As of yesterday, Sept. 1, Nova Scotia has six active cases of COVID-19. Public health officials didn’t announce any new cases in the latest media update, but did provide details of a case announced on Aug. 31.

“The individual is a student attending Université Sainte-Anne and did not properly self-isolate,” says the government press release. “Public health is working to identify close contacts.”

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, adds in the same update that this revelation shows the testing strategy for out-of-region students is working. “It’s helping us detect and manage cases early,” he says. “The testing strategy does not replace the need to follow other public health measures. The combination of testing, self-isolating, and digital check-ins will help to ensure the safety of all students, faculty and staff, and their neighbouring communities.”

Nova Scotia’s COVID-19 tally stands at 76,211 negative test results, 1,085 known cases, and 65 deaths. 

Strang and education minister Zach Churchill are giving an update on back-to-school plans today at 2 p.m. See the update and press conference live online.

Dylan Ehler

Dylan Ehler’s parents keep searching despite vile attacks
Since Truro toddler Dylan Ehler disappeared in May, his parents have searched relentlessly for some clue to his fate. And as their ordeal continues, the family faces an endless litany of social-media rumours, attacks, and accusations.

“All those groups are horrible,” says Jason Ehler. “This has destroyed us completely. It’s hard to go outside. It’s hard to go buy food. It’s all been so hard… Shame on them.” In this Hub Now story by Raissa Tetanish, he directs readers to an accurate online source for information about the disappearance, offers an update on the search, shares his frustration with local police efforts, and tells how people can help.

Care packages for migrant workers
Migrant workers have a hard lot even in the best of times: they’re far from home, working long hours for little pay, in demanding jobs that offer no security or room to advance. During a pandemic, things are even tougher, as they face long stints in isolation.

A Pictou County group is working to support them with care packages, offering food and a few comforts to help them know Nova Scotians appreciate their labour. “It will make relationships with them for the future so they don’t feel so alone,” says Brandi Medley. Heather Brimicombe has more in The Pictou Advocate.

Gordon Stewart

Restaurants fight to survive
Public-health precautions have cut their capacity and pandemic-wary customers are staying home: for local restaurants, it’s been frigid summer, and the chill will worsen as the weather cools. Extending the patio season and offering economical takeout and delivery options will be key to their survival. Halifax’s dining scene is changing fast and the upheaval has likely only begun.

“At some point, this pandemic will end and we’ll start going back to normalcy, but… there’s going to be an awful lot of structural damage done to the food and beverage sector,” says Gordon Stewart executive director of the Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia. “The slow rebuild of the business is going to be very challenging. There will be survival, but that damage will depend upon how long we are going to keep restaurants locked down or have limitations set on them.” Ameeta Vohra reports for Halifax Magazine.

RCMP won’t pursue noose incident
The noose has long been a racist symbol, a reminder of historic violence against Black people and a threat of more to come. In mid-August, Dean Rafuse, who is Black, was spending the afternoon with his family at a beach in Chester. Unprovoked, two people in a Ford Ranger began waving a noose at them.

While the community and local politicians have rallied around the family, the police response disappoints Rafuse. RCMP “told me they wouldn’t press charges,” he says. “His exact words [were] ‘being racist is not a crime.’ But I said ‘waving a noose at someone is a threat. That’s a hate crime.’ The police officer told me it wasn’t.” Keith Corcoran has the story for LighthouseNow.

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