After his wife, Sophie Gregoire, revealed last night that she had been diagnosed with Covid-19 following a trip to London, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau - who apparently hasn't been infected - said during a noon press conference on Friday that he is feeling fine, and will continue running the country from the comfort of his home office until he's officially cleared to return to the office.
During a news conference held outside his home
Trudeau says Canada is "pulling out all the stops" to respond to COVID-19.— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) March 13, 2020
"I know that you're worried. You're worried about your health, about your family's health. About your job, your savings. About paying rent. About the kids not being in school." https://t.co/7qcwjopHmq pic.twitter.com/OO019N254O
In the mean time, Canada will be "pulling out all the stops"
Trudeau ticked off a litany of daily stressors that are affecting Canadians, from school cancellations creating urgent child-care needs, to workers who might need to forgo paychecks.
"We will help Canadians financially," Trudeau said, promising to help out with child care, as well as a "fiscal stimulus package" that will be delivered "in the coming days.
NEW: Justin Trudeau says he is self-isolating for two weeks after his wife tests positive for coronavirus, though he has "no symptoms, and I'm feeling good, and technology allows me to work from home." https://t.co/saJgXKpl32 pic.twitter.com/4V8at5z7jH— ABC News (@ABC) March 13, 2020
Trudeau also said he's spoken with world leaders including Trump, UK PM Boris Johnson and French President Emmanuel Macron, and assured Canadians that the G7 would deliver a "coordinated response" to the crisis. The leaders of the organization's nation-state members will join a conference call on Monday to decide (or not) exactly what the nature of that response will be.
He said he'd be keeping in touch to provincial governors and indigenous leaders during his stay at home, and added that he'd be speaking with several of them later in the day.
In keeping with his liberal beliefs in open borders, Trudeau said Canada would continue to monitor foreign travelers and decide on "further measures that will be based on science." In the mean time, the administration will be restricting international flights to fewer airports, to improve monitoring and screening, while asking some travelers to "consider" self-quarantine. He also advised Canadians against all "non-essential" traveling abroad, especially to areas impacted by the virus, at this time.
Of course, by declaring a national emergency under the Stafford Act, President Trump will gain the authority to use $40 billion of disaster-relief funds to combat the outbreak in the US. He has also instituted unequivocal travel bans. And in the US, Trump's political opponents are insisting that this still isn't enough.
If this isn't enough, how will Trudeau's plan be any more effective?