

On Friday, Quebec reported 78 more Delta cases of the 125 new COVID-19 cases. Quebec’s total number of Delta cases (356), is at the low end of Canada’s overall numbers (9,841). Ontario leads the way with 4,565 total, followed by Alberta (2,004) and BC (1,664).

Epidemiologist Dr. Christopher Labos said the number one way to protect against a Delta-driven fourth wave of COVID-19 is to convince Quebecers who have yet to get a vaccine to do so immediately.

“If you’re not vaccinated, keep your distance from other people,” he said. “The problem with COVID is not just that it’s infectious, but that a significant portion of the people who get it get seriously ill and end up in hospital.”

— with files from The Canadian Press.

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COMMENTARY: Young Canadians are struggling economically. This election is our chance to fix that. – Global News

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Much like nearly half of the country, I was hoping Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wouldn’t call an early election in the midst of a pandemic, but here we are.

Canada’s federal election will take place on Sept. 20, so the Liberals, Conservatives, New Democrats and Greens have just a few days left to convince young Canadians to vote in their favour. Top of mind for gen Zs and millennials? Employment.

Read more:
First-time voter says her choice for election 2021 reflects her ‘lived experiences’

Unemployment rates for young Canadians increased by six per cent from 2019 to 2020 — roughly twice that of older Canadians, a Statistics Canada study about youth employment published last month revealed. Indeed, by 2020, the unemployment rate for Canadians aged 15 to 30 who weren’t in school full-time hovered just under 15 per cent. This has been a trend since COVID-19’s arrival in March 2020 when the number of post-secondary working students dropped by 28 per cent from the previous month.

As StatsCan says, this relatively high unemployment rate suggests young Canadians joining the labour force “might see lower earnings in the years following graduation than they would have in a more dynamic labour market.”


Click to play video: 'Canada’s third COVID-19 wave creates ‘zigzag’ economy'



2:04
Canada’s third COVID-19 wave creates ‘zigzag’ economy


Canada’s third COVID-19 wave creates ‘zigzag’ economy – May 7, 2021

There’s a clear need for a post-pandemic recovery plan that supports gen Zs and millennials in getting jobs. Some even had to sacrifice internships and other entry-level opportunities that would’ve given them a foot in the door because COVID-19’s arrival not only meant that working out of the office wasn’t an option, but also that many companies weren’t yet prepared for the transition to remote working.

Case in point: One of my fellows who graduated from journalism school in the spring of 2020 lost out on a school-funded reporting trip to Rwanda and an internship — which could have led to a permanent job — because the newsroom decided not to bring on interns after the pandemic’s arrival. To make matters worse, due to his unique circumstances as someone who graduated right before COVID-19 hit, he neither qualified for Canada’s Employment Insurance (EI) program nor the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) because he hadn’t started working yet.

He told me the CESB wasn’t enough to support him, so he’s been living with his parents during the pandemic. The Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) provided a scant $1,250 per month for eligible students from May through August 2020, and $1,750 per month for students with dependents and those with permanent disabilities. In most major Canadian cities, that amount would barely cover the cost of one month’s rent for a studio apartment.

Commentary:
Remote work isn’t a trend. It’s a fundamental shift in Canada’s work culture

Young Canadians with disabilities, who are less likely to be employed than their non-disabled counterparts, have even bigger economic barriers to overcome. Indeed, the election announcement effectively killed Bill C-35, the proposed Canada Disability Benefit Act, which aims to reduce poverty and support the financial security of working-age Canadians with disabilities.

As part of Canada’s post-pandemic economic recovery plan, our parties would do well to create green jobs. Not only will they contribute to the fight against climate change, which is a priority issue for gen Zs and millennials, these jobs will also help young Canadians get back to work. They include opportunities in the sectors of renewable energy, environmental protection, sustainable urban planning and more, as well as low-carbon jobs like teaching and care-worker roles.


Click to play video: 'Canada’s job seekers may have upper hand amid labour squeeze'



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Canada’s job seekers may have upper hand amid labour squeeze


Canada’s job seekers may have upper hand amid labour squeeze

Despite some resistance to a snap election as the delta variant of COVID-19 picks up, our country’s politicians have an opportunity to improve the financial future of young Canadians across the country during a time when they’re struggling economically.

Now’s the time to shore up our youngest generations and future leaders.

Anita Li is a media strategist and consultant with a decade of experience as a multi-platform journalist at outlets across North America. She is also a journalism instructor at Ryerson University, the City University of New York’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and Centennial College. She is the co-founder of Canadian Journalists of Colour, a rapidly growing network of BIPOC media-makers in Canada, as well as a member of the 2020-21 Online News Association board of directors. To keep up with Anita Li, subscribe to The Other Wave, her newsletter about challenging the status quo in journalism.

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

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The latest:

In Europe, about 3,000 French health-care workers were suspended for not meeting this week’s deadline to get mandatory coronavirus vaccinations, the health minister said Thursday.

Most of the people suspended work in support positions and were not medical staff, Health Minister Olivier Veran told RTL radio. The number suspended was lower than projected ahead of the Wednesday deadline.

A few dozen of France’s 2.7 million health-care workers have quit their jobs because of the vaccine mandate, he said.

France ordered all health-care workers to get vaccinated or be suspended without pay. Most French people support the measure. However, it prompted weeks of protests by a vocal minority against the vaccine mandate.


What’s happening across Canada

B.C. Premier John Horgan shows his provincial COVID-19 vaccine card in Vancouver on Thursday. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

  • Southern health region sees biggest chunk of Manitoba’s 64 new cases.
  • P.E.I. announces 9 new cases related to Charlottetown school outbreak.
  • N.S. reports 34 new cases amid outbreak in unvaccinated northern community.

What’s happening around the world

As of Thursday, more than 226.4 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University’s coronavirus tracker. The reported global death toll stood at more than 4.6 million.

In the Americas, Cuba began a vaccination campaign for children between the ages of two and 10, saying it was necessary to curb the spread of the delta variant. Meanwhile, the nearby U.S. state of Florida has surpassed 50,000 COVID-19 deaths, officials said, despite recent steep drops in hospitalizations and infections.

PHOTOS | Children in Cuba get vaccinated:

In Asia, Chinese health officials say more than a billion people have been fully vaccinated in the world’s most populous country — that represents 72 per cent of its 1.4 billion people.  China has largely stopped the spread by imposing restrictions and mass testing whenever new cases are found. It also limits entry to the country and requires people who arrive to quarantine in a hotel for at least two weeks.

In Africa, the World Health Organization’s Africa director says COVID-19 cases across the continent dropped 30 per cent last week, but says it’s hardly reassuring given the dire shortage of vaccines.  WHO’s Dr. Matshidiso Moeti says only 3.6 per cent of Africa’s population have been fully immunized, noting export bans and the hoarding of vaccines by rich countries has resulted in “a chokehold” on vaccine supplies to Africa.

Elsewhere in Europe, in order for Italian workers in both the public and private sectors to access the workplace, they must provide a health pass — which shows proof of vaccination, a negative result on a recent rapid test or recovery from COVID-19 in the last six months — starting on Oct. 15. Slovenia and Greece adopted similar measures this week.

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Canada must 'learn from' the pandemic crisis in parts of the West, Tam says – CBC.ca

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Canada’s chief public health officer says other provinces need to learn from the pandemic crisis in Alberta and Saskatchewan if they want to avoid the calamity now afflicting health services in those provinces.

“Don’t be complacent,” Theresa Tam said at this morning’s media briefing. “We have to be highly vigilant on this virus. When you see it accelerating, act fast because, I think, we have to learn from the situation in Alberta and also in Saskatchewan at the moment.”

On Thursday, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney reintroduced strict and sweeping measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 — including a new requirement that people provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to gain entry to some businesses and social events.

Alberta has more than 18,000 active COVID-19 cases — the most of any province right now. There were 877 people in the province’s hospitals with the illness on Wednesday, 218 of them in intensive care. Ontario, with a population more than three times Alberta’s, had 346 in hospital, with 188 in intensive care.

“It is now clear that we were wrong, and for that I apologize,” Kenney said in announcing the new measures.

Tam said that, despite the fact that a large majority of Canadians are vaccinated, there are still seven million Canadians who have not been vaccinated and intensive care units in areas where vaccination rates are low are filling up with people in their 40s and 50s.

“When enough people are infected, even rarer events, in younger adults for example, are going to become common,” she said.

Avoiding more school lockdowns

Tam said the Public Health Agency of Canada has looked at public health units across the country and found overwhelming evidence that areas with low vaccination rates are experiencing surges in infections. 

She said the regions of the country struggling the most with pandemic surges are in the West — Alberta, Northern Saskatchewan and northern and interior parts of British Columbia.

“If we want to keep schools open, for example, we have to make sure we manage the virus transmission … to protect kids who are under 12, who cannot get vaccinated at the moment,” she said.

WATCH | Dr. Theresa Tam on lessons the rest of Canada can learn from Alberta

‘We have to learn from the situation in Alberta:’ Dr. Theresa Tam

7 hours ago

Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam says the rest of Canada should learn from Alberta’s experience after the province announced strict pandemic restrictions to fight the rising case count. 3:31

In parts of the country where increasing the vaccination rate is proving to be difficult, Tam said, authorities should impose public health restrictions — limiting the number of people that can gather together, mandating the wearing of masks indoors, hand-washing and physical distancing.

If vaccination rates cannot be increased in those parts of the country and such public health measures aren’t introduced, Tam said, more restrictive measures — such as lockdowns and stay-at-home orders — may have to be implemented. 

“I think jurisdictions have to be prepared for that potential, but if you act early you can actually avoid those more restrictive measures,” she said.

“But if needed, more restrictions may have to take place and my colleagues are hoping that this can be done in a more localized manner in order to avoid the significant impacts of widespread restrictions. I think it can be done.” 

Tam said that while no provinces are immune from the highly transmissible delta variant of COVID-19, the provinces in Atlantic Canada have managed to control spikes in infection rates by acting “fast in putting down some localized measures.”

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