Pallister Government Breaks Promise to Release Demographic COVID Data

February 16, 2021

Treaty 1 Territory, Homeland of the Métis Nation, Winnipeg MB— The Manitoba NDP shared information today revealing the PC government has broken its promise to release demographic information regarding Manitobans who have contracted COVID-19.

“Good data leads to good decisions,” said Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew. “That’s why we’ve been calling on the PC Government to release COVID data on the impacts on racialized communities for months. Manitobans deserve to have this information so we can evaluate how well the vaccination plan matches our province's needs."

The PC government has been collecting race-based COVID data since May 2020 but has refused to release that data to the public despite repeated calls from the Official Opposition. In October 2020, the Premier and his Government said they would release a demographic report but they never did. Shared Health denied the Manitoba NDP’s Freedom of Information Request to access the race-based data that the government has collected.

“Manitobans want the immunization campaign to be fair – and that means prioritizing the health of those most at risk,” said Manitoba NDP Healthcare Critic Uzoma Asagwara. “These new national guidelines make it clear that racialized groups are high-risk but the PC government continues to hide the race-based COVID data we know they are collecting. Without this data, Manitobans can’t trust if this government is following the latest public health advice. The PC government needs to release the data today.”

Kinew noted the NACI has also revised its guidelines to recommend provinces include people with underlying health conditions be included in their second stage of immunization.