A worker adjusts a sign in the empty bread section of a Superstore in Surrey on Saturday, March 15, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)

Resist the urge to panic shop despite COVID-19 fears, Trudeau says

Trudeau said a measured approach will be important in all aspects of life

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urged retail restraint on Saturday, cautioning Canadians against panic buying in response to the escalating COVID-19 outbreak.

His remarks came during an interview with CTV’s Question Period in which he discussed the national response to the pandemic that has now sickened more than 300 people across the country.

But amid discussion of testing protocols and possible border shutdowns, Trudeau offered some guidance to the many Canadians who have been flocking to grocery and drug stores in recent days, leaving a swath of empty shelves in their wake.

He said Canada’s supply chains to date have not been affected by the tightening border restrictions around the world, merchandise is still coming across the border, and there’s no need to start hoarding supplies.

“Yes, stock up a little bit so you don’t have to go to the store every two or three days like we usually do, but make sure that you’re not taking more than you need,” he said. “Your neighbours, or vulnerable people, will need to access supplies as well.”

Trudeau said a measured approach will be important in all aspects of life as Canadians navigate the outbreak, which was officially declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization last week.

The number of cases continued to climb across the country on Sunday, with Ontario reporting 39 new cases, bringing the total 142. Health authorities in Quebec reported 11 new cases, while the Manitoba government reported three more in that province.

READ MORE: ‘Business as usual’: B.C. truckers crossing U.S. border despite COVID-19

And authorities in Nova Scotia said the novel form of coronavirus had officially reached that province after three people tested positive for COVID-19.

The total number of cases in Canada currently stands at 313.

Most people diagnosed with COVID-19 experience mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough, and the vast majority of those who contract the virus recover. The Public Health Agency of Canada says the risk to the general population is low.

However, for some, including Canadians aged 65 and over, those with compromised immune systems and those with pre-existing conditions, the illness can be much more severe. Among the Canadians diagnosed with the illness so far, fewer than 15 per cent have required hospitalization.

The growing number of cases has prompted widespread closures of schools and universities, mass cancellation of large-scale events, multimillion-dollar economic stimulus packages from governments, and the suspension of the Parliament until April 20.

Michelle McQuigge, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CoronavirusJustin Trudeau

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Thief steals bucket truck in Abbotsford while worker is 20 feet in air

Employee is able to jump to safety after suspect drives into pole

Abbotsford’s Cole Brandsma receives invite to Volleyball Canada virtual camp

UBC volleyball player one of 27 players in Canada invited to summer virtual camp

Fraser Valley Real Estate Board says sales double in June, buyers returning to market

Month’s property sales rebound 113% over May’s sales, 32% over June last year

Supreme Court orders new French-language school for Abbotsford, improved one for Chilliwack

A French-only elementary school must be built in Abbotsford, court ordered in landmark ruling

Man battling cancer paints thank-you rocks for Abbotsford health-care workers

Dale Leguerrier creates more than 200 rocks for hospital and hospice staff

The pandemic is widening Canada’s workplace gender gap

Gender pay gap is incentivizing fathers to work while mothers watch children, a new B.C. study has found

Investigation clears RCMP in incident where man fell from Langley overpass

‘Officers acted commendably and placed themselves at risk’ police watchdog report finds

Ex-Okanagan Mountie forfeits 20 days’ pay after sexual misconduct review

A former Vernon RCMP constable made sexual comments, grabbed genitals of male officer in two incidents 10 years ago

Rural Chilliwack residents asked to stay indoors, lock doors amid heavy police presence

Heavy police presence in rural Chilliwack neighbourhood as RCMP contend with ‘serious situation’

Councillor Doug Elford Surrey’s acting mayor during McCallum’s “health concern” absence

Mayor issued a statement Tuesday night saying he’ll be back on the job by Monday

Man found dead on Okanagan trail identified as Hollywood actor

GoFundMe campaign launched for man found dead at summit of Spion Kop

3 people dead in Prince George motel fire

Fire personnel believe the blaze was suspicious although investigation in early stages

B.C. sets terms to review police, mental health, race relations

MLAs to recommend Police Act changes by May 2021

Most Read