MARCH 22, 2020

Today, March 22, 2020:

Nova Scotia declared a provincial state of emergency to help contain the spread of COVID-19. Nova Scotians should not leave the province and only leave home for essential items and services.

A state of emergency gives government broad powers to do whatever is necessary for the safety and protection of Nova Scotians.

“These decisions were not made lightly and should signal to Nova Scotians the seriousness of what’s before us,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “These orders may seem harsh but they are absolutely necessary. We all have a moral and legal obligation to obey if we want to bring the spread of COVID-19 under control.”

Under the state of emergency:

– Nova Scotia borders will tighten to travellers and all entry points (land, sea, air) will be closely managed starting Monday, March 23, at 6 a.m., Nova Scotians should only leave if essential. Anyone entering the province will be stopped, questioned and told to self-isolate for 14 days.

Exemptions for cross-border travel include healthy workers in trades and transportations sectors who move goods and people (e.g. truck drivers);
healthy people going to work (e.g. health-care workers); and people travelling into the province for essential health services (e.g. chemotherapy treatment)

Effective immediately, provincial parks, beaches and tourist attractions are closed. Provincial trails will remain open for exercise.

Gathering limits and social distancing guidelines must be followed police will be authorized to enforce orders under the Health Protection Act. If Nova Scotians and businesses do not practice social distancing and self-isolation, they will face fines of $1,000 for individuals and $7,500 for businesses. Multiple fines can be given each day an individual or business fails to comply. Police can also enforce offences under the Emergency Management Act.

For example, fines for charging higher than fair market prices for goods and services
there are several groups who are essential and exempt from gathering limits. They include but are not limited to grocery stores, gas stations and pharmacies. If possible, one person per family should be designated to do these tasks. Other groups include construction sites, health-care services, community services (e.g. child protection), criminal justice services and law enforcement

New orders in effect under the Health Protection Act include:

– effective immediately, social gatherings of more than five people are prohibited
any workplace or business that is not deemed  – essential can remain open as long as a two-metre or six-foot distance can be maintained.

– Workspaces must also be cleaned and disinfected at a minimum of twice daily or as required and employees follow proper hygiene
dentists can no longer practice dentistry in their offices unless they deem it necessary to perform an emergency dental procedure in the best interest of the patient’s health (in effect March 21)

“This is a significant adjustment for all of us and people are understandably anxious about the changes in our daily lives,” said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health. “Nova Scotians must follow public health direction – practice good hygiene, keep a social distance of six feet and self-isolate for 14 days if you have travelled outside the province or are feeling unwell. It’s up to all of us.”

Seven new cases were identified on Saturday, March 21. All are travel-related or connected to an earlier case. To date, Nova Scotia has 28 positive test results and 2088 negative cases. The 28 individuals affected range in age from late-teens to mid-70’s. Two cases are hospitalized.

The QEII Health Sciences Centre’s Microbiology Lab is now certified to report positive and negative tests for COVID-19. Tests no longer have to be sent to the National Microbiology Lab in Winnipeg.

If you have been in close contact with someone who has travelled and are experiencing fever and/or a new cough you should complete the online questionnaire before calling 811. The online questionnaire can be found at: https://811.novascotia.ca/

Nova Scotians can find accurate, up-to-date information, handwashing posters and fact sheets at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus .

Quick Facts:

testing numbers are updated daily at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus

Nova Scotia’s Health Protection Act gives the chief medical officer of health the authority to give advice to protect public health and decrease risk to public health presented by communicable diseases such as COVID-19 the state of emergency is declared under the Emergency Management Act and comes into effect today, March 22, at noon until noon, April 5.

Under the state of emergency government can control or prohibit assembly as well as travel to and from areas. It can also coordinate commerce activity and emergency responders high-touch surfaces in homes and workspaces should be cleaned and disinfected with store bought cleaning products or a solution made up of one part bleach to nine parts water

Additional Resources:

The Public Health Agency of Canada maintains a list of affected areas: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/health-professionals/covid-19-affected-areas-list.html

Government of Canada:

https://canada.ca/coronavirus

Government of Canada toll-free information line 1-833-784-4397

Nova Scotia’s Emergency Management Act:

https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/emergency%20management.pdf

Nova Scotia’s Health Protection Act:

https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/health%20protection.pdf

Fact sheet about cleaning and disinfecting for businesses: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/COVID-19-Fact-Sheet-Business.pdf

Fact sheet about cleaning and disinfecting for families: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/COVID-19-Fact-Sheet-Families.pdf

Lets’s remember The Three Cs.-CARING, COMMUNITY, and COMMON SENSE.

MARCH 20, 2020

The Truro & Colchester Chamber of Commerce is closely monitoring the reports of COVID-19 and will be providing our members with information about the implications of the virus on the business community. As of March 20, there have been 5 confirmed cases of the virus in Nova Scotia, 10 presumptive positive cases and 1546 negative tests.

Included below is a news release recently issued by the province outlining the details of one additional presumptive COVID-19 case. There are now 15 cases of COVID-19 in Nova Scotia.

Premier Stephen McNeil, Minister of Business Geoff MacLellan, and chief medical officer of health Dr. Robert Strang will provide an update at about 3 p.m.

This update will be livestreamed at https://novascotia.ca/stayinformed/webcast .

A recording of the news conference will be available shortly after it concludes on the NS Gov Youtube page: https://www.youtube.com/user/nsgov

Please share this information with your staff, board members and stakeholders. We also ask for your support on social media by sharing accurate information from the Department of Health and Wellness and Nova Scotia Government social media channels. Follow them @nsheath and @nsgov on Twitter and https://www.facebook.com/NovaScotiaHealthAndWellness/ and https://www.facebook.com/nsgov/ on Facebook.

 

MARCH 19, 2020

The Truro & Colchester Chamber of Commerce is closely monitoring the reports of COVID-19 and will be providing our members with information about the implications of the virus on the business community. As of March 19, there have been 5 confirmed cases of the virus in Nova Scotia, 9 presumptive positive cases and 1373 negative tests. Two new cases were identified Wednesday, March 18. Both are travel-related.

The cases are located across the province. Northern Nova Scotia remains the only region without a positive case of COVID-19 at this time. The 14 individuals affected range in age from early 30’s to mid-70’s. Public health has been in contact with these individuals and working to identify others who may have come in close contact with them. Those individuals are also being directed to self-isolate at home, away from the public, for 14 days.

Anyone who has travelled outside of Canada must self-isolate for 14 days when they return to Nova Scotia. If you have been in close contact with someone who has travelled and are experiencing fever (above 38 C) and/or new cough you should complete the online questionnaire before calling 811. The online questionnaire can be found at: https://811.novascotia.ca/

Effective midnight, Thursday, March 19 personal service and fitness establishments such as hair salon, barber shops, spas, nail salons, body art establishments and gyms must shut down.

 

MARCH 17, 2020

As of March 17, there have been 1 confirmed cases of the virus in Nova Scotia, 6 presumptive positive cases and 934 negative tests.

Thank you to Denis James and Anne Marie Manley at Patterson Law for answering our questions this afternoon. Whether you are an employer or an employee, everyone has questions right now. For more information regarding employment we’ve put together a list of links to help you out.

Labour & Advanced Education
https://novascotia.ca/lae

Legal Info Nova Scotia
https://www.legalinfo.org

Futureworx Nova Scotia
https://futureworx.ca/

Service Canada
https://www.canada.ca/…/corpo…/portfolio/service-canada.html

Employment Advisor Nova Scotia
http://oeans.ca

Please remember that up to date information regarding COVID-19 can also be found from the Nova Scotia Government at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus

 

MARCH 16, 2020

As of March 16, there have been no confirmed cases of the virus in Nova Scotia, 5 presumptive positive cases and 671 negative tests.

The Truro & Colchester Chamber of Commerce understands the importance of having reliable information during this time. We will be hosting a Facebook live event on Tuesday, March 17th at 1:00pm with Denis James, Labour and Employment Lawyer with Patterson Law. Questions may be submitted in advance by leaving a comment below, by emailing [email protected] or via Facebook messenger.

 

MARCH 12, 2020

As of March 12, there have been no confirmed cases of the virus in Nova Scotia. However, businesses should have plans in place to be prepared for its most-likely arrival in the province as the virus spreads.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce will host a teleconference call today with its Chamber network, including the Truro and Colchester Chamber of Commerce, to discuss the implications on business and identify supports to assist with navigating this pandemic.

To help businesses prepare for and manage through a potential COVID-19 escalation in Canada, the Canadian Chamber has developed a brief guide source from a number of best practice documents and designed to assist business planning and continuity efforts. Information on Pandemic Preparedness for Business can be accessed here:

http://www.chamber.ca/resources/pandemic-preparedness/?fbclid=IwAR2zyLZtLC1GlSFxPxNLkDpzpMWxaAFlZyIV0hGN8anSyH7scHq_II-uGAc

The Province of Nova Scotia has launched a website page with links to resources on COVID-19 such as alerts and notices, how to protect yourself, when to seek help, travel advisories, reporting and the government response.

https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/?fbclid=IwAR2yjlqf62Jjv5yIsHzv6wnt7dMiEx4hGsr9tvZd-LLyMM4hMjb3yU1jj-c

The Town of Truro has released the following public notice:

Public notice – Town of Truro

Download:

COVID-19-Fact-Sheet-Business

Federal Government Resources:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.html

The Chamber will provide more information and updates as it becomes available.

In consideration of upcoming meetings and events hosted by the Chamber, we will continue to monitor the threat posed to health by COVID-19 virus, including updates from the Nova Scotia government. All events remain scheduled at this time. In the event of a cancellation those registered would be advised by email and event notices would be posted on the Chamber social media channels and Website.

We are adding flexibility to our event refund policy to further encourage anyone with symptoms, including a fever and signs of respiratory illness, such as coughing or difficulty breathing to not attend.

More in the news:

https://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/canada-pulling-out-all-the-stops-to-fight-covid-19-trudeau-on-1b-plan-1.4848070

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/canada/trudeau-goes-into-self-isolation-over-covid-19/ar-BB116rxR