COVID-19 - Four Weeks In (April 5, 2020)

Good Sunday Morning!

And for those of you who observe Christian holidays, Happy Palm Sunday!

It is hard to keep track of time. It is almost Passover. One week until Easter, but each day is like the one before. For most of us, we are working from home and only going out for essential things.

I continue to work at a fever pitch to resolve issues for constituents stranded in various places around the world (and making real progress getting people home!) and helping businesses access help and arguing for more help with the government for those (far too many) falling between the cracks.

When did this all start? I look back to late December and early January as the news from Wuhan spread. This business news site from the US sets out its timeline. I reflect on my own timeline.

I remember a hurried hallway conversation with Health Minister Patty Hajdu in Parliament about moving ahead on pharmacare. She sighed and said that all anyone wanted to talk about was COVID-19. At that point, neither of us could have imagined that Canada would be in lock-down within weeks. When did we have that conversation? My best guess is early February.

February 18th I was on CTV Power Play. The MP panel was supposed to discuss the Wet’suwet’en situation but, at the last minute, the topic shifted to COVID19. Before going on air, I did a quick research into advice from Dr. Theresa Tam and the World Health Organization. We “knew” that Canada would largely be unaffected; it was countries that lacked good primary health care that should worry. I repeated this as well as that COVID-19 could not be spread by touching surfaces. We now know that was wrong, but the picture was evolving and this is, as we know, a very tricky virus previously unknown to science.

By March 13, I was standing in the House to give unanimous consent to adjourning until April 20.

I am going to somewhat arbitrarily pick March 9 for Day One of my timeline. That was the day of first tragic death at the Lynn Valley Care home in BC.

So, as I write you we are now at the end of Week 4. It seems like longer.

I hope wherever you are as you read my weekly missive, you are safe and well. If by yourself, I hope you have good connections by phone and internet with people you love. I am lucky. It is almost one year since John Kidder and I were married, so for the first time in many years, I am not alone.   Our plans for our anniversary have changed, as we anticipate another night at home! At least, I will be with Paul Manly and Jenica Atwin in an Earth Day virtual town hall! If you are a Green Party member, you should have already received an invitation by email. If you did not, let me know.

To bring you up to date on GOOD NEWS with nothing to do with COVID-19:

Stay well, stay safe! (Please read the P.S. about opportunities to hear from candidates in the Green Party federal council election)


Virtual Green federal council “Meet the candidates”

April 5 Young Greens 6 pm Eastern

April 6 Ontario 7 pm Eastern

April 7 Sask & Territories 7 pm Mountain

April 8 BC 7 pm Pacific

April 10 Executive national (VP English& Fund Rep) 6 pm Eastern

RSVP: write <[email protected]> to confirm your participation in the Zoom session for your region.

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