Ontario has mandated a robust PPE stockpile to support emergencies

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The Ontario government is protecting people against emergencies with a legislation to ensure that a healthy and robust stockpile of personal protective equipment (PPE) and critical supplies and equipment (CSE) is available at all times. The Personal Protective Equipment Supply and Production Act, 2022 (PPESPA) is the first legislation of its kind in Canada.

PPESPA will impose requirements for the province to maintain a significant minimum level of critical goods, ready to be deployed to withstand the challenges of extraordinary events without having to rely on unstable foreign supply. A part of Ontario’s Plan to Stay Open, the PPESPA will shore-up the domestic production of critical supplies, according to a press release.

At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario faced the stark reality of a hollowed-out stockpile of critical and emergency supplies left behind by the previous government, with the vast majority of remaining materials in an unusable state, either rotting or expired. Coupled with the fact that all of the province’s supplies at the time were purchased from international sources, the province was left with a serious challenge of sourcing PPE and CSE when production shortages hit and border restrictions were imposed.

The Ontario government is protecting people against emergencies with a legislation to ensure that a healthy and robust stockpile of personal protective equipment (PPE) and critical supplies and equipment (CSE) is available at all times. The Personal Protective Equipment Supply and Production Act, 2022 (PPESPA) is the first legislation of its kind in Canada.

In response, the government supported increased domestic production and established a reliable and centralised supply chain for PPE and CSE that needs to be maintained over the long-term to withstand the challenges of everyday and future extraordinary events. The PPESPA will guarantee that no future government is saddled with empty shelves in their warehouses and can adequately equip its frontline workers with the tools they need in time of crisis.

The PPESPA would also require annual reporting by the Minister of Government and Consumer Services on the state of the province’s stockpile. In an effort to bring much needed transparency and restore Ontarians’ trust, information about the quantity, quality, and source of origin of supplies will be publicly disclosed.

“Never again will Ontario be caught flatfooted and forced to rely on uncertain foreign supply for PPE in times of emergency. With this legislation, we’re getting done what previous governments failed to do – keeping a healthy stockpile of quality critical supplies, made in Ontario whenever possible, to ensure the preparedness, safety, and security of Ontarians for whatever future crisis might face us,” Ross Romano, minister of government and consumer services, said in a statement.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (GK)





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