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“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.” ~~ John G. Diefenbaker

FURSTEANAU – Newsletter Update

 What a year it's been. Last March, our worlds closed down and we found ourselves thrown into a global pandemic with no road map.

I am tremendously proud of so many organizations in this community, health care providers, teachers, first responders, essential services workers, local governments, and business owners and employees for continuing to provide services above and beyond their usual call of duty. We could not have survived these strange days without you. My family and I are forever grateful for your sacrifice. 

  • On Monday, Dr. Bonnie Henry shared the province's vaccine rollout plan (details below). 
  • Please share this information with friends and family, as it's so important that people know when they are eligible for their vaccine, and how to book an appointment. 

In the legislature this week, we focused on the lack of health data. In the absence of disaggregated data (including detailed race and income) about who is accessing public health services, we are not able to make informed decisions on where and when to invest in supports. This has always been a problem but, as with so many other systemic issues, was critically missing in our COVID-19 response.

  • We can do better to inform our decision making on these important health matters. You can watch my questions on this topic in the Legislature.
  • To help us understand what disaggregated data is, the Office of the Human Rights Commissioner prepared this excellent summary entitled: The grandmother perspective

As we navigate the upcoming months, please remember to keep up the collective effort to wear masks and keep at a distance from each other. Our COVID-19 numbers in BC have plateaued around 400-500 new infections per day, and so vigilance remains essential.  

Sonia Furstenau ... is the MLA for Cowichan Valley, and Leader of the BC Greens

COVID Vaccination Rollout

Earlier this week, Dr. Bonnie Henry announced the provincial vaccine rollout plan. Island Health has provided the following information for booking an appointment: 

**Island Health is reminding people to please call only when it is your turn, as noted in the dates below.**

March 8:

  • People born in 1931 or earlier (90+),
  • Indigenous peoples born in 1956 or earlier (65+), and Elders

March 15:

  • People born in 1936 or earlier (85+)

March 22:

  • People born in 1941 or earlier (80+)

To book an appointment call:1-833-348-4787.

The call centre is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. Family members, friends, or any support person can call to make an appointment on behalf of a senior.

Please note

  • People in independent living, seniors supportive housing, and those who receive long term home support services are being immunized beginning March 1, along with the staff who care for them. There is no need for these priority populations to call to book an appointment. Island Health is contacting them directly.
  • Seniors aged 80 or over and Indigenous seniors aged 65 or older and Elders who do not live in independent living or seniors supportive housing must call to book a vaccine appointment over the phone.
  • For the latest information on vaccine delivery in Island Health, please use the link below.

COVID Resources

Testing is available for anyone with cold, influenza, or COVID-19 symptoms.
If you are unsure whether to seek medical care or get tested, contact your health care provider, call 8-1-1, or use the BC COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool.


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