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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: March 30th, 2021

National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommends pause in use of AstraZeneca vaccine for younger adults

Health Canada will be issuing additional terms and conditions requiring AstraZeneca manufacturers to conduct a detailed assessment of the benefits and risks of the vaccine by age and gender in the Canadian context following European reports of rare but serious cases of blood clots associated with low levels of blood platelets in people immunized with the AstraZeneca vaccine.

In the interim, National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) is recommending an immediate pause in the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine in all individuals less than 55 years of age in Canada.

Click here to read more.

Government of Canada issues reminder of COVID-19 border measures

Travellers should be aware of the following mandatory requirements to help with smooth processing at the Canadian border. These requirements apply to all travellers, including Canadians returning home.

Having a vaccination does not currently exempt anyone from having to comply with current testing, quarantine, and other requirements.

Travellers must:

Click here to read more.

Niagara Health launches digital identity service

Niagara Health, Southlake Regional Health Centre, North York General Hospital, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton and their technology partners, IDENTOS and SecureKey Technologies, are proud to introduce the Ontario trusted account, a service that allows patients to prove their identity online, just as they would in person using their Ontario Health Card, Driver’s License or Photo Card.

Click here to read more.

Dr. Mustafa Hirji delivers COVID-19 update

Payroll employment falls in January

Payroll employment fell by 134,500 (-0.8%) in January, following an increase of 48,000 (+0.3%) in December. The largest declines were in Ontario (-66,100; -1.1%) and Quebec (-43,700; -1.2%).

Average weekly earnings were $1,135 in January, up 1.8% compared with December. On a year-over-year basis, earnings grew 8.3%, as job losses since February 2020 have been concentrated among hourly paid—and largely lower-paid—employees.

Total hours worked fell 0.5% in January and were 5.2% below their pre-COVID February level, compared with a gap of 16.5% in May.

Payroll employment in retail trade fell by 65,900 (-3.4%) in January, notably in Ontario and Quebec where tighter public health measures were put in place in late December.

Payroll employment in accommodation and food services declined for the third consecutive month, down by 44,000 (-4.7%) in January, with full-service restaurants and limited-service eating places, traveller accommodation, and drinking places continuing a downward trend that started in autumn 2020.

Click here to read more.

Reading recommendations

Why Ships Keep Crashing

David A. Graham, The Atlantic

When a big jet airplane crashes, it almost always makes headlines around the world, and for good reason: Fatal passenger accidents are extremely rare. Right now, though, the eyes of the world are on the Ever Given, the massive container ship still stubbornly lodged between the banks of the Suez Canal.

Even though the world is incredibly dependent on ships like Ever Given—a reality that pandemic-related disruptions have suddenly made visible—major maritime incidents are surprisingly common. According to the insurer Allianz, 41 large ships were lost in 2019, and 46 in 2018. Over the past decade, about 100 big vessels have been lost annually.

Why does this keep happening?

12 people are behind most of the anti-vaxxer disinformation you see on social media

Matt Binder, Mashable

A new report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate and Anti-Vax Watch found that up to 65 percent of “anti-vaccine content” on Facebook and Twitter originated from twelve influencers within the anti-vaxxer movement.

On Facebook alone, the content from these individuals, which the reports dubs as the “Disinformation Dozen,” accounts for 73 percent of all anti-vaxxer content posted or shared on the platform in the last two months.

Niagara COVID status tracker

Niagara’s most up-to-date COVID statistics, measured against the targets for the various stages of the Ontario COVID-19 Response Framework, are presented below. This does not predict government policy, but is offered to give you an idea of where Niagara is situated and how likely a relaxation (or further restrictions) may be. These data are drawn daily from Niagara Region. The Grey-Lockdown level does not have its own metrics, but is triggered when the COVID-specific measurements in a Red-Control region have continued to deteriorate.

 Incidence ratePercent positivityRt
Target: Green<10<0.5%<1
Target: Yellow10-24.90.5-1.2%1
Target: Orange25-39.91.3-2.4%1-1.1
Target: Red≥40≥2.5%≥1.2
Niagara Current154.2 ▲7.4% ▲1.2 ▼


  • Weekly Incidence Rate: the number of new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people per week
  • Percent Positivity: the number of positive COVID-19 tests as a percentage of all COVID-19 tests performed
  • Rt: the reproductive rate, or the number of people infected by each case of the virus

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here.The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.
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