Listen for a breakdown of all the news surrounding the Covid-19 Global Outbreak, where we'll separate the facts from the fiction.
And, we begin WEEK 3….This is DAY 15 of the COVID-19 pandemic.
And today is all about following the money. Ottawa, Ontario, Bay Street and Wall Street make financial and market news, while the numbers of COVID-19 cases continue to soar around the world.
Here’s what you need to know on Wednesday, March 25th, 2020
71-year-old Prince Charles has tested positive for COVID-19. He is showing mild symptoms and is self-isolating at a royal estate in Scotland, his Clarence House office said. His wife Camilla, 72, has tested negative.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered some details on the $82 billion relief package passed by the House of Commons early this morning…and by the Senate midday today. The Prime Minister says Ottawa is streamlining some of the EI benefits for Canadians affected by the pandemic.
Getting the money into the hands of Canadians is critical now that we’re seeing thousands of layoffs announced each day. BNN Bloomberg is estimating nearly 1 million Canadians have applied for Employment Insurance since the pandemic was declared two weeks ago.
Other countries have presented similar relief packages but Denmark and Germany have committed to providing wage subsidies up to 70% to avoid layoffs. Trudeau says that it on the agenda for Ottawa.
Meanwhile, Trudeau is relying on all Canadians who are abroad to self-isolate when they return home.
To be clear, self-isolation is required but the Prime Minister isn’t making it mandatory.
Getting cash in to the system in an efficient and timely fashion may well be the difference between survival and failure for business and families across the country.
John Manley is the former Liberal Deputy Minister. He told BNN Bloomberg the federal package is a good first step and says we can be proud of how parliament worked.
But is this enough to avoid mass layoffs as we saw at the Leon’s Furniture chain today?
Manley also expects the $82 billion to be the first step in the federal government commitment to offset the financial effects of the COVID-19 crisis.
So….how did the markets respond to the stimulus and relief packages in Ottawa and Washington?
Ontario’s Finance minister Rod Phillips had intended to present his annual budget at Queen’s Park this month but the COVID-19 pandemic made that impossible. So he presented an economic statement in the legislature Wednesday afternoon. It’s a $17billion package aimed at supporting healthcare and business.
Keith Leslie is a veteran political commentator at Newstalk1010 radio in Toronto…and Co-hosts – On the Ledge – with John Wright and me. It’s the Ontario politics podcast.
Keith joins us now from his home office in Toronto.
So, here we are at the end of DAY 15 of this COVID-19 Pandemic. We are entering week three and, by all accounts the next three weeks are going to be the toughest we have seen as this strain of the corona virus continues to spread around the world and across Canada.
Just a reminder, three weeks ago today Canada had 34 confirmed cases of COVID-19. As we record this podcast, we have more than 32 hundred cases country wide. What you do today will make a difference in how that curve continues in the next three weeks.
IF YOU HAVE A STORY ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE OR A GOOD NEWS COMMUNITY STORY YOU WANT TO SHARE…send me an email. DAVE@DAVETRAFFORD.COM or connect with me on TWITTER @DaveTrafford.
THE VIEWPOINTS EXPRESSED IN THIS PODCAST REPRESENT THE OPINIONS OF THE HOST AND PARTICIPANTS AS OF THE DATE OF PUBLICATION AND ARE NOT INTENDED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR MEDICAL ADVICE AND BEST PRACTICES BY LEADING MEDICAL AUTHORITIES AS THE INFORMATION SURROUNDING THE CURRENT CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC IS CONSTANTLY EVOLVING.
Municipalities and health care providers across Canada are calling on the federal and provincial governments to take tougher measures in the fight against COVID1-19 – but the Prime Minister insists the time is not right to invoke the Emergencies Act.
Here’s what you need to know on Sunday, March 22, 2020
Nova Scotia declares state of emergency, identifies 7 more cases of COVID-19 Effective 6 a.m. Monday, the borders of Nova Scotia will be tightened, with screening processes at all points of entry to the province. Anyone who has travelled outside of the province will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon their return.
The Metropolitan Opera is cancelling the rest of its season and stopping the pay of the orchestra, chorus and other unionized employees at the end of March due to the new coronavirus. The Met last week called off performances through March 31.
Huge crowds defied coronavirus fears – lining up for hours to see the Olympic flame in northern Japan, as reports emerged that organisers of Tokyo 2020 are considering postponement of the games.
Despite states of emergency being declared by a number of provinces, despite the nearly minute to minute appeal for people to observe physical distancing, to stay home unless it’s necessary for you to buy groceries or go to work, there are increased reports of people gathering in large crowds in close proximity across the country.
It was the subject of the first question from the Prime Minister’s scrum today in Ottawa.
But that stance is frustrating for some municipal and public health leaders who have limited powers to make sure people follow these health and safety measures.
The first call to toughen up came this weekend from doctors in British Columbia.
That’s reporter Ben Miljure at CTV Vancouver.
Frank Scarpitti is the Mayor of Markham, Ontario. He’s adding his voice to the chorus calling on the senior levels of government to definitively shut down all non-essential businesses and public activities.
The House of Commons will convene on Tuesday to pass emergency measures but as noted, the Emergencies Act is not on the agenda.
While Canadian legislatures assemble to vote on emergency support packages to deal with the health and financial effects of the COVID outbreak, the US Congress appears stalled in its efforts to push a bill through the House and Senate.
Washington’s management of the COVID outbreak has criticized by front line healthcare providers and state governors and much of that criticizes stops in the Oval Office.
David Schultz is a professor of political science and constitutional law at Hamline University in Minnesota. He says, despite any effort to the contrary, the COVID-19 pandemic is becoming increasingly politicized in this presidential election year.
So here we are at the end of day 10 of the daily COVID-19 podcast series…and we end with the reminder we’ve heard from public health and government officials again today.
Whatever you and I do or fail to do to help curb COVID-19 will be reflected in the cases and circumstances we’ll face three weeks from now.
What are you doing today…to help flatten the curve?