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Featured Page – COVID-19 Updates & Information

covid virus, augusta logo, reads COVID-19 Updates and information

Updated: January 20, 2021

COVID-19: What Is It?

The Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit’s website has a page dedicated to COVID-19 which outlines exactly what this virus is, symptoms to watch for and how it is spread.


What is Expected of Us?

As per the Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit:

Because this virus spreads so easily – we all need to do our part to slow and reduce the spread so our healthcare system is not overloaded. This means:

  • Staying home as much as possible
  • Practice physical distancing – stay 2m (6ft) away from people in public areas – or where a face covering if physical distancing is not possible
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer after being in touch with others or handling anything from outside your home
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or into your arm, not your hands
  • Avoid visiting people in hospitals or long-term care centres
  • Do not share personal items that come into contact with saliva such as toothbrushes, eating utensils, drinks, water bottles, and towels
  • If you are experiencing any respiratory symptoms (including fever) – please self-isolate immediately and complete the online self-assessment or get tested at an assessment centre.
  • * UPDATE As of Tuesday, July 7, 2020 at 12:01am (and to be reviewed on September 30, 2020) business are required to adopt a policy to ensure facial coverings/masks are work inside enclosed public spaces/settings that are openly accessible to the public. To learn more about face coverings/masks, visit the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS page on the Health Unit’s website.  They have also produced a document with the guidelines for businesses which can be found HERE.

 

The province is recommending that people come forward and get tested who meet the criteria below:

  1. All people with at least one symptom of COVID-19, even mild symptoms. Please see the list of symptoms on the Province’s assessment tool.
  2. People who do not have symptoms but are concerned that they have been exposed to COVID-19. This includes people who are contacts of or may have been exposed to a confirmed or suspected case.
  3. People who do not have symptoms but feel they are at risk of exposure to COVID-19 through their employment, including essential workers (e.g., health care workers, grocery store employees, food processing plant employees).

If you need transportation or have mobility issues, contact the Health Unit to discuss how you can be tested.

No person who is symptomatic or who is concerned they have been exposed to COVID-19 will be declined a test at an assessment centre.

The Nearest Assessment Centre:

  • Brockville Memorial Centre (100 Magedoma Blvd)
    • Ages: All
    • Hours:
      • Monday to Friday, between 10:00am–5:30pm
      • Saturday and Sunday between 10:00am–2:30pm
    • Services: Scheduled appointments for assessments and testing
      • To cancel an appointment that was booked online using the online portal, please call the booking line during regular hours at 613-704-1441 and press 2.
    • Booking:
        • Online: The Brockville COVID-19 Assessment Centre Online Booking offers a set number of appointments per day with 2–4 active provider schedules per day. If no appointments are available for the time and date that you would prefer on the first schedule that you select, go back and select the next schedule to view other available appointments.
        • Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your appointment time and follow signs to register before parking your vehicle.
        • Phone: 613-704-1441 Please only call to book an appointment if you do not have access to the internet in order to schedule your own appointment.

 


What Else Should You Know?

 

ONTARIO DECLARED STATE OF EMERGENCY

Ontario declared a provincial state of emergency on March 17, 2020 and issued orders to close non-essential workplaces, recreational programs, libraries, publicly funded schools, private schools, day cares, provincial parks, churches and other faith settings, as well as bars and restaurants, except those that may only offer takeout or delivery. Essential services, such as grocery stores, convenience stores, pharmacies, public transit, manufacturing facilities, and supply chain companies remain open and operational.

In May, Stage 1 of the reopening process began with the Province slowly easing restrictions.  To learn more about Stage 1, visit the Province’s website.

The Province announced June 12, 2020 that people of Ontario can expand their household “bubbles” and establish a “social circle” of no more than 10 people. These 10 people can come into close contact with each other without having to practice physical distancing measures.

To form a safe social circle these steps should be followed:

  • Start with the people you live with or who regularly come into your household. Large households may not be able to add additional people to their circle, as it would exceed ten people.
  • If your current circle is under 10 people, you can add members to your circle, including another household, family members or friends.
  • Get agreement from everyone that they will join the circle and no other one.
  • Keep your social circle safe. Maintain physical distancing with anyone outside of your circle.
  • Be true to your social circle. No one should be part of more than one circle.

It is important to clarify that these “social circles” are different than social gatherings. Visits with non-circle people would be considered a social gathering and must use the same rules as before including being outside, keeping a physical distancing of at least 2m/6ft, staying home if sick, practicing good hand hygiene, covering your cough or sneeze, and cleaning & disinfecting commonly touched surfaces.  You can learn more about “social circles” on the Province’s website.

All places of worship in Ontario were also be permitted to open June 12, 2020 with physical distancing in place and attendance limited to no more than 30 per cent of the building capacity to ensure the safety of worshippers.

Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District (which includes Augusta Township) was also permitted to move into Stage 2 of reopening on June 12, 2020.  To learn more about what can and cannot be open during Stage 2, visit the Province’s website.

 

AUGUSTA DECLARED STATE OF EMERGENCY

On March 27, 2020, Mayor Doug Malanka declared a state of emergency in the Township of Augusta, under Section 4 (1) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and remains effect until further notice.  Declaring an emergency is not an indication that the crisis has escalated in our community. It means that, as a Township, our priority is to be proactive and prepared. It will ensure that Augusta Township’s municipal government can continue to respond quickly to the pandemic and any other events that arise from it in the weeks ahead.
We need residents who feel they are not at risk personally to recognize how serious (and potentially deadly) this pandemic can be to all, especially our elderly and those with a compromised immune system. The formal Declaration also provides the Township of Augusta with additional powers and tools to protect the health and safety of residents. It streamlines the decision-making process through the Municipality’s Emergency Control Group so they can act as quickly as possible when they need to.

 

TOWNSHIP OFFICE OPEN WITH NEW PROTOCOLS IN PLACE

The Township office in Maynard is now open once again with extra precautions in place to to ensure social distancing recommendations are followed.  In order to keep physical contact to a minimum, we still ask that residents call the office or email staff rather than come in to the office.  If a physical meeting is required, an appointment can then be arranged.  This is also recommended to ensure that staff are available and on site when you arrive.

For a complete list of Township Staff with their phone numbers, email addresses and examples of areas they are responsible for, please visit our CONTACT US page.

A new intercom/door release system has been installed on the inside set of lobby doors. A new protocol for visitors has been devised in order to protect the health of both visitors & staff.

To familiarize yourself with this new protocol, CLICK HERE.

Township Council & Committee meetings are still taking place electronically until further notice.  Dates & times will be posted on our website (Important Dates & Community Events calendar) with reminders being posted the morning of the meeting on our Facebook page. It is anticipated that a limited number of in-person attendees may be accommodated at the Township office. To join the meeting (electronically or in person), contact the Clerk at asimonian@augusta.ca at least 1 hour before the start of the meeting.

 

UPDATED 12/21/2020 AUGUSTA RECREATION FACILITIES

The Augusta recreation centres (Maitland, Maynard, North Augusta & Roebuck) are once again closed until further notice.

Playgrounds, ski trails, and outdoor rinks remain OPEN. Outdoor rinks will have a maximum of 10 persons allowed at a time and team sports such as hockey are NOT permitted.

CAUTION: PLAY STRUCTURES ARE NOT SANITIZED.

 

UPDATED 12/21/2020 AUGUSTA TOWNSHIP PUBLIC LIBRARY MODIFIED SERVICES

As of December 28, 2020, the Library will be returning to curbside pick-up only.  Please visit their website to learn more.

 

DROP BOX AVAILABLE

The front doors to the Township office are unlocked for anyone wishing to access the drop box inside the lobby.  The box is clearly marked on the left hand side of the lobby on the brick wall.  Township staff check the box regularly.  We ask that you please do not put cash in the drop box.  Thank you.

 

AUGUSTA’S COVID-19 ASSISTANCE HOTLINE  613-348-3455 ext. 222

Augusta Township has set up a dedicated hotline to assist residents with finding the resources they need in our community for everything from grocery delivery, senior assistance, mental health etc. The number is set up through Fire Station #1 and residents are asked to leave a message and staff will return their call as soon as possible.

 

TRANSFER STATION CHANGES

Both the Maynard and North Augusta Transfer Stations will remain open their regular operating hours however there will be a limit of six (6) cars inside at a time.  As of May 30, 2020, the sites will once again be accepting construction/bulky fee-based materials.  There will be a limit of ONE load ONLY per household per day.  Normal fees will apply.  Cash only will be accepted.  We anticipate high traffic volumes and for the safety of everyone, children are to remain in the vehicle at all times, NO EXCEPTIONS.  Please follow attendants directions.  Abusive, harassing or threatening comments and/or behavior will NOT be tolerated – possible measures include temporary suspension, permanent suspension or possible Law Enforcement removal of individual(s) from Transfer Stations.

We thank residents and ask that they continue to be patient as we work with our Contractor to provide this service during these uncertain times.

Physical distancing of 2m/6ft and/or facial coverings will be required at all times.

BURN PERMITS

Residents are reminded to follow our Open Air Burning By-Law 3500-2020 and property owners MUST obtain a free burn permit prior to any burning.  All Open-Air burning will be strictly enforced with zero tolerance for violations of the Open-Air Burning By-Law. Failure to comply could result in significant financial penalties. Every violation of the Burning By-Law 3500-2020 will result in a fine of $410.00. Should Augusta Fire Rescue be required to extinguish an open- air burn or a fire started by an open-air burn the fee is $485.00 per hour per fire apparatus on scene.

Residents must continue to follow all Federal and Provincial Government COVID-19 Orders which include physical distancing and no gatherings of more than 10 people.  Reminder that failure to comply with Open Burning regulations could result in reinstating the burn ban.  We thank all residents for their patience and understanding while abiding by the Burn Ban and continuing to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 through our communities and Fire Service.  Please contact us with any questions: 613-348-3455 ext. 201 or ext. 202.

 

INTERIM TAX BILLS WERE EXTENDED

Interim tax bills were originally due March 30, 2020.  Council extended the interim tax bill payment deadline to April 30, 2020 to help residents with this closure. No interest was incurred during the extension period.

NOTE: The final tax bill deadline was not be extended.  Taxes were due on September 30, 2020.

 


What To Expect As Things Reopen

As businesses/offices (including Township buildings) begin to reopen, everyone can expect changes to standard operating procedures.  Here’s a few things we can expect to see:

  • Physical distancing (6 ft) to be adhered to.
  • Being requested to wear a face mask.
  • The number of people being allowed inside to be limited.
  • New barriers/windows installed to protect people from airborne droplets.
  • Visitors being required to make appointments ahead of time.
  • Commonly touched surfaces being cleaned after use.
  • Being required to answer screening   questions before being admitted (do you have any symptoms, have you been out of the country etc.).
  • Having your temperature checked before being admitted.
  • Cash may not be accepted.
  • Longer, slower line ups with people following physical distancing recommendation of 6 ft.
  • New signs/floor markings indicating where you can stand.
  • Workers wearing masks, face shields/guards, gloves.
  • Less staff on hand (people working from home, self-quarantined, laid off workers etc.).

It is suggested that where possible, you call/email ahead to see what procedures will need to be followed.

To view the changes for visitors at the Township Office in Maynard (updated September 3, 2020), please visit the TOWNSHIP OFFICE VISITOR PROTOCOL page.


AUGUSTA TOWNSHIP NOTICE OF CHANGE OF SERVICE – EFFECTIVE JANUARY 14, 2021

Effective Thursday, January 14, 2021 the Township of Augusta will be implementing the following changes due to the recent “Stay at Home” protocols announced by the Province:

  • The Township Office will be closed to the public.
  • Township staff will be working from home and will have access to their emails and voicemails. Should you require assistance, you can either email staff or call and leave a message on their phone extension and they will reply as soon as possible.
  • Both Transfer Stations will remain OPEN and there will be no change to their hours of operation. Face coverings/masks will now be REQUIRED AT ALL TIMES at both stations.
  • When the weather permits, the ice rinks will reopen for use. Face coverings and physical distancing from those outside your household are required at all times. A maximum of 10 people are allowed on the ice at one time. Team sports such as hockey are NOT permitted.
  • The MERC trails will also remain open. Physical distancing from those outside your household are required at all times.
  • The purchase of dog tags and kennel licenses and the in-person payment of taxes will be unavailable until the office reopens. Licenses are not due until February 26, 2021.  If the lockdown is lifted on February 11th, residents will still have 2 weeks to purchase licenses.
  • The Library will remain open for curbside pickup only. Email or call the Library for more information.
  • Other Township essential services such as Fire & Rescue and Public Works will continue to operate as per usual with COVID-19 safety protocols in place.

Township Council and staff would like to thank residents for their continuous efforts in doing their part to keep our community safe and remind everyone to please STAY AT HOME, SAVE LIVES!

For a complete list of staff email addresses and phone extensions, please visit our Contact Us page.

For contact information for the Library, please visit their website.

Posted January 13, 2021

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Latest Ontario Government New Release: Ontario to Vaccinate up to 8.5 Million People in Phase Two

January 13, 2021

Province to Expand COVID-19 Immunization Program to Seniors, Frontline Essential Workers in Next Phase of Rollout Plan

TORONTO — The Ontario government is preparing to immunize up to 8.5 million people before the end of Phase Two of the government’s vaccine implementation plan, which aims to receive, store and administer COVID-19 vaccines to Ontarians as soon as supply is available.

Details were provided today by Premier Doug Ford, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones, and General Rick Hillier (retired), Chair of the COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force.

“With Phase One of our plan well underway, we’re getting ready to expand our vaccine rollout and get more needles into arms as soon as the supply is available,” said Premier Ford. “We now have a well-oiled machine, led by General Hillier, and we are making tremendous progress. We know this second phase will be an even larger logistical undertaking than the first. That’s why we’re ramping up our capacity on the ground to ensure these vaccines are administered quickly, beginning with the people who need them most.”

As recommended by the COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Task Force and aligned with the National Advisory Committee on Immunization, the province has mapped out the next steps for transitioning into Phase Two and has adopted an approach for identifying the next groups to receive the vaccination as early as March 2021. In order to vaccinate Ontarians as safely and quickly as possible, the government is expanding the list of health care providers who can administer COVID-19 vaccines.

Phase One of the vaccine implementation program is expected to see approximately 1.5 million eligible people vaccinated. Vaccination of residents, staff and essential caregivers of long-term care homes has begun in many parts of the province, with the goal of having the first dose administered in all homes no later than February 15, 2021. The vaccination of all staff and residents in long-term care homes in four areas with the highest rates of transmission, Toronto, Peel, York and Windsor Essex, is expected to be completed by January 21, 2021.

Groups eligible to receive vaccines as part of Phase Two of the Ontario immunization program will include:

  • Older adults, beginning with those 80 years of age and older and decreasing in five-year increments over the course of the vaccine rollout;
  • Individuals living and working in high-risk congregate settings;
  • Frontline essential workers (e.g., first responders, teachers, food processing industry); and
  • Individuals with high-risk chronic conditions and their caregivers.

Phase Two is expected to be completed by end of July 2021 and Phase Three for the general population could begin as early as August 2021, pending availability of vaccines. Vaccination of populations in Phase One will continue until all vaccinations are complete.

“We are prepared for the next phase in our vaccine distribution plan, but with limited supplies, our focus will be on vaccinating our seniors and frontline essential workers,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “When Ontario receives sufficient doses of vaccines, we will ensure that every person who wants to be vaccinated will receive it. Until then, everyone must continue to follow the public health guidelines and stay home, stay safe and save lives.”

In preparation for Phase Two of the vaccination distribution plan, more vaccination sites will be added. Over the coming months, those sites will include municipally run vaccination sites, hospital sites, mobile vaccination sites, pharmacies, clinics, primary care settings and community locations such as community health centres and aboriginal health access centres. The first municipally run vaccination site will be opening on January 18 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. The site will be administering vaccines to Phase One priority populations, including select frontline health care workers. It will be an initial proof-of-concept for municipally run vaccination centres, with a small number of doses to start with, from which learnings will be used to inform other locations across the province.

“Ontario’s immunization program is a monumental mission, and we have laid the foundations to ensure it remains successful as more vaccines become available and as we scale our rollout to reach more people across our province,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “By expanding the immunization program to more seniors and a broader list of frontline essential workers we are ensuring Ontario is ready to protect those who need it most as we receive the vaccines.”

“As you can see, we are consumed with delivering and administering our vaccines as quickly, efficiently and equitably as possible. This is great news for the people of Ontario,” said General (Ret’d) Rick Hillier. “Despite the difficult times we find ourselves in, this proves that there is light at the end of the tunnel and, with that in mind, I’m asking everyone to stay strong, stay safe and follow the public health guidelines.”

As the vaccine supply increases, and guided by the Ethical Framework for COVID-19 vaccine distribution, Ontario is also enabling more health care providers to administer the vaccine as quickly and safely as possible. This will help meet the unprecedented demand in the number of people who will be getting vaccinated. It will also increase access to the vaccine for all Ontarians, whether they reside in a remote fly-in community or a large urban centre. Health care professionals who are able to administer the vaccine can register and apply through Ontario’s Matching Portal. This could include nurse practitioners, registered nurses and registered practical nurses, along with pharmacists, pharmacy students, interns and pharmacy technicians.

Individuals interested in supporting the broader COVID-19 vaccination plan in roles such as data entry and scheduling, can also express their interest through Ontario’s Matching Portal.

As the vaccination rollout continues, it remains critically important that all Ontarians continue following public health advice to protect our communities and most vulnerable populations, and to stop the spread of COVID-19.

QUICK FACTS

  • To date, vaccines have been administered at 196 locations. Over 144,000 doses of the Pfizer or the Moderna vaccine have been administered across the province, including over 45,000 vaccinations administered to health care workers in long-term care homes and retirement homes, over 77,000 vaccinations administered to hospital workers and over 13,000 vaccinations administered to residents. An additional 20,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine have been administered in 158 long-term care homes since December 31, 2020.
  • Nearly 1,290 doses have been delivered by Ornge to James Bay Coast and Sioux Lookout with 145 vaccines administered to remote fly-in First Nation communities this week.
  • Ontario is adding three additional sites, Niagara Health – St. Catharines Site, Kingston General Hospital, and Brantford General Hospital, to receive and host immunization clinics for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. These three sites will receive allocations to assist in vaccinating health care workers, residents, staff and essential caregivers of long-term care and high-risk retirement homes.
  • Ontario received nearly 196,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine on January 11, with regular weekly shipments of Pfizer vaccine expected during January 2021. Additional delivery sites will be offering the vaccine to the key populations by the end of January.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Posted January 14, 2021

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Latest Media Release: Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit

January 20, 2021

Food Safety during the pandemic

The Health Unit recognizes that COVID-19 has been tough financially on many of our citizens and that some people may have started a new home business that involves food to help make some extra money. For people who are thinking of opening a food-related business in their home, it is important to do your research before starting. Public Health Inspectors are available to help guide you through the process which may help prevent delays in opening and extra costs.

Food businesses (restaurants or in a home setting) must be approved not only by the Health Unit but by your local municipality. Those starting a home based food business must have a kitchen that complies with the Ontario Building Code, the Ontario Fire Code, municipal zoning by-laws and the Ontario Food Premises Regulations.

Food businesses that require inspection include restaurants, food retail stores, bakeries, caterers, food processors and even home based food businesses. Under the Health Protection and Promotion Act a “food premises” means a premises where food or milk is manufactured, processed, prepared, stored, handled, displayed, distributed, transported, sold or offered for sale. Whether you sell directly from home, deliver, or sell online these regulations still apply.

Anyone intending to operate a food premises must notify the health unit in which they wish to operate. A food premises cannot operate without prior approval from the Health Unit because we need to ensure that the food prepared will be safe for consumption and that safety protocols are in place for staff.

During operating hours, every food premises must have at least one person present who has their Food Handler Certification.  While operating during COVID-19, there are extra rules for keeping the workplace safe, including actively screening all employees for COVID-19 before every shift, using personal protective equipment including masks and most importantly having a workplace safety plan. The Health Unit is here to help guide the opening and operating of food premises.

For more information please visit the Food Safety section of our website at healthunit.org, email us at contact@healthunit.org or call us at 1-800-660-5853.

Posted January 20, 2021

CLICK HERE TO VIEW PREVIOUS MEDIA RELEASES AND INFORMATION PUBLISHED BY THE LEEDS, GRENVILLE & LANARK DISTRICT HEALTH UNIT

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Latest United Counties of Leeds & Grenville Media Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 25, 2020

Leeds Grenville Municipal Emergency Control Group updates

The highlights of the Municipal Emergency Control Group (MECG) held today are listed below. The group hears reports from the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit, area police and fire officials and Counties departments, including Community and Social Services, Paramedic Service, Public Works, Finance and Maple View Lodge long-term care facility.

Counties Council will discuss continuation of emergency declaration:

Warden Pat Sayeau announced a discussion regarding whether the counties-wide Declaration of Emergency should be continued or lifted will take place at the Committee of the Whole meeting scheduled for June 9th.

Warden Sayeau initially declared a State of Emergency for Leeds and Grenville on Wednesday, April 8th.

The Warden commended Counties staff for ensuring service delivery throughout the past 10 weeks since the Ontario government announced its COVID-19 Declaration of Emergency on March 17th. He noted staff have adapted to new working procedures to ensure their safety while continuing to provide regular and critical services to Leeds and Grenville residents.

No new tri-county COVID-19 community cases identified in the past week:

Dr. Paula Stewart, Chief Medical Officer of Health with the Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit, confirmed there have been no new community cases of COVID-19 identified in the region over the past week.

Dr. Stewart also noted the province is now encouraging more testing, including testing of those who may be asymptomatic. Additional testing will give a better sense of how many community cases there are, she said.

Emergency childcare centres operating well:

Four Emergency Child Care sites for essential workers continue to operate in Kemptville and Brockville. There is a small waiting list for Brockville.

Child care rooms are limited to six children each to maintain required distancing guidelines. The application form for essential workers is available on the Counties Community and Social Services webpage.

The Temporary Social Distancing Centre is slowly winding down its operations. Alternative housing is being arranged for those in need.

Reminder for residents to follow safe burning practices:

Leeds and Grenville residents are permitted to burn according to local guidelines and restrictions within their municipalities. The Leeds Grenville Fire Coordinator asks residents to burn safely. Learn more on the province’s Safe Burning webpage.

Provincial Online Assessment tool

If you think you have COVID-19 symptoms, check the Ontario Online Self-Assessment tool. Symptoms have changed over time and now include a runny nose and fatigue. Online Self-Assessment tool.

MECG’s next meeting: The next Municipal Emergency Control Group will be at the call of the chair.

Learn more on the Counties COVID-19 Information webpage. Subscribe to a Special COVID-19 Business Support webpage.

Posted May 25, 2020

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Additional Information & Resources

Business Resources & Assistance

Media Releases from Community Partners

Informational Posters

Updated Summary of Government Support Programming, as of June 2, 2020

List of Local PPE Suppliers (as of May 25 2020)