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Coronavirus: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on May 26

Coronavirus: Military personnel raise concerns over conditions at Ontario long-term care homes
Military personnel sent to nursing homes in Ontario have observed shocking conditions, including “blatant disregard” for infection control measures, mistreatment of residents and a level of care described as “horrible,” according to documents obtained by Global News. Ottawa bureau chief Mercedes Stephenson has the details.

Here is a roundup of the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Tuesday:

Ontario reports 287 new coronavirus cases, lowest since end of March

Ontario reported 287 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Tuesday, the lowest daily case number within a 24-hour period we’ve seen since March 31. The provincial total now sits at 26,191 cases.

Tuesday’s report marks an increase of 1.1 per cent in total cumulative cases — the last time we saw daily cases in the 200s was May 10 and previous to that in March.

The death toll has risen to 2,123 as 21 more deaths were reported.

Meanwhile, 19,958 people have recovered from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, which is 76 per cent of cases.

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Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 65 per cent of all cases in the province.

READ MORE: Ontario reports 287 new coronavirus cases, lowest since end of March

Status of cases in Toronto

Toronto officials say there are a total of 10,373 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 161 compared to Monday.

A total of 7,627 cases are considered resolved.

There are 365 people in hospital with the virus, with 89 in intensive care.

There have been 768 COVID-19-related deaths in the city.

Military teams raise concerns about conditions at Ontario care homes

Military personnel sent to nursing homes in Ontario have observed shocking conditions, including “blatant disregard” for infection control measures, mistreatment of residents and a level of care described as “horrible,” according to documents obtained by Global News.

Canadian Armed Forces teams deployed to five of the province’s worst-hit long-term care homes to help control COVID-19 have raised concerns about each of the facilities, describing the care as ranging from below best practices to “borderline abusive, if not abusive” and worse, the documents show.

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The documents obtained by Global News said soldiers had witnessed cockroaches, flies and rotten food, residents left in soiled diapers and crying out for help for lengthy periods without any response.

READ MORE: Military teams raise concerns about conditions at Ontario care homes

Doug Ford reacts to ‘horrific’ military report on five Ontario long-term care homes
Doug Ford reacts to ‘horrific’ military report on five Ontario long-term care homes

Horwath calls for long-term care minister’s resignation

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Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is calling for the resignation of the province’s long-term care minister after a report by the Canadian Armed Forces was released detailing disturbing allegations of horrific conditions inside five of the province’s long-term care homes.

Horwath said Merrilee Fullerton must immediately resign and the province must take steps to ensure more residents in care homes don’t reside under similar conditions.

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READ MORE: Ontario NDP leader calls for long-term care minister’s resignation after disturbing report

City of Toronto opens emergency cooling centres during heat wave

The City of Toronto has opened up six emergency cooling centres as temperatures soar into the 30s.

Environment Canada issued a heat warning on Monday that is expected to last until Thursday as temperatures continue to hit the 30 C mark with humidex values into the mid and upper 30s expected by the afternoon, the weather agency said.

The six cooling centres will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Here is a list of the open locations.

READ MORE: City of Toronto opens emergency cooling centres during heat wave

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Porter Airlines extends suspension of flights again to July 29

Porter Airlines is extending the suspension of all of its flights by another month until July 29.

Chief executive Michael Deluce says the ongoing uncertainty due to government travel restrictions, including border closures, is impacting the airline’s ability to operate flights.

Porter says seasonal summer markets that it planned to serve this year are being cancelled as part of the deferral.

READ MORE: Porter Airlines extends suspension of flights again to July 29

CAMH survey looks at binge drinking, financial anxiety during coronavirus pandemic

A recent survey of about 1,000 Canadians suggests heavy drinking is highest among younger people and those worried about personal finances due to the pandemic.

The survey conducted between May 8 and 12 and commissioned by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health shows nearly 30 per cent of those between 18 and 39 reported heavy episodic drinking at least once in the previous week.

In the CAMH survey run by research firm Delvinia, nearly 24 per cent of the total number of respondents reported heavy episodic drinking, or binge drinking, which for women is considered four or more drinks on one occasion and five or more drinks for men.

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READ MORE: CAMH survey looks at binge drinking, financial anxiety during coronavirus pandemic

Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders gets tested for COVID-19

Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders said on Twitter Tuesday that he got tested for coronavirus.

Saunders said he does not have symptoms but that as first responders it can be difficult to always maintain physical distancing in doing their jobs.

“We do our best to protect the public and getting tested is important,” Saunders wrote.

Saunders is asking the public to follow public health directives on curbing the spread of the virus.

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— With files from The Canadian Press & Global News’ Mercedes Stephenson and Stewart Bell.