Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Saturday June 20, 2020

(Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Saturday, June 20, 2020:

  • There have been 33,095 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 178 (or 0.5 per cent) from the previous day. There are 28,250 people recovered from the virus while 2,564 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 1,123,932 of which 21,479 have pending results.
  • Canada’s coronavirus case total is 100,629. The country has 8,346 deaths from the virus – 168 in British Columbia, 152 in Alberta, 13 in Saskatchewan, seven in Manitoba, 2,564 in Ontario, 5,375 in Quebec, two in New Brunswick, three in Newfoundland & Labrador and 62 in Nova Scotia.
  • Two more cases have been resolved in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit area, bringing the number of resolved cases to 134. There are still 162 confirmed positive cases. There were 13,037 tests performed – 574 more than the previous day. Two people in hospital, one in ICU and there have been 11 deaths to date. The breakdown of cases is: Prescott-Russell 112 cases (94 resolved), SD&G 28 cases (24 resolved) and Cornwall 22 cases (16 resolved).
  • The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit area stayed at 352 confirmed cases on Friday. The number of deaths also remains at 52. There are 298 cases (99 per cent) resolved. For community cases in Leeds-Grenville, there are 23 in the central region (0 active), 13 in the west (1 active) and 17 in the east (0 active).
  • The Ontario government has instructed school boards to prepare for three scenarios for student learning in September. In one scenario, it would limit classrooms to 15 students and one instructor, by having students going to school on alternate day or week learning. Parents will also be left with the choice to keep their children home for at-home learning. The third option is just regular in-class learning. The province has also boosted education funding for school boards by $736 million (an average of $250 more per student), for a total of $25.5 billion. What model will be in place will be the decision by school boards in consultation with local health officials.
  • Prime Minister Justin Trudeau publicly scolded three grocery store chains – Loblaw, Metro and Empire Company (owner of Sobeys, Safeway and FreshCo) – for ending the temporary $2 per hour wage top-up program for front line workers. A House of Commons committee has called on them to testify after the three cut the bonus pay all on the same day.
  • Cornwall building, bylaw and planning offices at the civic complex reopen for limited hours starting Monday (June 22). It will be 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – the same as city hall – and you will be let in by a city employee at the Water Street entrance.
  • Via Rail passengers will be required to wear a mask as of Tuesday, June 23. Travellers are being encouraged to bring their own but Via Rail will have some available. Those with breathing troubles unrelated to COVID-19, children under two and small children will not be required to wear a mask.
  • With non-essential businesses closed for the entire month of April, retail sales in Canada plunged 26 per cent that month or nearly $35 billion – much more than the 15 per cent analysts had expected.
  • Quebec’s finance minister says COVID-19 has wiped out an expected surplus and the province is now looking at a nearly $15 billion deficit.
  • America’s largest movie theater chain – AMC Theaters – will require movie-goers to wear masks when they reopen in July.

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

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