"As we celebrate Canada's 153rd birthday, I want to reflect on a year that has been unlike any other, one of the darkest periods in Ontario's history. The COVID-19 pandemic touched everyone in the province, creating personal and financial hardship and resulting in losses far greater than anyone could have imagined.
As a country, as a province and as a people, Canadians have always come together in the face of adversity and worked together to defeat the threats we faced. The past few months have been no exception.
We have had each other's backs and stepped up in thousands of ways to combat this threat, support our frontline health care workers, protect our most vulnerable, and do our part to stay home and stop the spread. Hundreds of Ontario businesses retooled their operations, turning Ontario's manufacturing might to make the critical personal protective equipment and medical supplies we need to fight this deadly virus. Ontario's best and brightest minds are leading the country in clinical trials and research for vaccines, treatments, and rapid testing methods to help save lives.
Today, we celebrate not only our great country, but all those people who have worked tirelessly to protect us and our families, keep food on our tables, and get us through tough times. Their compassion, generosity, grit, and determination in the face of a global pandemic should make us all proud to be Canadian. In the months ahead, the Ontario spirit will continue to inspire us as we rebuild and ensure our province comes back stronger and more prosperous than ever before.
Whether you're celebrating at the cottage, in a park, on a patio or at home this Canada Day, please remember to stay safe and act responsibly by following public health advice. Avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people, stay two metres apart from anyone not in your social circle, wear a mask when physical distancing is a challenge, and wash your hands frequently. Being considerate of others is the Canadian way.
From my family to yours, wishing everyone a safe and happy Canada Day!"