November 20, 2020
Dear St.Amant families,
We have had some really positive news this week. Through a reach out that continues, we have already heard from over 80 people that they would be prepared to help in a frontline role if we ever end up in need of additional staff due to pandemic related shortages. In addition, the Department of Families announced $5.5 million dollars to support Community Living Disability Services agencies with over-time costs, replacement staff and for agencies to develop creative staffing options. They also announced a hotline to call if we are in need of support with contact tracing, need access to public health nurses or emergency staff. It is very positive to see the government recognize the importance of our frontline workforce. Additionally, the Minister of Families has recognized the importance of including people with disabilities in the early phase of vaccination.
Barrier-Free Manitoba is leading advocacy efforts for a fair and equitable urgent care triage protocol that will not bias against disability to help determine who will receive life-sustaining support if resources are limited. All disability advocates have signed on and we are hoping to hear something positive soon.
This week we have two new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in staff. One staff in the Community Residential Program and one administrative staff. We are very encouraged that staff are using the appropriate use of personal protective equipment and physical distancing that is keeping everyone as safe as possible.
As we move into winter the St.Amant Foundation has raised $17,550 to ensure we all have things to look forward to! Volunteer Services has developed a Wish Book and everyone supported residentially is able to look for a gift or activity basket tailored to their unique interests. This team is also organizing more virtual gatherings and events, similar to the virtual Halloween party they hosted.
There’s still time for you to take our online survey to provide feedback to help us shape our continued response.
We hope you are all keeping well, please reach out if you have any questions or are looking for support.
President & CEO