COVID-19 and Ward 10 Updates - December 9th

Dear friends,

New data released earlier this week by Toronto Public Health on breakthrough infections shows that getting vaccinated remains the best way to protect yourself and our city against COVID-19.

The data shows breakthrough infections happening in only 0.17% of fully vaccinated individuals in the city. This represents 3,936 cases among almost 2.3 million Toronto residents 12 and older who were fully vaccinated at the time the data analysis was completed.

Additionally, this shows us that individuals who are unvaccinated are two times more likely to contract COVID-19, five times more likely to become hospitalized, and 20 times more likely to be admitted to ICU, compared to those who are fully vaccinated. 

As we can see from these numbers, breakthrough infections are rare and vaccination remains one of the most important steps we can take to protect ourselves and our community. This is why it is essential for all family members to get vaccinated as soon as they are eligible — including kids five to 11 years old, and adults eligible for third doses. 

At the City of Toronto, we are continuing to do our part to make getting vaccinated as accessible as possible for every Torontonian. Help protect our city, and book your vaccination appointment today for yourself or your loved one.

Sincerely,

Joe


In this Edition

  1. Team Toronto Kids Update – More than 60,000 Doses Administered
  2. Announcing Special Guests and Giveaways for Toronto Kids Vaccine Day at Scotiabank Arena 
  3. Expanded Third Dose Eligibility to 50 Plus – Effective Monday, December 13
  4. Board of Health Approves the Toronto Model – A Comprehensive Health Approach to Ending the Overdose Crisis
  5. Garden of the Greek Gods Update
  6. Douro-Wellington Bikeway – Share your Feedback
  7. The Bentway Skate Trail Opens December 18
  8. Pop-Up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics in Ward 10
  9. Resources and Webinars for Small Businesses

1. Team Toronto Kids Update – More than 60,000 Doses Administered

In less than two weeks, Team Toronto has vaccinated more than a quarter of all five to 11 year olds in our city. As of December 6, more than 60,000 doses had been administered, and that number continues to grow. 

With tens of thousands more appointments already booked in the weeks ahead – and with our Scotiabank Arena clinic coming up on December 12th – we're off to a remarkable start. Team Toronto is continuing our work to ensure vaccines are accessible for all kids across our city. 

School-based clinics

This week, Toronto Public Health and Team Toronto partners are operating almost 50 school-based clinics as part of a data-driven and needs-based approach. As part of its neighbourhood-focused strategy, this initial phase offers 230 school-based COVID-19 vaccination clinics in 34 neighbourhoods reaching 55,000 children. Parents and guardians will be notified directly through their school, when a school-based vaccination clinic is being held.

Toronto Public Health is also working with Ontario Health Team (OHT) partners to identify a schedule for mobile pop-up and school-based clinics over the holidays when schools are closed. More details on the final plan will be shared once the information is confirmed.

VaxTO and Telephone Town Halls to Support Caregivers

We have announced the return of VaxTO to support our Team Toronto Kids campaign. Engagement strategies through VaxTO will include:

  • 500,000 broadcast voice mails 
  • 2 city-wide telephone town halls with medical experts 
  • Patch-through calling to connect people to vaccine appointments 
  • A text line in 14 languages

Parents and caregivers are invited to two telephone town halls where they can ask questions of an Associate Medical Officer of Health from Toronto Public Health and a paediatrician from the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids). The telephone town halls are scheduled for Tuesday, December 14 at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday, December 18 at 1 p.m.

Residents can join the telephone town halls by calling 1-833-490-0778 or by tuning in via webstream.

Learn more about telephone town halls, find a City clinic or pharmacy location and be linked to more information by texting “VACCINE” to 1-833-750-0888. This service is offered in 14 languages.


2. Announcing Special Guests and Giveaways for Toronto Kids Vaccine Day at Scotiabank Arena 

Team Toronto has lined up exciting partnerships that will make Toronto Kids Vaccine Day at Scotiabank Arena even more exciting for the city’s five to 11 year-old public health superheroes.

Running from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, December 12, Toronto Kids Vaccine Day has been designed top to bottom with children in mind. The one-day-only special event is superhero themed, with child-friendly branding, activities, giveaways of basketball and hockey tickets and jerseys and entertainment by KiSS 92.5’s DJ Clymaxxx and CityTV Breakfast Television host Devo Brown.

A Toronto Fire truck and Blinky the Toronto Police Car will be parked outside Scotiabank Arena to greet children and families. Inside the clinic, families may catch Toronto mascots Carlton the Bear, The Raptor, Stripes and Duke the Dog, their favourite Paw Patrol characters Chase and Skye, or Toronto first responder mascot Sparky the Fire Dog. There will also be Toronto Police support dogs on site to help children and families feel comfortable.

Team Toronto has been working behind the scenes to make the day memorable for everyone involved. Thanks to the generosity of partners, Toronto Kids Vaccine Day now includes a number of exciting giveaways and offers:

  • Scotiabank has provided a limited number of Toronto Maple Leafs tickets, Toronto Raptors tickets and jerseys to be given away throughout the day.
  • Bell is also giving away Raptors 905 tickets.
  • Sobeys will donate a select number of gift cards for giveaways.
  • Canadian toy company Spin Master has donated thousands of Paw Patrol bandages, stickers, activity sheets and crayons as well as toys for giveaways.
  • More details here.

Appointments still available – book today!
Toronto Kids Vaccine Day
Sunday December 12, 10am to 6pm
Appointments available for children ages five to 11 years old (or turning five by the end of 2021)
Click here to learn more and book an appointment


3. Expanded Third Dose Eligibility to 50 Plus – Effective Monday, December 13

Effective Monday, December 13, the Province will expand the eligibility for a third dose to individuals aged 50 and over who received their second dose approximately six months ago. Residents will be able to book appointments to receive their third dose using the Provincial system

Toronto residents will be able to receive their third dose of COVID-19 vaccine at one of more than 450 local pharmacies that are offering this vaccine. Residents are asked to call or visit a pharmacy’s website and check if they need an appointment or if walk-in vaccinations are available. Residents can find the pharmacy closest to them that offers COVID-19 vaccines here or here.

In addition, Toronto residents can receive their COVID-19 vaccine at City-run immunization clinics, many doctors’ offices and at other health care partner clinics. More information on where to get vaccinated here.


4. Board of Health Approves the Toronto Model – A Comprehensive Health Approach to Ending the Overdose Crisis

When it comes to the overdose crisis, the status quo is broken. Across our country people are dying, and together, governments have the capacity to stop this.

The crisis is escalating, and every year more lives are lost. In 2020 alone, 531 Torontonians died of opioid overdoses. That was 81% higher than 2019, when 293 Torontonians lost their lives. These are preventable deaths, and it's long past time to treat drug use as the health issue that it is. 

On Monday, after years of advocacy and months of work on the ground with a broad range of partners and stakeholders, the Board of Health has approved the Toronto Model – a comprehensive health approach to end the overdose crisis.

The Toronto Model is a comprehensive inter-governmental approach to increase treatment and prevention programs, to make harm reduction services more accessible, to provide pathways and referral programs for people who use drugs to access services, and to decriminalize the small possession of drugs.

The approval of the Toronto Model is a critical step towards treating the overdose crisis like the urgent health issue that it is, and most importantly, saving lives. I am committed to working with the Federal Government to see it through to implementation as quickly as possible.


5. Garden of the Greek Gods Update

For the past couple of years, I have been working with local stakeholders and Exhibition Place to relocate the Garden of the Greek Gods statues to a more accessible community viewing location on the Exhibition Place grounds. 

The working group for the Garden of the Greek Gods has continued meeting, and after a thorough analysis has determined that the best location for the statues is the Rose Garden area south of Bandshell Park. Exhibition Place aims to have the statues relocated by Summer 2022. To learn more about the work, please visit the project website.

I’d like to thank everyone in the working group, staff at Exhibition Place, and the operators for their cooperation to bring these wonderful sculptures back to the public. 


6. Douro-Wellington Bikeway – Share your Feedback

Cycling improvements are proposed for Douro Street and Wellington Street West between King Street West and Blue Jays Way. This will complete the connection between the future West Toronto Railpath extension and the downtown core cycle-track network, greatly expanding the options for local residents to reach more destinations on safe, comfortable cycling infrastructure.

Your feedback will help determine the new design for this corridor. 

To learn more about the draft proposal, please visit the project website. Options for providing your input include an interactive mapping tool.


7. The Bentway Skate Trail Opens December 18

The Bentway welcomes back local neighbours and city-wide visitors for another winter of fun and skating! The Bentway Skate Trail’s 220-metre figure-eight loop will open for skating on December 18 with skate rentals, hot drinks, special events and lessons. Alongside skating this year, The Bentway will also present a winter art exhibition by Inuvialuk artist Maureen Grube.

The Bentway’s 2021-2022 Winter Season will include:

  • Skating: No pre-registration required, just come on by during operating hours (see below for details)!
  • Skate rentals, skate sharpening, and hot drinks
  • Free Skate Nights: Free skate rentals every Thursday 5-9pm.
  • Free Skate Lessons: Expert instructors will provide free skate lessons. Register here.
  • Winter art exhibition: Moving with Joy and Annivik by Maureen Gruben.

Please check out the announcement for more information. 


8. Pop-Up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics in Ward 10

Trinity Community Recreation Centre
155 Crawford Street
Every Tuesday until December 14th
Open to residents born in 2009 or older
2 pm - 6:30 pm
View flyer

Scadding Court Community Centre
707 Dundas Street West
Every Wednesday until December 15th
Open to residents born in 2009 or older
5 pm - 7 pm
View flyer

Scadding Court Kids Clinic
Monday, December 20th, 12:30 - 7pm
Kids aged 5-11
View flyer for details

Canoe Landing Community Recreation Centre
45 Fort York Blvd
Every Thursday until December 16th
Open to residents born in 2009 or older
4 pm - 8 pm
View flyer


9. Resources and Webinars for Small Businesses

The City of Toronto continues to provide resources and support programs to help businesses respond to the impact of COVID-19 and support safe reopening and economic growth and recovery.