The Canadian government response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

I am very disappointed with the Canadian government response and the way they mishandled the whole Coronavirus situation, I understand that this is not the time to point fingers, I am just saying my opinion out loud based on my frustration, lets hope everything goes well for Canada and the whole world. Who knew that movies could turn into reality? I guess no one. The Canadian government have failed in every single aspect of handling the situation, where do I begin?  

Let me begin by going back in time, back in December, the Coronavirus or COVID-19 started spreading in China, the numbers were terrifying and it was a big indication that something unusual is happening. The whole world kept watching until the virus started showing in other countries. Canada is one of those countries who didn’t do much back in January and February. Let me clarify, we had at least 3 months lead time to prepare for this unexpected disaster. I am not expecting the government to hoard all the masks and make all the PPE and ventilators available ahead of time, this would be impossible even if we went back 6 months.

I’ve expected the Canadian government to have a plan in case the virus spreads in Canada, just a plan! is that too much to ask? a plan wouldn’t have taken 3 weeks to prepare, remember we had a 3 months lead before things started getting worse and worse. Why did the government wait until last minute to come up with a plan to rescue the Canadian citizens?  

Borders closure:

While it might sounds easier than said, the borders should have been restricted to emergency or essential travelling or at least everyone who came from countries known to have the virus should have been forced to go into a 14 days quarantine. I know, it doesn’t sound plausible but this would have saved us. Many countries had many cases and we were seeing an increase in cases coming from certain countries including the US. Why did we wait until last minute when things became uncontrollable? The government was probably afraid of making a decision that would impact the economy and had to wait for other countries to apply such measures. I am trying to understand why do we have all these government bodies and advisors if they can’t make decisions that benefit and save the citizens.

Rapid Emergency Plan:

As I mentioned, I expected the government to have a plan when it came to all the jobs that have been lost, this is what they tried to avoid by not closing the borders but it still happened. The government seemed to be confused about what needs to be done, they started laying out plans and kept updating them with missing information since there are too many scenarios. First, they came with a $900 biweekly for people without employee insurance then they introduced the Canada emergency response benefit which was still missing the information that was required. People were scrambling to figure out what and who does this plan apply to and on April 6th people became more confused because the plan said they won’t be eligible if they have received income but some of them were working for few hours a week since their jobs asked them to come and they cannot say no since they want to keep that job. How can you put your citizens in so much stress while they are dealing with the whole virus situation? What were all these government advisors doing from March 10th until April 6th?  So many people are left out without money and yet don’t know what do. 

The most sad part was the employees who were eligible for the employee insurance, they have been paying the insurance since day 1 and the government failed them when they needed it, the lines were too busy and the on hold time was around 7 hours if you are lucky to get inline, people are still waiting for their service Canada account codes to know what happened with their claim since they cannot get a hold of anyone in the EI. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate what the EI employees are doing and the amount of pressure they are under since everyone is calling them but this is on the government. I have never been frustrated with such a process until This happened, the failure of the government have shown how useless are all these big shots hired to make decisions. Nobody knows when they will get paid or of they will get paid since the government’s website explanation is very vague, what happens to the people who worked few hours after they were let go? what about the people whose hours went down to zero? at the moment the CRA websites says your income has to be 0? how? how can you be so negligent to miss such details that add to the stress of your citizens. 

I have tried to stop myself from writing about the government’s failure to respond to the covid-19 but I couldn’t, my apologies if I sounded harsh but dealing with the whole situation is not easy and the government has made it worse by not planning. a whole government couldn’t put a plan while having a 3 months lead on an issue that was obvious, I don’t prefer one party over the other so this article is not pointing to one party, they would all have failed because nobody cares, they are too busy doing who knows, a plan is just what we needed, a plan that could have been written on few papers and executed when needed. 

To be fair, almost every country failed their citizens similar to what we have seen, some countries didn’t even offer anything to their citizens but these countries are not “highly rated” as Canada is.