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Emmy-winning musician Adam Schlesinger dies from coronavirus

Kyle Mack | posted Thursday, Apr 2nd, 2020

Emmy and Grammy-winning musician and songwriter Adam Schlesinger, known for his work with his band Fountains of Wayne and on the TV show “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” died Wednesday after contracting the coronavirus, his attorney said.

Schlesinger died at a hospital in upstate New York, his longtime lawyer Josh Grier told The Associated Press. It is not clear where or how Schelsinger, a 51-year-old father of two, contracted the virus. He had been sedated and on a ventilator for several days.

Schlesinger was nominated for 10 Emmys for writing comical songs across several television shows, winning three. He was nominated for an Academy Award for writing the title song to the 1997 Tom Hanks-directed movie “That Thing You Do.”

Raised in New York and Montclair, New Jersey, Schlesinger formed Fountains of Wayne, named for a lawn ornament store in Wayne, New Jersey, in 1995 with his classmate from Williams College Chris Collingwood.

With Schlesinger playing bass and singing backup and Collingwood playing guitar and singing lead, and the two men co-writing songs, the band known for its sunny harmonies and synthesis of pop, rock punk and comedy would have hits in 1996 with “Radiation Vibe” and 2003 with “Stacy’s Mom.” The latter was nominated for a Grammy.

Schlesinger would then drop behind the scenes and go on to be known for his writing.

He won the 2009 Grammy for best comedy album for writing the songs on “A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!” a companion to a TV Christmas special with songs performed by Stephen Colbert and Elvis Costello.

In recent years he was known along with the show’s star Rachel Bloom as one of the songwriters behind “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” the musical comedy series on the CW.

Last year, Schlesinger, Bloom and Jack Dolgen won an Emmy for the show’s song, “Antidepressants Are So Not A Big Deal.”

Schlesinger was divorced and had two daughters.

Andrew Dalton, The Associated Press

Super-spreading events and Wimbledon cancelled; In The News for April 2

Kyle Mack | posted Thursday, Apr 2nd, 2020

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what’s on the radar of our editors for the morning of April 2 …

 

COVID-19 in Canada …

One of Canada’s largest veterans’ organizations is urging the federal government to automatically approve the roughly 44,000 outstanding applications for disability benefits from injured veterans to help them better deal with the COVID-19 crisis.

The call from the National Council of Veteran Associations, which represents more than 60 veteran groups, comes amid fears about the financial and emotional toll the pandemic is taking on veterans struggling with mental and physical wounds.

Veterans Affairs Canada says staff are still processing claims as they work from home and that there are no immediate plans to automatically approve the backlog, which was already a source of frustration and anger for many veterans forced to wait years for support even before COVID-19.

But the COVID-19 crisis presents yet another barrier for veterans to get their applications approved, said council chairman Brian Forbes, who is also executive director of The War Amps Canada and a member of Veterans Affairs Minister Lawrence MacAulay’s policy advisory group.

“It was bad enough as far as the backlog and the delays and the number of new claims (before COVID-19),” Forbes said in an interview “And then when you put the coronavirus on top of it, you’ve got a perfect storm. Things are just not getting done.”

Also this …

Thousands of people smiled, laughed, shook hands and conversed at one of the largest dental conferences in North America last month unaware of a deadly virus circling among them.

More than 15,000 attendees, presenters or vendors were part of the Pacific Dental Conference at the Vancouver Convention Centre in early March. Six days later, public health officials sent out a warning: an attendee had tested positive for COVID-19.

More positive tests followed. A dentist from British Columbia, Dr. Denis Vincent, died two weeks after the convention.

In the days and weeks that followed, positive cases linked to the conference popped up across Canada: at least 32 in B.C., nine in Alberta and three in Saskatchewan.

It’s not known how many people were infected with the novel coronavirus at the convention because not all regions have provided that information.

COVID-19 in the U.S. …

President Donald Trump is resisting calls to issue a national stay-at-home order to stem the spread of the new coronavirus despite his administration’s projections that tens of thousands of Americans are likely to be killed by the disease. One by one, though, states are increasingly pushing shutdown orders of their own.

Trump said Wednesday he wants to give governors’ “flexibility” on whether a stay-at-home policy is the best option for their constituents, but acknowledged that he’s looking at limiting air and rail travel between hot spots within the United States. The president remains hesitant to press a unified policy even after the White House released “sobering” new projections on Tuesday that 100,000 to 240,000 Americans will likely succumb to the coronavirus even if current social distancing guidelines are maintained.

Surgeon General Jerome Adams said Wednesday the nation’s federalist system leaves much of the authority on how to properly respond to catastrophes to individual state governors and local officials.

“We trust the governors and the mayors to understand their people and understand whether or not they feel like they can trust the people in their states to make the right decisions,” Adams said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

On Wednesday alone, five more states — Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Nevada and Pennsylvania — added or expanded their stay-at-home orders.

COVID-19 around the world …

The Taliban said the group was ready to declare a cease-fire in areas of Afghanistan under its control if they are hit by a coronavirus outbreak.

The announcement follows a U.N. Security Council statement Tuesday urging Afghanistan’s warring parties to heed the U.N. secretary-general’s call for an immediate cease-fire to respond to the pandemic and ensure the delivery of humanitarian aid throughout the country.

“If, God forbid, the outbreak happens in an area where we control the situation then we will stop fighting in that area,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Muajhed told The Associated Press.

The Taliban have also said they would guarantee the security of health and aid workers travelling to their areas offering assistance to prevent the spread of the new virus.

It wasn’t clear how many cases would need to be confirmed in any given area for the insurgent group to announce a cease-fire and there was no immediate response from the government.

COVID-19 in sports

Wimbledon was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, the first time since World War II that the oldest Grand Slam tennis tournament won’t be played.

The All England Club announced after an emergency meeting that the event it refers to simply as The Championships is being scrapped for 2020.

Wimbledon was scheduled to be played on the club’s grass courts on the outskirts of London from June 29 to July 12.

Instead, the next edition of the tournament will be June 28 to July 11, 2021.

Also Wednesday, the ATP and WTA announced that the men’s and women’s professional tennis tours would be suspended until at least July 13. They already had been on hold through June 7.

Wimbledon first was held in 1877 and has been contested every year since, with the exception of two stretches: from 1915-18 because of World War I, and from 1940-45 because of World War II.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 2, 2020.

The Canadian Press

Tax collectors, auditors to help field ‘historic’ numbers of benefit-seeking callers

Kyle Mack | posted Thursday, Apr 2nd, 2020

OTTAWA — Canada Revenue Agency employees know a giant spotlight will be pointed at them come Monday.

That’s when they begin the monumental task of delivering on historic federal benefits meant to mitigate the disastrous economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Normally at tax time the agency has between 3,000 and 4,000 employees working the phones at call centres across the country. But this is no normal year.

More than 1,000 CRA employees have volunteered to bolster those numbers and take calls from an estimated 300,000 Canadians per day who are expected to inquire about the government’s $2,000-a-month Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

Those calls will be fielded from the kitchens, living rooms and home offices of the agency’s employees, who have like so many Canadians been forced to work from home as part of Canada-wide efforts to lessen the spreading of the novel coronavirus.

Marc Briere, national president of the Union of Taxation Employees, which represents most CRA workers, says it’s a historic challenge, and one that he hopes will show Canadians they are not just tax collectors.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 2, 2020.

The Canadian Press

Canadians on 2 stranded cruise ships will be heading home

Kyle Mack | posted Thursday, Apr 2nd, 2020

U.S. President Donald Trump says there are plans to remove nearly 250 Canadians from two cruise ships and get them back to Canada.

The U.S. Coast Guard has directed all cruise ships to remain at sea where they may be sequestered “indefinitely” during the coronavirus pandemic, but Trump said Canada is coming to get the Canadians from the MS Zaandam and its sister ship the Rotterdam.

“We’re taking the Canadians off and giving them to Canadian authorities. They’re going to bring them back home,” Trump said at his daily press briefing on Wednesday.

Trump said the same is true for citizens of the United Kingdom on the ships.

The president said states have been reluctant to take cruise guests, but he feels the U.S. is obligated to help. He said at a minimum, the U.S. will send medical teams on board.

“You have people that are sick on those ships and states don’t want to take them,” Trump said.

“They have enough problems right now and they don’t want to take them, but we have to from a humane standpoint. We don’t have a choice. I don’t want to do that, but we have to. People are dying.”

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, cruise ships must also be prepared to send any severely ill passengers to the countries where the vessels are registered.

The rules, which apply to any vessel carrying more than 50 people, were issued in a March 29 safety bulletin signed by Coast Guard Rear Admiral E.C. Jones, whose district includes Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Puerto Rico.

But Trump said Tuesday he was going to speak with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis about whether to allow the Zaandam and the Rotterdam, one of which has seen four people die and 200 passengers and crew report flu-like symptoms, to dock.

Global Affairs Canada said in a statement that there are 97 Canadian passengers on the Zaandam and 150 Canadians on the Rotterdam. At this time, no COVID-19 cases have been confirmed among Canadian passengers.

“We continue to engage with the passengers and Holland America to co-ordinate travel for Canadian citizens back to Canada upon disembarkation,” Global Affairs said.

The Zaandam, which set sail in early March on a South American cruise, is carrying sick passengers and crew, while passengers not showing symptoms were transferred to the Rotterdam, which was sent to the region to help. Both ships have cleared the Panama Canal and are sailing toward Florida. Two of four deaths on the Zaandam have been blamed on COVID-19 and nine people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the company said.

Catherine McLeod, an Ottawa resident who was recently transferred to the Rotterdam from the Zaandam, said the captain came on the internal television system last night and “proposed a toast to world health and our safe return home.”

Champagne and sweets were left outside each passenger’s doors.

The Rotterdam captain “is a class act, so was the captain of the Zaandam,” McLeod said in an email. “This guy has made some excellent speeches regarding his and the crew’s devotion to getting us out of here healthy.”

The ship was off the northwest coast of Cuba by late Wednesday morning. McLeod said passengers have been told they’ll reach Florida by Thursday morning.

“We were told that Holland America would arrange for our transportation home, and received a call yesterday from guest services asking our destination,” McLeod said.

They remain hopeful they won’t be stranded at sea.

DeSantis said he expected a resolution Wednesday after speaking with Trump, but port authorities later said discussions between the company and officials over the terms of docking were ongoing and they did not expect to update Broward County commissioners on Wednesday as it was foreseen at the Tuesday meeting.

DeSantis maintained Florida’s health care system is stretched too thin to take on the ships’ coronavirus caseload, but he said he would accept the 49 Florida residents on board.

“My concern is simply that we have worked so hard to make sure we have adequate hospital beds,” he said.

Holland America said in a statement Wednesday night that it is awaiting confirmation to disembark guests from both ships in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The company said both ships are scheduled to arrive at the boundary of U.S. waters early Thursday and will remain there while waiting for clearance.

The ships are on the Port Everglades docking schedule for Thursday afternoon at 1 and 1:30 p.m. ET.

Holland America also said guests fit to travel would transfer straight from ships to flights so they can return home. The approximately 45 guests who still have mild illness would continue to isolate on board. For the estimated less than 10 people needing critical care, Holland America says it has secured approval from a local health system partner that will accept them for treatment.

More than two dozen cruise ships are either lined up at Port Miami and Port Everglades or waiting offshore, the Miami Herald reported. Most have only crew aboard, but several still carry passengers and are steaming toward ports in southern Florida. Carnival notified the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday that it has more than 6,000 passengers still at sea.

Under normal conditions, when a passenger or crew member become too ill for the ship’s medical team to care for, they call the Coast Guard to provide a medical evacuation to an onshore hospital. Under the new rules, sick passengers would be sequestered indefinitely on board.

“This is necessary as shore-side medical facilities may reach full capacity and lose the ability to accept and effectively treat additional critically ill patients,” the Coast Guard memo said.

The document requires all ships in U.S. waters to report their numbers of sick and dead on board each day or face civil penalties or criminal prosecution.

Cruise ships with sick passengers must consult with the Coast Guard, which may now recommend keeping the sick person on board. The Coast Guard will decide if a transfer is absolutely necessary, but the cruise line would be responsible for arranging on-shore transportation and hospital beds.

With files from Liam Casey in Toronto and The Associated Press

Four tips to self-isolation from Chris Hadfield!

Kyle Mack | posted Thursday, Mar 26th, 2020

Today we chatted with Colonel Chris Hadfield to shed some light on how to cope with self-isolation.

– Understand the actual risk – not just being afraid of things
– Choose goals – what is your mission for right now? What do you want to get done?
– Constraints – look at what you’ve been told not to do, financial restraints
– Take action – start doing things. Not necessarily what you did before.
Had field notes – there’s never been a better time to self-isolate – the internet is a wide place for knowledge and learning.
-Tell us about what you’ve been up to during self-isolation (he’s with granddaughter Eleanor and his pug Albert)
– One activity they’ve done is: one person starts a drawing, the other finishes it.

How are you coping with isolation? Email us at feedback@breakfasttelevision.ca

Not even $100 to spare: renters worry as months’ end nears

Kyle Mack | posted Wednesday, Mar 25th, 2020

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Nearly half of Canadian households report a loss in wages or work as the coronavirus continues to ravage the global economy, according to a new Angus Reid poll.

So far a number of announcements about support have been made but little relief has actually made it into people’s pockets, as renters wait to hear what the province will offer Wednesday.

The new survey found people who have been hit the hardest by layoffs and mass shutdowns because of the pandemic will also be the least likely to absorb the financial losses.

(Courtesy the Angus Reid Institute)

Claire Lomas is a self-employed dog walker who rents a condo in Vancouver’s West End. She is uncertain what the federal benefits package promised for April will bring, as she doesn’t qualify for regular employment insurance.

“I would like to hear blanket policies that are going to cover everybody, at least in the short term, so that people know they’re not going to lose their home, we can self-isolate and we can get this under control,” she says.

Even if she does get some relief from the feds, Lomas, who is also an active housing advocate at City Hall, says those relying on EI to get by are going to struggle.

John Horgan

@jjhorgan

No one should lose their job for prioritizing their health & safety.

We’ve made a significant change to the law to protect workers – so anyone who cannot work because of COVID-19 can take leave without risking their job.

This is retroactive to Jan. 27.https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2020LBR0012-000551 

Protecting jobs during difficult times

The Province has made two significant changes to the Employment Standards Act to better support workers both during the COVID-19 public health emergency and in the long term.

news.gov.bc.ca

239 people are talking about this

“Especially for here in Vancouver, they’re not going to be sufficient; they cap out at $1,800 a month. If you look at most people’s rents in the city that’s gonna take most of the money there.”

Ash ‘I work from home now’ Kelly

@AshDKelly

A lot of people are wondering if landlords get a break on mortgage payments – will they in goodwill pass it on to tenants? Jeniffer Roebuck already has her answer: “It doesn’t matter what my situation is, doesn’t matter what his situation is, he’s not budging at all.”@NEWS1130

Randy@ranmann82

I’ve spoken with my tenants and told them if they need to defer rent, or pay a portion that is fine by me, I can always go to the bank and ask them to defer my mortgage payment but there needs to be more information ie: will interest be accrued or deferred as well

See Randy’s other Tweets

The Angus Reid poll also found about 44 per cent of people have lost work as a result of the virus and at one-third are worried about paying their rent or bills in a few days. Some can’t bear an increase of even $100.

(Courtesy the Angus Reid Institute)

 

Those who are younger are at a greater risk of losing work, and many will face difficult decisions and trade-offs when it comes to bills, according to the poll.

More than one million people have applied for EI already, according to the federal government and those who don’t fit the regular or sickness EI requirements will be able to apply for a new emergency benefit coming in April.

Lomas says renters deserve to know they have a secure place to isolate so all of Canada can get COVID-19 under control in these critical weeks.

“I know that this is very new in what’s going on but when we’re looking at mortgages we also need to be looking at rent relief in a city where 53 per cent of the population rents,” she explains.

“If 30 per cent of that $1,800 was going towards housing that would be ‘affordable’ but this is just going to affect so many people,” she says.

ACORN Canada@ACORNCanada

We want urgent moratorium on ALL evictions in British Columbia. Ontario, Nova Scotia and Quebec have shown the way. BC MUST follow. Tell your elected officials, we also need a RENT BREAK: https://acorncanada.org/take-action/urgent-action-rent-freeze-suspension-of-rent-end-nsf-fees-internet-all @BC_ACORN

Finance Minister Carole James says don’t expect that in your pocket until may

Government gets unanimous consent to quickly pass legislation for COVID-19 help

Kyle Mack | posted Wednesday, Mar 25th, 2020

The government received unanimous consent to quickly pass emergency legislation to free up $82 billion to help Canadians weather the COVID-19 crisis.

After a day of tense negotiations, MPs began debating the bill in the wee hours of morning, with a vote planned within a couple of hours.

The motion sent to the Speaker stated the House would resolve itself into a committee for no more than an hour to consider the matter with members getting up to five minutes for a question, and will be adjourned until April 20 after the third reading.

Starting the week of March 30, the finance minister will give a biweekly report on all actions undertaken to the pandemic, and will be discussed on April 20.

The Standing Committee on Finance will begin a review of the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act within six months of the day on which the it receives royal assent and will report its findings to the House no later than March 31, next year.

The motion also said that unless the Speaker received a notice from the House leaders of all four recognized parties it would remain adjourned until a future date.

Earlier on Tuesday, Conservatives raised objections to what they dubbed a Liberal “power grab,” which led to a late-night discussion and early hours of Wednesday.

An emergency sitting of the House of Commons was suspended moments after it began as Conservatives balked at provisions that would give the government sweeping powers to unilaterally spend, borrow and change taxation levels without Parliament’s approval for the next 21 months.

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said early in the day that his party would support emergency efforts to get money to Canadians struggling with the COVID-19 crisis, but would oppose any attempts by the Liberal government to expand its power.

His warning came before a small group of 32 MPs gathered in the Commons to debate and vote on legislation to deliver $82 billion in financial aid and tax deferrals to individuals and businesses, as proposed last week by the government to deal with COVID-19 and its ensuing economic havoc.

They convened as scheduled. However, the sitting had only just begun when government House leader Pablo Rodriguez asked that it be suspended so that the government could continue negotiating details of the legislation with opposition parties.

“Canadians need support to get through this. Fast,” Rodriguez tweeted shortly after the sitting was suspended. He said talks were ongoing and he expected MPs to reconvene later Tuesday.

But almost six hours later, Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet angrily denounced the delay. If the government can’t get the unanimous consent needed to pass the legislation in one day, as hoped, Blanchet called on the government to put the bill through the normal, lengthy legislative process necessary to get the money flowing as quickly as possible.

He guaranteed Bloc support to approve the legislation.

The Commons eventually returned briefly Tuesday evening to extend the day’s sitting. Negotiations with the Conservatives were to continue and it remained possible that the Commons could yet approve the legislation by the end of the day.

If it does get through the Commons, the plan was for the Senate to approve it Wednesday, followed immediately by royal assent.

At a morning news conference, Scheer said the Conservatives had no issue with the relief package promised by Trudeau last week. But they wouldn’t agree to give the government a blank cheque to spend and tax as it pleases for almost two years, as initially proposed in a draft of the bill shared with opposition parties on Monday.

“Any conversation about new government powers should not get in the way of passing this much-needed assistance,” he said. “Canadians are counting on us.”

Even as Scheer was speaking, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted that the legislation would be tabled “without clause 2,” suggesting the bill would not contain the offending elements.

At his own news conference outside his residence, where he remains in self-isolation after his wife contracted COVID-19, Trudeau said the government is trying to balance the need to act quickly to help Canadians with the need to remain accountable to Parliament.

“It is an exceptional situation that requires extreme flexibility and rapidity of response by governments to be able to help Canadians and react to a situation that we’ve seen is moving quickly every single day,” he said.

“So saying, we have a Parliament that works, we have an Opposition that is doing its job of making sure that we are taking the right steps the right way.”

Trudeau arrived late for his news conference because he was on the phone with opposition leaders.

He said the government was negotiating “up until the last minute” to find a way to give it the flexibility it needs to get the money into Canadians’ hands quickly while maintaining “our democratic institutions and the values that are so important to us all.”

Blanchet said the Bloc agrees the government needs some flexibility to quickly get financial relief to Canadians and businesses without having to recall Parliament each time — but that extraordinary power need not last longer than September.

Scheer, meanwhile, sidestepped questions about whether the Tories are prepared to vote against the emergency-aid bill if it’s not changed to their satisfaction. Defeat of the bill would be a vote of no confidence for the minority Liberal government and possibly trigger an election.

The bill only needs one party’s support to pass the Commons eventually but it needs the support of every MP present to be put through on the one-day schedule the Liberals want.

“Our hope is that (the government) will stay focused on providing to Canadians, not focused on a power grab. Not focused on giving themselves unprecedented new powers,” Scheer said.

The Conservative position on the bill was complicated by one of its own MPs, Scott Reid, who threatened on his website Tuesday to show up in the Commons, despite not being one of the designated 11 Tories who were supposed to be present, and deny the unanimous consent needed to expedite the bill’s passage.

He later amended his post to say he has no objection to same-day passage of the relief measures provided MPs have enough time to read and understand the bill.

Parliament adjourned on March 13 until at least April 20 as part of a countrywide effort to curb the spread of the virus. It was recalled Tuesday to deal with the emergency aid package but with only about one in every 10 MPs present in the Commons, seated at least two metres apart.

After agreeing to extend the sitting beyond 7 p.m., Scheer began to cross the aisle to speak privately with Rodriguez. The two men pulled up short and spoke to each other at a safe distance.

Prince Charles tests positive for coronavirus

Kyle Mack | posted Wednesday, Mar 25th, 2020

Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, has tested positive for the new coronavirus, his office said Wednesday.

The 71-year-old is showing mild symptoms of COVID-19 and is self-isolating at a royal estate in Scotland, his Clarence House office said.

It says his wife Camilla, 72, has tested negative.

“The Prince of Wales has tested positive for Coronavirus,” Clarence House said. “He has been displaying mild symptoms but otherwise remains in good health and has been working from home throughout the last few days as usual.”

Britain’s Press Association, citing a source, said the prince and the duchess remained in good spirits, and that Charles was not bedridden.

The tests were carried out by the National Health Service in Scotland.

“It is not possible to ascertain from whom the prince caught the virus owing to the high number of engagements he carried out in his public role during recent weeks.”

Buckingham Palace said Queen Elizabeth II remains at her home in Windsor.

“Her Majesty the queen remains in good health,” the palace said. “The queen last saw the Prince of Wales briefly after the investiture on the morning of 12th March and is following all the appropriate advice with regard to her welfare.”

Charles’ last public engagement was March 12. He has had a number of private meetings, and participants at those sessions have been made aware of his condition.

What food delivery services are running?

Kyle Mack | posted Monday, Mar 23rd, 2020

In isolation and need groceries? These digital services can help.

– Uber eats

  • $0 delivery fee for independent and  local restaurants *follow the eat local banner on the app*
  • You can request orders to be left on doorstep

– SkipTheDishes

  • Suspending the cash payment option for all orders

– HelloFresh

  • Working closely with their network of suppliers to ensure they are still delivering fresh meals to customers
  • Spokesperson for HelloFresh says they have not been impacted by COVID-19

– Foodora

  • Issued a series of informed measures, including work-travel restrictions
  • Work-from-home policy for those who’ve travelled recently to areas with outbreaks

– DoorDash

  • Focused on drivers – offering financial assistance to any employee who has been with the company for 60 days if they contracted the virus

– Grocery stores delivering and changing their hours

  • An app called Instacart – you can order groceries through your smartphone
  • Shoppers Drug Mart changing their first hour to be for elderly people
  • LCBO changed their hours from 11am-6pm

 

A list of restaurants now offering takeout or delivery:

  • Adamson Barbecue
  • Aloette
  • Blood Brothers
  • Descendant
  • Elm Dt. Deli
  • Favorites
  • Fourth Man In The Fire
  • Hotel Delilah
  • Imanishi Japanese Kitchen
  • Indie Ale House
  • Maker Pizza
  • Sotto Sotto
  • South Indian Dosa Mahal
  • Roselle Dessert
  • Tinuno

 

Transat AT lays off 3,600 staff, about 70% of its workforce

Kyle Mack | posted Monday, Mar 23rd, 2020

Transat AT Inc. says it has temporarily laid off about 70 per cent of its workforce in Canada, about 3,600 people.

The decision comes as non-essential travel around the world comes to a standstill as governments close borders in an effort to slow the COVID-19 pandemic.

Transat says some of these layoffs are effective immediately, while others will take effect following advance notice of up to one month.

The layoffs include all flight crew personnel.

The company says the final Air Transat flight prior to the full suspension of its operations is scheduled for April 1.

Transat says operations are being stopped gradually in order to enable it to repatriate as many of its customers as possible to their home countries.

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