Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says disaster relief funding available for tornado victims, province just needs to ask

Federal Disaster Relief Fund being put to the test of late

Recovery efforts continue in south Barrie following last week’s tornado. The federal government says it might be able to help.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office reached out to Barrie 360 to reassure local residents there is support available for victims of Thursday’s EF-2 twister. “My heart goes out to everyone who was impacted by this,” said Trudeau. “And I just want to reassure people that all levels of government will be there.”

Thursday’s EF-2 tornado caused significant structural damage to a number of homes

Trudeau pointed out the Federal Disaster Relief program is designed for just such an event and is being used more often than ever before. “Unfortunately, these days, with more and more extreme weather events, we’re using it quite regularly. Whether it’s for wildfires or floods… it’s certainly there for tornadoes,” said Trudeau.

CITY OF BARRIE PROVIDES MORE INFORMATION, RESOURCES FOR RESIDENTS AFFECTED BY TORNADO

“We’ll be in contact with the province, as we always are, to see how and if we can help,” he added, pointing out the Ontario government would have to apply for relief funding. Provincial officials toured the hardest-hit parts of town on Wednesday to assess the damage and determine whether further funding would be required.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford toured the damage zone last week, but has yet to indicate whether his government will apply for federal relief funding

Questions have been raised over the timing of the tornado warning from Environment Canada, with some saying they didn’t get the warning until after their home was damaged by the twister. Trudeau gave assurances there will be a review. “Anytime there is an incident, we always review our processes to make sure that we can do better. And I know there’ll be a thorough examination of the processes in place and how we can improve them.”

“There are going to be more and more extreme weather events across the country, and how we keep people informed and safe is going to be a really important part of that.”

Feature image: Barrie’s Drone Pilot via Instagram