Prime Minister says COVID-19 measures must remain in place

Not out of the woods yet

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UPDATE 8:55 a.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says while he hopes to spend some time with his family this Easter weekend, his focus is on getting new emergency aid legislation passed.

He says discussions with opposition parties continue on the bill, which backs up the new wage subsidy program.

Trudeau says it is important to debate the democratic processes that could be put in place in the COVID-19 era, which the opposition wants to have.

Trudeau also says it will take months of a continued and determined effort to avoid a COVID-19 worse-case scenario.

Trudeau is commenting on models released this morning forecasting how the continued spread of the pandemic will pan out based on how aggressively Canadians follow physical distancing protocols.

He says Canada is at a crossroad and the outcome will depend on how people behave, given there could be ongoing waves of the coronavirus.

He says this means physical distancing is and will be Canada's new reality until a vaccine is found.

ORIGINAL 8:07 a.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be providing a live update on how the federal government will be approaching the next weeks in the fight against COVID-19.

Trudeau is expected to address the latest unemployment numbers just released today. Statistics Canada reports the economy lost 1,011,000 jobs in March — the worst recorded single-month change — as the COVID-19 crisis began to take hold, lifting the unemployment rate to 7.8 per cent.

Federal projections released by Health Canada show the  overall best- and worst-case scenarios for the pandemic’s spread and impact in Canada, could see between 11,000 and 22,000 Canadians killed as a result of COVID-19 in the months ahead.

Though, the current reality of the virus has Canada closer to the lower end of that spectrum.

-with files from CTV News and the Canadian Press

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