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Dear Friends,

NDP MPP Faisal Hassan (York South—Weston) says severe testing delays in Toronto’s COVID-19 hot spots are putting local residents at greater risk, with people waiting for over two weeks just to get their results. Hassan has received over 25 complaints just this week from local people who have no idea when they will finally get the results of their tests leaving them unable to return to their jobs, go back to school, or provide essential care to their loved ones in long-term care homes.

“Our community is a high-risk area for COVID-19 with case counts escalating every day. We have a high proportion of vulnerable residents, and many front line workers in health care, food services and retail who don’t have the option of working from home,” said Hassan.

“These delays are totally unacceptable. It’s forcing people to stay in isolation and unable to earn a living, and risks making community transmission even worse. By the time the local public health unit has followed up with contacts of a positive case, it may be too late as they could already have spread the virus to others."

Hassan said it took months of pressure to finally get the Ford government to provide a local testing facility in late September, but without timely results and contact tracing this will not be enough to control the spread of the virus.

“Doug Ford chose not to act before the second wave, because he didn’t want to spend the money. He tried to pinch pennies by delaying, and doing the bare minimum. His government has still refused to increase sick days so every worker can stay home when they have COVID-19 symptoms. Now it’s communities like ours in York South—Weston that are suffering. He’s been far too slow to respond to the COVID-19 crisis in our community, and once again we are being neglected. Without fast results and immediate contact tracing, we are putting more lives at risk,” said Hassan.

“We need urgent action to fix the testing mess Doug Ford has created. We need more resources right now to protect our community before it’s too late.”
 
Please contact my office should you have any questions or would like to discuss your experience getting tested for COVID-19. Also, let me know how you’re doing or what you’re concerned about at 905-495-8030 or KYarde-CO@ndp.on.ca. Thank you to those that have reached out to me.

Sincerely,


MPP Kevin Yarde
Brampton North
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Health and Medical Resources

Stay informed on COVID-19 advice information from our public health experts by accessing the most up-to-date information through the following links: 

City of Brampton

Region of Peel

Ontario Government

Government of Canada

Find COVID-19 testing locations in Ontario: You must make an appointment to get tested at all locations.

Telehealth Ontario: Get fast, free medical advice through Telehealth Ontario on all subjects relating to health. Please note that wait times are long.

Toll-free: 1-866-797-0000
Toll-free TTY: 1-866-797-0007

Mental Health Supports: As social (physical) distancing may continue for a long time, CAMH has posted some strategies on psychological coping with COVID-19.

CRA and COVID-19: Benefits, credits, and financial support

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB): The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) benefits. The CRB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). If you are eligible for the CRB, you can receive $1,000 ($900 after taxes withheld) for a 2-week period. If your situation continues past 2 weeks, you will need to apply again. You may apply up to a total of 13 eligibility periods (26 weeks) between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB): The Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are unable to work because they must care for their child under 12 years old or a family member who needs supervised care. This applies if their school, regular program or facility is closed or unavailable to them due to COVID-19, or because they're sick, self-isolating, or at risk of serious health complications due to COVID-19. The CRCB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). If you're eligible for the CRCB, your household can receive $500 ($450 after taxes withheld) for each 1-week period. If your situation continues past 1 week, you will need to apply again. You may apply up to a total of 26 weeks between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB): The Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are unable to work because they're sick or need to self-isolate due to COVID-19, or have an underlying health condition that puts them at greater risk of getting COVID-19. The CRSB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). If you're eligible for the CRSB, you can receive $500 ($450 after taxes withheld) for a 1-week period. If your situation continues past 1 week, you will need to apply again. You may apply up to a total of 2 weeks between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS): As a Canadian employer who has seen a drop in revenue due to COVID-19, you may be eligible for a subsidy to cover part of your employee wages, retroactive to March 15. This subsidy will enable you to re-hire workers, help prevent further job losses, and ease you back into normal operations.

Income Tax Relief: The CRA is further extending the payment due date for 2019 individual tax returns and 2019 or 2020 corporation, or trust returns, as well as for installment payments, from September 1, 2020, to September 30, 2020. The previously-extended filing due dates for individual, corporation, and trust income tax returns remain unchanged. The CRA encourages everyone to file their income tax returns as soon as possible, even though payment deadlines are being extended. However, recognizing the difficult circumstances faced by Canadians, the CRA will not charge late-filing penalties where a 2019 individual return or a 2019 or 2020 corporation, or trust return is filed late as long as it is filed by September 30, 2020. 

The extensions to the filing due date for income tax returns detailed below also apply to forms T106 and T1135, and any elections, forms, and schedules that must be filed with the return or on the same day as the return.

The CRA will also waive arrears interest on existing tax debts related to individual, corporation, and trust income tax returns from April 1, 2020, to September 30, 2020, and from April 1, 2020, to June 30, 2020, for Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) returns. While this measure for existing tax debts does not cancel penalties and interest already assessed on a taxpayer’s account prior to this period, it will ensure that a taxpayer’s existing tax debt will not grow through interest charges during this difficult time.

Extended validation periods for drivers, vehicle and carrier products and services:
As part of the province's enhanced measures, the Provincial government is extending the validity period of driving products, services and health cards. These new regulations include extensions for driver licenses, license plate validation, Ontario Photo Cards, and Commercial Vehicle Operator Registration certificates, among others. Expiring and expired health cards will continue to provide access to health services.

Reminder: For the most up-to-date information please visit Peel Public Health, Ontario Ministry of Health, and the Public Health Agency of Canada.
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Community Office
10215 Kennedy Rd. North, Unit 7
Brampton, ON L6Z 0C5
Tel: 905-495-8030
Fax: 905-495-1041
Email:
KYarde-CO@ndp.on.ca
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Room 206, North Wing, Main Legislative Building, Queen's Park
Toronto, M7A 1A8
Tel: 416-326-6727
Fax: 416-326-6726
Email:
KYarde-QP@ndp.on.ca
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Kevin Yarde, MPP Brampton North · 10215 Kennedy Road North · Suite 7 · Brampton, ON L6Z 0C5 · Canada

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