Letter to the Premier and Minister Elliott regarding Vaccine Availability in Durham Region

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament

March 29, 2021

Honourable Doug Ford
Premier of Ontario

Honourable Christine Elliott
Deputy Premier and Minister of Health

Dear Premier and Deputy Premier:

Re: Vaccine Availability in Durham Region

Thank you for your public service through one of the most challenging crises to face our country and communities in a century.

I write today with concern regarding the equitable distribution of vaccines to Durham Region. I appreciate that you have the difficult task of ensuring that vaccines are distributed across the province and to the hardest impacted areas and this can be tough to balance. However, as you know Durham Region has been hovering between the Red and Grey zones since the stay-at-home order was lifted. As the Member of Parliament for Whitby, I have heard from constituents and community leaders with concerns about the local vaccine supply.

With Canada and Ontario receiving increased deliveries every week, it is critical that we get as many vaccines into the arms of residents as possible as quickly as possible. I know Durham Public Health is ready and able to receive increased vaccine shipments.

I am writing to request immediate action in three areas:

  • Ensure Durham Region is receiving an equitable share of the vaccines available to the Province
  • Immediately include Durham Region in the pharmacy pilot program
  • Work with Durham Region Public Health to lower the age of eligibility for those who can             receive a vaccine

These measures will allow more members of our communities to be vaccinated during a time when over 30% of new cases are a variant of concern. I am hearing from people daily who are ready to receive their vaccine.

Thank you for your time and consideration of these requests.

Yours Sincerely,

 Ryan Turnbull

Member of Parliament for Whitby

cc:
His Worship Mayor Don Mitchell, Town of Whitby
John Henry, Chair of the Regional Municipality of Durham
Dr. Robert Kyle, Medical Officer of Health, Durham Region
Chris Leahy, Deputy Mayor and Regional Councillor, Town of Whitby
Rhonda Mulcahy, Regional Councillor, Town of Whitby
Elizabeth Roy, Regional Councillor, Town of Whitby
Steve Yamada, Regional Councillor, Town of Whitby
Durham Region MPs
Durham Region MPPs

Statement on Call Display Issues

February 19, 2021

It has come to my attention that when constituents receive a phone call from my constituency office in Whitby the display on some Android phones comes up as Jim Flaherty.

The late Jim Flaherty was a decent and honourable public servant who served our community and country with distinction for many years. There is no intention of disrespecting or dishonouring the Late Jim Flaherty or his legacy.

I have been working with the House of Commons Information Technology team to find a solution to this problem. Bell Canada has changed the name on their network to reflect my name.

Unfortunately, this particular change must come from Google directly to be displayed properly on Android devices. My team has been in touch with Google to advocate for this change to take place.

We are sorry for the unintended impact on anyone that this situation may have caused.

Sincerely,

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament for Whitby

Event: Pre-Federal Budget Consultation

Event: Discussion with Healthcare Workers

Letter to Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Long-Care Fullerton on Sunnycrest Nursing Home Outbreak

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament

December 2, 2020 

The Honourable Doug Ford, M.P.P.
Premier of Ontario

The Honourable Merrilee Fullerton, M.P.P. 
Minister of Long-Term Care

Dear Premier Ford and Minister Fullerton: 

Re: COVID-19 Outbreak at Sunnycrest Nursing Home in Whitby 

I am deeply concerned about the recent outbreak at Sunnycrest Nursing Home in Whitby. The rapid increase in cases and lack of communication with families has left many in my community scared and worried for the well-being of their loved ones.

I have been in touch with the Minister of Public Safety, the Minister of Health, and the Minister of Seniors to convey my serious concern for the situation. 

I also want to emphasize my support for an independent public inquiry into the state of Ontario’s long-term care system. 

For too long, the issues and challenges in our long-term care system have gone unnoticed or ignored. The pandemic has only exacerbated issues that already existed and stretched an already fragile system to the breaking point.  

I know you both agree, our seniors, the people who built this country, deserve better.  

Urgent action is needed for the residents of Sunnycrest Nursing Home to get the COVID-19 outbreak under control and ensure the recovery of those who have contracted the virus.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Yours sincerely,

Ryan Turnbull 
Member of Parliament for Whitby 

c.c.: 

The Honourable Christine Elliott, M.P.P., Deputy Premier and Minister of Health 
Lorne Coe, M.P.P., Whitby

Updated Statement on COVID-19 Outbreaks in Whitby

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament

I have heard from a number of constituents concerned about the COVID-19 outbreak at Sunnycrest Nursing Home. As someone whose own mother is in a senior’s residence, I want you to know how alarmed I am at the rapid increase in cases at this facility and the stories I am hearing from constituents about conditions at the facility.

Though long-term care is managed by the Ontario Government, I have reached out to Sunnycrest to offer my support on anything the federal government can do.

I have been in contact with Federal Minister of Health, Patty Hajdu, Federal Minister of Seniors, Deb Schulte, and Federal Minister of Public Safety, Bill Blair to convey my serious concern. The Federal Government remains ready to assist if called upon by the Ontario government.

I have written to Premier Doug Ford and Ontario’s Minister of Long-Term Care, Merilee Fullerton conveying my deep concern for the situation and repeating my support for an independent, public inquiry into Ontario’s long-term care system.

We must all work together to protect our community. We simply cannot allow those who built our country to be treated this way.

Letter to Ministers Advocating for Dedicated Infrastructure Support for Post-Secondary Institutions

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament

November 19, 2020

Hon. Navdeep Bains, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Innovation, Science, and Industry
House of Commons
Ottawa ON K1A 0A6

Hon. Catherine McKenna, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
House of Commons
Ottawa ON K1A 0A6

Dear Ministers:

RE: Dedicated Infrastructure Support for Post-Secondary Institutions

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadians have been able to count on our government to support them. Thank you to you both for your leadership over the past months as we have shifted our focus to getting through, and rebuilding from this pandemic.

As Canadians have made changes to their lives and plans to adapt to the realities of COVID-19, post-secondary institutions have found themselves hard hit with declining revenues in addition to pandemic-related expenses. Many have been forced to run significant deficits due to COVID-19.

We can all agree that post-secondary institutions are vital to Canada’s economic development and make immeasurable contributions through the innovation that they produce.  Currently, post-secondary institutions require direct support. Dedicated support streams for post-secondary institutions grappling with the economic effects of the pandemic would ensure the long-term viability and health of our institutions and would ensure that the innumerable benefits they bring to our communities continue.

Furthermore, I have heard from these stakeholders that post-secondary institutions are unable to apply for funding independently from municipal governments, and currently having to compete with other municipal infrastructure projects. This makes obtaining funding particularly challenging for post-secondary institutions as they must compete against a long list of local government priorities.

I urge you to consider a direct financial support stream for post-secondary institutions, similar to the Strategic Infrastructure Fund, as well as administrative changes required to allow them to apply for funding available to other public-sector organizations.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Ryan Turnbull

Member of Parliament for Whitby

Letter to Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland on Business Supports for Businesses Opened during the Pandemic

Ryan Turnbull Member of Parliament

November 19, 2020

Hon. Chrystia Freeland, P.C., M.P.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6

Dear Minister:

RE: Business supports for businesses opened during the pandemic

I have appreciated your responsiveness and commitment to helping businesses, workers, and all Canadians through this pandemic. I am very appreciative of the support programs we have rapidly put in place.

I am proud of the resilient entrepreneurs and business owners who have been able to keep their businesses open during this challenging time. I am especially proud of those who have started new businesses, a testament to boldness and tenacity even in ideal circumstances.

After connecting with some of my constituents who have opened new businesses during this pandemic, it was brought to my attention that the eligibility criteria for some of our business support programs excludes those businesses opened after March 2020. While I understand that the purpose of the supports, including the CEBA, and CEWS, were intended to help existing businesses survive the pandemic, this eligibility criteria puts those businesses that have opened in recent months at a disadvantage. As we aim to build back better and recover from the coronavirus recession, it is imperative that we provide new businesses with the same supports as businesses that were in existence on March 1st, 2020.

I am requesting that your officials review the eligibility criteria for the CEWS and the CEBA to allow new enterprises to qualify.

I sincerely appreciate how responsive you and your department have been to the feedback and concerns expressed by Members of Parliament and I want to thank you sincerely for that.

Yours very truly,

Ryan Turnbull
Member of Parliament for Whitby