OPINION: Not at risk, not super spreaders — let the children play

Almost everyday the Premier of Ontario, Doug Ford comes out for a COVID-19 update. We believe we are getting the updates unbiasedly, directly from the source to keep us in the know, and keep us safe. I myself believed kids would be efficient spreaders of the virus, after all, my own children come home sick from school all the time. I’m sure this knowledge was a driving factor into why schools were shut down. 

Like many Canadians, with my increased down time came the time to investigate my genuine curiosity regarding COVID-19. I began researching the data from Canada.ca and their official epidemiologist report on May 18, 2020.

I was shocked at what I found. It was never mentioned in any of their daily coronavirus updates from Premier Ford.

Not a single death has been recorded due to COVID-19 for a person under the age of 19 in Canada.

Screenshot from https://www.canada.ca/content/dam/phac-aspc/documents/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/surv-covid19-epi-update-eng.pdf

This caught me by surprise as Mr. Ford told all Canadians it was for their “safety” as to why the parks were closed. So why hadn’t Mr. Ford thought it was proper to inform the residents of Ontario — that according to their epidemiologist’s data, children were the least likely to contract or die of the virus?

After all, if there is no good reason for a law or rule to be followed, it’s our duty and right as free citizens to not follow it. Laws only exist for the betterment of our society — not for the ability of government to control different facets of it.

Screenshot from Toronto CTV News.

And just like that, the whole narrative I had believed was deflated. Those under 19 with the most severe cases of COVID-19, who were admitted to hospital, hadn’t passed away.

So why keep camps, school’s, and playgrounds closed?

Statistically speaking if you’re under the ages of 59 and healthy, you’re very safe from dying of a COVID-19 infection. According to the data, less than 4 per cent of deaths fall into this bracket and it’s worth noting that the vast majority of those who fell deceased in these age categories suffered from a per-comorbidity.

Screenshot from The NY Times.

Most people likely didn’t know they had the virus, or if they even have it because they are asymptomatic. That’s why estimates of infected populations keep going up, and the known severity of COVID-19 keeps going down.

According to researchers in Iceland, 50 per cent of positive coronavirus cases were asymptomatic.

“researchers in Iceland reported that 50 percent of their novel coronavirus cases who tested positive had no symptoms.” Screenshot from Healthline.com.

Another German study tested the population of the heavily hit city of Heinsberg. They found 15 per cent of the 919 residents they tested had antibodies for COVID-19. This was then cross referenced with known coronavirus deaths in the community, bringing researchers to a new estimated fatality rate of .35 per cent.

“About 15 percent of the residents tested were positive. Cross-referenced with known coronavirus deaths in the community, researchers estimated a death rate of .37 percent. Screenshot from Global News.

This is a far cry from the “official” reports coming out of government. The issue is they don’t know the number of infected in Canada, they just know the most severe infections in the country —those that sought help.

 So the questions remains, if my children are keeping distance from those most at risk and they aren’t at risk themselves — why are they being denied the ability to go to the park? Does their quality of life not matter? Children are the least at risk of dying from the virus and they’re the least likely age group to contract the virus. Just look at the breakdown below:


I want to protect the most vulnerable just like you, however presented with the new data, I know that it’s safe to send my children to an overnight camp or to go play on the playground. My question for Mr. Ford is this:

Why aren’t you talking about these stats? After all, they’re from your official epidemiologist report.

Published by Greg Staley

Greg Staley is a husband and a father to 4 beautiful girls. He is the owner of Diverge Media and takes pride in telling the stories that matter - even if they may be unpopular. In addition to writing, editing, and producing videos and articles for Diverge, Mr. Staley also works full-time on a farm. Mr. Staley is working hard to be able to pursue Diverge Media full-time and wholeheartedly believes that it will become a reality in the near-future with the support of the readers/viewers of Diverge Media.