Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, says he is working with provinces to send more healthcare workers to Ontario. He’s also committed to increasing the speed with which the virus is tested in hotspot areas throughout the province. On Friday, Ontario set a new high of 4,812 new cases, marking the third consecutive day of new highs. The province reported 4,250 new cases of the novel coronavirus and 18 new deaths on Sunday.
Trudeau said on Friday that the Canadian Red Cross is “standing by” to assist Ontario’s mobile vaccination efforts. However, the Ford administration initially rejected the offer, claiming that it needed to be accompanied by an increase in vaccine supply. On Saturday, the premier backtracked on some of the new policing powers, announcing that officers will no longer be able to stop pedestrians or vehicles and ask why they are out or request their home address.
On Saturday, Public Safety Minister Bill Blair granted the province’s request to extend the use of two mobile health units. P.E.I. Premier Dennis King has also contacted the presidents of the University of Prince Edward Island and Holland College to see if there are any students who can assist.
Ontario had previously requested that nurses and other health workers be diverted from other parts of the country to the region’s overburdened health-care system. Premier Andrew Furey of Newfoundland and Labrador told CBC’s Rosemary Barton that the province is looking to help in any way it can. The Ford administration stated in a letter sent to all provinces and territories on Friday that it had a shortage of thousands of nurses.