THUNDER BAY – NEWS – Thunder Bay’s Municipal Emergency Control Group (MECG) met Thursday with community partners as part of its ongoing management of the COVID-19 situation.
The group continues to meet weekly to provide a coordinated approach to the community’s COVID-19 pandemic response.
The group discussed making sure that emergency and essential city services are protected and continue to be delivered in the coming days and weeks, even as COVID-19-related staffing shortages will have an impact to some services and programs.
“At today’s meeting, I asked about Emergency Services and how COVID-related staffing shortages are affecting them,” said Mayor Bill Mauro.
“The Chiefs of Police, Fire and EMS gave assurances that even with staffing losses, critical services will still be delivered and they will continue to respond to calls without interruption. They have contingency plans in place, and continue to monitor all critical services to ensure sufficient staff is available to support operations.”
The city’s workforce has already seen some staffing impacts in recent weeks due to the isolation requirements and the highly transmissible Omicron variant. Contingency plans are in place so that priority services can still be delivered to residents, including snow and ice removal, transit, waste services and emergency services.
“The Corporation is working hard, as best we are able, to ensure the continuity of emergency and essential services as we go through this fifth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic,” says City Manager Norm Gale.
“Currently our staffing situation is stable, but we know that challenges are coming, and we are ready for that. Our main focus is to make sure that the essential and critical city services that residents rely on continue to be delivered.”
Gale added that it’s important for the community to know there are plans in place for these exact situations, and asked that everyone be mindful and have patience should some non-critical and non-essential services be adjusted or cancelled.
The MECG continues to meet bi-weekly to provide a coordinated approach to the community’s pandemic response. Those in attendance at the MECG meeting represented the City of Thunder Bay, Thunder Bay Police Service, Thunder Bay Fire Rescue, Superior North EMS, St. Joseph’s Care Group, Tbaytel, Thunder Bay Airport, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, Thunder Bay District Health Unit, District of Thunder Bay Social Services Administration Board, Conseil scolaire de district catholique des Aurores boréales, Lakehead Public Schools, the Catholic District School Board, Canada Border Services, and the Solicitor General’s Office of Ontario.