Getting Canada Safely Back to Work

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Even in trying times, we have much to be thankful for. 

As always, Canadians have answered the call. Despite the federal government's early ignorance on securing the border, and federal and provincial flip-flopping on public health guidelines, we've bested our flawed, relentlessly-negative pandemic modelling at nearly every turn, our treatments are growing stronger, and we now know exactly who is at most risk, and how to greater protect them.

But now, the conversation is evolving rapidly. The downstream effects of lockdowns could cost us tens-of-thousands of Canadian small businesses. Hundreds-of-thousands of essential surgeries and millions of screenings have already been missed or delayed. Our mental and physical health crisis is very real. Children are being needlessly harmed. And overdose deaths are skyrocketing.

For those not privileged enough to comfortably work from home or collect a public sector paycheque, this situation is dire. How dire? Over 90% of our supporters have told us they simply cannot return to another lockdown.

And yet, 200 in line at Costco, and 100 inside a Walmart is still "safe", but, for example, 1-2 customers in a hyper-compliant independent store is often an absolute no. It's the kind of unscientific government restriction that has small business owners defeated, and in tears.

Even the normally-reserved President of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business has called these kinds of lockdown policies "disgusting."

"These deepening small businesses restrictions, without evidence, are politics playing science, and are doing nothing to actually protect those at risk," says NCC President Peter Coleman.

The media fear-mongering and the government blame game simply must stop. Canadians deserve better.

We all deserve a scientific, rational, balanced approach to dealing with a now-endemic virus. Especially now that a wide-spread vaccine option is available.

Greater public health matters. Mental health matters. The health of small business matters.

So what are we calling for?

First and foremost, the priority must be on better funding and protections (rapid testing for employees and visitors) in our LTC homes -- where the vast majority of deaths have occurred.

Secondly, for the the continuation of indoor social-distancing measures for the near future -- but without the shameful abuse of Draconian bylaw enforcement. No Canadian family should ever be ticketed $800 for merely existing. That's not the Canadian way. And it never should be.

Thirdly, an end to quarantine hotels and detention centres for healthy Canadian travellers. Rapid testing, and home isolation, is enough. Charter rights matter -- especially in challenging times.

And finally, we are calling on the provincial governments to end "non-essential service" restrictions, and to stay in their final phases of re-openings, with health and work-place safety guidelines still firmly in place. 

It's time to permanently move on from collateral damage-inducing lockdowns. SIGN the petition below and SHARE if you agree. 

Here's to the push for better business, better governance, and a better balance that follows the science -- NOT the politics.

Here's to better days ahead.

 

Founded in 1967, the NCC is a pioneering non-profit advocate for the Canadian taxpayer.

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