Public health officials reported 126 new cases of COVID-19 today and 3 more deaths.

The three deaths include two women from Winnipeg and a woman from the Southern Health region.

Today’s new cases of COVID-19 are in the following health regions:
• 24 cases in Interlake–Eastern health region
• 55 cases in the Northern health region 
• seven cases in the Prairie Mountain Health region
• eight cases in the Southern Health–Santé Sud health region
• 32 cases in the Winnipeg health region

The current five-day COVID-19 test positivity rate is 6.9 percent provincially and 3.9 percent in Winnipeg.

Manitoba has a total of 29,857 cases province-wide. The total number of deaths is 835.

Of Manitoba’s cases, 3,358 are active cases and 25 people have recovered from COVID-19.

There are 105 people in hospital with active COVID-19 as well as 155 people in hospital who are no longer infectious but continue to require care, for a total of 260 hospitalizations.

There are 22 people in intensive care units with active COVID-19 and 12 who are no longer infectious but continue to require critical care, for a total of 34 ICU patients.

According to the province’s data, there are active cases in the following Parkland health districts: Dauphin (1), Riding Mountain (1), Porcupine Mountain (49), Duck Mountain (1), Asessippi (13), Little Saskatchewan (8), Whitemud (1), and Agassiz Mountain (10). Brandon has 30 active cases.

In the Interlake, the Eriksdale/Ashern health district has 70 active cases, while Fisher/Peguis has 76.

The province is aiming to give 20,000 COVID-19 vaccine shots per day from April to June.

This all hinges on the vaccine supply, but that would amount to 1.5 million doses over the three month period.

The plan laid out by the province today states 70% of the daily doses will come from the vaccine supersites, 25% will come from doctors and pharmacists, and the last 5% will be delivered by pop-up clinics.

On February 8th, the Thompson Vaxport supersite will open, joining the supersites already in place at the Thompson Regional Community Centre, Brandon’s Keystone Centre, and in Winnipeg at the convention centre.

As early as March 1st, another three supersites will be launched, in the Interlake-Eastern health region, Southern Health region, and another one in Winnipeg. Five additional supersites are being planned for April, but the locations of those sites are still to be determined with regional health authorities.

Next week on Monday, February 8th, Flin Flon and The Pas are opening pop-up vaccine clinics, while Churchill, Gillam, Grand Rapids, Leaf Rapids, and Lynn Lake will open pop-up clinics soon.  

Layoffs at WestJet have affected a number of workers in Manitoba.

Roughly 110 WestJet employees in Winnipeg and Brandon have been laid off as the airline switches to a contractor for customer service and ground handling positions.

In June, the Calgary-based company announced 3,333 workers would be laid off across the country due to business challenges during the COVID pandemic.

The permanent layoffs announced in Manitoba are expected to take effect in the coming days.

RCMP have laid charges after conducting a search warrant on Peguis First Nation.

On Sunday, Jan. 31 at around 7:55 a.m. Fisher Branch RCMP searched a home on Peguis First Nation where they seized two firearms, about 16 grams of cocaine, cash, and gang paraphernalia.

A 36-year-old man has been arrested and is facing drug and weapon charges.

He will appear in court on April 20th.

UPDATE | 9:26 a.m. Feb. 3

Tammi Timara Isabelle Spence has been safely located.

Police are thanking the public for their assistance.

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The Manitoba First Nations Police Service is looking for a missing woman last seen on Sandy Bay First Nation.

Tammi Timara Isabelle Spence was last seen at the beginning of November in Sandy Bay.

She is known to travel between Sandy Bay First Nation, Portage la Prairie, and Winnipeg.

Spence is described as 5’4”, 132 pounds with a slender build, with short black hair and brown eyes.

Police ask that any information on her whereabouts be directed to the Sandy Bay First Nations Police Service at (204)-843-7701 or Crimestoppers.

The province is set to add 584 to the existing area codes of 204 and 431.

A recent estimate suggests Manitoba phone numbers that use the 204 or 431 area codes will be nearly used up by June 2024.

Once 584 is introduced, 204 and 431 will still be available when people disconnect their numbers or move away.

The increasing number of cell phones and additional phone providers drain the stock of phone numbers.

Manitoba has been using 204 since 1947 and 431 since 2012.

Registrations are still open for the 2021 Snowshoe Run fundraiser by the Dauphin Rotary Club.

The annual event is typically held on Louis Riehl Day, but will go virtual this year and give participants a month to complete the run, says race director Bryan Byers.

“This is the first year we’re doing the virtual one. It’s going to be our largest event we’ve ever had. We’re all extremely excited so many people are taking part.”

In order to follow public health guidelines, the event will run from February 8th to March 8th, giving participants plenty of time to chose which day they’d like to complete the 5 to 10 km.

Byers says an official route has been posted at the Northgate Trails in Dauphin, but participants can complete the run anywhere they’d like.

All proceeds will go to the active living fund to promote active living in the Parkland.

Those who sign up will automatically enter a raffle to win prizes from local sponsors, including a two-night stay at micro-cabins at Northgate, gift cards from Parkland Source For Sports, a gift basket from Dean Cooley GM, Garage 41 Coffee, and more.

Registration is $25 and you can sign up online at RaceRMNP.com or contact race director Bryan Byers at 204-572-4008.

Over $58,000 in COVID-19 fines were issued to Manitoba businesses and individuals last week.

COVID-19 enforcement officers handed out 42 tickets to individuals ($1,296) and 14 for not wearing a mask in an indoor public place ($298).

Tickets were handed out at two Manitoba businesses, a massage studio in Winnipeg, and a hair salon in Winkler.

The province says 31 of the 42 $1,296 tickets issued last week were in relation to gatherings that violated current public health orders.

The City of Dauphin has invested in a rapid charging station for electric vehicles, the first of its kind in the Parkland.

Justin Tokarchuk, ICT Manager with the City of Dauphin says the Level 3 DC Rapid Charger is compatible with the majority of electric vehicles.

“There are two standards on it that it supports. One of them is a combo connector and one’s a CHAdeMO connector. It’s kind of like two different competing standards right now. The broad range of vehicles are supported by both of these connectors, and if not, some of them have adaptors available.”

The charging station costs $20/hr to use, and vehicle owners must download the “FLO – EV Charging Network” app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Tokarchuk adds that the city is also working to install an EV3 charger, capable of charging an empty vehicle up to 80% in about 30-45 minutes.

The City of Dauphin is thanking Fusion Credit Union, Dauphin Consumers Co-Op, John’s Electric Ltd., the Government of Canada, and the Province of Manitoba for funding the project.

The Crisis Prevention Task Force (CPTF) has purchased the Dauphin First United Church building.

Fern Beasse, chair of the church board, says this is a very positive move.

“The congregation of Dauphin First United Church is getting smaller and older as we go forward and the building was getting less use every year. This way here, the task force is going to utilize a majority of the building and they’re going to provide a very needed service in the community for the people that need help.”

The new ownership will allow the church to focus on providing a service in the sanctuary instead of looking after the building too.

Beasse says the move won’t have an impact on the church services.

“The church sanctuary, which is where we held our services, is accessible to the church community, as well as the whole building if we have events that take place. We just have to coordinate our events now with the task force rather than out of our office.”

Part of the purchase agreement gives the First United Church use of the sanctuary for a minimum of ten years.

The CPTF is a non-profit organization comprised of multiple agencies and community organizations focused on health and wellness. The CPTF strives to provide after-hours services and connections for clients in need.

Under One Roof is one of the CPTF’s most notable subcommittees and has been operating every Monday since November 2019 with the help and support of the First United Church.

In addition to Under One Roof, the Hero Club and Manitoba Harm Reduction Network also operate daily programming in the building.

The acquisition of the building is making office space available to lease for organizations and agencies that offer similar programs.

More programs and workshops will be available when the impact of COVID-19 lessens.

Manitoba health officials are reporting 83 new cases of COVID-19 in the province on Tuesday.

There are no deaths being reported by the province today due to what’s being called a “data reset” aimed at improving the overall data reporting system.

The deaths will be updated and reported tomorrow.

The current five-day COVID-19 test positivity rate is 7.6% and 4.1% in Winnipeg. The total number of lab-confirmed cases in Manitoba is 29,733.

Provincial data shows 3,421 active cases and 25,480 individuals who have recovered from COVID-19.

There are 99 people in hospital with active COVID-19 as well as 155 people in hospital who are no longer infectious but continue to require care (254 hospitalizations total).

There are 24 people in intensive care units with active COVID-19 as well as 12 people who are no longer infectious but continue to require critical care (36 ICU patients total).

The total number of deaths in people with COVID-19 in Manitoba is 832.

Today’s new COVID-19 cases are broken down as follows:
• five cases in Interlake–Eastern health region
• 53 cases in the Northern health region
• five cases in the Prairie Mountain Health region
• two cases in the Southern Health–Santé Sud health region
• 18 cases in the Winnipeg health region

According to the province’s data, there are active cases in the following Parkland health districts: Dauphin (1), Riding Mountain (1), Porcupine Mountain (50), Duck Mountain (2), Asessippi (13), Little Saskatchewan (8), Whitemud (1), and Agassiz Mountain (15). Brandon has 31 active cases.

In the Interlake, the Eriksdale/Ashern health district has 70 active cases, while Fisher/Peguis has 76.

As of 4 p.m. today, Manitoba's state of emergency was extended for another 30 days.