This afternoon, Premier Kelvin Goertzen addressed the public for the first time as Premier.

Kelvin announced that Manitoba's controversial education reform bill and four other pieces of legislation delayed by the opposition party will not move forward to a vote.

"I want to thank all of those who signed up to have their voices heard on those five bills in particular. However, I also know that a new leader has to set their own agenda. As such, cabinet and caucus have authorized with my full support that those bills will not move forward in the fall."

He says that this is about creating a clean slate for a new leader.

Goertzen also announced that he asked Minister Rochelle Squires to serve as Deputy Premier, and she accepted the offer.

"I'm honoured that she has accepted my offer."

He thanked Brian Pallister for his service, on behalf of his caucus and Manitobans.

"For three decades, Mister Pallister has served in challenging roles provincially, and in Canada, the challenges have never been greater than they've been over the last 18 months. I know it's taken a toll on his family, I saw that personally."

Goertzen will be Manitoba's 23rd premier for a two-month term until he's replaced by one of the candidates running to replace Pallister on October 30th.

Goertzen has served as MLA for Steinbach since 2003.

Manitoba Government and General employees union, which represents support members of the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority and Prairie Mountain Health regions, have voted overwhelmingly to authorize their committees to call a strike if they deem it necessary.

Members have not had a renewed agreement, and wages have been frozen since 2017 and 2018.

Just a week ago, the government inducted health care workers into the Order of the Buffalo Hunt. However, the government has appeared to show no appreciation for healthcare workers at the bargaining table.

Manitoba nurses recently took a strike vote since their negotiations stalled. The government stepped in and agreed that a third-party arbitrator would settle the agreement if bargaining failed.

The hope for MGEU is that the government will provide support workers with the same respect and commit to bringing in a third-party arbitrator if talks break down for support staff.

There are over 6,100 workers in these MGEU components. They work in rural hospitals, personal care homes, and the community in various roles, including health care aides, home care attendants, maintenance, clerical, housekeeping, and dietary.

Results:
IERHA Community Support – 98.9%
IERHA HCSS – 98.3%
PMH Community Support – 98.1%
PMH HCSS – 97%

According to the provincial dashboard, there are 57 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba today.

Of today’s cases:

  • Five are in the Prairie Mountain Health region
  • Five are in the Interlake-Eastern Health region
  • None are in the Northern Health region
  • 25 are in the Southern Health–Santé Sud health region
  • 22 are in the Winnipeg Health region

Dauphin has two new COVID-19 cases to report today, bringing the number of active cases in the city to two.

The numbers of active cases in other Parkland health districts are:

Riding Mountain (0), Swan River (0), Duck Mountain (0), Porcupine Mountain (3), Agassiz Mountain (2), Asessippi (2), Little Saskatchewan (2), Whitemud (0). Brandon has eight active cases.

In the Interlake, the Eriksdale/Ashern health district has five active cases. The Fisher/Peguis district has 58 active cases.

The current five-day test positivity rate is 2.9 percent provincially. 2,235 laboratory tests were completed yesterday.

There are 495 active COVID-19 cases in the province.

65 Manitobans are hospitalized, including three Manitobans in intensive care units with active COVID-19.

A man who was part of a crime spree that ended with an RCMP officer shot in the head was sentenced to two years in jail on Tuesday morning.

Shane Beaulieu’s sentencing in Minnedosa marks the third person to be sentenced for the crime that left RCMP Cpl. Graeme Kingdon with life-long injuries that ended his policing career.

Beaulieu pleaded guilty in December 2019 to two counts of break and enter, possession of a motor vehicle obtained by crime and two firearm-related charges.

Beaulieu and three co-accused broke into two properties in Onanole on August 29th, 2018, stealing numerous items, including five long guns and ammunition.

Although Assiniboine's Prairie Innovation Centre for Sustainable Agriculture has received many donations, Westman agricultural staple, Mazergroup, has provided the school with its biggest financial boost so far this year. 

The New Holland equipment dealer is donating $500,000 for the new facility. 

The Prairie Innovation Centre will enable more unique work-integrated learning opportunities, applied research projects and industry innovation. The Centre is Assiniboine's vision for the future of agriculture in Manitoba and will address industry and economic needs in this important sector.

Throughout 2021, the Prairie Innovation Centre has received financial contributions from various groups and organizations, with donations ranging from $50,000 to $100,000.

The Prairie Innovation Centre, which aims to expand seats in agriculture-related programming from 300 to more than 800, will be located at Assiniboine's North Hill campus in Brandon.

With the school year quickly approaching, Doctors Manitoba held a town hall last night to answer questions that parents and teachers might have about COVID-19.

The Back-To-School COVID-19 Town Hall was hosted by Director of Strategy and Communications, Keir Johnson.

The expert panel of physicians included

  • Marni Hanna, President of the Manitoba Pediatric Society
  • Ruth Grimes, President of the Canadian Paediatric Society
  • Jared Bullard, pediatric infectious disease specialist
  • Ashley Chopek, pediatric oncology and bone marrow transplant specialist
  • Andrew Hall, child and adolescent psychiatrist
  • Melanie Morris, pediatric general surgeon and Indigenous health lead at Children's Hospital

Dr. Bullard talked about the level of risk for school-aged children.

“15 thousand kids have been infected with COVID out of the three waves that we’ve had so far. Out of those, about one in 200 ended up in the hospital, about one in a thousand ended up getting multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C), and children in the ICU is about one in 2 thousand so not many kids making it there, and when they do typically it’s with MIS-C and all of those that have had MIS-C have done really well.”

Bullard also talked about the Delta variant in children.

“Yes, children are more likely to be infected with this, but the hospitalization rate might not be as severe as they initially anticipating.”

Dr. Grimes talked about the long-term effects of COVID-19 in children.

She says a lot of questions about this topic have yet to be answered.

“I can certainly speak to the fact that the Canadian Pediatric Society is collecting data in real-time to address questions about what the long-term effects of COVID symptoms are in children.”

Another toping discussed was at-risk children, which Dr. Hanna touched upon.

“We are still concerned about all children not just those with pre-existing conditions, but in particular, if children have conditions that affect their lung function, cardiac conditions, or conditions suppress their immune function, those are the big ones that make us more worried about their vulnerability to COVID infection.”

She added that getting vaccinated if you’re eligible is a good way to protect children, as they can’t get vaccinated themselves.  

The Manitoba Progressive Conservative MLAs have decided that Deputy Premier Kelvin Goertzen will become the party's interim leader and temporary Premier.

Goertzen will be sworn in after Premier Brian Pallister resigns tomorrow morning.

However, he won’t be in power for long, as the party is electing a permanent leader, Manitoba’s 24th Premier, on October 30th.

Manitobans don’t have to worry about getting a third jab any time soon, according to Dr. Joss Reimer, head of the vaccination task force.

Reimer says there’s no medical reason to give third doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to people at this time.

However, she says that doesn’t mean things won’t change in the future.

“This is something we’re continuing to monitor and review, particularly as new information becomes available about any clinical reasons to provide people with a third dose.”

Her comments come after other provinces announced that they would be providing third doses of the vaccine to those who are immunocompromised or to those who want to travel internationally.

This includes Saskatchewan, Alberta, Ontario, and Quebec.

Today Prairie Mountain Health released some information about visiting personal care homes.

The increased social visitation guidelines associated with general visitors allow facilities to ask for a person’s COVID-19 immunization status when determining whether in-person visits may take place.

This measure applies to being fully vaccinated for both visitors and residents.

In situations where the resident, visitor, or both are not fully vaccinated, indoor visitation continues to be restricted under general visitation guidelines.

Guidelines for the number of visitors and location of visits can still vary based on factors including the size of the room and a resident’s current medical condition or vaccination status.

Site screening and safety measures, including the wearing of masks, remain in place.

PMH advises that visitors check ahead of time with the personal care home before planning a visit.

According to the provincial dashboard, there are 34 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba today.

Of today’s cases:

  • Two are in the Prairie Mountain Health region
  • Five are in the Interlake-Eastern Health region
  • Three are in the Northern Health region
  • 11 are in the Southern Health–Santé Sud health region
  • 13 are in the Winnipeg Health region

There’s one new recovery in Dauphin, which means there are no active cases in the city.

The numbers of active cases in other Parkland health districts are:

Riding Mountain (0), Swan River (0), Duck Mountain (0), Porcupine Mountain (3), Agassiz Mountain (2), Asessippi (2), Little Saskatchewan (1), Whitemud (1). Brandon has eight active cases.

In the Interlake, the Eriksdale/Ashern health district has five active cases. The Fisher/Peguis district has 58 active cases.

The current five-day test positivity rate is 3 percent provincially. 1,539 laboratory tests were completed yesterday.

There are 483 active COVID-19 cases in the province.

19 Manitobans are hospitalized, including six Manitobans in intensive care units with active COVID-19.

Today Agriculture and Resource Development Minister Ralph Eichler announced that two new programs under the AgriRecovery framework were launched by the federal and provincial governments.

Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, livestock producers can now apply to two programs.

The Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program will help producers purchase and test feed for livestock to maintain their breeding herds including transporting purchased feed from distant locations.

The Livestock Transportation Drought Assistance program will offer assistance to help offset freight expenses associated with moving livestock to alternative feed supply areas.

Eichler says these programs will help producers buy feed, or get the animals to another location where feed is available.

“This has been a tough year and we continue to take strides to support our producers in any way we can.”

For more detailed program information, producers can contact their Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development Service Centre by calling 844-769-6224.