Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed media outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Tuesday for his daily update on the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic in Canada.
Trudeau started by thanking the Canadian Armed Forces for the work being done in long-term care homes in Quebec and Ontario, stating that the troubling observations seen in the facilities have been reported to the provincial governments.
Trudeau said he spoke to Ontario Premier Doug Ford on the matter this morning, saying that the federal government would "continue to support" Ontario. Ford will provide more information at his daily press conference at 1 pm.
Bill Blair received a letter on May 14 outlining these allegations of abuse and neglect. On why the minister sat on this letter for ten days before acting, Trudeau said: "When we received this report, we shared it with Ontario, I found out the existence of this report on Friday afternoon. On the weekend we shared it with Ontario, I read the report yesterday, and it's being made public today," the prime minister said.
"These are things that we needed to move quickly on, and needed to take action on, and as I said, the federal government will be there to support Ontario and other provinces as they move forward."
PPE, Trudeau said that in the last 10 weeks, over 40 flights have arrived in Canada, all carrying PPE, such as masks and hospital gowns.
Domestic production continues at home, with Trudeau announcing a contract with General Motors in Oshawa to create 10 million face masks.
Meeting with world leaders and the United Nations
Trudeau went on to touch on the global situation of the pandemic, and Canada's role in ensuring countries abroad weather the coronavirus storm well.
Trudeau touched on how Canadian jobs and businesses were dependent on international business, saying that Canada "can't wait for others to act."
"It's just not who we are."
"Canada is ready to do our part to bring the world together in the fight against COVID-19," said Trudeau, before announcing that he will be meeting with the Secretary General of the United Nations and the prime minister of Jamaica to find strategies to help developing countries.
"I've been speaking to leaders about these issues, about the importance of global cooperation. This includes Chancellor Merkel, President Macron, and leaders from the Caribbean, Africa, Latin America, and the Pacific," said Trudeau.
"We need to collaborate. With this forum, Canada will be there to lead the way forward."
Yesterday, Quebec Premier François Legault said he was in consideration of giving asylum seekers to Quebec who work in long-term care facilities the potential to stay in the province as full time working immigrants.
On the matter, Trudeau applauded immigrants who make strong contributions to Canada, saying that when it came to asylum seekers who came into the country "through a regular means, and are now working in our long term care homes, and are doing heroic work to protect Canadians," Trudeau said his government was looking at how to recognize that work, and expedite the process.
Trudeau said that the "exceptional and unprecedented" circumstances around COVID-19 was making his government review the way "certain things" are done, including immigration.
"That system is focused on abiding by the regular processes and treating everyone fairly, and it's important to follow those processes. But in an exceptional situation, we can, of course, consider exceptions."