Prime Minister Trudeau said today to restart the economy safely, we need a coordinated, country-wide plan.
At his daily news conference, he noted a pattern among countries that have already restarted their economies and have seen cases of COVID-19 beginning to rise again.
Canada, he said, must learn from these lessons, ” … after months of hard work, people are finding themselves right back where they started.”
Trudeau said it’s clear we have to make safety and control of the virus a top priority. As such, the federal government is working with the provinces and territories to bring in the right measures to keep Canadians safe and healthy.
Last week, the government committed $14-billion to a Safe Restart Agreement for the things Canadians will need in the months ahead, including child care, paid sick leave, contact tracing, PPE, and support for the most vulnerable.
While physical distancing is still the best way to protect oneself from Covid-19 Trudeau said there are still places where that’s not possible. On airline flights, for instance, where it’s difficult to keep two metres apart.
The government has already made use of face masks mandatory for travellers and staff. And has worked with airlines and airports on standards for enhanced cleaning, and distancing measures for people waiting in lines.
Now, the government is mandating temperature screening for air passengers. Those with a fever will not be allowed to board their flight. In addition, employees in secured areas of airports will be required to have their temperatures checked.
This, said Trudeau, will add another layer of protection.
Long-term care homes
Trudeau said the military will continue to offer vital support to residents of certain long-term care homes in Ontario and Quebec until June 26.
Violence against blacks and aboriginals
The prime minister said he spoke Thursday night with the premiers about changes that should be made to policing to eliminate violence against Blacks and Aboriginals in Canada. “We’ve all seen the shocking video of Chief Adams arrest. Like many people, I have serious questions. We also know this is not an isolated incident.”
Trudeau noted far too many Black and Indigenous Canadians do not feel safe around police. “It’s unacceptable. And as governments, we have to change that.”
All levels of government, he said, must work together to ensure that things change as quickly as possible. “Reforms are needed at all levels of policing, and these reforms need to happen quickly.”
Trudeau added that women and men who serve in our police services must be part of the solution. “They will be invaluable allies as we move forward to make sure that all Canadians are well-served by these institutions,” he said.