St. Catharines' mayor warns public not to get overconfident


St. Catharines' mayor is warning the public not to get overconfident.

Mayor Walter Sendzik is encouraging people to continue following COVID-19 protocols, even as the infection rate numbers look promising.

"For the last two months the people in our community have listened very clearly. They've been responsible, they've made the sacrifices, and what we don't want to do is take all of that effort and have it jeopardized by people who just think that, 'Oh, we're back to the way it was February 2020.' We're not going back to February 2020."

Sendzik says he is getting a lot of questions from residents.

"'What's safe? Are we in a safe place? Are we able to now start to get together in larger groups?' And the answers to those are no. We're still not in a safe place where you can have the confidence that we've pushed back at COVID-19 to the point where we can allow for more public gatherings."

During the virtual council meeting this week, CAO Shelley Chemnitz said the city is starting to look at what recovery will eventually look like.

She said given the nature of this emergency, "...waiting for a definitively clear line isn't even a consideration. Recovery needs to begin with small steps informed by the medical community and evaluated regularly. Recovery will not be the same for everyone."

There is a team of 25 people working on hammering out the details for business best practices and how to best protect the public when things start to reopen.