May 1, 2020

COVID-19 UPDATE May 1, 2020

This week’s revised data showed us that protective measures and the efforts of Albertans are making a critical difference in our fight against COVID-19. Together, Albertan’s efforts in adhering to public health guidelines have succeeded in containing the spread of the virus far below the scale of outbreak in many other places.

As a result, Premier Kenney announced a three stage strategy to relaunch the Alberta economy as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The full relaunch strategy will allow for the gradual, staged reopening of businesses, services and recreational opportunities, as they are able to reopen under health guidelines. The successful launch of the strategy will be contingent upon our continued ability to keep infection rates low and well within the capacity of our healthcare system.

Several safeguards will be in place to keep us protected, including increased testing capacity, comprehensive contact tracing, support for those who test positive, stronger border controls and airport screening, rules and guidance for the use of masks, and strong protections for the most vulnerable.

Although we will have to continue to practice the physical distancing and hygiene habits that we have all adapted to over the last two months, I am confident that Albertans will continue to work together so we can get relaunch our economy.

Immediate Action:

  • Resumption on non-essential surgeries by AHS.
  • Dental and other non-critical health services may resume.
  • Golf courses may open (but club houses and pro-shops must remain closed).

Phase 1 Highlights:

  • Albertans can go to the hair salons and barbershops.
  • Campsites may begin to be booked for June 1.
  • Restaurants, bars and patios may open to 50% capacity (must maintain physical distancing).
  • Retail business can open again, as well as museums and art galleries.
  • Day cares, summer camps and out of school care may resume (strict limits on social distancing must be enforced). 

Phase 2 Highlights:

  • Theaters and movie theaters may reopen.
  • Resumption of more surgeries by AHS.
  • Resumption of personal services (massage, manicures, waxing).

Stage 3 highlights:

  • Pools, gyms, rec centers and arenas may re-open (some restrictions).
  • Fully reopening all business and services.
  • Arts and culture festivals, sporting and concerts will be permitted.
  • Lifting of restrictions on non-essential travel.

For more information you can find the full news release at https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=70217037B8E9C-C319-32CC-240D33487895E4F7

Government and Community Supports

Government supports

COVID-19 has impacted many Albertans and our businesses.  Our government implemented measures to support Albertans which has including rental assistance, student loan repayment deferrals, utility payment deferrals, supports for charitable and non-profit groups and protections for employees who need to work from home or take a leave of absence.  We also continue to work with the federal government on further supports for Albertans.

For more information on Alberta government supports go to https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx

For more information on Federal government supports go to https://www.canada.ca/en.html

Community supports

A message from the University of Calgary
The University of Calgary has launched the following website, https://www.ucalgary.ca/community/covid-19-support to share useful information and virtually support our community. This COVID-19 Community Support page includes information from UCalgary experts presented in a variety of ways to meet diverse needs including written stories, webinars, and COVIDcast – a new podcast series that takes a deep dive into a variety of topics related to COVID-19 – to help our community understand the global pandemic, explore the latest research, and provide advice for navigating health and wellness, home and family, business and economy, and community life during this unprecedented and challenging time.

Mental health and addictions support

Addiction Helpline at https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/findhealth/Service.aspx?id=1008399&serviceAtFacilityID=1047128

Mental Health Helpline at  https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/findhealth/Service.aspx?id=6810&serviceAtFacilityID=1047134

Kids Help Phone at https://kidshelpphone.ca/get-involved/contact-us

Community and Social Services Helpline at Alberta 211 https://www.ab.211.ca/

Recognizing Education Week

April 27-May 1st officially recognized Education Week.  This year’s theme is “Learning is a Journey.”  In the spirit of this theme I think we can all agree that we never stop learning.

In these uncertain times I have been impressed with how our educators have been their for our students.  They have had to adapt quickly to teaching in new ways and connecting with their students through different forums.  I  would like you to join me in paying tribute to teachers, education partners, parents and family members for their support during this challenging time.

I would also like to thank students for continuing to work on your studies. Your resilience and ability to adapt to change is commended.  Keep up the good work and never stop embracing education.

https://mailchi.mp/2b39b0adf35a/covid-19-update?e=e6298ddbbc

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