Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Friday April 17, 2020

A cleaning crew is parked outside a Tim Hortons on Tollgate Road West in Cornwall, Ont. on Thursday, April 16, 2020 after a worker tested positive for coronavirus. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Friday, April 17, 2020:

  • There have been 8,961 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 514 cases (or 6.1 per cent) from the previous day. There are 4,194 people recovered from the virus while 423 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 128,093 of which 4,323 have pending results.
  • Canada’s COVID-19 case total is 30,092. The country has 1,193 COVID-19 related deaths – 75 in British Columbia, 50 in Alberta, four in Saskatchewan, five in Manitoba, 423 in Ontario, 630 in Quebec, three in Newfoundland & Labrador and three in Nova Scotia.
  • The Cornwall, SD&G and Prescott-Russell region added another four cases to its tally (one in SD&G, three in Prescott-Russell), bringing the total number of coronavirus cases to 65. The number of people in hospitals is four (one fewer than Wednesday) – three in the intensive care unit (ICU).
  • A Cornwall Tim Hortons location is closed after a worker tested positive for coronavirus. Read that story here.
  • Despite the insistence from U.S. President Donald Trump to reopen the border, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says it will be “many weeks” before Canada and the U.S. can loosen restrictions. In other words, the border won’t be opening to non-essential traffic any time soon. The agreement to keep the border closed is due to expire in a few days. Ontario Premier Doug Ford also said unequivocally that the border should not open.
  • Still with the border, with waves of social media criticism of Quebec and New York State licence plates spotted in Cornwall, a local resident with relatives in Akwesasne says people may not be aware that Akwesasne covers three territories and two countries (Quebec, Ontario in Canada and New York State in the United States). Residents in Akwesasne are permitted to freely travel inside a 50 mile (80 kilometer) radius of the reserve under local government rules, which includes trips to the City of Cornwall.
  • Canada’s chief public health officer says the number of deaths is higher than they expected because of the number of outbreaks in long term care homes. Nearly 1,200 people have died across the country and models indicate that number will be 1,620 by next Tuesday.
  • The details are still being finalized but a federal program to help small and medium sized businesses and commercial landlords cover rent for at least three months is coming.
  • The Ontario government is expanding COVID-19 testing to cover staff and residents of homeless shelters and group homes, as well as people living with health care workers and cancer patients.
  • South Dundas has maxed out it matching funds campaign with the local food bank. The municipality is matching the full $7,000 it promised after Community Food Share had $13,307 donated to its campaign.
  • The Canadian Open – the third oldest golfing event on the PGA Tour – has been cancelled. It was originally scheduled for the second week of June in Toronto.
  • Sorry, racing fans. Cornwall Motor Speedway won’t be opening its 2020 season on May 17. The season is postponed indefinitely. The speedway is now discussing various scenarios to have the racing season later in the year.

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.