Niagara’s Largest Business Group Vents Over Ford’s Stay-At-Home Order

“Sudden restrictions pose significant costs to businesses and should be avoided wherever possible, especially when public health officials have been warning that such measures will be necessary for weeks.”

A News Release from the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC)

Posted April 7th, 2021 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – Public health officials have indicated that it is necessary to strengthen the restrictions placed upon the province of Ontario in order to contain the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC)  believes that expert advice should be heeded to safeguard public health and avoid the consequences of an out-of-control pandemic, which will not only result in loss of life, but a far deeper economic recession.

Timing of announcements

The GNCC notes that, once again, these measures are being imposed with virtually no notice, with imposition following announcement by a matter of hours.

Sudden restrictions pose significant costs to businesses and should be avoided wherever possible, especially when public health officials have been warning that such measures will be necessary for weeks.

Need for further support

Statistics Canada data indicate that more than half of businesses do not know how long they could continue to operate at their current level of revenue and expenditures before considering closure or bankruptcy. More than 20% reported they would have to lay off staff within a year.

One-quarter of businesses in accommodation and food services will close within a year at their current level of revenue and expenditures. Over half of businesses in this sector do not have the ability to take on more debt.

These data were gathered before the new lockdown/stay-at-home orders were announced, which will only make these statistics worse. Even with the recent announcement of the extended small business grant program, more support will be needed to avoid closures and job losses.

Stay-at-home enforcement

While the government has placed restrictions upon businesses, appointed officers to inspect them and ensure that orders are being followed, and made the penalties for non-compliance clear, the enforcement of stay-at-home orders and the penalties for individual violations are open to question.

The GNCC believes that the individual behaviours which contribute to the spread of SARS-CoV-2, such as unnecessary travel and multi-household gatherings, should be restricted, enforced, and penalized as least as much as business activities.

Testing and tracing

Now as before, one of the reasons why the virus is spreading so fast and why severe, blanket measures are therefore necessary is insufficient testing and tracing capacity, and consequently insufficient data on the sources of community spread. The GNCC urges governments to allocate more resources to tracing and testing which will allow us to isolate outbreaks before they become too large.

Vaccination gap

The only permanent end to lockdowns and restrictions will come with mass vaccination. Only 11.4% of Ontarians have received at least one dose, and only 2.2% are fully vaccinated.

The United States has already fully vaccinated almost one in five of its people, the UK almost one in ten, and France, Germany, and Italy have all achieved rates more than double that of Canada’s. Greater urgency and more resources are clearly needed for our vaccination programs.

We ask that decisions on who is vaccinated, and when, should be purely science-based. Vaccination policies should be continuously reviewed by experts to assure their efficacy and adjusted as needed.

We also ask the public sector to leverage the expertise, capacities and resources of businesses to support vaccination distribution, and improved testing and tracing capacities.

The Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce is the largest business organization in Niagara and the second-largest Chamber of Commerce in Ontario, with 1,500 members representing 50,000 employees. More information on the GNCC is available at gncc.ca<https://gncc.ca/&gt; .

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

One response to “Niagara’s Largest Business Group Vents Over Ford’s Stay-At-Home Order

  1. Linda McKellar

    The second dose of vaccine should also be given according to the prescribed 21 to 28 days and not 4 months as they are doing. The vaccine has not been used long enough to verify that it will retain adequate effectiveness up to that time period. Some are going with a “presumption” that it “might”. They should go with what the scientists have decided to date, not the convenience of the politicians. Maximum effectiveness is 21 to 28 days for the second dose.
    If the second dose comes 4 months later the efficacy might be significantly reduced by that time. Just as with antibiotics, will their effectiveness be lost by giving an ineffective dose and not following the protocol? If the vaccine’s efficacy is reduced due to the 4 month wait, will that enable the virus to mutate just as bacteria mutate and become resistant if antibiotics are not taken as prescribed? Many epidemiologists are expressing this fear.
    I know they want to make everybody happy by giving at least one dose to everyone but they may in fact be making things worse. Get the politicians out of the equation. They have botched this horribly! They are idiots with the medical expertise of a gnat. I bet they have had their shots!

    Like

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