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What are the new COVID19 measures and who do they effect?

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Can we have dinner with our close friend?  What exactly is a Cohort anyway?   Is it true that we can go swimming even though we can’t play hockey?

We pulled this information From Alberta.ca to help make sense of the new health measures in the areas of Alberta most affected by COVID19.

From the Province of Alberta

Who is affected?

Targeted measures apply to all communities on the enhanced list (purple zones)  plus affected communities in the Calgary area and the Edmonton area.
All purple zone areas Calgary Area1 Edmonton Area1 Fort McMurray Grande Prairie Lethbridge Red Deer
No social gatherings inside your home or outside of your community Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
15-person limit on family & social gatherings Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Limit of 3 cohorts, plus child care Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mask use encouraged in all indoor workplaces Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Employers in office settings to reduce employees in the workplace at one time Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Restaurants/pubs stop liquor sales by 10pm, close by 11pm (Nov 13-27) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Ban on indoor group fitness classes & team sports (Nov 13-27) No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Ban on group singing, dancing & performing activities (Nov 13-27) No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
50-person limit on wedding and funeral services (indoor & outdoor) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Faith-based gatherings limited to 1/3 capacity Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

How are we affected?

The main enhanced measure is gathering restrictions

A gathering is any situation that brings people together in the same space at the same time for the same purpose. Check with your municipality for additional restrictions in your area.

New gathering limits for all communities on the enhanced measures list

  • Stop holding social gatherings in private homes or outside your community
  • 15 person limit on indoor and outdoor social and family gatherings
  • 50 person limit on wedding ceremonies and funeral services
  • Faith-based gatherings limited to 1/3 capacity
  • Do not move social gatherings to communities with no restrictions.
  • Instead, socialize outdoors or in structured settings, like restaurants or other business that are subject to legal limits and take steps to prevent transmission.

Unless otherwise identified in public health orders, these gathering restrictions are in place:

  • 200 people max for outdoor audience-type community events
  • 100 people max for outdoor social gatherings and indoor seated audience events
  • 50 people max for indoor social gatherings
  • No cap for worship gatherings, restaurant, cafes, lounges and bars, casinos and bingo halls, trade shows and exhibits (with public health measures in place)
  • keep 2 metres apart from people outside your cohort
  • avoid high-risk or prohibited activities
  • stay home and get tested if you are sick

What is a Cohort Group?

A COVID-19 cohort – also known as bubbles, circles, or safe squads – is a small group of the same people who can interact regularly without staying 2 metres apart.

A person in a cohort should avoid close contact with people outside of the cohort. Keeping the same people together, instead of mixing and mingling:

  • helps reduce the chances of getting sick
  • makes it easier to track exposure if someone does get sick

You should only belong to one core cohort.

Cohort types and recommended limits

Limit of 3 cohorts: your core household, your school, and one other sport or social cohort.

Young children who attend child care can be part of 4 cohorts.

What is a Core cohort?

Core cohorts can include your household and up to 15 other people you spend the most time with and are physically close to.

This usually includes people part of your regular routine:

  • household members
  • immediate family
  • closest tightknit social circle
  • people you have regular close contact with (co-parent who lives outside the household, a babysitter or caregiver)

Safety Recommendations

Core cohorts

Everyone in your core cohort should:

  • belong to only one core cohort
  • limit interactions with people outside the cohort
  • keep at least 2 meters from people outside the core cohort
  • wear a mask when closer than 2 metres with others wherever possible

Other cohort groups

When participating in other cohort groups, you should:

  • interact outdoors if possible – it’s safer than indoors
  • avoid closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places and close contact settings
  • be healthy and not show any COVID-19 symptoms (see the full symptom list)
  • have not travelled outside Canada in the last 14 days
  • keep track of where you go, when you are there, and who you meet:
    • this information will be helpful if someone is exposed to COVID-19
    • download the ABTraceTogether app, a mobile contact tracing app that helps to let you know if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 – or if you’ve exposed others – while protecting your privacy

At-risk people

If you are at high risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 and want to participate in a cohort, you should:

  • consider smaller cohorts, and
  • avoid cohorts with people who also participate in sports, performing and child care cohorts to minimize exposure potential

High risk groups include seniors and people with medical conditions like high blood pressure, heart disease, lung disease, cancer or diabetes. Find out how to assess your risk.

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Alberta

Exercise in ‘patience’ pays off for Kadri, says winning a factor in joining Flames

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By David Alter

Nazem Kadri said the Calgary Flames expressed interest the moment he became an unrestricted free agent, but it was an “elaborate process” before he finally signed on the dotted line on Thursday.

“The patience definitely did me some good,” Kadri told reporters in a Zoom call Friday. “There were some decisions to be made.”

The Flames’ wild off-season took another dramatic turn Thursday when the team signed the coveted free agent to a seven-year, US$49-million deal.

Before the deal could be made official, Calgary sent forward Sean Monahan and a conditional 2025 first-round pick to the Montreal Canadiens for future considerations in a move to create salary cap space for Kadri’s contract.

“That’s part of the reason why it’s been taking so long,” Kadri said from Paris, where he is on vacation.

The 32-year-old Kadri was one of the biggest names available in free agency after an all-star season with Colorado that ended with the Avalanche winning the Stanley Cup.

The benefits of returning to Canada, where his NHL career started, and taking part in the ‘Battle of Alberta’ with the provincial-rival Edmonton Oilers were benefits to signing with the Flames, but what ultimately led him to sign was how close he feels the team is to winning a Stanley Cup.

“Ultimately, it’s about winning and that played a huge factor in me coming to Calgary,” Kadri said. “The time is now and it certainly can be close with the moves we’ve made and me hopping on board.”

The 31-year-old Kadri had 87 points (28 goals, 59 assists) in 71 games for the Avalanche in 2021-22. He added 15 points in 16 playoff games, including the overtime winner in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup final against Tampa Bay.

That was his return to action after being injured in Game 3 of the Western Conference final after being hit from behind by Edmonton forward Evander Kane.

Kadri’s addition capped a wild off-season for the Flames that saw star forward Johnny Gaudreau walk away in free agency.

The Flames’ leading scorer last season (115 points), and a finalist for the Hart Trophy as league MVP, Gaudreau informed the Flames before the start of the free agency period that we would not be re-signing with the Flames in a desire to move closer to home.

The New Jersey native signed a seven-year, $68.25-million contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets when free agency opened on July 13,.

Calgary was then informed that forward Matthew Tkachuk, who had a breakout season with 42 goals and 104 points, would not sign a contract extension after the upcoming season.

What looked like a potential nightmare for Calgary started to turn around when the Flames dealt Tkachuk to Florida for a package that included forward Jonathan Huberdeau, who had 115 points last season, and defenceman Mackenzie Weegar.

The Flames then locked up Huberdeau long-term with an eight-year, $84-million contract extension.

“It’s alarming to anybody when you lose players of that magnitude,” Kadri said. “But I think Brad (Flames GM Brad Treliving) has done a great job getting some return and valuable players.”

This is not the first time the Flames have tried to add Kadri to their roster. The Flames attempted to acquire him from the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2019, but Kadri used the no-trade clause in his contract to veto the deal. Kadri was then traded to the Avalanche on July 1, 2019.

“I didn’t see myself leaving (Toronto),” Kadri said about the situation. “That had nothing to do with the city of Calgary or the organization, I just wanted to stay where I was.

“It’s important for me to clarify that. I think it’s important because I’ve always admired the city of Calgary and Canada in general. I’m a Canadian boy. I love playing in Canada but it’s certainly ironic, but it was always a team that was on my radar.”

Kadri was selected seventh overall by Toronto in the 2009 NHL draft and has 512 points (219 goals, 293 assists) in 739 career games with the Maple Leafs and Colorado.

The London, Ontario native has yet to have his day with the Stanley Cup, but his plans include taking it to his hometown.

He also said he’s going to bring it to Toronto, where he spent his first eight NHL seasons.

“I’ve done a lot of growing up in that city as well and there’s been lots of supports of mine there,” he said.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 19, 2022.

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Alberta

‘Just horrid’: Police watchdog now investigating death of man in Alberta RCMP cell

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CALGARY — An Alberta man is hoping for answers now that the province’s police watchdog is investigating the death of his son while in RCMP custody.

Addison Hartzler, 30, was found dead in an RCMP holding cell in Grande Prairie, Alta., on June 3, nine hours after he was arrested for public mischief on suspicion he had falsely reported a break-and-enter at the home where he was staying.

Greg Hartzler said he was told his son was acting in a “psychotic and delusional” manner, but police didn’t call paramedics or have him assessed by a doctor.

“They never even sought any medical attention in the entire nine hours they had him in custody. At no point in time was he ever assessed medically,” Hartzler told The Canadian Press Thursday.

“If they had, I believe he would have gone to the hospital in Grande Prairie directly from the house instead of the holding cell.”

The case was being investigated by RCMP, but Hartzler requested the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team look into it.

He was only informed Wednesday that ASIRT had taken over the investigation as of Aug. 9.

Hartzler said he wants to know if the RCMP was negligent in his son’s death and to protect other parents from going through a similar experience.

“Oh, Lord — If we can be an advocate for this, I guess maybe that’s our lot in life,” Hartzler said.

“From a father’s perspective and a family’s perspective, it’s just horrid. We were expecting him to be at our house that morning. By noon he was planning to leave Grande Prairie to come to his brother’s graduation,” he said.

Hartzler said his son had been in the Grande Prairie area northwest of Edmonton since April looking for work. He said they talked a day before his son’s death and the younger Hartzler seemed fine as he watched an NHL playoff game.

The father said he is relieved ASIRT is investigating.

“We’re trusting that we at least get somewhat of a better investigation with ASIRT doing it and hopefully more objective than what I believe RCMP (would do), even though it was their special unit. We’re hopeful we will get a more thorough investigation,” Hartzler said.

“At the end of the day, everything and every direction we turn to points to negligence. As Canadian people, we have to start saying enough is enough and the RCMP has to be held accountable for these types of actions.”

An RCMP spokeswoman said it’s not unusual for the special unit to do the investigation on cases where there are injuries to people in custody.

“What typically occurs is that even though it remains with us, there is an ongoing process where information about the investigation is shared with ASIRT so they have awareness of what happened and the facts and information as it progresses,” said Cpl. Deanna Fontaine.

“In this case, in the course of that, a decision was made by ASIRT to take it back.”

Alberta Justice said the original decision to leave the investigation with the RCMP was made due to a lack of resources with ASIRT at the time.

“ASIRT’s resourcing issues at the time were well known and were raised in correspondence with the Hartzler family’s lawyer in the interest of being fully transparent regarding the capacity challenges the agency was facing,” said spokesman Jason van Rassel.

“We can now confirm that the director of law enforcement referred this case to ASIRT for investigation on Aug. 9. As this matter is now with ASIRT, Alberta Justice and Solicitor General isn’t able to provide further comment.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 18, 2022.

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

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