‘Prevent another lockdown’: Clarham resident advocates for Durham Rapid COVID-19 trial

A Clarington, Ontario, resident is hoping that people can safely return to business after being ordered to stay in the province’s stay home.

Mark Canning is advocating for the area to take proactive steps so that after the current lockdown, businesses can remain open without fear of closing again. He has proposed an alternative COVID-19 rapid testing pilot program for retailers in Clarington.

“Small businesses can’t really afford (another lockdown). Many people are still hanging.

“Rapid testing would be another way, another way to catch some COVID-19 on a completely optional basis to prevent another possible lockdown.”

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The concept is currently being introduced in Waterloo, Kitchener and Cambridge. According to reports, there are millions of unused COVID-19 rapid tests in empty warehouses across the country.

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This is where the region can get most of its supplies, says Canning. Doctors say the tests are mostly accurate, but there is still a possibility of errors.

Gord Gill, the owner of a youth entertainment complex in Bournville, says he is on board with the proposed project because it could help ease concerns between employees and customers.

“It will only help because of the behavior of customers during the last year when we were allowed to open, they wanted to know if there was enough space for their children to come,” he said.

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“For those who are concerned about getting the coronovirus back into their home, we will open daytime time slots for that section so that the population knows they are safe here.”

The health sector medical officer says Durham does not currently play a role in obtaining and delivering rapid test kits, and will do so for businesses.

“(Businesses) need to understand not only how to access test kits, but how to implement them within () the workplace,” Dr. Robert Kyle said.

“In the context of the field, we do not have a role in the case of rapid testing. It really belongs to the auspicious of Ontario health. “

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Canning says he will continue to inform local businesses and municipal employees about his pilot project. His proposal is to be presented at the next Health and Social Services Committee of the region on Thursday.

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