June 9 – Appearance by the Minister of National Defence
Advice to the Minister - Canadian Armed Forces Assistance TO Long Term Care Facilities
Question: When will the Government provide military members deployed in long term care homes with the equipment they need, and the hazard pay they deserve?
- The Canadian Armed Forces always stand ready to assist communities across Canada.
- Military members are currently assisting vulnerable populations in Long Term Care Facilities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in Quebec and Ontario.
- We recognize that COVID-19 poses unique hazards for Canadian Armed Forces personnel operating in these facilities.
- The Canadian Armed Forces ensures its personnel are properly trained and equipped.
- This is why we defined Operation LASER, including the assistance military personnel are providing in these facilities, as a Special Duty Operation.
- The Chief of the Defence Staff has also tasked his staff to pursue hazard allowance for members directly engaged inside these facilities.
- That work is ongoing now.
- We will continue to support Canadian Armed Forces members as they provide assistance to communities across Canada.
If pressed on requested continued assistance to LTCF in Quebec
- Canadian Armed Forces members are currently making a real difference in thirteen long term care facilities in Quebec.
- Military personnel are proud to have provided assistance in a total of twenty-nine facilities in Quebec thus far.
- At the request of the province of Quebec, in the coming days, military personnel will be withdrawing from five centres where the situation has stabilized.
- During this period, the Canadian Armed Forces will be repositioning to other facilities in Quebec that require support.
- National Defence has received Quebec’s request for continued assistance and is currently assessing whether continued support can be provided.
If pressed on COVID-19 testing among CAF in LTCF
- Every day, military personnel risk their own health and safety to protect vulnerable Canadians.
- In both Ontario and Quebec, any military personnel who displays symptoms of COVID-19 is immediately removed from the facility and tested.
- We are now developing more stringent testing protocols for personnel, including those without symptoms.
- All military personnel will be tested before they start work in a long term care facility.
- Whenever a facility orders additional testing, military personnel within that facility will also be tested.
- Finally when the mission is over, all personnel will self-isolate for 14 days, and will be tested again before returning to their home units.
- These measures will be adopted to ensure the health of the force, of residents and staff, and of our overall mission in long-term care facilities.
Location of CAF assistance in LTCF
- Quebec: CAF personnel assisting in thirteen facilities in and around Montreal.
- 11 facilities on the island of Montreal
- 1 facilities in Saint-Lambert
- 1 facilities in Laval
- Ontario: CAF personnel assisting in four facilities in and around Toronto.
- 1 facility in Scarborough
- 1 facility in Etobicoke
- 2 facility in North York
COVID-19 cases within the CAF population providing support in LTCF
- Total: 51 cases as of June 8, 2020
- 36 Tested Positive in Quebec
- 15 Tested Positive in Ontario
Responsible Principals: Canadian Joint Operations Command, Strategic Joint Staff, Assistant Deputy Minister (Policy) June 9, 2020
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