Good morning, Ontario.
Here's what we're following:
COVID-19 tests being sent to the U.S.
CTV News reports that the province is sending some COVID-19 tests to a firm in New Jersey for assessment due to a lack of internal capacity. “Testing is a key pillar in Ontario’s fight against COVID-19. As Ontarians expect, all options are on the table to quickly identify cases and contain the spread,” a spokesperson for the Ministry of Health said.
Premier Doug Ford said Ontario’s new appointment-only testing system will help clear the testing backlog. However, reporters have noted that there are still long lines at many testing centres and that booking a test can be challenging.
Toronto neighbourhoods show “very, very high” positivity rates
Documents obtained by the Toronto Star show that some parts of the city have coronavirus test-positivity rates in excess of 10 per cent. High test positivity rates can indicate surging transmission levels. “Anything over 3 per cent is pretty high,” said infectious-disease expert Andrew Morris. “When you get over 8, 9, or 10 per cent, it’s very, very high.”
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Provincial ombudsman blasts “glacial” pace of police reform
Ontario ombudsman Paul Dubé says the province has not acted on recommendations he made in 2016 that would change the way police train for the use of force. He told the Toronto Star that there is still too much emphasis on weapons use as opposed to de-escalation — and that the public is losing faith in the police as a result. “If you fail to respond to calls for reforms that are evolutionary,” he said, “you eventually get demands for changes that are revolutionary.”
Steve Paikin writes that the pandemic will be with us for a while, so he’s decided to start doing some of the things he used to do — as safely as possible. “This past week,” he writes, “I did two things I haven’t done in more than six months: I went to the movies, and I played hockey.”
In-person school can be risky — if it’s even an option full-time. But virtual studies often aren’t accessible. Reporter Meagan Gillmore speaks to Ontario families struggling to make sure their kids will get an education during COVID-19.
Pippa and Karina explore the many modern ways to self-identify as Latin-American. They welcome a Chicanx psycholinguist and a Venezuelanx performer to discuss the term Latinx, the divisive debates that surround it, and the far-reaching colonial history of language.
Tonight on TVO
7 p.m. — Impossible Railways: Tracks and the City
From an inverted monorail in Germany, to London's high-frequency, high-capacity Crossrail project, discover how metropolitan-railway engineering helps keep the world’s biggest cities running.
8 p.m. — The Agenda: Trump, Fox News, and the death of truth
CNN’s chief media correspondent Brian Stelter joins host Steve Paikin to discuss his new book, Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth.