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Media Release

City of Brampton partners with RIC Centre and Communitech to slow spread of COVID-19 and restart local economy with rapid screening for small and medium businesses


​BRAMPTON, ON (June 9, 2021) – Today, the City of Brampton announced that its Economic Development Office, in coordination with the Brampton Emergency Management Office, has partnered with RIC Centre and Communitech to provide small to medium-sized businesses in Brampton with free COVID-19 rapid screening kits. Dubbed StaySafe, the program will help to slow the spread of COVID-19 and ensure a swift local economic recovery.

Rapid antigen screening is a quick way to help identify asymptomatic COVID-19 cases before they lead to workplace outbreaks. Identifying asymptomatic and presymptomatic individuals early is an effective way of limiting spread within both workplaces and the community.  StaySafe provides access to rapid screening kits so that businesses can administer a workplace screening program.

StaySafe
Funded by the federal and provincial governments, the StaySafe program is free for all businesses with fewer than 150 employees who can’t work from home or physically distance while at work.

The rapid antigen point-of-care screening tests allow employees to test themselves before work and see the results of that test within minutes. If an employee tests positive, an employer can then send them to the nearest COVID testing centre for more conclusive testing without running the risk of exposing other employees to the virus.

The opportunity is open to Brampton organizations with 150 or fewer employees. Training and registration are required for participation in this program before picking up a first order. Organizations can learn more about the program and sign up here.

Businesses with over 150 employees can order directly from the Ontario government portal.

Economic Recovery
Under Step One of the Province’s Roadmap to Reopen, non-essential retail is permitted at 15 per cent capacity, with no restrictions on the goods that can be sold, and essential and other select retail is permitted at 25 per cent capacity, with no restrictions on the goods that can be sold. As businesses prepare to reopen, rapid antigen testing will not only help protect workers, but will also help Brampton residents feel confident entering local businesses. 

Last year, Brampton City Council endorsed Brampton’s Economic Recovery Strategy as a framework for the City to move forward with restarting the local economy. The Economic Recovery Strategy aims to bring resiliency and competitive advantage to Brampton’s economy as it moves forward. The strategy is organized into four cornerstones: Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship, which includes better support for entrepreneurs and small businesses; Investment; Arts, Culture and Tourism; and Infrastructure. Learn more at www.brampton.ca 

Quotes
“The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted our local businesses and the greater Brampton community. By continuing to work together and utilizing all the tools available to us – physical distancing, wearing masks, practising good hygiene and following all public health measures, in addition to rapid screening – we all get one step closer to seeing the people we’ve missed, participating in the activities we love and safely enjoying our amazing Brampton businesses. I thank our partners at RIC Centre and Communitech, and encourage all small and medium-sized businesses in Brampton to secure your rapid test screening kits through the StaySafe program.”
- Patrick Brown, Mayor, City of Brampton

“Partnerships and innovative thinking will play a key role in us navigating life safely as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. Through our collaborative effort with RIC Centre and Communitech and the use of rapid testing for small and medium-sized businesses, we will continue to protect Bramptonians and our dedicated workers in Brampton, while confidently supporting our great local businesses.”  
- Martin Medeiros, Regional Councillor, Wards 3&4; Chair, Economic Development, City of Brampton

“As we move forward from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, we must continue to focus on the safety of our residents and workers in Brampton while working together to restart the local economy. We encourage all eligible Brampton companies to pick up their rapid screening kits through the StaySafe program. By putting safety first, we can all confidently and safely support our great local businesses.”
- Paul Vicente, Regional Councillor, Wards 1&5; Vice-Chair, Economic Development and Culture, City of Brampton

“Staff at the City of Brampton remain committed to keeping our residents and workers in our community safe while supporting our local businesses as we enter Step One of the Province’s Roadmap to Reopen. Thank you to our partners at RIC Centre and Communitech. Rapid tests will help to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community, and ensure local economic recovery.”
- David Barrick, Chief Administrative Officer, City of Brampton

"The RIC Centre is proud to be a partner on this project which aims to help protect more of our community. It's programs like StaySafe that are helping bridge the gap between returning to a sense of normalcy and staying safe while doing so. As an innovation catalyst for change, RIC Centre looks forward to watching this program unfold and encourages all eligible organizations to sign up." 
- Pam Banks, Executive Director, RIC Centre

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As one of the fastest-growing cities in Canada, Brampton is home to 650,000 people and 70,000 businesses. People are at the heart of everything we do. We are energized by our diverse communities, we attract investment, and we are embarking on a journey to lead technological and environmental innovation. We partner for progress to build a healthy city that is safe, sustainable and successful. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Learn more at www.brampton.ca.

MEDIA CONTACT
Megan Ball
Senior Advisor, Media Relations,
City of Brampton
905.874.2143 | megan.ball@brampton.ca