Halton Mayors Release a Statement Against Lockdown

By: Laura Steiner
The Mayors of all four Halton municipalities have released a joint statement coming out against a lockdown.  The statement comes on the same day as a call for a 28 day province-wide lockdown from the Ontario Hospitals’ Association.(OHA)
The statement reads: “We the local elected Heads of Council of Halton Region, Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton, and Oakville are not in support of a GTHA-wide lockdown.  We were not consulted nor were any of us a party to any discussions on the topic,” Halton has spent the last 30 days in the red or restricted zone.
It continues. “We follow the direction and advice of our local Medical Officer of Health and will continue to do so.  We encourage the Heads of other Councils to focus on their own areas of jurisdiction,” Halton Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Hamidah Meghani has advised residents avoid social gatherings, and only venture out for necessities such as groceries, medical appointments, and for fitness.
Wednesday, and Thursday saw a collective increase of 167 cases.   As of Thursday, Halton hospitals have an acute care occupancy 95%, and an ICU bed occupancy of 89%.  44 cases of COVID-19 are confirmed in Halton hospitals with 7 currently in ICU.  “We also stand ready to assist our neighbours with any hospital surge requirements, including the Pandemic Response Expansion Units,” the statement ends.  Meghani updated Council at its December 16, meeting. A lot of questions from councillors  centered on how many patients in Halton hospitals are from neighbouring regions under lockdown where hospitals are overstretched.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford is meeting this morning with Ontario Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams, as well as hospital leaders.  He is expected to announce stricter measures later today.