COVID-19 in Canada: Manitoba premier calls out 'reckless behaviour', says people 'did not bother' to get life-saving COVID-19 vaccine

·2 min read
Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister waves to vaccination staff in Winnipeg’s convention centre as Dr. Brent Roussin, chief provincial public health officer, prepares to give him his COVID-19 vaccination Thursday, April 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister called out people's "reckless behaviour" after not following the public health measures in place and are choosing to not get vaccinated.

"There are Manitobans who did not bother to take an hour or two and go and get a life-saving vaccine," Pallister said at a press conference on Tuesday. "In fact, over 70 per cent of our hospitalizations currently are folks who haven’t been vaccinated."

"To be a good citizen it would be helpful for you to go and get vaccinated."

A total of 761,132 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Manitoba to date, with 878,980 doses delivered to the province.

The premier went on to say that as of Friday, 43 per cent of COVID-19 patients in Manitoba hospitals had not been tested for the virus before being admitted.

"There’s an element of personal responsibility that shouldn’t escape us but seems to be escaping some that we need to remark upon," Pallister said.

"Many Manitobans have chosen not to obey our public health orders and then have gotten sick and too many of those people didn’t even bother to get tested for COVID, which means they placed other people in jeopardy as well."

In advance of the long week, Manitoba put a number of more restrictive public health measures in place, which will be in effect for the remainder of the week.

This includes:

  • Indoor public gatherings are not permitted and no visitors are permitted on private property

  • Outdoor gatherings with anyone from outside a household are not allowed 

  • Retail businesses can only operate at 10 per cent capacity or 100 customers, whichever is fewer

  • Only one person per household will be allowed to enter a business

"We are at a critical point in this third wave, we need everybody to do the right thing to be good citizens," Pallister said. "If that sounds old fashioned to you I hope it doesn't because that’s what this is about as we move forward."

"These and previous measures that we had taken will not work if they are not followed. These measure were put in place, strong measures to limit gatherings, to limit close contacts, [are particularly] important with the increasing transmission possibilities of these variants of concern."

Manitoba reported 259 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday and two more deaths related to the province. There are currently 253 people in hospital with active COVID-19 in the province.

At a press conference earlier on Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the federal government is ready to assist the province once a formal request for support is made by Manitoba.

"In anticipation of Manitoba’s official request for additional support to manage the situation, we’re preparing to deploy federal health human resources" Trudeau said. "We’re also looking at deploying medical staff through the Canadian Red Cross and sending support from the Canadian Armed Forces."

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