Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Monday, March 30, 2020

Customers line up at a Tim Hortons drive-thru on Second Street East in Cornwall, Ont. on Thursday, March 26, 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Monday, March 30, 2020:

  • There have been 1,355 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario. Eight of those have recovered. Twenty-three have died. The positive total includes nine confirmed cases in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit’s jurisdiction. All the cases were in Prescott-Russell. The number of Ontario people tested is 49,186; 40,630 were negative and test results are pending for 7,203.
  • Canada’s confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 case total is 6,258. The country has 61 COVID-19 related deaths – 17 in British Columbia, two in Alberta, one in Manitoba, 21 in Ontario (Ontario government is reporting 23 but two cases are not lab confirmed) and 22 in Quebec.
  • The Eastern Ontario Health Unit says five more cases of coronavirus in the region, confirmed over the weekend, just reinforces the importance of staying home. The latest cases were all in Prescott-Russell. One woman is in the ICU in Cornwall.
  • When it comes to construction sites, Ontario’s Chief Prevention Officer has outlined for employers their legal responsibilities. They include cleaning high-touch areas like site trailers, door handles and hoists and making sure shifts are staggered to limit the number of workers on site. If a worker feels unsafe and the problem is not solved by the company, they can file a complaint with the Health and Safety Contact Center at 1-877-202-0008.
  • North Stormont will hold a special council meeting Wednesday where it will hear a report from the public works department on measures put in place to address COVID-19, such as giving workers specific lunch times and giving each employee their own pickup truck or piece of township equipment.
  • The number of cases in the counties of Leeds, Grenville and Lanark jumped from one case on Friday to 13 by Sunday. The health unit says that’s because more test results are coming back from labs, people are returning from the United States with the virus and assessment centers are now processing more people.
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark cases include an outbreak at a long term care home in Mississippi Mills where three residents and a staff member are positive.
  • Via Rail will be cutting its service down to one train per day in each direction, starting Tuesday (March 31). For the Toronto-Kingston-Montreal corridor through Brockville and Cornwall, it will be trains 66 and 63.
  • The federal government is targeting more help for kids and seniors with an extra $7.5 million for the Kids Help Phone program for counsellors and volunteers and $9.5 million to the United Way for food and grocery delivery programs for seniors.
  • A gift certificate program, launched by Kelly Bergeron, has already injected $10,000 into the pockets of local small businesses. The Cornwall Gift Certificates program under the Campaign to Save Main Street has 160 local small businesses on its site.
  • Olymel has had to temporarily shut down one of its slaughtering plants in Quebec for two weeks after nine employees tested positive for coronavirus. The move affects 1,000 workers in Yamachiche, near Trois-Rivieres. The action has no effect on the Cornwall operations.
  • Organizers with the Glengarry Highland Games say they are “watching the world situation very carefully” but, at this point, there has been no decision to cancel the games, scheduled for the July 31st weekend. But ticket sales and camping reservations are on hold.
  • Country music legend Joe Diffie died Sunday from health complications after testing positive for the coronavirus. He was 61.

Have a story or news release related to COVID-19? Send it along for possible inclusion in a future digest on Cornwall Newswatch. Email Please put “COVID-19 Digest” in the subject line.

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