Thursday, May 21: How COVID-19 is affecting P.E.I. today
Premier defended decision to allow seasonal residents into the province in a Q&A Thursday
P.E.I. Premier Dennis King and Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison joined CBC News: Compass host Louise Martin for a live Q&A, answering audience questions about COVID-19.
Many of the questions for King and Morrison were about the announcement to allow seasonal residents to begin the pre-approval process to enter the province on June 1.
Many Islanders have voiced opposition to the idea, including Opposition leader Peter Bevan-Baker.
So .... people who can afford two homes can now come here. And the people already here who can’t even afford one house have to put themselves at risk serving them <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/peipoli?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#peipoli</a>—@peterbevanbaker
"We have to begin the process to get back on the road to recovery," King said.
"It's not sustainable or healthy to keep our province locked down for two years. It's not feasible or sustainable to do that. There are unintended health and social and mental health issues that are being caused by the fact that we've done what we've done for the past 10 weeks," he said.
"I expect we will spend the next months and years trying to identify what those impacts are."
King also said he informed New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs about the plan to allow seasonal residents into the province.
"We've been working pretty closely together but we all have our own provinces to run," he said.
"I didn't ask him if it was OK or not, I informed him of what we were doing."
Many P.E.I. businesses are preparing to reopen Friday as the province enters a new phase of easing restrictions.
The pandemic won't stop the annual Women's Institute roadside cleanup.
P.E.I. will begin the process of allowing about 2,300 Canadian seasonal residents into the province beginning June 1, Premier Dennis King said Wednesday during a COVID-19 briefing.
There are about 3,500 seasonal residents who come to P.E.I. each year, King said, including about 1,150 from the United States and 50 from other parts of the world. International borders remain closed.
A program to offer respite activities to hundreds of students with special needs is going well, says a school official.
Liquor sales could be down in a poor tourist season. More than a quarter of 2019's sales were in July and August.
Two Charlottetown fabric stores are finding new customers during the COVID-19 pandemic, but still developing ways of making their business work in the new reality.
P.E.I. has had 27 confirmed cases of COVID-19. All have recovered. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison said Wednesday another 580 tests results had come back negative since the start of the weekend.
Also in the news
- Calls to police have dropped dramatically during the pandemic.
- P.E.I. tourism operators have been anxiously waiting for answers before deciding whether to reopen this summer.
- Twins in Bethel have been outed as the benefactors leaving gifts on doorsteps to cheer up neighbours during the pandemic.
- Charlottetown police officers say positive messages written in chalk on the sidewalk outside the police station are "very touching" — especially since they come from youths.
- Here is information for living with the COVID-19 pandemic on P.E.I. — including information on government relief programs, physical distancing measures, and essential health services.
- Here are charts tracking COVID-19 numbers and a timeline of COVID-19-related events on P.E.I.
COVID-19: What you need to know
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
Common symptoms include:
But more serious symptoms can develop, including difficulty breathing and pneumonia, which can lead to death.
Health Canada has built a self-assessment tool.
What should I do if I feel sick?
Isolate yourself and call 811. Do not visit an emergency room or urgent care centre to get tested. A health professional at 811 will give you advice and instructions.
How can I protect myself?
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Clean regularly touched surfaces regularly.
- Practise physical distancing.
More detailed information on the outbreak is available on the federal government's website.