Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Thursday April 9, 2020

(LGL Health Unit via Newswatch Group)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Thursday, April 9, 2020:

  • There have been 5,276 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 550 cases (or 11.6 per cent) from the previous day. There are 2,074 people recovered from the virus while 174 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 84,601 of which 1,102 have pending results.
  • Canada’s confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 case total is 19,289. The country has 435 COVID-19 related deaths – 48 in British Columbia, 29 in Alberta, three in Saskatchewan, three in Manitoba, 174 in Ontario, 175 in Quebec, two in Newfoundland & Labrador and one in Nova Scotia.
  • Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit is reporting four more deaths in the health unit area, bringing the total number to eight. Seven of those deaths have been in long term care homes while the eighth death was in the community. There are now 123 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19.
  • The United Counties of Leeds-Grenville has declared a state of emergency. Warden Pat Sayeau says it was done to “reinforce the importance of social distancing” heading up to the Easter weekend when people would be getting together. “It’s critically important that we do not let down our guard,” Sayeau said. See his YouTube video here.
  • Brockville City Council has teamed up with the Brockville Winter Classic to do a community mobile food drive on Saturday, April 11 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. There will be two routes through the city led by an escort of emergency vehicles. People making donations will put their items at the end of their driveway for pickup. You can find the routes near the bottom of the page here.
  • Brockville will resume blue box collection on Monday. The two weeks have allowed city staff and contractor GFL to put safety measures in place for their front line workers. As for garbage, it has to be bagged – no loose garbage, even in cans. There’s no garbage collection on Good Friday, which will move to Saturday.
  • The city says a public request to have local organizations help get groceries and essentials to vulnerable residents went “above and beyond the response that was anticipated.” At least nine community organizations are helping.
  • Premier Doug Ford says the number of COVID-19 tests being performed right now – about 3,500 a day – is “unacceptable.” Ford says if labs are capable of performing 13,000 tests per day then they should be performing that number daily. The premier says he’s going to be like a “dog on a bone” over increased testing because “we owe it” to Ontarians, especially front line health care workers and emergency responders.
  • The province is speeding up construction of health care buildings, whether they’re hospitals, additions to hospitals or assessment centers. The government is lifting time constraints, meaning construction workers can work any time of the day or night. These projects will be temporarily exempt from noise bylaws.
  • The federal government won’t be a strict with its proof of lost revenue for the federal wage subsidy program. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says employers will only have to show a 15 per cent decline in March – not 30 per cent – and the comparison will be to the previous months, not the previous year. Trudeau also announced the federal government will cover 100 per cent of wages for students under the Canada Summer Jobs Program.
  • Toronto has cancelled its Caribbean Carnival – formerly known as Caribana – which would have happened in late July through early August.
  • A man from British Columbia, originally charged with break and enter and theft, is now facing charges of assaulting police. The 24-year-old is accused of coughing in their faces on purpose during his arrest.
  • The epicenter of novel coronavirus – Wuhan, China – is bustling again with cars and people as officials there ended a two-and-a-half month lockdown. Schools are still closed and people are encouraged to wear face masks.

Have a story or news release related to COVID-19? Send it along for possible inclusion in a future digest on Brockville Newswatch. Email Please put “COVID-19 Digest” in the subject line.

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