COVID-19 on P.E.I.: What's happening Tuesday, June 23

SaltWire Network has announced 109 permanent layoffs and the Charlottetown airport has revealed a stark financial forecast with Phase 4 of the province's ease-back plan scheduled to begin on June 26.

SaltWire Network lays off 109 people permanently, Charlottetown airport reveals dismal financial forecast

P.E.I. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison gave a briefing Tuesday morning. (CBC)

Atlantic Canada's largest newspaper chain, Halifax-based SaltWire Network, has announced it will be laying off 109 people permanently.

The Charlottetown airport revealed a stark financial forecast at its virtual annual public meeting. With passenger traffic expected to drop by 75 to 80 per cent in 2020, the airport has put plans to expand on hold and is considering increasing passenger fees.

New COVID-19 measures developed to maintain physical distance among customers have caused lineups outside shops and services on P.E.I., including long lineups at Access PEI's Charlottetown office. 

Officials there worried that in the middle of P.E.I.'s current heat wave, people could be vulnerable to the sun, so they've set up tents along the side of the building to offer some reprieve to those in line.

Among the 109 people affected by layoffs at Saltwire Network are 61 people working in Nova Scotia, 25 in Newfoundland and Labrador and 23 on P.E.I. (Natalia Goodwin/CBC)

P.E.I. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison remained cautious at a pandemic briefing Tuesday morning about the possibility of opening up provincial borders to people outside of Atlantic Canada.

For Phase 4, slated to start June 26, Morrison said the limit on large organized gatherings will remain at 50 people, but some venues may be able to accommodate multiple gatherings.

Marion Dowling, Health PEI's chief of nursing, said work is continuing at Riverview Manor in Montague to develop a centre for long-term care patients who may develop COVID-19. It will be called the Rosedale Care Centre.

P.E.I. has had 27 confirmed cases, the most recent on April 28. All have recovered. More than 10,000 COVID-19 tests from P.E.I. have been done.

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