As families in our community prepare for back-to-school, additional health measures are being put in place to ensure that students can return safely to the classroom. Based on the latest recommendations from the Chief Medical Officer of Health, masks will now be required for students in grades 4 to 12, teachers, and school staff in school areas where physical distancing is not possible. Masks will be optional for younger students. To support a safe return to school, all students, teachers, and staff will be provided with two reusable masks, and all schools will be provided with hand sanitizer and contactless thermometers, at the beginning of the upcoming school year. As students return to classes, public health officials will continue to provide advice on how to keep all staff and students safe.
Last month, thousands of small businesses have accessed the Small and Medium Enterprise Grant. Alberta’s Government is supporting job creators by providing businesses hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic with grants of up to $5,000 to cover the costs of reopening. This grant has given a helping hand to businesses by helping with the costs of following new public health guidelines and hiring new staff. Over 6,700 businesses have received the grant since the launch of the program. For more information, please visit https://www.alberta.ca/sme-relaunch-grant.aspx.
Hunting and trapping season is approaching fast! Alberta’s Government is updating the Wildlife Regulations to improve conservation, enhance opportunities for hunters and trappers, and provide relief for outfitters struggling during COVID-19. The changes will allow hunters to spend more time outdoors and less time filing paperwork, keeping our promise to cut unnecessary red tape. The new updates also help improve wildlife conservation, end outdated administrative requirements, reduce conflicts between animals and people, and protect wildlife habitats.
It has been six months since the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Alberta. Since then, our daily lives have changed in many ways, big and small. After a recent jump in active cases, the spread of COVID-19 in Alberta is gradually slowing once again. This improvement is due to the renewed efforts of Albertans to practice physical distancing and other key public health measures. For the latest information and resources on COVID-19 in Alberta, visit alberta.ca/covid19.