TORONTO — Mike Schreiner made the following statement in response to the Premier’s press conference this afternoon:
“I have consistently called for expanding eligibility for booster shots and free rapid tests, and I’m relieved the Premier finally listened.
Now it’s on the government to properly educate the public on why boosters are so crucial, and to ensure the vaccines and rapid tests are distributed equitably and are easily accessible to those at higher risk. Relying only on LCBOs for distribution ignores mental health and addictions issues, and rapid tests should be available at sites like Service Ontario and community centres.
Public health experts are clear that we need more than just boosters and testing to stem the omicron tide.
Missing from the Premier’s announcement today was a reopening plan for schools in January. Parents and educators want a plan and they deserve to know details in advance.
And the Premier once again failed to acknowledge that COVID is airborne — a call that several leading health experts have said is crucial.
I am calling for:
- Rapid tests to remain free, widely accessible and equitably distributed
- A mass information campaign that #COVIDisAirborne
- N95 masks to be made available for everyone in high-risk settings, especially those in health care, education and transit
- Mandating vaccines for all healthcare and education workers
- Ventilation and air quality upgrades in all congregate settings
- A clear plan for school reopenings in January
We have the tools available to keep Ontarians safe while avoiding another mass lockdown. Let’s put them to use.”