Ontario confirms 42 new cases of COVID-19, the biggest single-day jump so far
Chris Fox, CP24.com
Published Sunday, March 15, 2020 9:20AM EDT
Last Updated Sunday, March 15, 2020 7:33PM EDT
Ontario has confirmed 42 new cases of COVID-19, the biggest single-day jump since it started tracking the numbers.
The new cases push the total number in the province to 145, which includes five recoveries.
The jump comes after officials confirmed 24 new cases in the province on Saturday and 19 on Friday.
Fourteen of the new cases involve Toronto residents while five are from Peel Region, three are from York Region and two are from Durham Region. There are also three new cases in Hamilton.
That comes after Hamilton officials announced that there are now five confirmed cases of the virus in the city, including one involving a three-month old baby.
Of the new cases reported on Sunday morning, all but one have the method of transmission listed as “pending.”
The lone exception is a case in Niagara Region involving a woman in her 50s who had recently returned from Egypt.
In a statement Niagara Region Public Health and Emergency Services said that individual “has interacted only with a family member during the time she may have been contagious, and has not exposed anyone in the community.”
The data also reveals that all of the new cases involve individuals who are “self-isolating” at home with the exception of one patient in Simcoe Muskoka who has been hospitalized.
Three more cases were confirmed on Sunday afternoon. Two of the new cases are a man and a woman in their 50s from Grey Bruce. Officials said they contracted the virus on a cruise. The other case involves a Peterborough man in his 30s who travelled to Spain and Portugal.
All three are self-isolating.
Ford government preparing emergency legislation
As the number of cases of COVID-19 in the province continues to rise, a spokesperson for Premier Doug Ford has confirmed that he has directed members of his government to “draft legislation that will protect hardworking Ontarians and their families.”
The legislation would “include direction to employers to ensure protected leave and remove the requirement for employees to obtain sick notes prior to taking time off for self-isolation or quarantine, or to provide care for those who are in self-isolation or quarantine,” according to the spokesperson.
Shortly after coming to office in 2018, Ford's government repealed labour legislation introduced by the previous government that gave workers two paid sick days a year and banned the practice of requiring sick notes.
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, who has been calling for such measures to be reinstated, said the official opposition has been in touch with the government and is helping to draft and pass the emergency legislation to help Ontarians cope with the economic impact of COVID-19.
“The NDP will be working hard to ensure the emergency legislation helps people take time off work without losing a paycheque,” said Horwath in a statement. “We want to ensure no one faces consequences for missing a rent or mortgage payment through no fault of their own.
So far, Ontario has tested a total of 8,462 people and is awaiting results for 1,316 of those tests.
- with files from The Canadian Press