Item - 2020.HL16.2

Tracking Status

  • City Council adopted this item on May 28, 2020 with amendments.
  • This item was considered by Board of Health on May 7, 2020 and was adopted with amendments. It will be considered by City Council on May 28, 2020.

HL16.2 - COVID-19 Update

Decision Type:
Presentation
Status:
Amended
Wards:
All

City Council Decision

City Council on May 28, 2020, adopted the following:

 

1.  City Council commend Toronto Public Health staff for their exemplary dedication and hard work to keep Torontonians safe and healthy through the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

2.  City Council extend its thanks to the Augmented Civilian Care teams of the Canadian Armed Forces who have been providing assistance at Altamont Care Community in Scarborough, Eatonville Care Centre in Etobicoke and Hawthorne Place in North York since April 28, 2020.

 

3.  City Council direct the General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, in consultation with the Medical Officer of Health, to conduct a review of measures needed to protect clients and to continue to provide shelter services safely while COVID-19 is a concern, including reviewing the existing Toronto Shelter Standards related to the separation of beds and the use of bunk beds, and to report on the implementation considerations for medium- and longer-term response strategies.

 

4.  City Council direct the City Manager and appropriate staff to consult with Chinese-Canadian social justice organizations about their work and the opportunity for collaboration including, but not limited to:

 

a.  ensuring new services introduced to address the negative impacts of COVID-19 are culturally and linguistically accessible to all Toronto residents, including those that speak Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese;


b.  creating a public awareness campaign to counter anti-Chinese and anti-Asian racism and discrimination exacerbated by the global pandemic and to launch it as soon as possible as part of the "Toronto For All" public education initiative; and


c.  recording and addressing incidents of anti-Chinese and anti-Asian violence, harassment, and labour and housing discrimination as part of the City's Vision Statement on Access, Equity and Diversity.

 

5.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to require the collection and public reporting of health and community service data, including COVID-19 tests disaggregated by race and occupation, in collaboration with affected communities and health professionals.

 

6.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to proactively share data disaggregated by race, occupation, and congregate settings to the public and public health units during the COVID-19 recovery phase.

 

7.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to review the staffing and funding models for the long-term care sector, including issues of poor and precarious working conditions, to permanently improve the standards of care and reduce the risk of infectious disease outbreaks.

 

8.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to permanently ensure that sufficient paid sick leave is available to all workers who must quarantine or self-isolate, without the requirement for a doctor's note.

 

9.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to take immediate steps to address the medical professional and technical issues identified in the Observation Report of the Canadian Armed Forces.

 
10.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to immediately establish a full public inquiry led by independent experts with representation from staff, families of survivors and current residents to:

 

a. identify the failings of the long-term care system in Ontario;


b. determine the reasons for those failings; and


c.  make specific recommendations as to the steps that must be taken to ensure that the seniors in our long-term care homes receive the quality of care that they deserve.

 

11.  City Council request the City Manager to establish a process by which the public is consulted through the City of Toronto’s Poverty Reduction Office, the Anti-Black Racism Office, the Indigenous Affairs Office and all other bodies that can provide input concerning the problems faced by marginalized people during COVID-19.

 

12.  City Council request the City Manager to report to the July 21, 2020 meeting of the Executive Committee on the process in Part 11 above, in order to inform the City of Toronto’s ongoing COVID-19 strategy.

City Council Decision Advice and Other Information

City Council considered Items HL16.2 and CC21.1, together.

Background Information (Board)

(May 7, 2020) Presentation from the Medical Officer of Health on COVID-19: An Update to the Board of Health
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147251.pdf
(May 7, 2020) Presentation from the Deputy City Manager, Community and Social Services on Community and Social Services: Supporting Vulnerable Torontonians during COVID-19
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147252.pdf
Presentation from the General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration on Response for People Experiencing Homelessness during COVID-19
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147253.pdf

Communications (Board)

(May 1, 2020) Letter from Councillor Gord Perks, Chair, Toronto Drug Strategy Implementation Panel (HL.Main.HL16.2.1)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/comm/communicationfile-101808.pdf
(May 6, 2020) Submission from Dr. Samantha Young (HL.New.HL16.2.2)
(May 6, 2020) Submission from Aaron Caplan, Toronto St. Paul's Tenant Associations Network (HL.New.HL16.2.3)
(May 6, 2020) Letter from 21 organizations, submitted by Sean Meagher, ConveneToronto (HL.New.HL16.2.4)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/comm/communicationfile-101809.pdf
(May 7, 2020) Letter from Andrew Sosna, Moss Park Overdose Prevention Site (HL.New.HL16.2.5)

Motions (City Council)

1 - Motion to Amend Item (Additional) moved by Councillor Jennifer McKelvie (Carried)

That:

 

1.  City Council extend its thanks to the Augmented Civilian Care teams of the Canadian Armed Forces who have been providing assistance at Altamont Care Community in Scarborough, Eatonville Care Centre in Etobicoke and Hawthorne Place in North York since April 28, 2020.

 
2.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to take immediate steps to address the medical professional and technical issues identified in the Observation Report of the Canadian Armed Forces.

 
3.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to immediately establish a full public inquiry led by independent experts with representation from staff, families of survivors and current residents to:

 

a. identify the failings of the long-term care system in Ontario;


b. determine the reasons for those failings; and


c.  make specific recommendations as to the steps that must be taken to ensure that the seniors in our long-term care homes receive the quality of care that they deserve.

Vote (Amend Item (Additional)) May-28-2020

Result: Carried Majority Required - Item HL16.2 - McKelvie - motion 1
Total members that voted Yes: 24 Members that voted Yes are Paul Ainslie, Ana Bail„o, Brad Bradford, Shelley Carroll, Mike Colle, Gary Crawford, Joe Cressy, John Filion, Paula Fletcher, Michael Ford, Mark Grimes, Stephen Holyday, Jim Karygiannis, Cynthia Lai, Mike Layton, Josh Matlow, Jennifer McKelvie, Frances Nunziata (Chair), James Pasternak, Gord Perks, Anthony Perruzza, Michael Thompson, John Tory, Kristyn Wong-Tam
Total members that voted No: 0 Members that voted No are
Total members that were Absent: 2 Members that were absent are Denzil Minnan-Wong, Jaye Robinson

2 - Motion to Amend Item (Additional) moved by Councillor Anthony Perruzza (Carried)

That:

 

1.  City Council request the City Manager to establish a process by which the public is consulted through the City of Toronto’s Poverty Reduction Office, the Anti-Black Racism Office, the Indigenous Affairs Office and all other bodies that can provide input concerning the problems faced by marginalized people during COVID-19.

 

2.  City Council request the City Manager to report to the July 21, 2020 meeting of the Executive Committee on the process in Part 1 above, in order to inform the City of Toronto’s ongoing COVID-19 strategy.


Motion to Adopt Item as Amended (Carried)

HL16.2 - COVID-19 Update

Decision Type:
Presentation
Status:
Amended
Wards:
All

Board Recommendations

The Board of Health recommends that:

 

1.  City Council commend Toronto Public Health staff for their exemplary dedication and hard work to keep Torontonians safe and healthy through the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

2.  City Council direct the General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, in consultation with the Medical Officer of Health, to conduct a review of measures needed to protect clients and to continue to provide shelter services safely while COVID-19 is a concern, including reviewing the existing Toronto Shelter Standards related to the separation of beds and the use of bunk beds, and report on the implementation considerations for medium- and longer-term response strategies.

 

3.  City Council direct the City Manager and appropriate staff to consult with Chinese-Canadian social justice organizations about their work and the opportunity for collaboration including, but not limited to:

 

a.  ensuring new services introduced to address the negative impacts of COVID-19 are culturally and linguistically accessible to all Toronto residents, including those that speak Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese;


b.  creating a public awareness campaign to counter anti-Chinese and anti-Asian racism and discrimination exacerbated by the global pandemic and to launch it as soon as possible as part of the "Toronto For All" public education initiative; and


c.  recording and addressing incidents of anti-Chinese and anti-Asian violence, harassment, and labour and housing discrimination as part of the City's Vision Statement on Access, Equity and Diversity.

 

4.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to require the collection and public reporting of health and community service data, including COVID-19 tests disaggregated by race and occupation, in collaboration with affected communities and health professionals.

 

5.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to proactively share data disaggregated by race, occupation, and congregate settings to the public and public health units during the COVID-19 recovery phase.

 

6.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to review the staffing and funding models for the long-term care sector, including issues of poor and precarious working conditions, to permanently improve the standards of care and reduce the risk of infectious disease outbreaks.

 

7.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to permanently ensure that sufficient paid sick leave is available to all workers who must quarantine or self-isolate, without the requirement for a doctor's note.

Decision Advice and Other Information

The Board of Health:

 

1.  Requested the Government of Canada to significantly increase funding to support the City of Toronto's efforts to rapidly rehouse shelter residents during the COVID-19 pandemic and to create lasting permanent affordable housing options to end chronic homelessness.

 

2.  Urged Health Canada to increase funding for a spectrum of safer supply initiatives, including enhanced and flexible injectable and oral hydromorphone programs.

 

3.  Requested the Government of Ontario to continue supporting Toronto's COVID-19 homelessness and supportive housing response by:

 

a.  providing proactive testing in shelters and respites;


b.  providing additional Personal Protective Equipment for frontline shelter staff;

 

c.  establishing a regional Greater Toronto Area plan for isolation and recovery spaces for those in the shelter system;


d.  establishing an immediate alternative to the practice of discharging people into homelessness from provincial correctional institutions;

 

e.  providing resources and supports for isolation and recovery spaces for the provincially-funded supportive housing sector; and

 

f.  providing additional funding for the provision of permanent supportive and affordable housing opportunities.

 

4.  Requested the Government of Ontario to increase overall COVID-19 testing capacity at a rate determined by global best practices and leading public health officials to ensure that adequate testing is in place to enable the safe reopening of regular life in the recovery phase.

 

5.  Urged the Government of Ontario to support Toronto's Overdose Prevention Sites (OPS) through the provision of funding and Personal Protective Equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

6.  Requested the Government of Ontario to review enhanced measures to reduce community spread and protect frontline workers, such as providing separate living accommodations for workers at higher risk like those in health care and providing isolation accommodations away from families for people who test positive for COVID-19.

 

7.  Requested the Government of Ontario to work with food advocates and producers to review existing emergency restrictions on farmers' markets and food markets through a comprehensive public health lens and provide clarification to municipalities under what conditions, if any, markets can safely open and operate. 

 

8.  Requested the Ontario Ministry of Health, using an expert scientific work group, to immediately explore how best to support interaction between caregivers and residents in long-term care homes that provides for the health and safety of residents and staff.

 

9.  Requested the Ontario Minister of Health to extend the one-time funding for Toronto Public Health beyond 2021, reverse previously announced cuts, and provide full 100 percent provincial funding to support public health protection functions, including infectious and communicable diseases prevention and control.

 

10.  Requested the Ontario Minister of Health to pause the previously announced reduction and restructuring of local public health units beyond 2021 in order to allow Toronto Public Health to focus on its immediate and ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery work.

 

11.  Urged the Ontario Minister of Health to support the implementation of managed opioid/safer supply programs, including by adding the required formulation of hydromorphone (i.e., 50 milligrams/milliliters and 100 milligrams/milliliters hydromorphone) to the Ontario Drug Benefit Formulary to enable injectable hydromorphone programs to operate.

 

12.  Requested the Medical Officer of Health to strongly consider, as a fundamental component of the COVID-19 recovery strategy, the following:

 

a.  pursuing opportunities to provide more space for pedestrians, cyclists, and public transit riders to allow for better physical distancing, in addition to improving the safety of all road users;

 

b.  ensuring adequate and equitable access to open space and parkland for mental health and exercise;


c.  applying a "Housing First" approach to seek permanent affordable housing solutions, including new supportive housing units as part of the City of Toronto's response to shelters and homelessness;


d.  consulting, in coordination with the Toronto Office of Recovery and Rebuild, with affected communities and stakeholders, including Indigenous and Black communities and the non-profit sector;

 

e.  developing guidelines for the safe operation of farmers' markets and community food markets, in support of access to healthy and affordable food;

 

f.  a scaled-up and robust program of case and contact tracing, along with the resource requirements;

 

g.  close coordination with Toronto school boards;

 

h.  ensuring a robust approach to mental health promotion;

 

i.  reconciliation; and

 

j.   an enhanced public awareness campaign to increase knowledge of how to protect against COVID-19, combat misinformation, and address common public questions such as when and how to wear homemade masks.

 

The Medical Officer of Health gave a presentation on COVID-19: An Update to the Board of Health.

 

The Deputy City Manager, Community and Social Services, gave a presentation on Community and Social Services: Supporting Vulnerable Torontonians during COVID-19.

 

The General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, gave a presentation on Shelter, Support and Housing Administration Response for People Experiencing Homelessness during COVID-19.

Summary

The Medical Officer of Health and other City Officials will give presentations on COVID-19 Update.

Background Information

(May 7, 2020) Presentation from the Medical Officer of Health on COVID-19: An Update to the Board of Health
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147251.pdf
(May 7, 2020) Presentation from the Deputy City Manager, Community and Social Services on Community and Social Services: Supporting Vulnerable Torontonians during COVID-19
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147252.pdf
Presentation from the General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration on Response for People Experiencing Homelessness during COVID-19
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/bgrd/backgroundfile-147253.pdf

Communications

(May 1, 2020) Letter from Councillor Gord Perks, Chair, Toronto Drug Strategy Implementation Panel (HL.Main.HL16.2.1)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/comm/communicationfile-101808.pdf
(May 6, 2020) Submission from Dr. Samantha Young (HL.New.HL16.2.2)
(May 6, 2020) Submission from Aaron Caplan, Toronto St. Paul's Tenant Associations Network (HL.New.HL16.2.3)
(May 6, 2020) Letter from 21 organizations, submitted by Sean Meagher, ConveneToronto (HL.New.HL16.2.4)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2020/hl/comm/communicationfile-101809.pdf
(May 7, 2020) Letter from Andrew Sosna, Moss Park Overdose Prevention Site (HL.New.HL16.2.5)

Speakers

Sara E. Garnett, Toronto Drug Strategy Implementation Panel and Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance
Dr. Gillian Kolla, Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research, University of Victoria
Dr. Jeanette Bowles, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, Centre on Drug Policy Evaluation, St. Michael's Hospital
Aaron Caplan, Toronto St. Paul's Tenant Associations Network
Helen Chilas, 1501 Woodbine Tenants Group
Gil Penalosa, 8 80 Cities

Motions

1 - Motion to Amend Item moved by Councillor Joe Cressy (Carried)

That:

 

1.  City Council commend Toronto Public Health staff for their exemplary dedication and hard work to keep Torontonians safe and healthy through the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

2.  City Council direct the General Manager, Shelter, Support and Housing Administration, in consultation with the Medical Officer of Health, to conduct a review of measures needed to protect clients and to continue to provide shelter services safely while COVID-19 is a concern, including reviewing the existing Toronto Shelter Standards related to the separation of beds and the use of bunk beds, and report on the implementation considerations for medium- and longer-term response strategies.

 

3.  The Board of Health request the Government of Ontario to continue supporting Toronto's COVID-19 homelessness and supportive housing response by:

 

a.  providing proactive testing in shelters and respites;


b.  providing additional Personal Protective Equipment for frontline shelter staff;

 

c.  establishing a regional Greater Toronto Area plan for isolation and recovery spaces for those in the shelter system;


d.  establishing an immediate alternative to the practice of discharging people into homelessness from provincial correctional institutions;

 

e.  providing resources and supports for isolation and recovery spaces for the provincially-funded supportive housing sector; and

 

f.  providing additional funding for the provision of permanent supportive and affordable housing opportunities.
                                                           

4.  The Board of Health request the Government of Canada to significantly increase funding to support the City of Toronto's efforts to rapidly rehouse shelter residents during the COVID-19 pandemic and to create lasting permanent affordable housing options to end chronic homelessness.

 

5.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to require the collection and public reporting of health and community service data, including COVID-19 tests disaggregated by race and occupation, in collaboration with affected communities and health professionals.

 

6.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to proactively share data disaggregated by race, occupation, and congregate settings to the public and public health units during the COVID-19 recovery phase.

 

7.  City Council direct the City Manager and appropriate staff to consult with Chinese-Canadian social justice organizations about their work and the opportunity for collaboration including, but not limited to:

 

a.  ensuring new services introduced to address the negative impacts of COVID-19 are culturally and linguistically accessible to all Toronto residents, including those that speak Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese;


b.  creating a public awareness campaign to counter anti-Chinese and anti-Asian racism and discrimination exacerbated by the global pandemic and to launch it as soon as possible as part of the "Toronto For All" public education initiative; and


c.  recording and addressing incidents of anti-Chinese and anti-Asian violence, harassment, and labour and housing discrimination as part of the City's Vision Statement on Access, Equity and Diversity.

 

8.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to review the staffing and funding models for the long-term care sector, including issues of poor and precarious working conditions, to permanently improve the standards of care and reduce the risk of infectious disease outbreaks.

 

9.  The Board of Health request the Ontario Ministry of Health, using an expert scientific work group, to immediately explore how best to support interaction between caregivers and residents in long-term care homes that provides for the health and safety of residents and staff.

 

10.  City Council request the Government of Ontario to permanently ensure that sufficient paid sick leave is available to all workers who must quarantine or self-isolate, without the requirement for a doctor's note. 

 

11.  The Board of Health request the Government of Ontario to increase overall COVID-19 testing capacity at a rate determined by global best practices and leading public health officials to ensure that adequate testing is in place to enable the safe reopening of regular life in the recovery phase.

 

12.  The Board of Health request the Ontario Minister of Health to extend the one-time funding for Toronto Public Health beyond 2021, reverse previously announced cuts, and provide full 100 percent provincial funding to support public health protection functions, including infectious and communicable diseases prevention and control.

 

13.  The Board of Health request the Ontario Minister of Health to pause the previously announced reduction and restructuring of local public health units beyond 2021 in order to allow Toronto Public Health to focus on its immediate and ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery work.

 

14.  The Board of Health urge the Ontario Minister of Health to support the implementation of managed opioid/safer supply programs, including by adding the required formulation of hydromorphone (i.e., 50 milligrams/milliliters and 100 milligrams/milliliters hydromorphone) to the Ontario Drug Benefit Formulary to enable injectable hydromorphone programs to operate.

 

15.  The Board of Health urge the Government of Ontario to support Toronto's Overdose Prevention Sites (OPS) through the provision of funding and Personal Protective Equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

16.  The Board of Health urge Health Canada to increase funding for a spectrum of safer supply initiatives, including enhanced and flexible injectable and oral hydromorphone programs.

 

17.  The Board of Health request the Government of Ontario to review enhanced measures to reduce community spread and protect frontline workers, such as providing separate living accommodations for workers at higher risk like those in health care and providing isolation accommodations away from families for people who test positive for COVID-19.

 

18.  The Board of Health request the Government of Ontario to work with food advocates and producers to review existing emergency restrictions on farmers' markets and food markets through a comprehensive public health lens and provide clarification to municipalities under what conditions, if any, markets can safely open and operate. 

 

19.  The Board of Health request the Medical Officer of Health to strongly consider, as a fundamental component of the COVID-19 recovery strategy, the following:

 

a.  pursuing opportunities to provide more space for pedestrians, cyclists, and public transit riders to allow for better physical distancing, in addition to improving the safety of all road users;

 

b.  ensuring adequate and equitable access to open space and parkland for mental health and exercise;


c.  applying a "Housing First" approach to seek permanent affordable housing solutions, including new supportive housing units as part of the City of Toronto's response to shelters and homelessness;


d.  consulting, in coordination with the Toronto Office of Recovery and Rebuild, with affected communities and stakeholders, including Indigenous and Black communities and the non-profit sector;

 

e.  developing guidelines for the safe operation of farmers' markets and community food markets, in support of access to healthy and affordable food;

 

f.  a scaled-up and robust program of case and contact tracing, along with the resource requirements;

 

g.  close coordination with Toronto school boards;

 

h.  ensuring a robust approach to mental health promotion;

 

i.  reconciliation; and

 

j.   an enhanced public awareness campaign to increase knowledge of how to protect against COVID-19, combat misinformation, and address common public questions such as when and how to wear homemade masks.

Vote (Amend Item) May-07-2020

Result: Carried Majority Required
Total members that voted Yes: 13 Members that voted Yes are Ashna Bowry, Joe Cressy (Chair), Stephanie Donaldson, Angela Jonsson, Cynthia Lai, Mike Layton, Ida Li Preti, Jennifer McKelvie, Kate Mulligan, Gord Perks, Peter Wong, Soo Wong, Kristyn Wong-Tam
Total members that voted No: 0 Members that voted No are
Total members that were Absent: 0 Members that were absent are
Source: Toronto City Clerk at www.toronto.ca/council