Afternoon News: Thursday, March 19, 2020

Covid-19 Ottawa:

Two more cases of Covid-19 have been reported in our city Thursday.  

Ottawa Public Health says there are also three intermediate cases, that, if confirmed, would take our city’s total to nineteen. The new cases are a man in his 40’s, and another man in his 60’s, both of whom recently returned from Europe. 

Despite the relatively low numbers, our city’s Top Doctor Vera Etches estimates that there could be as many as 2000 undiagnosed cases in the city, and is strongly encouraging residents to continue practicing social distancing. 

Covid-19 Ontario:

Ontario has confirmed its second Covid-19-related death.  

The Halton Region Health Unit reports that a man in his 50’s, who had an underlying health condition, but had not traveled out of the country, and had no known connection to a confirmed Covid-19 case, has died. 

42 new cases have been reported across our province, bringing the total to 257. Five cases have been resolved. 

Ontario Emergency Bill: 

A small group of MPPs are set to pass an emergency bill this afternoon to help workers forced to stay home. Premier Doug Ford is among the politicians at the legislature where the bill is expected to receive unanimous support.  Ford says the law will apply to employees under investigation, supervision or treatment for COVID-19.

The Prime Minister’s Address: 

The Prime Minister says the border will likely be closed to all non-essential travel sometime tomorrow night, but an exact time has not been determined.  

Justin Trudeau says details are still being worked out with the US government. Canada and the U-S will still let health-care professionals, air crews and others cross, as well as snowbirds returning from the States. 

Trudeau added in his address this morning that it could be weeks or even months before the government can lift social-distancing measures and restrictions on public activities. 

Canadians Abroad:  

The Government is also working with C-E-Os of Air Canada and WestJet about ways to help Canadians stranded overseas come home. 

Trudeau spoke with Ukraine’s president this morning and will be talking to Sweden’s president later today about coordinating efforts to help Canadians in other countries.  He says the government is working with telecom companies to send text messages to Canadians abroad to let them know about consular services available to them. 

Indigenous Services Response: 

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says Indigenous communities were disproportionately affected by the H-1-N-1 pandemic in 2009 due to inequalities in the health care system.  

Miller is determined to make sure that doesn’t happen with Covid-19.  The federal government announced yesterday that a 305-million dollar fund will address immediate needs in First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nation communities. 

Covid-19 Around the World: 

To the international response to the pandemic now, 

Italy has surpassed China as the country with the most coronavirus-related deaths. 

Officials in Rome say 34-hundred and five people in the country have died of COVID-19. 

That’s as the epicentre of the pandemic, Wuhan, China, recorded no new infections. 

Italy has recorded 41-thousand and 35 infections, more than half of the world’s positive cases. 

Sports:

The CFL has issued a statement today, suggesting that it is looking at alternatives for the start of its season, in light of Covid-19. 

The Ottawa Redblacks are scheduled to start their pre-season hosting Montreal May 29th, and their regular season taking on Toronto two weeks later. 

It seems Nick Foles has a new home. The Jacksonville Jaguars have reportedly dealt the former Super Bowl M-V-P to the Chicago Bears for a compensatory fourth-round pick. 

ELMNT FM Weather: 

A special weather statement warns of a cold snap that’s expected to hit after a warm day Friday. 

Showers expected late tonight with a risk of an overnight thunderstorm. Seven is our overnight low. 

Friday we’ll have showers off and on with the risk of a thunderstorm in the morning and afternoon. It will be windy, but we’ll have a very warm high of 17 

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