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Peterborough to open emergency shelter, re-open select daycares for essential workers amid COVID-19 crisis

Peterborough daycares are expected to re-open for essential workers.
Peterborough daycares are expected to re-open for essential workers. Global News

Peterborough Public Health says some daycares in the city will be re-opening to support essential workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, medical officer of health, mentioned the daycares during Wednesday’s media briefing updating the region on the fight against COVID-19.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Peterborough closes city hall, daycare, public works, drop-in centre to public

Details on which daycares will re-open have yet to be determined. However, Salvaterra said they will be for children of essential workers, such as healthcare workers, only.

The City of Peterborough closed its daycare facilities on March 17. At the time, they were expected to remain closed until March 31.

“Our role will be to ensure that infection control measures will be followed,” said Salvaterra.

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New measures are being put in place to help the city’s vulnerable population.

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Peterborough Mayor Dianne Therrien via telephone announced that the Peterborough Sport and Wellness Centre “should be” open Wednesday to be used as a temporary emergency shelter for the city’s homeless.

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The purpose of the shelter is to improve physical distancing that the Murray Street overflow shelter and the Brock Mission men’s shelter cannot currently provide. The setup at the PWSC will include 45 to 50 beds but additional beds can be added, if necessary.

“They (city staff) were doing a lot of work yesterday (Tuesday) to get it all arranged,” said Therrien. “So that’s the plan.”

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Ontario schools won’t reopen on April 6, Premier Doug Ford says

Salvaterra noted Peterborough Public Health had an inspector at the Peterborough Sport and Wellness Centre on Wednesday morning.

Therrien says discussions continue on utilizing transit to help people relocate from downtown-area shelters to the temporary centre in the city’s west end near Fleming College.

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Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are asked to self-isolate for 14 days in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

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For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.