Haldimand County Paramedic Services Offering Community Flu Shot Clinics

**Please note that flu shot appointments are fully booked. At this time, wait lists will not be offered.**

Haldimand County Paramedic Services will be offering six community flu shot clinics throughout November and December 2020. Flu shots will be offered by appointment only to individuals over the age of 16. Appointments may be booked using the County’s online registration system at link.haldimandcounty.ca. Due to the limited number of appointments, flu shots will be offered to Haldimand County residents only. High dose vaccinations (65+) will not be offered at these clinics.

According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, getting a flu vaccine this year is more important than ever because:

  1. Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalizations, and death.
  2. Getting a flu vaccine can also save healthcare resources for the care of patients with COVID-19.

Flu shot appointments will be offered from 10am to 3pm on the following dates:

  • November 27 – Dunnville Arena
  • December 9 – Selkirk Fire Station #13
  • December 11- Cayuga Arena
  • December 15 – Hagersville Legion

Instructions for individuals who book flu shot appointments:

  • Please arrive 5 minutes before your appointment and wear a face covering. Leave unnecessary items in your car.
  • When you arrive, you will be greeted by a Haldimand County staff member who will help you complete a COVID-19 screening assessment and flu shot consent form.
  • Once you receive your shot, you will need to remain in the building for 15 minutes post-immunization.
  • Immunization areas will be disinfected thoroughly after every appointment.

For COVID-19 safety reasons, a limited number of individuals will be permitted inside each flu shot location at any given time. Individuals who arrive with other family members may not be able to enter the facility together as a group. Individuals who are more than 15 minutes late or miss their appointment will be required to book a new time slot.

Residents are reminded to not come to their pre-booked appointment if they are feeling unwell. Please call 905-318-5932 ext. 6127 and leave a message to cancel or re-schedule your appointment.

Individuals who need assistance booking an appointment online may call Haldimand County customer service at 905-318-5932.

Haldimand County Emergency Services reports increase in motor vehicle-farm equipment collisions

Haldimand County Emergency Services has seen an increase in collisions involving motor vehicles and slow-moving farm equipment.

Fire Chief / EMS Manager Jason Gallagher is urging motorists to stay alert, slow down and share the road with farm equipment. Gallagher is also and reminding farm equipment operators to ensure their equipment has proper lighting and a reflective slow-moving vehicle emblem.

“Although we’re past peak harvest season, there are still farming operations underway throughout the County and slow-moving farm equipment on our roads. We’ve seen an increase in collisions that could have been prevented, and ask that everyone utilizing County roads do their part to keep them safe,” said Gallagher.

Both motorists and farm equipment operators have been found to be at fault in recent collisions.

Roadway safety for motorists

  • Stay alert for slow-moving farm equipment, especially at dawn or dusk when visibility is reduced;
  • Slow down and be patient when approaching slow-moving machinery from behind;
  • Wait to pass until you have a clear view of the road ahead and there is no oncoming traffic;
  • Never pass on a hill or curve.

Roadway safety for farm equipment operators

  • Make sure any farm equipment being driven on roadways is properly marked with lights and a “slow-moving vehicle” emblem;
  • Drive as far to the right as possible;
  • If traffic accumulates behind you on a road where it is difficult to make a safe pass, you should pull off onto the side of the road in a level area, so the vehicles can pass;
  • If possible, avoid traveling on roadways at dawn or dusk when it is more difficult for drivers of other vehicles to see;
  • Always use a seat belt when operating a tractor equipped with a roll-over protection structure.

Arena Program Participants Test Positive For Covid-19, No Immediate Risk To Staff Or Public

Haldimand County has been made aware that participants in several ice-user groups at Dunnville, Cayuga and Caledonia arenas have tested positive for COVID-19.

Affected individuals are currently self-isolating and additional disinfecting measures have been carried out at all three facilities. A public health management plan has been initiated by the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit and there is no immediate threat to staff or the public. The arenas remain open at this time.

Each instance involves independent leagues who had no interactions with other arena users. Disinfection occurs between each rink rental, and all publicly accessible areas are thoroughly cleaned and decontaminated daily.

Haldimand County remains committed to enforcing its rigorous facility use protocols to ensure the health and safety of arena users. These protocols have been put in place to maximize the health and safety of everyone at the facility and minimize the risk of the spread of COVID-19.  Meeting these goals requires the cooperation and compliance by all  facility users.

The Haldimand Norfolk Health Unit has reviewed the arena protocols in effect and have not indicated any concerns at this time.

Haldimand County Face Covering By-Law Will Not Be Extended In Light Of Stricter, Provincially-Mandated Regulations

Haldimand County’s temporary Face Covering By-Law No. 2191/20, which took effect August 1, 2020, is set to expire November 3. Council will not be extending the by-law as stricter, provincially-mandated regulations are now in effect.

The Province’s face covering regulations took effect October 5 and require that all businesses and organizations in Ontario require persons to wear a face covering in public areas at all times. These regulations supersede those outlined in the County’s by-law.

County staff will continue to have a role in education and enforcement of the Province’s regulations. The OPP will similarly continue with a role in this regard.

Should the Province rescind its regulations, staff will seek advice from the Health Unit and if necessary, work towards bringing another by-law forward for Council’s consideration. At this time there has been no indication from the Province as to when face covering regulations might be rescinded, and it is expected that they will remain in effect throughout the winter months.

Haldimand County will continue working closely with the Health Unit in managing the local COVID-19 response.

For more information about the local COVID-19 situation, visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19 or HNHU.org.

Information on Provincial face covering regulations is available at Ontario.ca.

Residents Reminded To Replace Batteries In Smoke/CO Alarms When Turning Clocks Back This Weekend

Clocks will fall back one hour at 2am on November 1 and Haldimand County Emergency Services recommends that residents install new batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms when they change their clocks.

“In order for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to do their job, they need to have working batteries,” explained Captain Richard Geerdink. “At least once a year, old batteries should be replaced with new batteries. When you change your clocks this November 1, Haldimand Emergency Services wants everyone to take the time to install new batteries in all alarms.”

In order to survive a fire, you need early warning and know what to do when the smoke alarms sound. Working smoke alarms are required on every floor of the home and outside all sleeping areas. For added protection, it is also recommended to install smoke alarms inside all bedrooms.

Carbon monoxide alarms must be installed outside all sleeping areas if your home has a fuel-burning appliance, fireplace or attached garage.

Tampering with or removing the batteries from your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms is against the law. Failure to comply with the Fire Code can result in a fine from $360 up to $50,000.

Consider replacing expired or old alarms with combination alarms, which have the capability of alarming for both smoke and carbon monoxide emergencies.

Residents who have questions about fire/CO prevention may also contact the Fire Prevention Bureau directly at 905-318-5932 for guidance. Assistance is available for low-income or vulnerable residents who need support obtaining fire/CO alarms or batteries.

Haldimand County Terminates Declared COVID-19 Emergency, Reminds Public To Remain Vigilant And Follow Public Health Orders

Haldimand County has terminated its emergency declaration that was instated on March 25, 2020 due to COVID-19. This decision aligns with the termination of the provincial emergency and comes as the County moves from an emergency response focus toward recovery.

Though the emergency has been terminated, municipal and provincial orders that were introduced while the emergency was in effect remain in place. Residents and visitors are asked to continue following emergency orders still in effect and follow the advice of the public health authorities – including wearing a face-covering, maintaining physical distancing and regularly washing hands.

Haldimand County by-law will continue to enforce public health orders with assistance from the Health Unit.

“Thanks to our community’s extraordinary efforts to halt the spread of COVID-19, the number of new cases in Haldimand continue to drop,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “I do want to reiterate that even though the emergency has been terminated, it does not mean the pandemic is over. Staff will continue working closely with the Health Unit and Medical Officer of Health to manage the local response, which includes planning for a potential second wave,” Hewitt added.

Despite terminating the emergency, the County’s Emergency Operations Centre will remain active and members of the Emergency Management Team will continue to meet regularly and monitor the situation closely.

For more information on the County’s COVID-19 response – including a list of public health orders and municipal facility re-openings – visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19.

 

Statement from the Haldimand County Police Services Board RE: Caledonia protests

On Wednesday, August 26, the Haldimand County Police Services Board (PSB) met to discuss the ongoing issue of illegal protests in Caledonia, related policing concerns and the significant impacts these incidents are having on the broader community.

The PSB recognizes that legally, its role is not to direct police operations. Rather, the PSB’s role is to serve as a conduit to the wider community and provide an avenue for communication between community members and the OPP. It is also the PSB’s responsibility to establish priorities, objectives and policies regarding policing in Haldimand County, in consultation with the Detachment Commander and Haldimand County Council.

At the August 26 meeting, PSB members expressed concerns to OPP Detachment staff regarding the adequacy and effectiveness of the OPP’s response to the illegal occupation at McKenzie Meadows and related occupations of municipal roadways, provincial highways and CN railway corridor. It is imperative that policing concerns related to illegal protests are addressed in a timely manner and even more critical that the OPP uphold the rule of law and maintain peace, order and stability within Haldimand County.

The PSB also recognizes that actions taken by the OPP in response to the McKenzie Meadows occupation and related blockades are the result of decisions made not at the local detachment level, but higher up in the OPP’s chain of command. As such, the PSB has forwarded its concerns to the Ministry of the Solicitor General and senior OPP officials. Further, the PSB has requested that individuals involved in the decision-making attend an upcoming PSB meeting to discuss the community’s significant safety concerns.

The PSB remains committed to acting as the ‘voice’ of Haldimand County residents on matters of policing and will continue to advocate for the community with OPP decision-makers and senior levels of government.

The PSB will keep the community apprised of any developments related to policing services in Haldimand County, as well as the outcome of the requested meeting with senior OPP officials and representatives from the Ministry of the Solicitor General.

Haldimand County Police Services Board

Bernie Corbett (Board Chair) – Haldimand County Council Member

Dan Lawrence – Haldimand County Council Council Member

Brian Haggith (Vice Chair) – Community Member

Kerry Boon – Provincial Member

 

Haldimand County Council approves face covering by-law

On Monday, July 27, Haldimand County Council reviewed and approved a by-law requiring face coverings in specific enclosed public spaces where physical distancing cannot be achieved. The by-law, which aligns with the Haldimand-Norfolk Medical Officer of Health’s recommendations, takes effect August 1.

The approved by-law is tailored to the needs of Haldimand County and provides flexibility for certain businesses and institutions to develop face covering requirements relative to their specific circumstances and unique needs.

The by-law separates enclosed public spaces into two distinct categories: Category 1 and Category 2. Each category has unique requirements.

Category 1

  • Category 1 includes businesses with a high volume of in-and-out foot traffic where the potential interactions between people including amongst residents and with community visitors is elevated and where as a result the risk is higher. Category 1 businesses include, but are not limited to, supermarkets/grocery stores, bakeries, convenience stores, financial institutions, pharmacies and retail operations with a gross floor area greater than 465 square metres (5,000 sq ft).
  • Category 1 businesses are required to adopt a practice and install signage that prohibits individuals from entering or remaining within their enclosed public space without a face covering.

Category 2

  • Category 2 covers businesses and institutions not covered in Category 1 which include, but are not limited to, office buildings, restaurants, places of worship, retail operations with a gross floor area less than 465 square metres (5,000 sq ft.), libraries, community centres, indoor sport/recreational facilities and gyms.
  • Category 2 businesses are required to adopt a social distancing policy that prohibits individuals from entering or remaining within their enclosed public space unless the individual can maintain, at all times, a physical distance of 2 metres (6ft) from all other individuals. Category 2 businesses must also post prominent, clearly visible signage at every public entrance indicating that individuals must maintain a 2m (6ft) from other individuals, and that a mask is required if that distance cannot be achieved. Under the by-law, businesses in Category 2 reserve the right to require individuals to wear masks within their premises regardless of whether social distancing can be maintained at all times.

The by-law outlines individuals who are exempt from wearing face coverings. These exemptions include, but are not limited to: children under the age of 10 and individuals with medical conditions and/or disabilities. Proof of an exemption is not required, and the public is asked to be respectful of those who may be exempt from wearing a face covering.

“This has been, and continues to be, a very polarizing issue. It would have been preferable for this decision to come from the Province or local Board of Health, but unfortunately, that isn’t the case,” stated Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “That being said, we have a duty to protect the community, especially given the influx of visitors coming to the area. We’ve taken a lot of steps over the past few months to ensure our numbers remain low, and we certainly don’t want to lose that momentum and traction. The approved face covering by-law – which takes into account feedback received from residents and businesses – is an added layer of defense in our battle with the virus,” Hewitt added.

Members of the public are reminded that face coverings should be used in combination with frequent hand washing and social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Haldimand County By-Law No. 2191/20 will take effect August 1, 2020 and remain in place until November 2, 2020, unless otherwise amended or repealed. Violations may be reported to the COVID-19 enforcement hotline at 519-428-8019.

A number of resources, including a Frequently Asked Questions document, will be soon be available at HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19.

 

Haldimand County Council to review proposed face covering by-law

On Monday, July 27, Haldimand County Council will review a draft by-law that would require face coverings in specific enclosed public spaces or spaces where physical distancing cannot be achieved.

The intent of Council is to 1) introduce face covering regulations that are tailored to Haldimand County and 2) provide flexibility for certain businesses to develop face covering requirements relative to their specific circumstances and unique needs.

The decision to implement a by-law was made given mounting evidence of the effectiveness of face coverings in preventing the transmission of COVID-19, and consideration of actions taken by neighbouring municipalities, including Norfolk County, to introduce face covering regulations in the absence of a vaccine.

Haldimand County continues to rely on and follow the advice of the Medical Officer of Health – who serves both Haldimand and Norfolk counties as one health unit region – for guidance related to public health decisions. The Medical Officer of Health supports the use of face coverings where social distancing cannot be achieved, and the by-law under consideration aligns with this advice.

While Haldimand County believes public health issues like this should be dealt with as a Board of Health matter, Haldimand Council is in part introducing the face covering by-law to ensure consistency within the health unit region.

Overall, the intent is to enact a by-law requiring face coverings in enclosed public spaces where interactions of significant numbers of people are more likely, and where physical distancing is difficult or impossible. This includes, but is not limited to: convenience stores, grocery stores, banks and large retail operations. The by-law includes exemptions for persons with specific medical conditions and disabilities.

For smaller businesses and other indoor spaces, the proposed by-law would require the use of face coverings only when a business has identified that social distancing requirements cannot be achieved through other measures. Businesses will have the option of requiring face coverings if they choose to do so, however, all businesses will be required to post signage that indicates whether face coverings are required.

Over the past few weeks, the County has actively engaged in dialogue with residents, local Chambers of Commerce, BIAs, public health officials on the topic of face coverings and while there are certainly mixed opinions, a face covering by-law is one additional step to protect the health, safety and well-being of everyone that lives and works in the municipality.

Council will review the proposed face coverings by-law at a Special Council meeting (July 27, 9:30 a.m.) at the Haldimand County Administration Building (53 Thorburn St. S, Cayuga). The meeting will be live-streamed. Members of the public can read the draft by-law on the Council Meetings & Agendas page of HaldimandCounty.ca. Public comments regarding the proposed by-law can be provided in writing via e-mail to the Municipal Clerk at clerk@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Additional information related to the County’s COVID-19 response is available at HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19.

Haldimand County moving into Stage 3 Friday, more facilities to gradually re-open

On Friday, July 24 at 12:01am, Haldimand County will be moving into Stage 3 of the Province’s re-opening plan. County staff are finalizing plans to re-open more facilities and amenities with physical distancing protocols and safety measures.

In Stage 3, gatherings of up to 100 people outdoors and 50 people indoors will be permitted. Playground equipment may be used, and team sports may also resume on a limited basis in accordance with Stage 3 public health requirements.

The following updates pertain to Haldimand entering Stage 3:

Arenas & walking tracks
Staff are currently working to:
– Re-open the Almas Pad (HCCC) for socially-distanced ice bookings by late August;
– Re-open the Clark Pad (HCCC), Cayuga Memorial Arena, Dunnville Memorial Arena and
Hagersville Arena for ice bookings by the end of September.
– Re-open the walking tracks at the Cayuga & Dunnville Memorial Arenas by the end of September

Playground equipment
All playground equipment will re-open for public use on Friday, July 24. Users should note that playground equipment will not be regularly sanitized and physical distancing rules remain in effect.

Pavilion rentals
Though pavilions are now open for use, bookings for private/organized functions at pavilions will not be taken for the remainder of summer. Pavilions will not be sanitized and physical distancing rules remain in effect.

Baseball diamonds
County-operated ball diamonds will not be accepting bookings for tournaments or games until further notice. Individuals who are interested in playing baseball – and meet all criteria listed in Stage 3 guidelines – will be connected with organizations who operate diamonds on behalf of the County.

Community halls
As of July 24, community halls may begin renting facilities (if they choose) for events that comply with Stage 3 requirements. As halls are operated via a license agreement with the County, staff will assist hall boards in navigating new public health regulations, protocols and procedures.

“Haldimand County continues to take a gradual, phased approach to re-opening facilities that align with provincial guidelines and keep the safety of staff and the community top-of-mind,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt. “As more facilities re-open and gathering restrictions loosen, I ask that everyone remain patient and continue being vigilant in their efforts to combat the virus,” Hewitt noted. Hewitt noted that community efforts to date have largely influenced Haldimand’s progression into Stage 3.

Members of the public are encouraged to follow the County on Facebook/Twitter and check HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19 regularly for the most up-to-date information on municipal services, facilities and related COVID-19 details. Other helpful information – including frequently asked questions and key contacts – is also available on this page.

For more information on Stage 3 requirements and what’s allowed to re-open, visit the Province of Ontario’s website.

 

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