Community Coming Together to Support the Most Vulnerable

Published on March 20, 2020

MPP David Piccini, partners with Northumberland County, Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board, Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit and Transition House, to provide alternative housing to our community’s most vulnerable citizens during COVID-19

COBOURG, ON – Today, David Piccini, Member of Provincial Parliament for Northumberland-Peterborough South, announced that the Government of Ontario is supporting expanded response capacity for Transition House Emergency Shelter to support the most vulnerable in our community.


Due to COVID-19, shelters are unable to operate at full capacity while meeting public health guidelines. An agreement between Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (KPRDSB), Northumberland County and Transition House will enable the County’s only emergency homeless shelter to continue to support and house the homeless during this unprecedented time. A temporary shelter, the first of its kind in Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic, will be located at Cobourg Collegiate Institute.


“It is important that our Government takes decisive action to protect citizens during this difficult time,” said MPP David Piccini. “Under the leadership of Premier Ford, our Government is being proactive in solving problems affecting our most vulnerable.”


Bringing to light a pressing local issue, MPP David Piccini convened community partners: Northumberland County; Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board; Haliburton, Kawartha Pine Ridge District Health Unit; and Transition House Emergency Shelter, to develop a plan to keep residents of the shelter healthy and safe during COVID-19.


Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board quickly agreed to utilize infrastructure to support an additional facility for Transition House to house residents safely, maintain social distancing and meeting public health guidelines. In less than 48 hours, community partners came together to make this shelter a reality.


“We thank MPP Piccini for his leadership in bringing community partners together to develop this unique solution to a local challenge. We also thank the staff of Transition House, along with the KPR District School Board, the HKPR District Health Unit, the Cobourg Fire and Cobourg Police departments, and others for their collaboration in ensuring the ongoing provision of safe and effective shelter services for those experiencing homelessness in Northumberland. In this time of uncertainty, residents can be assured that public organizations and community partners continue to work cooperatively together to address local needs, and ensure a robust response against the spread of COVID-19 in our community.” Bob Sanderson, Warden, Northumberland County


“These are unprecedented times that are requiring uncommon actions to support our communities. As an organization, we take great pride in being a responsive and caring community partner. When the need was presented to us by MPP Piccini and others, it was our pleasure to open our doors to Transition House. We will continue to do all that we can to help as
we work through these difficult days.” Diane Lloyd, Chairperson, Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board“

The health and safety of our clients and staff is Transition House’s number one priority. The temporary relocation of emergency shelter services to Cobourg Collegiate Institute will enable us
to implement the recommended social distancing measures in our operations, and strengthen prevention against COVID-19 in the emergency shelter system. Thanks to a united effort by
community partners to make this move possible, Transition House is positioned to maintain our current capacity in providing essential services for the most vulnerable members of our
community.” Anne Newman, Executive Director, Transition House. On Monday, Ontario declared a provincial state of emergency and made an initial investment of over $300 million to support immediate measures to protect seniors, the most vulnerable and our front line health care professionals. At this time of uncertainty, Northumberland-Peterborough South has come together to support one another, especially those most vulnerable.

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QUICK FACTS

 The Government convened an emergency session of the Legislature on March 19 to pass
legislation to protect the jobs of employees who self-isolate or quarantine, help keep store
shelves stocked and give municipal councils the flexibility to continue operations while
maintaining social distance.

 Ontario is investing over $304 million to enhance the province's response to COVID-19
by providing the following:

o $100 million for increased capacity in hospitals to assist with the effective
treatment of COVID-19 patients both in critical care and medicine beds.

o $50 million for more testing and screening through public health,
including additional funding to support extraordinary costs incurred to
monitor, detect and contain COVID-19 in the province. This includes
contact tracing, increased laboratory testing capacity and home testing.

o $50 million to further protect frontline workers, first responders and
patients by increasing the supply of personal protective equipment and
other critical supplies and equipment to protect them.

o $25 million to support frontline workers working in COVID-19
assessment centres, including the creation of a new fund to provide respite
care, child care services and other supports as they are needed.

o $50 million for long-term care homes to support 24/7 screening, additional
staffing to support infection control and additional supplies.

o $20 million for residential facilities in developmental services, genderbased
services and protective care for children and youth to support
additional staffing, respite for caregivers impacted by school closures,
personal protective equipment and supplies and transportation costs to
minimize client exposure and to support social distancing, as well as
additional cleaning costs.

o $5 million to protect seniors in retirement homes through increased
infection control and active screening procedures.

o $4 million for Indigenous communities to support transportation costs for
health care professionals and the distribution of critical supplies.

 The increased funding includes investments from Ontario’s previously-announced
COVID-19 Contingency Fund, as well as funding provided by the federal
government.

 There is no vaccine available to protect against the 2019 novel coronavirus, but
there are everyday actions that can help prevent the spread of germs that cause
respiratory illnesses. To find out more, visit Ontario's website.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

 Visit Ontario.ca/coronavirus to learn more about how the province continues to
protect Ontarians from COVID-19.