No mask requirement in Ontario
Ontario’s chief medical officer of health says there are no plans, at this time, to re-impose a mask mandate.
But Doctor Kieran Moore says he strongly advises people to wear a mask, especially in crowded indoor locations, as the number of new COVID-19 infections continues to grow.
In his first public briefing in a month, Moore says the increasing trend will likely continue through most of May, but adds our hospitals have the capacity to deal with the rising numbers.
He says the government is considering the April 27th deadline for the removal of the mask requirements in long-term care homes and aboard public transit…..but adds it would make “tremendous sense” to keep the requirement in place.
Russia and Ukraine
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is warning that Russia could use chemical weapons, as it attempts to crush remaining resistance in the southern port city of Mariupol, which has been under siege for several weeks.
The handful of remaining Ukrainian troops in the city say they expect to run out of ammunition shortly, and face death or capture.
Unconfirmed reports say a drone dropped some sort of chemical agent in the city yesterday, but there were no casualties.
Zelensky is again calling for heavy weapons to be supplied from western nations, as Russia continues preparations for a major offensive in Ukraine’s eastern regions, where Russian-backed separatists have been operating for the past eight years.
Allegation against Russia
U-S intelligence sources say Russian President Vladimir Putin may step up his actions against the U-S for its support of Ukraine.
They say his frustration over the lack of progress in Ukraine could include stronger attempts to interfere in this fall’s congressional elections.
American officials are also urging governments and private businesses, especially those involved in critical infrastructure, to boost their cyber protections against possible Russian attacks.
The federal government says producers are making adjustments to maintain the supply of eggs and poultry, as the number of cases of avian flu continue to increase.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it’s been an unprecedented year, worldwide, for infections of the virus, also known as bird flu.
So far, about 260-thousand birds have been hit by the deadly strain……mostly in Alberta and Ontario.
Officials say the virus is being brought in by birds migrating north for the spring….and they expect the number of infections to rise.
So far, there have been no reports the virus has been transmitted between farms.
The Agency can’t yet say whether the infections have had any impact on the prices consumers pay in the marketplace.