Over the past month, Empower Simcoe has taken rapid and necessary steps to address the COVID-19 Pandemic. Effective, April 1, 2020, Empower Simcoe transitioned to Essential Services only. Essential Services are those that must remain in place to ensure the health and safety of the people we support and our Empower Simcoe employees to preserve the continuity of our organization.
On Monday April 20, the government released new modelling projections regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. This information illustrated that Ontario is now trending positively and the province has likely avoided a significant surge in cases. Additional information provided by Public Health Ontario shows a recent decrease in the province-wide reproduction rate of virus transmission, which means that Ontarians’ collective efforts to implement the public health measures recommended by the Chief Medical Officer of Health have helped reduce the spread of the virus.
While the community rate of transmission is dropping at the provincial level, outbreaks in long-term care and congregate settings continue to be a significant concern. Tremendous efforts are being taken across the health system to protect vulnerable people in these settings. As the provincial government has extended the state of emergency until May 12, Empower Simcoe will continue with our active Pandemic Plan under essential services only until such time.
We continue to monitor updates from all levels of government and public health to guide our decision making. Empower Simcoe is committed to ongoing communication with you as we navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic together.
Non-essential Empower Simcoe programs and services are maintaining core functions utilizing a key contact approach. All parents and caregivers have been provided with a contact person to address their support needs. As well, regular
weekly communication is sent to all parents and caregivers with updated information and resources. An online resource library has been created for easy access to resources and information for children, youth, parents and caregivers. You
can access this resource at any time here. We thank-you for your understanding during this unprecedented time and we will continue to provide updates as we move forward.
On April 24, 2020, the Ontario government amended the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act –under subsection 7.0.2 (4) of the Act -Congregate Care Settings as part of the government’s measures to protect the health, safety, and well-being of Ontario workers from COVID-19. This order is specific to frontline workers in Ontario only working in one service agency in the same sector.
This Order applies to any staff member of a congregate care setting service agency who performs work in a residence operated by one agency shall not also perform work as a staff member of a different congregate care setting service agency in the same sector in a residence operated by the different agency. A “staff member” of a congregate care setting service agency includes a person who performs work for the agency as an employee or as temporary staff, including a person hired through an employment agency or other third party to perform work directly at a residence operated by the agency.
The requirements of this Order do not apply with respect to a staff member who can perform all of their work for congregate care setting service agencies by working or providing services remotely. Any person to whom this applies shall inform each agency of whom they are a staff member they are subject to this Order. A copy of this Order will be posted in all work locations.
The Order supports Empower Simcoe’s decision to institute a one employer restriction as communicated in the memo dated April 22, 2020. Empower Simcoe’s single employer restriction will come into effect on Tuesday April 28, 2020.
We will continue to monitor all developments related to this Order and all previously issued orders under the EMCPA and communicate any changes to our clients. Thank you to our Empower Simcoe employees for their hard work and dedication. We will continue to provide updates as we move forward.
Please See the newest update from Empower Simcoe CEO Claudine Cousins in regards to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.