I hope that everyone who celebrated enjoyed their Franco-Ontarian Day! Despite having to adjust to the current situation, September 25th was a tremendous occasion to celebrate the cultural pride of the strong and vibrant Franco-Ontarian community. Earlier in the week, I had the opportunity to voice my opinion on Bill 182, the Franco-Ontarian Emblem Amendment Act. The recognition of the Franco-Ontarian flag as an emblem of Ontario should have been a given. I was happy to support the bill and made sure to emphasize that Franco-Ontarians need concrete support from this government. You can watch my remarks in French on my Twitter page.
COVID-19 Testing Information
Ottawa Public Health has updated COVID-19 Testing Information. As we know, COVID-19 cases are rising across the province and we are officially in a second wave of the pandemic. I am supporting OPH’s request for the government to prioritize additional testing capacity for schools and to increase capacity for existing testing sites. OPH is doing everything possible to reduce the transmission that is currently occurring in Ottawa and I am grateful to have such a strong health team in our region. I continue to advocate for a testing centre in Vanier and will continue to urge the government to do everything possible to increase testing and lab capacity.
The return to school has been a source of anticipation and some anxiety. While school boards are doing their very best to keep our community safe, we are seeing an increasing number of persons testing positive for COVID-19. I invite you to consult the NEW testing FAQs posted for Supporting Schools during COVID-19 web page. Please note that OPH does not recommend that a medical certificate or proof of a negative COVID-19 test by required to return to school for children who have experienced non-COVID related symptoms or illness, or who recovered from COVID-19. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to teachers and education workers who are front-line workers of our education system. They deserve better support from our government.
While education and long-term care remain at the forefront of my concerns at the moment, I have recently taken some opportunities to also emphasize the importance of protecting our environment. One of those opportunities was to respond to a proposal by the government to expand hydrogen technologies in Ontario. While I supported the motion, I also emphasized the ongoing importance of making immediate changes with big impacts on fighting climate change. You can watch my remarks on this here.
That’s all for now. Thank you for subscribing to my updates and for staying engaged in the issues that matter to you. Have a great weekend!