Ontario plans to re-open for business. However, the province’s three-stage road map guide for reopening the economy is dependent on several specific achievements, including lesser untraceable cases over the coming few days and reduction in hospitalisation cases. The progress made during each step will, however, be open to scrutiny and evaluation after every two to four weeks.
Following Ontario, Quebec has also announced its plan to open elementary schools from May 11 in areas outside of Montreal and from May 18 in Montreal. However, given the concern amongst parents, attending school will be made optional and the class size will see a cap on the numbers. More importantly, the decision to reopen will be open to revaluation based on how the province performs in terms of rescinding the outbreak in the coming days.
Anthony Rota, Speaker of the House of Commons, sent out an official word on April 28 clearing that the Commons will be back in session in the days to come and the house will negotiate a bill to enact measures in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. This bill will have a special focus on providing emergency aid measures to the students affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the meantime, students, as well as professionals, can apply for loans to get through the tough days. The good news is, even in these challenging times, most private lenders in Canada are giving out personal loans. However, make sure to read and know the terms before you sign anything.
On Tuesday, this week, Prime Minister announced that close to 10,000 businesses have already applied for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program. Even if these companies employed an average of only 5 people, $21,175,000 would go under the CEWS program within the first week itself. Since the wage subsidy program is available between March and June, it is only certain these numbers and figures will see a significant surge in the days to come.
However, in these dark times, the first virtual sitting of 338 MPs provided some moments of comic relief. Midas, Michelle Rempel-Garner’s adorable pup, emerged as a star, and while Carla Qualtrough impressed with his cool hat, Adam van Koeverden’s attempt at becoming a technological expert allowed him to convert his home into a more resplendent house-like setting through the Zoom Virtual background tool. The call had many light-hearted moments, much needed to keep the mood light and lively during these tough days.
In the meantime, good news also comes from the scientific community where scientists from around the world are working in unison and with support from each other to discover a vaccine that can save millions of lives around the world. However, experts anticipate that the work of scientists to benefit the world as a whole might be jeopardized by the ambitiousness of politicians. With most countries under lockdown, nations’ economies have in some ways entirely halted. Thus, a vaccine, as soon as it is developed, will become a highly coveted resource and countries, around the world, will make their claim to it to revive their economies.