Grim indicators of COVID-19 transmission in the Peel region have Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie warning residents to prepare for another Stay-at-Home order.
“While it is my hope that we will be able to limit the impact of this third wave, there is always the concern that if cases continue to rise, we could see a Stay-at-Home measure return to the entire province,” she told Daily Hive in a statement.
She’s pleading with the province to allocate more COVID-19 doses to the Peel region as the area sees a troubling rise in transmission.
Patients living in Peel account for 20% of Ontario’s total COVID-19 cases, but the health region has received less than 10% of available vaccine doses, Crombie said.
“Premier [Doug] Ford has called Peel Region an ‘inferno,’ and our residents and businesses have paid an incredible price during this pandemic,” she said. “I’ll use a metaphor myself: if we’re an ‘inferno,’ then we need to be doused with more water than surrounding regions that are not engulfed in flames.”
Mississauga and Peel are home to a large share of the GTA’s essential workers, and their workplaces, including factories, warehouses, manufacturing, and food processing facilities, have a higher transmission tendency. With a large portion of the population needing to go in-person to work is one reason the area is a hotspot of infection, she said.
“An incredible number of residents are going to work every single day to keep the economy of this province up and running,” she said. “The result is that we are seeing many workplace outbreaks in our Region, ultimately leading to household and community transmission.”
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Mississauga is now seeing 97 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents, up from 78 last week and 63 two weeks ago. The city’s R-value sits at 1.18, suggesting every COVID-19 patient is infecting at least one other person and sometimes more than that — which is a risk factor for exponential growth.
“We need more vaccines, plain and simple.”
Ontario announced Friday that Hamilton would move into Grey-Lockdown and also tightened restrictions in two other health zones.
At the same time, the province is also re-jigging the framework to make Grey-Lockdown less severe. Outdoor dining, group outdoor fitness, and personal services such as haircuts will be allowed even in lockdown going forward.