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Quebec requests military assistance, feds put up $100M to help food banks amid COVID-19 crisis

Last Updated Apr 3, 2020 at 10:46 am PDT

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addresses Canadians on the COVID-19 pandemic from Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Wednesday, April 1, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Summary

Quebec has requested assistance from Canada's Armed Forces to help northern communities prepare for outbreaks

Justin Trudeau says the request has been granted and the military is ready to help where and when needed

The federal government is also sending $100-million to organizations that provide food to the most vulnerable

OTTAWA – Quebec is the first province to request the military’s help to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday that Rangers would be deployed to Quebec’s northern areas to help remote and isolated communities respond to novel coronavirus outbreaks.

Speaking through a translator, Trudeau noted Rangers would provide assistance with things like setting up tents and medical infrastructure. More details on numbers and other duties were expected later on Friday, he said.

This came as the government announced it is sending $100-million in funding to organizations that provide food to the most vulnerable.

“We will help support organizations you might already know, like Food Banks Canada, Breakfast Club, and the Salvation Army, and many more,” he said.

The government will also deliver more aid to low-income Canadians through the GST credit a month sooner than planned — in April rather than in May.

Trudeau also announced a federal agreement with Amazon to help distribute needed medical supplies to provinces in need.

Meanwhile, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has called on the government to release all of its projections for just how bad this crisis could get, as well as weekly updates on the stockpile of medical supplies and capacity levels at hospitals.

The prime minister said the government has been working with provinces to get the data, and that it was compiling models which will be released soon.

It’s unclear when exactly that will be.