One in six people ventured beyond their neighbourhood last weekend, according to a report that lays out a dramatic drop in Canadians’ movement as people adjust to stringent stay-home advisories during the COVID-19 pandemic. The report, compiled by marketing firm Environics Analytics from a database of anonymized location data from 2.3 million mobile phones, examined the movement patterns of Canadians over the past 10 weekends.
More about the report:
- Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and Yukon were excluded because of the lower number of cellphone users captured in those areas
- Surprisingly, age alone was not a factor, deflating the narrative that younger people haven’t been physically distancing enough
- Using Environics’s data, The Globe found that those living in the highest-earning areas were indeed going out less frequently
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Economic fallout: There had been speculation that Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz would be asked to remain in charge longer in light of the COVID-19 shock. According to sources, Mr. Poloz would have stayed on beyond his soon-to-expire term but the Liberal government never asked him. In March, Canada lost a record-setting number of jobs, but Statscan pointed to a striking gender divide in numbers: women, young people and lower-wage workers are feeling the economic effects of the virus more than most.
Long-term care: Ontario’s top doctor now says that anyone moving into a long-term care facility should be tested for COVID-19, reversing a policy that said only patients with symptoms should be tested. In Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Dwight Ball has noted his province has the highest proportion of seniors in the country, and officials are warning the province’s aging population creates particular risks.
Front-line workers: Ontario reported its first known casualty among those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic, A housekeeper at a hospital in Southern Ontario. In B.C., 200 psychologists are volunteering to provide free virtual counselling to front-line health workers as part of efforts to ramp up mental-health services for anyone who needs them.
- At least six Canadians face criminal charges after alleged coughing, licking incidents
- First Nations along B.C.'s north, central coasts ask for crackdown on non-essential travel to the region
- Big tobacco eyes a PR boost as it joins the race for a COVID-19 vaccine
In world news:
The emergence of COVID-19 from China has created a worldwide wave of discrimination, sometimes violent, against people of Asian descent. But now that the country has declared the virus under control, foreign residents in China have become victims of discrimination.
- Africa must not be ‘neglected’ in fight against novel coronavirus, officials say
- Joe Biden joins growing call for release of America’s racial data on coronavirus
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Canada to resume approving military-goods exports to Saudi Arabia: In the midst of the pandemic’s economic crisis, the government has also disclosed for the first time that it would have been on the hook for up to $14-billion if it had cancelled the contract or revealed its terms.
OPEC reaches deal to slash global oil production amid pandemic, with no further cuts for Canada: Further action on output is expected to be the main topic of discussion at a meeting of Group of 20 energy ministers on Friday.
Shaw Communications withdrawing guidance, cutting spending after uncertainty of COVID-19, oil prices: The Calgary-based telecom provider has reduced its travel costs and discretionary spending and expects that some of the projects it had planned to invest in will be delayed.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
Tiger King isn’t a coronavirus distraction; it’s a mirror into our blatant disrespect for animals
Kendra Coulter: “Never has it been more clear that we are all connected, and that how we treat animals has significant and often fatal effects – for them, and for us.” Coulter holds the Chancellor’s Chair for Research Excellence at Brock University and is a fellow of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics.
A jolt into preparing for a longer crisis, and a new normal
Campbell Clark: “If a ‘virtual’ Parliament is ready to function in four weeks, Mr. Scheer will have to accept that for a while; politics will have a new normal, too.”
We’ll have to accept that the best forecasts will still be imperfect
André Picard: “The numbers that will make the headlines, however, are the most dubious ones: the longer-term projections.”
There are reasons to be cautious of Alberta’s smartphone surveillance plan
Kelly Cryderman: “He has not answered privacy questions, such as how can the public be assured data will not be misused, that data will eventually be destroyed, and that monitoring will end when the coronavirus is brought under control?”
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
How Ukrainian Easter eggs offer beauty and continuity in troubled times
It feels odd to think about Easter eggs right now. With everything going on, why would someone spend time decorating an egg? But the art of Ukrainian Easter eggs was not born out of comfort or luxury. As is often the case, the beauty came out of times when it was needed most.
MOMENT IN TIME
The Great Gatsby is published
April 10, 1925: It has often been called the Great American novel, but when F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby was first published it was met with decidedly mixed reviews. The New York Times called it “a curious book, a mystical, glamorous story of today.” While The New York World ran a review with the headline: “F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Latest a Dud.” Set in the Roaring Twenties, it told the tragic story of Jay Gatsby, a self-made man who profited – as so many did at the time – on the sale of black-market liquor during Prohibition. It was a novel that perfectly encapsulated the heady Jazz Age of lavish parties and social climbing, an era Fitzgerald himself described as a “whole race going hedonistic, deciding on pleasure.” A gripping love story, told with finesse, it nevertheless fell flat. The 20,000 copies of its first printing sold slowly, and there were still copies unsold from its second printing when Fitzgerald died in 1940. It is now required reading in English literature classes around the world and the story has been retold in film, theatre, ballet, opera, video games, TV movies and radio plays. Gayle MacDonald