Based on data collected by Toronto Public Health over the course of the pandemic, the City has worked to develop an enhanced plan to provide targeted support to neighbourhoods experiencing higher COVID-19 case rates – many of these neighbourhoods are in the northwest and northeast of the city. Mayor John Tory announced an updated and enhanced set of targeted COVID-19 measures on Monday to help the city’s most vulnerable residents during the lockdown.
These targeted COVID-19 equity measures, which build on protections already implemented, include sharing public health information, improving access to COVID-19 testing, and providing critical supports to individuals and their families during this lockdown.
Measures to expand testing sites include increasing testing in neighbourhoods experiencing higher COVID-19 case rates, expanding the number of provincial testing sites using City facilities and using buses for mobile testing as well as providing more transportation to testing sites and extending testing site hours.
The City is also looking to intensify community outreach and engagement among residents who face multiple barriers (i.e. food support, income services, etc.) by providing relevant public education to residents and employers. Residents will also receive masks to support their efforts to stay safe. Strong community partners, trusted by residents in neighbourhoods experiencing higher COVID-19 case rates, are critical to ensuring that these measures are implemented effectively.
For those who test positive and are unable to work due to mandatory isolation, the City acknowledges the importance of improving access to emergency assistance which includes advocating for residential eviction protection, income supports, and newcomer access to COVID-19 services and supports.