This holiday season is undoubtedly different than those of years past, but I hope you and your family have found ways to celebrate. As we count down to the new year one thing is certain: 2021 will not be the same as 2020. There are reasons for optimism.
I am proud to share that Manitobans have started to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. In early December, our province received a very limited supply of the vaccination from the federal government. Since receiving that supply, we have begun implementing our immunization plan by offering the vaccine to those most vulnerable including those working on the front lines in our healthcare system to protect them and those they care for.
The federal government has provided assurance that enough doses of the vaccine will eventually be available to every Manitoban who wishes to receive one. For those who do not want to be vaccinated, it will not be mandatory. Until then, I encourage everyone to continue to follow the public health fundamentals to help fight the spread of this virus and save lives.
For those looking for things to do while at home during the holidays, Manitoba’s government is offering free programming under the Safe at Home Manitoba grant to provide entertainment to people’s homes. The program features free creative cultural, artistic and fitness activities by Manitoba businesses, artists and instructors. For more information and to access programming, please visit: www.safeathomemb.ca
We can enter 2021 with hope and optimism, but also with choices. Whether our preferred 2021 becomes reality sooner or later depends in large part on our willingness to practice the essentials outlined by medical officials. We must remember that the speed of improvement depends on hospital numbers decreasing, which depends on cases decreasing, which depends on all of us taking basic daily precautions.
Please accept my best wishes to you and your family for a healthy and prosperous 2021.