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Welcome to the Markham-Stouffville
Weekly Update for June 26, 2021

Ontario Moving to Step Two of Roadmap to Reopen on June 30
 
With key public health and health care indicators continuing to improve, the provincewide vaccination rate now surpassing the targets outlined in the province’s Roadmap to Reopen, and on the recommendation of the the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government is moving the province into Step Two of its Roadmap to Reopen at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, June 30, 2021.

This is great news for our small businesses that I know have been waiting patiently to re-open.

In order to enter Step Two of the Roadmap, Ontario needed to have vaccinated 70 per cent of adults with one dose and 20 per cent with two doses for at least two weeks, ensuring a strong level of protection against COVID-19. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of Ontario’s health care partners, as of June 23, 2021, over 76 per cent of the population in Ontario ages 18 and over have received one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and over 29 per cent have received their second dose. More than 13.3 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered provincewide.

Step Two of the Roadmap focuses on the resumption of more outdoor activities and limited indoor services with small numbers of people where face coverings are worn, with other restrictions in place. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Outdoor social gatherings and organized public events with up to 25 people;
  • Indoor social gatherings and organized public events with up to 5 people;
  • Essential and other select retail permitted at 50 per cent capacity;
  • Non-essential retail permitted at 25 per cent capacity;
  • Personal care services where face coverings can be worn at all times, and at 25 per cent capacity and other restrictions;
  • Outdoor dining with up to 6 people per table, with exceptions for larger households and other restrictions;
  • Indoor religious services, rites, or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services permitted at up to 25 per cent capacity of the particular room;
  • Outdoor fitness classes limited to the number of people who can maintain 3 metres of physical distance;
  • Outdoor sports without contact or modified to avoid contact, with no specified limit on number of people or teams participating, with restrictions;
  • Overnight camps for children operating in a manner consistent with the safety guidelines produced by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health;
  • Outdoor sport facilities with spectators permitted at 25 per cent capacity;
  • Outdoor concert venues, theatres and cinemas, with spectators permitted at 25 per cent capacity;
  • Outdoor horse racing and motor speedways, with spectators permitted at 25 per cent capacity;
  • Outdoor fairs, rural exhibitions, festivals, permitted at 25 per cent capacity and with other restrictions.
Please visit www.ontario.ca/reopen for the full list.

While the province has surpassed Step Three vaccination targets, Ontario may remain in Step Two for a period of approximately 21 days to allow the most recent vaccinations to reach their full effectiveness and to evaluate any impacts of moving to Step Two on key public health and health care indicators. When it is determined to be safe, the province will promptly move to Step Three of the Roadmap to Reopen.

For those businesses in Step Three, know that the government is doing everything it can to get you open safely and responsibly. It is important that we proceed with caution, so that when the economy is fully open, it can stay open.
Ontario Further Accelerates Second Doses in Delta Hot Spots

With a majority of Ontario adults having received a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and over three million doses of the Moderna vaccine arriving in June, the government is continuing to accelerate its vaccine rollout by expanding eligibility for second doses ahead of schedule.

  • As of June 28, 2021, all Ontarians aged 18 and over who have received their first dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine will be eligible to book their second dose appointment. The appointment will be scheduled at least 28 days after the first dose, per the recommended interval.
  • York Region Public Health Vaccine Clinics are not yet accelerating second dose appointments to youth aged 12 to 17 beyond the eight week interval. Certain exceptions apply, including youth with high-risk health conditions, essential workers who cannot work from home and Indigenous youth. This means most second dose appointments for youth will start the week of July 18, 2021.  
    • This still allows enough time for children and youth to be vaccinated with both doses before the 2021-2022 school year begins in September 2021. 
    • However, accelerated second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for those age 12 to 17 are available through the provincial booking system (ex. for Cornell Community Centre) and participating pharmacies.

In addition, effective June 14, 2021, individuals who received their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine are also eligible to receive a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine (either AstraZeneca or an mRNA vaccine) at an interval of eight to 12 weeks, with informed consent.

On Monday, June 28, 2021 at 8 a.m. York Region will open an additional 31,000 COVID-19 vaccine appointments to the following eligibility groups:

  • All individuals 18+ who live, work or go to school in York Region and received a first dose of an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) at a 28-day interval
  • Individuals who received AstraZeneca as their first dose and have chosen to receive an mRNA vaccine for their second dose at an eight-week interval
  • All individuals 12+ who live, work or go to school in York Region and have not yet booked their first dose appointment

To book your vaccine appointment, please visit: ontario.ca/bookvaccine or york.ca/covid19vaccine

FREE Rapid Testing Kits now avaliable for Small and Medium Sized Businesses in Markham-Stouffville

Ontario has now delivered 12.3 million rapid antigen test kits for COVID-19 to over 2,600 work sites across the province. The effort is helping businesses and other organizations keep employees and their families safe by helping keep the virus out of their workplaces.

A recent success of the antigen screening program came with the involvement of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. Less than a month after the launch of its COVID-19 Rapid Screening Initiative, Ontario has shipped nearly 2.4 million kits to local chambers. These kits will help small and medium-sized businesses across the province stay safe and stay open.

The Stouffville Chamber of Commerce and the Markham Board of Trade have received thousands of rapid test kits from the Ontario government which will be distributed to local businesses that are interested in protecting their staff and customers in the Markham/Stouffville community.

Any business that has 150 employees or less are eligible to receive FREE rapid test kits. They do not need to be a member of the Chamber to qualify. For more information and to order kits visit:

https://stouffvillechamber.ca/rapid-screening/ or
https://markhamboard.com/covid-19-testkits/
Ontario to Officially Open New Bloomington GO Station
 
Last week, Ontario announced the opening of the NEW Bloomington Go Station, bringing more transit options to the people of Markham-Stouffville.

Starting June 28, 2021, GO trains and buses will begin serving Bloomington GO Station, giving customers full access to the new, four-level station, located at Highway 404 and Bloomington Road.

The province is transforming GO Transit into a modern, reliable and fully integrated rapid transit network that will support the future generations to come. The new Bloomington GO Station is complete with nearly 1,000 parking spots, a three-level parking structure and a passenger drop-off and pick-up area, to help keep commutes as simple as possible. 

Learn more: 

https://news.ontario.ca/en/release/1000355/ontario-to-officially-open-new-bloomington-go-station
Ontario Helping Youth Explore Careers in the Skilled Trades

The Ontario government is investing almost $4 million through Support Ontario Youth to help up to 2,100 young people access training and networking opportunities to become future electricians, plumbers, millwrights, automotive service technicians and horticulture technicians. This funding will help deliver 70 one-day boot camps in communities that have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic to provide youth with hands-on training, resume writing help and introductions to prospective employers in the industrial, construction, motive power and service sectors.

From September 2021 to March 2022, Support Youth Ontario will run “Tools in the Trades Boot Camps,” targeting three groups of participants:

  • Grade 12 students who have an interest in the skilled trades
  • People who lost their job during COVID-19
  • People looking to start a new career in a growing sector or industry, with a special focus on Indigenous youth, racialized groups, women and newcomers.
Students and adults interested in attending a boot camp can apply on the Safe Ontario Youth website at: 

https://www.supportontarioyouth.ca/
Ontario Supporting the Identification and Commemoration of Indian Residential School Burial Sites

The Ontario government is providing $10 million to help support the identification, investigation, protection and commemoration of Indian Residential School burial sites across the province. The funding will also ensure that culturally appropriate, trauma-informed mental health supports are available for Indian Residential School survivors, their families and Indigenous communities.

Across Canada, over 150,000 Indigenous children were forcibly removed from their families and communities and sent to Indian Residential Schools between 1870 and 1996. According to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, there were 18 Indian Residential Schools in Ontario; the last of these closed in 1991, with some sites since repurposed, abandoned or destroyed.

Ontario is working in collaboration with Indigenous leaders to establish processes that will guide the work related to Indian Residential School site identification, investigation, protection and commemoration. Initial site identification will be the first step in a much more extensive process, pending the wishes of the affected families and communities.

Learn more: 

https://news.ontario.ca/en/release/1000343/ontario-supporting-the-identification-and-commemoration-of-indian-residential-school-burial-sites

Ontario Launches Applications for 2021-22 Seniors Community Grant

The Ontario government is investing $5 million in the 2021-22 Seniors Community Grant program to help enable municipalities and local organizations to deliver programs for older adults to stay active in their communities.

This funding is an increase of $1 million from last year’s grants, allowing the province to help more grass-roots organizations positively impact the lives of older adults.

The Seniors Community Grant program focuses on projects that align with four pillars which help improve the lives of older adults in the province:

  • Enabling Aging- at-Home and in Communities
  • Safety and Security
  • Remaining Healthy, Active and Socially Engaged
  • Participating in the Labour Market and Economy.

Successful applicants will receive a grant of between $1,000 and $25,000 to provide programs, learning and social opportunities for older adults to safely enjoy as Ontario continues to meet the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Beginning Friday, June 11th, applicants can apply through Transfer Payment Ontario (formerly Grants Ontario) online at Ontario.ca/GetFunding. The deadline for all applications is July 15, 2021 at 5PM EST.

Graduation 2021
 
Congratulations to all graduates in Markham-Stouffville of the Class of 2021.

As graduates of one of the toughest years we have faced as a community, you are the most resilient and persevering class ever.

The class of 2021 is unique and will inspire others for years to come. 
Constituency Office Services
 
My constituency office is here to serve you. We offer assistance for various provincial government services such as the renewal of Driver's Licences, Health Cards, WSIB claims, ODSP/FRO cases, and any other service under provincial jurisdiction.

Due to the risk of COVID-19, my office is open by appointment only. However our staff remain avaliable to respond to your inquiries via phone or email. Should you require any assistance, please email paul.calandra@pc.ola.org or call 905-642-2588. We will endeavour to respond as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

To reduce in-person visits to ServiceOntario, a number of provincially-issued documents have extended expiry dates until further notice. Please click here for further information. 

Best regards,

Paul Calandra, MPP
Markham-Stouffville
Copyright © Paul Calandra, MPP, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Suite 400, 37 Sandiford Dr. Stouffville, ON L4A 3Z2

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