Province announces help for renters and landlords

Nellie Chapman
March 26, 2020

There are now 11 deaths associated with that single outbreak, out of a total 14 in B.C. and 36 across the country.

"We are actively looking at getting as much as we can", said Henry, who also mentioned using alternate supplies, but did not elaborate.

"It is not surprising to us that we're seeing an increased number of people being affected by this", Henry said of the Haro Park outbreak on Wednesday.

Most of the cases, 547 people, are those who live in the Lower Mainland, Henry said.

She said another long-term care home, Broadway Pentecostal Lodge, had been struck by the virus by Wednesday, making it the seventh such facility with coronavirus cases.

As of 3:30 p.m. PT on Wednesday, there were more than 3,400 confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 in Canada, with 36 deaths and 197 cases listed by provinces as recovered or resolved. "This is something that is required to protect people", she said.

More equipment is on order, she said, as the province look at others ways to procure the gear.

Her orders for people to physically distance themselves, self-isolate and wash their hands frequently are aimed at keeping the virus from spreading, she said, adding next week's patient numbers could start showing success.

"This is an unbelievable thing", said Teresa Douglas, who was facing a a $50-a-month increase May 1 in the rent for the two-bedroom townhouse she and her husband rent through student housing at the University of British Columbia.

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On personal protective equipment, Henry said the province is in "a critical phase". Celebrations and ceremonies need to be postponed.

A total of 339 confirmed cases in B.C. are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 218 are located in the Fraser Health region, 47 in the Island Health region, 46 in the Interior Health region and nine in the Northern Health region.

Since COVID-19 hit British Columbia, 14 people have died, while 64 are now in hospital.

"We must remind ourselves that the virus can spread with minimal symptoms and that is why physical distancing, especially staying away from people at higher risk, is so critically important at this time".

"We want to make sure that those students are supported and that their concerns are heard".

The province is planning for the worst, the premier said, with the rental supplement covering all of the roughly 500,000 renters in B.C. and will go towards renters experiencing a loss of income. Fifty-five of those people are health care workers.

"For the most part, if you have a mild illness and it can be managed at home and you're in isolation and you're not going to pass it on to others, you may or may not be tested depending on whether there's a cluster that's detected around you in particular", Henry said.

The next week to 10 days will be critical, she said, in determining whether COVID-19 is spreading rapidly through the B.C. population or if the containment measures have had the desired effect.

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