Trudeau says he'll keep self-isolating, announces new help for charities

Published March 29, 2020 11:57 a.m. ET

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TORONTO -- Sophie Gregoire Trudeau has been given a clean bill of health, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he'll continue to self-isolate because he can't rule out that he acquired the novel coronavirus from her.

Speaking to reporters outside Rideau Cottage on Sunday, the prime minister said he will continue to live and work at his home until he has no reason to believe he could have been exposed to COVID-19 for more than 14 days.

Trudeau entered self-isolation March 12 following his wife's positive test for COVID-19. Gregoire Trudeau announced Saturday that she had received the "all clear" from her doctors. But as it is not clear exactly when the virus left her body, the prime minister will remain in isolation.

Trudeau said Sunday that he was "very happy" that his wife had been cleared. He said she had taken their children to the prime minister's retreat property at Harrington Lake.

The prime minister also announced new funding to help seniors and children affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said United Way Canada will receive $9 million to distribute to local organizations that can help seniors by delivering items to them and connecting them to other organizations, while Kids Help Phone will receive $7.5 million to bring on additional counsellors. A more comprehensive program for Canadian charities, which have warned that the pandemic could threaten their survival, is expected to be announced in the near future.

"We promise to help everyone through this tough time," he said.

Trudeau also urged Canadians to consider how they might be able to support charities even from isolation, possibly by volunteering from home or donating.

"Think of how you can lend a hand to help others through this tough time," he said.

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