COVID-19 round-up for Monday, May 11 – the you just keep on pushing my love over the borderline edition

New Brunswick – For the fifth day running, Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer was able to tell New Brunswickers there were no new cases of COVID-19 in the province today.  The total cases stands at 120, with two active and 118 recovered.  There are no cases currently in the hospital.

“This does not mean we can lower our guard,” said Russell.

She said COVID-19 is here, and it’s something resident of New Brunswick will have to live with as we venture towards creating a “new” normal.

Russell also announced new protocols for visitation for those for visiting patients nearing the end of their lives in hospitals, nursing homes and hospices.

Patients may now identify two static individuals who can visit the patient, one at a time. These individuals cannot be interchanged, and if one designated visitor is older, frail, or in any need of assistance, then the person who assists them must be designated as the second visitor.

All designated visitors:

  • Will be required to maintain physical distancing and limit their interactions with facility staff and the public.
  • Must leave the patient’s room when staff are conducting procedures.
  • Must monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19 and refrain from visiting should symptoms appear.
  • Must follow facility rules regarding infection control for other viruses, such as influenza and the common cold.

Premier Blaine Higgs said now that some of the rules under the emergency measures act have been relaxed, New Brunswickers shopping and eating out experiences will be different, and residents must be prepared to follow the rules set out by the various establishments.

He also addressed the current situation regarding New Brunswick’s closed borders – borders Higgs has repeatedly stated will not open any time soon.

“Throughout this pandemic, New Brunswick has been a leader,” said Higgs.

“We must continue to lead the way now that our province has begun to recover.  That is why we made the tough decision to keep access to our borders restricted.

“Our province still is surrounded by COVID-19, and while we know there will be additional cases, we need to minimize the risk,” he added.

“The virus is all around us,” said Russell.  “It’s in Quebec, it’s in Ontario, it’s in the states, it’s in Nova Scotia.  PEI is doing very well, but at this time we so still have to maintain our border measures to protect travel related related cases in New Brunswick. 

“We can’t eliminate travel related cases completely, but we definitely have to minimize the risk of travel related cases,” she said.

Higgs ­­reminded job seekers and employers beginning tomorrow, Tuesday, May 12 and continuing Wednesday, May 13,  the province is hosting a free virtual career fair.  Over 50 employers have registered, and there will be virtual booths for job seekers to explore.  Those interested just need to go to www.WorkingNB.ca

Job seekers will be able to speak with WorkingNB employment counsellors about employment and training concerns. They will have access to information on applying for Employment Insurance and other programs.

The platform is also available for employers to discuss recruitment, retention, and training with a WorkingNB consultant.

If you have non-health related questions including those about compliance, and the state of emergency, you can call 1-844-462-8387 toll-free from 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday, and 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. You can also send inquiries via email at  helpaide@gnb.ca

Up-to-date information about COVID-19 is available online.

From outside the familiar Rideau Cottage in Ottawa today, the shaggy Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today announced the extension of the business credit program designed to help small businesses across the country.

“Export Development Canada and the Business Development Canada will be working with private sector lenders to increase access to capital by tens of millions of dollars for Canadian companies in all industry sectors and all regions of the country,” he said.

Trudeau also announced assistance for Canada’s larger industries in the form of bridge financing.

“But I want to be clear, this is bridge financing, not a blank cheque,” said Trudeau. “We are providing support to these large employers in order to protect millions of jobs right across the country.”

Trudeau said this funding is a bridging solution only, and are aimed at staving off bankruptcies and at protecting the jobs these large industries provide.

“The goal here is not to fix preexisting insolvencies or restructurings. Nor is it to provide low cost lending to companies that don’t need it,” he added.

Trudeau said in the efforts of fairness, this financing will be available to every industry in every sector across the provinces and territories.  He said those who receive funding will be held accountable and will protect workers.

Companies who receive assistance will also be required to maintain jobs and investment, must respect collective agreements and pension obligations, and “environmental and climate commitments”.

“There will be strict limits on dividends, share buybacks and executive compensation. To stand strong against tax avoidance and tax evasion, we will require companies to share with us their complete financial structure as they apply for funding.”

At 11 a.m. EDT, there were 69,156 active/recovered cases of COVID-19 in Canada, with over 50 per cent in New Brunswick’s neighbouring province of Quebec, who saw schools outside Montreal open (with voluntary attendance) on Monday, with 37,721 active/recovered cases. 

Ontario follows behind with 20,546.

For details on funding programs, application portals, and details on COVID-19 in Canada, go to www.canada.ca

editor@stcroixcourier.ca