The Glengarry News
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2 die in 401 crash

publisher May 13, 2021 - 9:03pm

Two people have been declared dead at the scene of a single-vehicle collision that occurred shortly before 4:30 p.m. on the westbound Highway 401 Westbound, between Boundary Road and McConnell Avenue in South Stormont Township.

A third person in the vehicle has been transported to hospital with life-threatening injuries, reports the Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry Ontario Provincial Police detachment.

The crash occurred when the vehicle left the roadway and struck a ditch.

SD&G OPP is seeking the assistance of motorists who were travelling in the area and observed the crash, or who may have dash cam footage from their vehicle. Contact SD&G OPP at  1-888-310-1122.

Vaccine scam

publisher May 13, 2021 - 10:25am

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit has received a report of a phone scam in the area about the COVID-19 vaccine. Please note that the COVID-19 vaccine is free. If you receive a call requesting financial information to receive the vaccine, please hang up immediately and do not provide any personal information such as your health card or credit card number. Never allow anyone inside your home offering the vaccine in return for a fee. Alert the police.

Second doses

publisher May 12, 2021 - 12:21pm

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) is working hard to ensure that its COVID-19 vaccination efforts, including booking, continue to operate efficiently and ethically.

The EOHU appreciates that individuals who received their first dose, but who don't have an appointment scheduled for their second dose, want to ensure their second dose is received on time and in accordance with their respective recommended dose interval.

"We recognize that for some, this time frame is nearing and, understandably, they are worried," the health unit says.

 The provincial booking system currently only allows individuals to book first and second dose appointments at the same time. Individuals who have received a first dose of the vaccine without using the provincial booking system are not currently able to book an appointment for their second dose only. The Province is in the process of upgrading its booking system to allow individuals to book a single dose appointment only. As soon as this feature becomes available, instructions will be shared on the EOHU website, on social media and by e-mail to those who pre-registered with the EOHU for their second dose prior to April 28. In the meantime, the EOHU is planning clinics for those requiring a second dose based on future vaccine allocation. Individuals who have received their first dose, but don't yet have an appointment for their second dose, will not be missed or forgotten. In recent weeks, the EOHU has unfortunately had to turn individuals away at our clinics who had booked a single second dose that did not respect their recommended dose interval. We ask that individuals needing a second dose appointment only please continue to follow the latest updates and rest assured that appointments will be made available to them. For the latest information about COVID-19 vaccines, including which population groups are eligible to receive it and how to access it, regularly visit the Eastern Ontario Health Unit's website at www.EOHU.ca/vaccines

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Update on Jim McDonell

publisher May 6, 2021 - 2:56pm

"I am happy to report that my COVID-19 period of isolation ended this past Thursday," reports Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry MPP Jim McDonell. "While I contracted the virus before my vaccination had time to provide me with its maximum protection, I do not doubt that it was responsible for my low level of symptoms. I am grateful for the many best wishes I received for my speedy recovery. Thank you very much!"

Standby list

publisher May 1, 2021 - 10:24am
 
The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) has announced that individuals who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine but who have not yet been able to book an appointment, can register online to stand by.
Should doses remain at the end of a clinic due to missed or empty appointments, eligible individuals on the standby list could be called in to receive the extra doses to avoid vaccine wastage at local clinics.
Go to www.EOHU.ca/standby for upcoming COVID-19 vaccination clinics. Each week, registration for the standby list will open to individuals who are currently eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine; can arrive at the selected clinic location within 20 minutes of receiving a call; have not yet booked an appointment; and have not yet received their first dose.
The standby list is not a booking tool and should not be relied upon to schedule an appointment. Individuals on the standby list are not guaranteed to be called in to receive a vaccine. They will only be called if there are unused doses available at the end of a clinic. The EOHU encourages these individuals to continue to attempt to book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment through the provincial booking system or another vaccination partner if accessible (e.g. pharmacy, participating primary care provider, or other).
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McDonell tests positive

publisher Apr 30, 2021 - 2:00pm

Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry MPP Jim McDonell is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID19.

"After receiving my first dose of vaccine, I can tell you that I was particularly diligent in following the masking and distancing guidelines for the short two-plus week period required to achieve its protection," he says in a statement.

"The only situation I can recollect was waiting for an apartment elevator when someone masked in line inadvertently sneezed. I remember feeling uncomfortable, but it happens. Whether this was the point of contact, I can't say for sure, but I mention this only so that you may appreciate how little contact it takes for these new variants to spread and for the increased risk our essential workers and people in large urban areas face daily. While the short period of vaccination could not stop me from picking up the virus, I can credit it for the minor symptoms that I am experiencing that could easily be explained as the common cold."

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Cases drop

publisher Apr 29, 2021 - 1:58pm

The number of active COVID-19 cases in the region served by the Eastern Ontario Health Unit dropped by nine to 292 between April 28 and 29. Of this number, 30 are hospitalized; five are in intensive care. To date, 101 people have succumbed to the disease. The per-capita rate of infection is 58.8 per 100,000 residents in the territory that includes Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry, Cornwall, Prescott-Russell and the northern part of Akwesasne. In SDG, the infection rate is 31.9 per 100,000. 

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Border checkpoints

publisher Apr 19, 2021 - 8:34am

Border checkpoints are being set up in Ontario and Quebec this morning (April 19).

While Ontario Premier Doug Ford announced Friday that traffic at the Québec and Manitoba borders would be set up to limit non-essential visitors to Ontario, Québec Deputy Premier Geneviève Guilbault said Québec would also restrict Ontarians from travelling to La Belle Province.

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is requesting that Ontarians voluntarily comply with the new emergency orders as it does its part to support the government of Ontario's health emergency declaration to limit transmission of the COVID-19 virus.

OPP officers will enforce the Stay-at-Home Order, under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMPCA), and the Reopening Ontario Act (ROA) by focusing on non-compliance in businesses and restaurants, complaints from the public and unlawful public gatherings.

Officers can disperse and ticket individuals found to be non-compliant resulting in a $750 fine.

Outdoor events and gatherings are now prohibited unless all parties are from the same household or one other person from outside that household who lives alone or is a caregiver for any member of the household. All retail stores that are permitted to be open must limit the number of persons to 25 per cent capacity of the store.

The following outdoor recreational amenities shall be closed: All outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields including, golf courses, baseball diamonds, soccer fields, frisbee golf locations, tennis, platform tennis, table tennis, pickleball courts, basketball courts, BMX parks, skate parks, all portions of park and recreation areas containing outdoor fitness equipment and all picnic sites and picnic tables in park and recreation areas.

An outdoor recreational amenity that is an off-leash dog area or park bench may be open and used if physical distancing is maintained. A playground, a place specifically designed to enable children to play there, may be open and used. Consistent with the new emergency orders, OPP officers will not arbitrarily stop an individual or a vehicle, or enter a dwelling for the singular purpose of checking compliance with the order. Individuals are not expected to provide proof of essential work. Officers who believe an individual may be participating in a gathering that is prohibited may require the individual to provide information to determine whether or not they are in compliance.

More information about the restrictions covered by the Government of Ontario's declared State of Emergency and the updated enforcement provisions of the EMCPA can be found at Reopening Ontario Act (A Flexible Response to COVID-19; ROA), 2020. For all non-emergency police matters, including allegations of COVID-19 restrictions non-compliance, contact your municipal by-law office, call the OPP non-emergency number at 1-888-310-1122, or contact your local detachment. Please reserve 911 for life-threatening emergencies. “The OPP will continue to provide public safety services to the communities we serve and support the efforts of federal, provincial and local health authorities,” the OPP says.  

'Fed up'

publisher Apr 14, 2021 - 4:08pm

Everyone is "fed up" with governments' responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, declares Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry Warden Frank Prevost, saying people need actions not words from decision makers.

Here is a statement he issued at a press conference today.

Our residents have been through the wringer over the last 14 months.

We have endured lockdowns, shutdowns, physical isolation, fear of getting sick and concern that local hospitals are bursting at the seams because COVID-19 cases are spiking. In short, we are fed up.

We look on with envy as other regions and countries, including our neighbours just across the St. Lawrence River in the United States, enjoy the benefits of mass vaccination. Because Canada has been slow to roll out mass vaccination, and because COVID-19 variants are entrenched in Ontario, we once again find ourselves in a shutdown.

Just today we learned that 10,000 vaccination appointments were cancelled in this province, due to lack of supply.

This situation is unacceptable to our residents and we are here today to call upon senior levels of government in Ottawa and Toronto, as well as our local MPs and MPPs, to turn heartfelt words into concrete action. Our local health unit has begun the process of vaccination in our region.

At last count there were approximately 35,000 vaccinations completed by the Eastern Ontario Health Unit. More vaccinations are being planned at hospitals and pharmacies.

By the end of this current shutdown, the EOHU has plans to vaccinate another 35,000.

But the total eligible population within the EOHU region is 170,000. The EOHU can only vaccinate individuals when it has enough vaccines to do the job. I am calling on the federal and provincial governments to do more to get an increased number of vaccines to our local health unit so they can continue the good work they are doing.

There has been much made of COVID problems in southern Ontario, and there is increased focus on other ‘hot spots’ throughout the province. With all due respect to the terrible tragedy unfolding in the GTA, I want to ensure our voice is heard as well.

It is the voice of rural and small-city Ontario. I have to remind our political leaders in Toronto and Ottawa that our residents are just as vulnerable to the coronavirus – and our businesses are suffering just as much, if not worse, than those in other jurisdictions.

I further call on senior levels of government to level with us. We keep hearing that there is a light at the end of the tunnel – but this seems like an awfully long tunnel. The yo-yoing our residents have been forced to grapple with these last few months is unacceptable. In one breath we are told vaccines are coming and hope is on the horizon. But at the same time some vaccine clinics are being cancelled due to lack of supply, schools are shuttered and businesses closed. This is confusing and frustrating. Our residents deserve the respect of straight-forward answers, without unnecessary spin. Our business owners have been forced to grapple with a tsunami of change in recent weeks. They need a greater understanding of what is to come in the months ahead and better supports to keep their doors open right now. I have heard directly from businesses in SDG, some of whom tell me they are falling through the COVID cracks. Some businesses, which opened just last year, cannot get supports because they are unable to prove a sustainable income over the last 12 months. How is this fair?

Our local economy is built upon these small businesses. I look at our local barbershops as an example. Why have they been forced to close an operation that can be limited to just two people, who wear masks and liberally sanitize themselves? Yet I can go into any grocery store and be surrounded with a multitude of individuals. What’s good for one business should be good for all, because it’s discrepancies like this that anger our business owners and frustrate our residents. This pandemic is not new. We have been battling the scourge of COVID-19 for more than a year. It’s time for concrete plans that will lead us out of the pandemic as quickly as possible and so far, unfortunately, I am left with the impression that the tunnel I spoke of earlier continues to get longer and longer. Finally, I have a message for our residents. We understand your frustrations. You have been put in an impossible situation, and many of you have risen to this challenge. Until we get effective vaccination in our region, I urge you to continue physical distancing and mask wearing. You are our first line of defense, and we need your help too.

Thousands lost in water treatment scam

publisher Apr 14, 2021 - 10:55am

A water treatment scam has surfaced in the area again, cautions the Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry Ontario Provincial Police detachment. April 6, the detachment responded to a report of a fraud in North Glengarry Township. The victim lost thousands of dollars after being contacted by an individual claiming to represent a water treatment business. The victim agreed to have a reverse osmosis system installed at his residence. But the product was never received. April 8, a person claiming to be a debt consolidator made arrangements to meet the victim. Seeking money, the person claimed that the victim’s name was on a list of people who were victims of scams related to air conditioning, furnace, and HVAC installations in the past and was attempting to assist him with consolidating his debts. Police intercepted the individual with the victim at a local bank and arrested a suspect. The identity of the suspect will be revealed once charges have been laid. The investigation continues. Under the new laws in Ontario certain door-to-door sales are banned: Air cleaners, air conditioners, air and water purifiers, duct cleaning services, furnaces, water filters, heaters, sater softeners, water treatment devices, and bundles of these goods and services. There are many ways to prevent becoming a victim. Be suspicious if you are approached for the repairs or work. Check identification and references of the company. Make sure the contractor is licensed. Get at least three written quotes for work that you need completed. Ask for an itemized bill for the repairs and materials. Do not give a cash deposit. Get a contract for the work being completed. Make any cheque payable to the company name and ensure the cheque is written in a way that can't be altered. If you are not sure of the situation you are in, ask for the individual to come back and get a phone number. Consult with a family member or close friend about the work and the price that is being suggested. If you feel the people attending your property are trying to intimidate you and are putting pressure on you, ask them to leave. Write down any information you may observe about their description, number of people, and the vehicles that they are using, especially a licence plate. Call 1- 888-310-1122 to report them to the OPP immediately. There are many credible and reputable contractors and businesses that will provide the above information requested by customers. 

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Schools to remain closed after break

publisher Apr 12, 2021 - 8:43pm
 
The Ontario government has decided to move elementary and secondary schools to remote learning following the April break. This move has been made in response to the rapid increase in COVID-19 cases, the increasing risks posed to the public by COVID-19 variants, and the massive spike in hospital admissions, the province says.
"We are seeing a rapidly deteriorating situation with a record number of COVID cases and hospital admissions threatening to overwhelm our health care system," said Premier Doug Ford. "As I have always said we will do whatever it takes to ensure everyone stays safe. By keeping kids home longer after spring break we will limit community transmission, take pressure off our hospitals and allow more time to rollout our COVID-19 vaccine plan."
With appropriate measures in place, schools have been safe places for learning throughout the pandemic, as confirmed by the Chief Medical Officer of Health and local medical officers of health and have demonstrated low rates of in-school transmission. However, increasing rates of community spread pose a threat to the health and safety of school communities. As a result, all publicly funded and private elementary and secondary schools in the province are to move to teacher-led remote learning when students return from the April break on April 19, 2021. Private schools operating in-person this week are to transition to remote learning by April 15, 2021. This action is being taken in support of the Government's broader efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19. Data will be assessed on an ongoing basis and health officials will be consulted to determine when it will be safe to resume in-person learning.
Child care for non-school aged children will remain open, before and after school programs will be closed and free emergency child care for the school-aged children of eligible health care and frontline workers will be provided. To protect the most vulnerable, boards will make provisions for continued in-person support for students with special education needs who require additional support that cannot be accommodated through remote learning.
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