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Coronavirus: City of Barrie temporarily lays off portion of its workforce due to pandemic

The city has laid off 470 workers temporarily, including part-term recreation and theatre staff and part-time transit clerks, said a city spokesperson.
The city has laid off 470 workers temporarily, including part-term recreation and theatre staff and part-time transit clerks, said a city spokesperson. Nick Westoll / File / Global News

The City of Barrie has announced that it’s temporarily laying off a portion of its workforce as a result of COVID-19.

The city is temporarily laying off 470 part-time theatre and recreation staff, as well as part-time transit clerks.

“The downtown transit terminal is closed,” said Scott LaMantia, a city spokesperson.

“They would be the ones that would be selling the passes. Transit is free right now, so there’s no need for them at this point.”

READ MORE: 10 cases of coronavirus confirmed in Bradford, Ont., long-term care home

Barrie CAO Michael Prowse said the decision to lay off staff members wasn’t taken lightly.

“These are truly unprecedented times, and the city is faced with tough choices of how we operate during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Prowse said in a statement.

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“Our main goal is to keep our employees safe and healthy and get them back to work as soon as responsibly possible.”

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Prowse said the city will continue to follow coronavirus-related mandates that have been set out by the province.

As of Monday, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has confirmed a total of 98 local cases, including five deaths. In Ontario, there have been 4,347 cases.

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