Kanata North COVID-19 Update June 25

Good evening Kanata North, 

Congratulations to all students, teachers, and homeschooling parents for finishing the school year! I hope you had a great year and learnt a lot despite the circumstances. The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us many things including proper hygienethe importance of community and how we can have a real impact by working together, but also – most importantly – how to slow down. I appreciate the extra time I get to spend with my family to create new memories. As we enter the summer holidays, I hope that we all spend time to reflect on how fortunate we are to live in a community with beautiful green spaces, amazing small businesses, and generous neighbours that create a strong sense of community. I am proud to be a part of the Kanata North community! 

Kanata North Updates 

  • Thank you to the many Kanata North residents who have volunteered their time to help our community. Should you need help through the pandemic, your neighbours can assist with walking pets and picking up items from the store. Please go to my website to sign up or contact me directly. My team will be happy to coordinate your needs with a friendly neighbour. 
  • We are fortunate to have many local restaurants and shops in Kanata North. COVID-19 has been challenging for many, especially small businesses. As our city begins to reopen, I encourage you to support our local businesses. Explore the businesses on the Kanata North Business Association and the Kanata Central Businesses Improvement Area’s webpages. Please be mindful of the health and safety regulations that are put in place to keep staff and customers safe.  


City of Ottawa and Ottawa Public Health Updates (OPH) 

Here are the latest updates from the City of Ottawa and OPH: 

  • Today, OPH reported four new cases and no new deaths. This brings the cumulative total of cases to 2,069 and 262 deaths. 
  • Yesterday, City Council received an update regarding the city’s financial state. As a result of COVID-19, projections show that the city will run a $192-million deficit this year. To close this year’s deficit gap, the city will implement various strategies including reducing the operating expenses, leveraging reserve funds, and adjust capital spending to maintain services and respond to evolving community needs. While these one-time solutions address our deficit this year, they put pressure on city finances in future years. To avoid a large tax increase, the city will require funding from the federal and provincial governments to support needed infrastructure investments, transit, and operating pressures. Mayor Jim Watson, on behalf of the City of Ottawa, has requested funding through the Big City Mayors’ Caucus, the Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario and the Association of Municipalities of Ontario. The City of Ottawa is also actively working with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities on their requests for emergency operating funding. 
  • Dr. Vera Etches, Ottawa’s Medical Officer of Health, shared that everyone’s commitment to practicing physical distancing has contributed to flattening the curve and allowed us to move into Stage 2 of reopening. It is up to us to make sure this trend continues. We must be COVIDWise:
    • Wear a mask. 
    • Isolate when sick (and seek testing if you have symptoms). 
    • Stay two metres apart from others. 
    • Exercise proper hand hygiene.  
  • In early May, OPH began collecting socio-demographic data from people diagnosed with COVID-19. An initial look at data collected is showing there may be an over-representation of people who are racialized and immigrants compared with the census 2016 data. This data is consistent with what is being seen in other areas. OPH will be working with community partners such as the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership to understand these numbers. We need to better understand how people’s experiences and life situations are creating this unfair vulnerability to COVID-19 in order to address these differences and barriers. The data shows that:          
    • 66% of people diagnosed with COVID-19 identified as from a racialized community compared to 26% of Ottawa residents in Census 2016 data. 
    • 54% are immigrants to Canada while only 24% of Ottawa residents are immigrants in Census 2016 data. 
    • Areas in Ottawa with the most diverse communities have rates of COVID-19 almost twice that of areas with the least diversity. 
  • There’s no doubt that the pandemic has been challenging for many. OPH has been surveying Ottawa residents to better understand how people are managing the health and social impacts of COVID-19. This data will help inform OPH on the mental health and wellness support our community needs. In June, residents were asked about mental health and emotional well-being including sense of community belonging and loneliness. Some of the findings include: 
    • 38% reported their overall mental health and emotional well-being as ‘fair’ or ‘poor’ in the last two weeks compared to 9% in 2017 (Canadian Community Health Survey). 
    • 52% reported a weak sense of belonging to their local community compared to 30% in 2017. 
    • Nearly 60% of residents reported feeling some sense of loneliness over the last two weeks. 
    • 1 in 3 reported at least one time in the past two weeks wanting to talk to someone about something on their mind but did not know where to turn. 
  • The Ottawa Public Library (OPL) will be expanding its services next week to better serve the community. As part of this new service phase, customers will be able to reserve new library items, and new branch locations will soon be offering returns and holds service. Residents are reminded to continue to practice strict health and safety guidelines when visiting a branch. Starting: 
    • Monday, June 29: Customers will be able to reserve new library items, with a temporary limit of 20 holds per customer. 
    • Monday, July 6: Customers will be able to come inside the six currently open branches to pick up their holds and check them out using the checkout machines. At this time, appointments will still be required for customers who wish to pick up their available holds. 
    • Mid-July to mid-August: The returns and holds contactless service will be expanded to additional branches following this anticipated timeline (subject to change). 
  • The City of Ottawa in partnership with OPH want to know your thoughts, perceptions and understanding of current recommendations and the reopening of businesses in Stage 2. This information will be used to better support residents and businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic. You can provide your feedback here. 
  • To ensure employees returning to work are safe, OPH has updated the COVID-19 Health Screening Questionnaire to include more symptomsThis assessment should be completed before employees enter the building to protect staff and customers. 



 Provincial Updates 

Here are the latest updates from the Ontario government: 

  • This week, the majority of the updates from the Premier and the Province of Ontario focused on other areas of the Province that were not in stage 2 like Ottawa. As you may recall, the Province of Ontario is carrying out regional reopening, that take into account local conditionsIf you want to follow the work being done in other regions of the Province you can find all of the updates here.  
  • In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government has further extended the Declaration of Emergency to better protect residents until at least July 15, 2020. This extension will provide the government with the additional time, flexibility, and the necessary tools to safely and gradually allow more places to reopen, while continuing to support frontline health care providers in the fight against COVID-19. 
  • You can read more about the phase 2 guidelines that have been provided by the Province here.  It’s important to remember that the only way of continuing to build on the progress and hard work we have done to get here is by continuing to be COVID Wise. If we stay the course, we can move into phase 3 responsibly  

Federal Updates 

Here are the latest updates from the Federal government: 

  • To better support students and recent graduates that are facing unique challenges due to COVID-19, the Canadian government is launching the Canada Student Service Grant (CSSG). Starting today, students and recent grads that are volunteering to serve in their communities’ COVID-19 response will be able to apply for a one-time payment of between $1,000 and $5,000 based on the number of hours they serve. To find not-for-profit organizations looking for help during the pandemic, post-secondary students and recent graduates can use the new I Want to Help platform, which also launched today. 
  • The Government of Canada is also helping young Canadians find paid work placements and get the skills they need to start their careers. These activities include: 
    • Supporting an additional 20,000 job placements for post-secondary students in high demand sectors. A new investment of $186 million in the Student Work Placement Program will help more post-secondary students across Canada get paid work experience related to their field of study. This funding is in addition to the $80 million that was announced on April 22, 2020. 
    • Creating 10,000 new job placements for young people between the ages of 15 and 30 through the Canada Summer Jobs program. New funding of over $60 million will help expand the current work placement target from 70,000 to 80,000, creating 10,000 more placements for young people aged 15 to 30. The program provides wage subsidies to employers so they can give quality work experience to young Canadians and help them develop the skills they need to transition into the labour market. 
    • Creating 5,000 new internships through Mitacs for college and university students across Canada with small and medium-sized businesses. Funding of $40 million will also help develop partnerships with new industries and offer internships to students in more areas of study. 
    • Increasing funding to the Digital Skills for Youth (DS4Y) program by $40 million to help post-secondary graduates gain professional work experience. DS4Y provides wage subsidy opportunities to help connect young people with small and medium-sized businesses and not-for-profits. 
    • Creating over 3,500 new job placements and internships through the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy. New funding of $34 million, in addition to the over $153 million announced on April 22, will support programs serving high-demand sectors such as health, community services, and information technology, and help other sectors to recover. 
    • Providing $6.7 million for the Computers for Schools Plus (CFS+) program. The partnership-based program refurbishes donated surplus computers and electronic devices, and provides them to schools, libraries, not-for-profit organizations, Indigenous communities, and low-income Canadians. It also offers paid, practical work internships for young people, through which they can develop advanced digital skills as well as experience in project management, teamwork, and communications. 
    • Creating 5,000 to 10,000 more work-integrated learning opportunities through the Business + Higher Education Roundtable (BHER). The BHER will launch a national challenge for students to develop creative solutions in response to current and future sector needs as defined by Canadian industry. The national student challenge will help connect Canada’s small and medium-sized businesses with the next generation of talent in Canada. 


Please reach out should you need anything. Stay safe.    

Take care,   

Jenna Sudds