City of Niagara Falls COVID-19 Update: March 13, 2020 at 4:30 PM

Archived News

This news item was posted on 3/13/2020 4:52:00 PM and is an archived post

The health and welfare of our staff, residents and visitors is a top priority for the City of Niagara Falls as we are following the ever changing impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

The City of Niagara Falls response to public health emergencies is led by Region of Niagara Public Health. We have full confidence in our local healthcare system and are committed to working closely with local hospitals, health care and community partners, the Ministry of Health, Public Health Ontario and national partners to monitor and respond accordingly to the COVID-19 situation.

However, this is a rapidly evolving situation; discussions and decisions are being made on an ongoing basis. Any changes in operations will be communicated and posted to this webpage.

Today, as part of continued close monitoring of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the City of Niagara Falls partially activated its Emergency Operations Centre (EOC). The role of the City’s EOC, staffed by employees trained in emergency management, is to coordinate a response to any type of emergency. The EOC provides support and resources in the event of an emergency and ensures business continuity for City of Niagara Falls services. This provides the City the opportunity to have key staff at the table to ensure we are making decisions that help protect the public and our employees.

As the situation continues to unfold, we wanted to advise the public of the measures that we are taking to keep our employees, residents and visitors safe, and to prevent the spread of germs and viruses:

  • The City of Niagara Falls continues to work closely with our regional, provincial and federal counterparts to monitor the most current information and take appropriate actions at the direction of the Region of Niagara Public Health.
  • City of Niagara Falls staff are not permitted to attend meetings or conferences where the Government of Canada has issued Active Travel Health Notices.
  • Meetings have been cancelled when possible, and webinars/conference calls will be implemented.
  • We have communicated health and safety tips to our staff to reinforce the importance of proper hand washing and hygiene protocols as the best defense against COVID-19, colds, and influenza.
  • Staff are required to stay home when they or their immediate family members are sick.
  • Protocols are in place for staff returning from affected areas.
  • Facilities management is ensuring soap dispensers are replenished and are in good working order, and additional hand sanitizer stations are located throughout City facilities.
  • Increased signage to create awareness of good hygiene and disease prevention has been added to all facilities.
  • Increased cleaning in facilities of high touch areas including banisters, handles, elevator buttons and door knobs.
  • Increased cleaning of City buses by disinfecting high frequency touch points, such as handles and doors using a long-acting antimicrobial agent
  • Online payment options for municipal services are encouraged.

We are asking the public to not attend any City facility if they are sick or have travelled outside Canada in the last 14 days and to avoid unnecessary visits to City facilities. If a member of the public must come to a City facility, please observe social distances of approximately 6 feet or 2 meters from others when possible.

The best way to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including COVID-19 is to:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or with alcohol-based hand rub
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or sleeve
  • Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces daily. Use a disinfectant and follow manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Call ahead if visiting your health care provider for infectious symptoms so they can plan to protect others from spread

Contact Niagara Region Public Health and Emergency Services by calling 905-688-8248 ext. 7330 or toll-free 1-888-505-6074 if you have a fever, or new cough, or shortness of breath and difficulty breathing, and any of the following:

  • Travelled outside of Canada in the 14 days before onset of illness
  • Close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19
  • Close contact with a person with acute respiratory illness who travelled to affected areas within 14 days prior to their illness onset

As this is an evolving situation, we continue to remind everyone the importance of using credible sources to stay informed. We encourage all Niagara residents and visitors to visit the Niagara Region’s Public Health Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) webpage.

For information regarding travel, please visit the Government of Canada website.

Visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect Ontarians from COVID-19.

Posted on: 3/13/2020 4:52 PM - Category: Media Releases