Trudeau to update on pandemic efforts, speak with G20 leaders about COVID-19 impact

OTTAWA —
The global co-ordination on the COVID-19 pandemic response is on the agenda today when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau takes part in a video conference call with other leaders of the G20.

Trudeau is also set to update Canadians on the latest domestic response efforts, which this week have already included invoking the Quarantine Act to impose mandatory self-isolation on travellers returning to Canada, and adding billions to the economic aid Canadians can claim.

On the call with international leaders, Trudeau is set to discuss further global co-ordination in both the health and economic response to a rapidly spreading virus that, as several federal officials have stated: knows no borders.

From home Trudeau has been speaking regularly with other world leaders, who are also all grappling with how to respond to, or prepare for an onslaught of COVID-19 cases in their countries.  

It’s possible the prime minister will also have more to say about the next steps in applying for the billions in revamped emergency benefits for Canadians who are now unemployed, or off work because of the pandemic.

The Emergency Response Benefit will provide $2,000 a month for four months for those eligible and is set to roll out the week of April 6, while other boosts and top-up measures are not expected to flow until May.

Trudeau was set to receive the latest modelling from the Public Health Agency of Canada on Wednesday on the evolution of the virus and he vowed to share what he could, saying Canadians “deserve the best information we’ve got about what’s happening today and what tomorrow might bring, because otherwise the uncertainty can be really tough.”

As of Thursday morning there are 3,409 confirmed COVID-19 cases Canada-wide.

Thursday marks the 15th day since Trudeau began self-isolating on account of his wife Sophie demonstrating COVID-19 symptoms and then shortly after being confirmed to have contracted the virus.

Trudeau said that neither he nor his children have demonstrated symptoms but they’ll continue to rely on health official’s advice as to whether or not he’ll begin attending cabinet meetings and conducting other work in-person or if he’ll do as he’s asking millions of Canadians to do: stay home. 

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