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Halton Mayors Outline COVID-19 Relief Measures & Priority Requests for Federal and Provincial Governments

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*Please see below a joint statement from Halton’s Mayors for Feb. 3, 2021.

 Yesterday, the Halton Mayors and Chair met for our bi-weekly check in to discuss several issues jointly affecting our communities. We appreciate our partnership with the Provincial and Federal and COVID-19 has created numerous challenges for all levels of government. There are many factors that we all must consider and balance within our decision making.

We continue to call on our partners on the following matters:

Vaccines

We reiterate our call for the Federal Government to accelerate the delivery of the COVID-19 vaccines to support the needs and expectations of Canadians. Halton Regional Council passed a resolution on January 20, 2021 requesting that the Federal and Provincial Governments clearly and consistently communicate publicly with public health units and municipalities on the distribution of vaccine including: the receipt of COVID-19 vaccinations, the timing of delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations for each priority population, and the timing of delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations for the general population. Timely updates are necessary as we all work through the current supply chain challenges. We stand ready to provide facilities and logistical support for public vaccination efforts.

Sick pay:

We continue to advocate that the provincial and federal governments work together to urgently provide longer, better funded sick leave to help address the ongoing spread of COVID-19. To protect the essential services our residents rely on we must protect essential workers, and that includes supporting them to stay at home when they are ill, without financial penalty.

At our recent Regional Council meeting, Halton Region’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hamidah Meghani, stated that: “Currently, provincial employment standards do not require paid sick days. In Canada the most recent data available reveals that 58 per cent of workers in Canada and over 70 per cent of workers making less than $25 000 dollars per year have no access to paid sick days.” (Halton Regional Council, January 20, 2021).

Safe Reopening and Business Supports:

We add our voices to the GTHA Mayors and Chairs in calling on the province to prepare plans for the safe reopening of our communities, in consultation with businesses, municipalities and other stakeholders, and guided by advice from our Medical Officers of Health. We repeat our call for business support programs, including extension and expansion of the Digital Main Street program and the Small Business Grant program.

Safe Restart 2.0:

We thank the Provincial and Federal governments for their financial support for municipalities in 2020 and call on them once again for funding as we finalize our budgets in 2021 to offset the increasing costs of COVID-19 along with the decreased revenues in areas such as public transit and recreation services. Our municipalities will continue to do our part to find savings and efficiencies, while providing the services our residents depend on, including enhanced frontline services in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sincerely,

Marianne Meed Ward, Mayor of Burlington

Rick Bonnette, Mayor of Halton Hills

Gord Krantz, Mayor of Milton

Rob Burton, Mayor of Oakville

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For more information please reach out to the following media contacts:

PLEASE NOTE: To stay updated on what the City of Burlington is doing regarding COVID-19, please visit the dedicated pages burlington.ca/coronavirus (and subscribe) and bit.ly/mayormeedwardCOVID19updates, and our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page — bit.ly/COVID19BurlingtonFAQ that are updated as new information becomes available.

A consolidated page for information and updates on the work of the provincial Ministers’ COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force is available at bit.ly/COVIDVaccineUpdates.

Halton Region has also created a dedicated COVID-19 Vaccine webpage for up to date information on the status of our COVID19 vaccination program.

A Burlington COVID-19 Task Force has been created to help support our community through this unprecedented emergency — updates will be provided at burlington.ca/COVID19taskforce.

To report an incident of non-compliance with provincial emergency orders, please contact the Halton Regional Police Service COVID-19 Hotline: 905-825-4722.

We’ve also created a dedicated page to feature the local organizations and businesses that have inspired us during the COVID-19 pandemic by taking action to support our community in new and creative ways — head to bit.ly/covidwallofinspiration.

HELPFUL RESOURCES & RELATED LINKS:

*Posted by John Bkila, Mayor’s Media and Digital Communications Specialist

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Phone: 905-335-7607
Email:  mayor@burlington.ca

Media Specialist: John Bkila
john.bkila@burlington.ca
905-335-7600