Alberta MLAs in contact with COVID-19-infected minister test negative

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All of the Alberta politicians who came into contact with a provincial cabinet minister infected with COVID-19 have tested negative for the coronavirus.

Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard tested positive for COVID-19 last Wednesday.

She had interacted during the previous week with Premier Jason Kenney, Transportation Minister Ric McIver and United Conservative Party MLAs Angela Pitt, Peter Guthrie and Nathan Neudorf.

Kenney received his negative test result last Thursday, but has said he would continue to isolate at home for a week as a precaution.

Christine Myatt, a spokeswoman for Kenney, said McIver, Pitt, Guthrie and Neudorf have also received negative test results and will continue to self-isolate.

Allard participated in a virtual panel during the UCP annual meeting on Saturday and appeared to be in good health.

Alberta's daily case count began to surge over the 400 mark last week, up sharply from about a month earlier when new daily infection totals stood in the mid-100s.

While Quebec, Ontario and Manitoba have toughened restrictions on certain businesses and activities in recent weeks, Kenney has said his government prefers encouraging personal responsibility over imposing new shutdowns on Alberta's frail economy. He told UCP members Saturday that there's no plan to shut bars and restaurants again.

"I give my absolute commitment to that sector that is struggling that barring some absolute catastrophe, which we do not see, there is no likelihood of restriction on their ability to operate like we had in the spring."

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