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LETTER: Ford's colour-coded lockdown system 'woefully inadequate' to handle caseload

'Let's not forget that each number in this caseload is a human life,' says letter writer
Pekka Reinio NDP candidate
Pekka Reinio, a former NDP candidate in Barrie-Innisfil, is shown in a file photo.

BarrieToday welcomes letters to the editor at [email protected]. Please include your daytime phone number and address (for verification of authorship, not publication). The following letter is from Pekka Reinio, a former NDP candidate in Barrie-Innisfil, about Premier Doug Ford's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

We are undergoing the biggest public health crisis in a century. Many young people, like my two kids, are studying in front of their laptops. Their grandfather has been isolated in his small apartment for eight months. Small businesses in Barrie and Innisfil are hurting badly as COVID pummels our economy.

Despite the unprecedented challenges that we face, Premier Doug Ford has thrown in the towel in our crucial fight against the pandemic. Ford’s wishful thinking and half-measures have allowed COVID to reach record numbers in Ontario. His new colour-coded lockdown system is woefully inadequate to address our rising COVID caseload.

Let's not forget that each number in this caseload is a human life.

In the just released Ontario budget, there was no new spending for public health, long-term care homes or education, each of which are considered the front lines in the fight against COVID. This failure will cost lives and businesses because we can't help our economy recover if the virus continues to spread.

In August, Ontario’s COVID numbers dropped below 100. Throughout the summer, Premier Ford, Health Minister Christine Elliott, and their health advisory team should have been focusing their time, resources and money on testing, contact tracing and isolation enforcement to keep those numbers low.

What we see instead is complacency. We rarely meet our testing capacity, contact tracing has broken down, flu shots are in short supply, and individual COVID test results are long-delayed.

Premier Ford has dropped the ball. Families are grieving. Businesses are exasperated.
Now, we are entering the winter season and a subsequent surge in the virus with no understandable plan going forward.

Businesses, families, and long-term care residents will continue to pay a steep price under Ford’s ineffective leadership. As we face a new wave of COVID cases, Ontario needs strong, thoughtful and responsible leadership to fight the pandemic, to protect our businesses, and to save lives.

Pekka Reinio