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PM Justin Trudeau said second wave of COVID-19 already in Canada

Last Updated Sep 24, 2020 at 4:42 pm MDT

FILE - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau adjusts his face mask following a news conference where he paid a visit to the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) Royalmount Human Health Therapeutics Research Centre facility in Montreal, Monday, Aug 31, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has sent a clear message to Canadians: we aren’t on the brink of a second wave of COVID-19, it’s already here.

In a plea to the nation Wednesday, the prime minister urged people to stay committed to bending the curve, as daily cases counts in the country’s largest provinces continue to climb.

“We can’t change today’s numbers or even tomorrow’s. Those were already decided by what we did or didn’t do two weeks ago.”

He said Canada on the verge of a fall season that could be much worse than the spring.

“But what we can change is where we are in October and into the winter. It’s all too likely we won’t be gathering for Thanksgiving, but we still have a shot at Christmas.”

Trudeau stressed that a collective effort was needed to get the spread of COVID-19 under control, adding we’ve done it once before.

He said people need to take the appropriate measures to protect themselves, noting no one is invincible to the coronavirus, and that people can’t get complacent.

“We can bend the curve, we can build a stronger future, we can define the change.”

The country has recorded more than 148,000 cases of COVID-19 since the start of the outbreak, and more than 9,000 deaths have been linked to the coronavirus.

The health crisis has put a major strain on the local and global economies.

It also shuttered businesses, and in a number of cases permanently, forcing many into unemployment.

Trudeau’s rare public address came the same day the throne speech was delivered.

The prime minister used his message to Canadians later in the day Wednesday to highlight the speech.

Some of its promises include help for ramped-up testing in provinces, extending the wage subsidy for businesses, a national childcare system, and a national standard for long-term care.

All opposition parties have criticized the plan.

It’s unclear if the throne speech will pass a confidence vote.

Alberta update

In the last 24 hours, Alberta reported nine new cases and six recoveries of COVID-19 in the RMWB.

In Fort McMurray, there are 48 active cases, one death, and 194 resolved cases of the illness.

Fort McMurray’s Catholic School Division (FMCSD) updated parents and staff on its COVID-19 response.

St. Martha and Elsie Yanik schools issued notifications for a total of three separate cases of the illness.

On Sept. 23, Sister Mary Phillips School reported two unrelated cases of COVID-19.

The FMCSD said the cases are unrelated and not the result of in-school transmission.

“Parents/guardians of students who AHS deem to be close contacts and are required to self isolate will receive a call from Alberta Health Services shortly (24 to 48 hours) with additional information. Virtual learning will be available for the continuation of student learning.”

All school remains open, including Holy Trinity High School which confirmed ties to a third case of the infection.

“Alberta Health Services has advised these cases are NOT the result of in school transmission. At this time, based on advice from AHS, Holy Trinity Catholic High School will remain open.”

Outside the urban service area, there are still four active cases and 61 recoveries of COVID-19.

Dr Deena Hinshaw, chief medical officer of health, addressed the province on a report on opioid-related deaths in Alberta during the first six months of the year.

Across the province, there are 158 new cases and one additional deaths linked to COVID-19.

Hinshaw said the death is from the Foothills Medical Center.

Hinshaw said guidelines for Thanksgiving get-togethers will be available on the Alberta website.

Alberta has 1462 active cases, 261 deaths, and 15,467 recovered cases of COVID-19.

58 Albertans are in hospital with 14 in intensive care.

This article includes excerpts from News 1130.