Calgary’s latest state of local emergency (SOLE) has been extended for another 90 days, Mayor Naheed Nenshi announced Tuesday.
The SOLE has allowed the city to respond to emerging needs with agility with in the city, in an effort to protect Calgarians’ health and welfare.
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“One of the good news pieces about the fact that we’re maintaining the state of local emergency is precisely because it will allow us to do a better job at vaccine distribution,” Nenshi said.
“With vaccines here and many more on the horizon, it’s critical that the city maintain our agility to act as quickly as we can to provide space, to provide facilities, to provide personnel for the provincial government’s vaccination efforts.”
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For weeks, the mayor has been offering those resources to Alberta Health Services. But Nenshi said the province hasn’t had a need to tap into the city resources yet.
Sue Henry, chief of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA), said she sits on vaccination task forces to make sure CEMA is “positioned to work quickly.”
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“As early as yesterday, we had conversations with the province around our offers of facilities,” Henry said. “We’re waiting on a supply issue to understand if and when they will reach out to the cities and municipalities to have us help in that vaccination. And until that point, we are planning and standing ready to assist.”
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Henry isn’t sure when the city will be called upon by AHS.
“We are hopeful that as that supply chain continues to ramp up — as soon as they’re at a point where Alberta Health Services feels the need to have additional logistics support to be able to get those vaccines into arms faster — that’s when our network will kick in to assist them,” the CEMA chief said.
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada’s website, Alberta is due to receive more than 69,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines this week.
The province remains in a state of public health emergency.
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