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Alberta to massively expand COVID isolation centres

Premier Jason Kenney announced the centres will be expanded in Calgary and Edmonton, specifically aimed at two neighbourhoods in Calgary’s northeast and nine in Edmonton.




Alberta is “massively expanding” the use of isolation centres in the province – with specific emphasis in low income communities that are mainly ethnic neighbourhoods.

Premier Jason Kenney announced the centres will be expanded in Calgary and Edmonton, specifically aimed at two neighbourhoods in Calgary’s northeast and nine in Edmonton.

Kenney said people who have trouble self-isolating in those communities will be offered free stays for 14 days at local hotels – with culturally-appropraite meals, transportation and a a $625 payment once their isolation has been completed.

The cost for housing is about $160 a day, per person.

He said that is the same support offered to other Albertans who may have been displaced by natural disasters like floods and fires.

“We are here with real help,” Kenney said at a Tuesday afternoon press conference.

He said new “Covid Care” teams will be sent into the neighbourhoods with COVID-19 materials in 10 different languages and home care packages with face masks and hand sanitizer.

Kenney said people in the neighbourhoods are suffering through high infection rates “through no fault of their own” and noted many residents have “public-facing” jobs and have trouble speaking English.

He added the neighbourhoods tend to have lower incomes and higher density housing making it difficult for people to self isolate if they are sick.

“We must show empathy and compassion,” Kenney said.

“This pandemic has had a profound impact across the province, touching all our communities and all sectors of our economy – but for some, this impact has been even more severe. Alberta’s government will provide extra help to protect families in communities dealing with high rates of spread. We need to meet people where they are and help them to stay safe.”

A total of 16 hotels in Alberta will now offer COVID-19 housing – nine in Edmonton, six in Calgary and one in Peace River.

A total of 791 rooms will now be available in Calgary and 1,300 in Edmonton.

A total of 1,341 new cases were announced for Tuesday and an addition 11 more deaths.

On Monday, Alberta recorded a daily record of 1,887 new cases of COVID-19. There were 15 additional deaths, bringing the total death toll in Alberta to 733.

Earlier Tuesday, the first Pfizer vaccine doses were being prepared for the first day of immunizations in the province.

The shipment of 3,900 doses arrived by plane at YYC Monday night before being given out to health care workers in Edmonton and Calgary.

Sahra Kaahiye, a respiratory therapist at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital in Edmonton, and Tanya Harvey, an intensive care nurse at the Foothills Medical Centre Cell in Calgary, were the first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Kenney tweet

And in BC, the first health care worker there also received the vaccine Tuesday afternoon.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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  1. Charles Martell III

    December 17, 2020 at 1:22 pm

    So you take the Fake Test . . . and then get locked up . . . we ALL live in Wuhan NOW.
    How long till they come to your apt and weld the doors shut?

    “The PCR test was invented by Kary Mullis in 1985 but it was never intended for detecting disease; it’s primary applications included biomedical research and criminal forensics.

    Before his death in 2019 Mullis told reporters:

    ““Scientists are doing an awful lot of damage to the world in the name of helping it. I don’t mind attacking my own fraternity because I am ashamed of it.”

    –Kary Mullis, Inventor of Polymerase Chain Reaction

  2. Herry69

    December 17, 2020 at 6:48 am

    Scamdemic !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Charles Martell III

    December 16, 2020 at 12:21 pm

    Too bad Kenny didn’t do that for Seniors’ Care Home workers . . . say about 10 months ago . . . the death toll would likely be much smaller.

    Florida is quite NORMAL today . . . .

    Governor Ron DeSantis Holds Press Conference at Okeechobee Steakhouse in West Palm Beach 12.15.2020

    The Florida Governor holds a press conference at a local restaurant today promising that all small business owners, restaurants and bars in the state will remain open and free to conduct business. COVID-19 will be managed, but we will not destroy families with arbitrary rules and dictates holding no foundation in science. God Bless DeSantis !


  4. warrenzoell

    December 15, 2020 at 7:20 pm

    Has he lost his mind?
    How so easy it is to take away peoples natural rights. Eh Kenney?

  5. Allen

    December 15, 2020 at 5:49 pm

    Something smells off here.

    • warrenzoell

      December 15, 2020 at 7:20 pm

      The stink of Kenney often leaves that impression.

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Hockey arena backs down on banning unvaccinated kids

Within hours of the Western Standard posting the exclusive story, Oaten was contacted by the SLSFSC and advised of an update to their policy.




Public pressure has brought minor hockey out of the penalty box in Cochrane.

Following an exclusive story by the Western Standard on Saturday, along with mounting pressure from the community, a Cochrane sports facility has revamped its vaccine passport policy.  

The Cochrane Minor Hockey Association (CMHA) and Hockey Alberta were not mandating a vaccine passport system, but Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre (SLSFSC) announced it would be requiring proof of vaccine status for anyone 12 and up.

Within hours of the story being posted, CMHS President Cory Oaten was contacted by the SLSFSC and advised of an update to their policy with this statement: “Youth between the ages of 12 (vaccine eligible) to 18 years of age are exempt from the REP vaccination requirement to enter the facility for the purpose of participating in a youth organized sport organization. Examples include (but not limited to) Cochrane Minor Hockey, Ringette, Cochrane Minor Soccer, Lacrosse, Cochrane Figure Skating Club, Comets, Junior Lifeguard Club, etc.”

Although youth may access the facility without being vaccinated, all adult spectators, coaches, volunteers and organizers of any youth activity “must show proof of vaccination, proof of a negative test, or medical exemption to gain entry to SLSFSC premises.”

“Although this helps our kids get on the ice in Cochrane, it’s still an issue at lots of other facilities, especially in larger facilities in Calgary and Airdrie,” Oaten said.

Oaten, who works in the insurance industry, points out the “huge liability issue” this poses to his and other sports organizations.

“Originally, Spray Lakes pushed us to collect this medical documentation from our members,” he said.

The CMHA board consists of 18 volunteer members.

“They can’t put those expectations on a board of volunteers. It’s a big legal issue for us,” Oaten said, adding he and his board refuse to take responsibility for requiring proof of vaccine or the collection of their members’ private medical information.

Oaten was informed the SLSFSC will now have its own security checkpoints set up in the facility and will take responsibility for checking the vaccine status of anyone 18-plus entering the building.

Oaten anticipates families will still pull their kids from hockey and other sports programs as those who remain unvaccinated will not be permitted in the facility to accompany their child.

Hockey Alberta stated on their Facebook page they are working with the Alberta government on how last Wednesday’s announcement will affect hockey for Alberta players. Oaten has asked his members to hold off on making a decision to pull their child from the program until Hockey Alberta comes forward with their updated season plan.

The Western Standard reached out to the SLSFSC for comment but did not hear back in time for publication.

Risdon is a reporter for the Western Standard

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Nearly $400 million in commemorative holiday events planned for fed employees only

The Department of Canadian Heritage promises “large-scale commemoration events” for a September 30 holiday for federally regulated employees only.




It’ll cost hundreds of millions of dollars with federally regulated employees getting ready to party like it’s 2021, all on the public teat.

The Department of Canadian Heritage promises “large-scale commemoration events” for a September 30 holiday for federally regulated employees only.

Blacklock’s Reporter says the holiday will cost $388.9 million, by official estimate.

“The department will collaborate with national organizations for large-scale commemorative events on September 30,” staff wrote in a briefing note. It is the first federal observance of its kind.

The Senate on June 3 passed Bill C-5 An Act To Amend The Bills Of Exchange Act that designates September 30 as National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. The paid holiday applies only to federal employees including the RCMP and Canadian Armed Forces, and federally-regulated private sector workers at job sites like airports, banks, grain mills, marine shippers, radio stations and railways.

“This new annual statutory holiday on September 30 will ensure public commemoration of the tragic history and legacy of Residential Schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process,” said the briefing note National Day For Truth And Reconciliation. Costs of planned events were estimated at $2.7 million.

Parliament passed the holiday bill without a dissenting vote though senators in final debate questioned its usefulness. “What could long-term, dedicated and stable funding mean for food security, for closing the infrastructure gap which is huge, for finally ending boiled water advisories, for dealing with acute housing shortfalls in Indigenous communities?” asked Senator Dennis Patterson (Nunavut).

“It is hard for me to hear about the hundreds of millions of dollars that will go to provide federal employees a paid day off when I think about how an ongoing commitment of what we have heard today would be $388.9 million per annum for this holiday,” said Patterson.

“It would be an insult to my family members, to my friends and to the memories of those survivors I have lost along the way if this day were to become yet another paid day at the cottage for federal workers,” said Patterson. “It needs to truly be a day of remembrance and learning.”

The Treasury Board said direct costs were $165.9 million in the federal public service. “Most of that is in lost productivity,” Stephen Diotte, executive director of human resources, told the Senate June 3.

“The balance of it is payments required for employees in 24/7 work environments like corrections or Canada Border Services or ships’ crews and officers in the Department of National Defence and Department of Fisheries,” said Diotte.

The $165.9 million figure did not include holiday pay or overtime for Crown corporation employees. “I don’t have those figures,” said Diotte.

The labour department said airlines, marine shippers and other federally-regulated private sector companies would pay another $223 million annually.

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City of Edmonton mandates COVID jabs

The e-mail did not contain what disciplinary actions the city would take against staff who don’t get jabbed.




City of Edmonton employees have less than a month to get jabbed against COVID-19, officials said in a new mandatory vaccine policy announced Monday.

City Manager Andre Corbould said in an e-mail to all staff they will have to be vaccinated by November 15.

“Last week, I shared the results from the Employee COVID-19 Vaccination Disclosure Policy (A1700) with you. The Executive Leadership Team (ELT) used this information to determine if additional steps were necessary to protect you, keep our facilities safe and operational, and stop the spread of COVID-19,” said Corbould.

“According to the disclosure results, 72% of employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. In the context of the fourth wave in Alberta and rising cases in our own employees, that level is not high enough to give us confidence that we are minimizing the hazard of COVID-19 in the workplace to the greatest extent possible.

“As a result, the City of Edmonton is introducing a COVID-19 vaccination policy for all City of Edmonton employees effective today, September 20, 2021. All employees will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (two weeks after receiving the final dose of a COVID-19 vaccine) by Nov. 15, 2021.”

Courbould said he realizes the decision is bound to set off a storm of controversy.

“While I recognize this decision may be difficult for some, I expect everyone to behave respectfully to one another as this decision is implemented. ELT made this decision, not your supervisor. We will not tolerate disrespectful or abusive behaviour or communications,” he wrote.

“This is a significant step for our organization, and an essential safety measure for keeping our workplaces safe.”

The e-mail did not contain what disciplinary actions the city would take against staff who don’t get jabbed.

Earlier this month, the City of Calgary also instituted a mandatory vaccination requirement.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

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