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News Releases

June 17, 2014

Winnipeg paramedic receives prestigious award for work with HIV-vulnerable populations in Winnipeg

Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service member Ryan Sneath presented with the Paramedic Chiefs of Canada (PCC) Award of Excellence for Innovative Treatment or Technology

Released: 10:52 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB - Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) member Ryan Sneath received the Paramedic Chiefs of Canada (PCC) Award of Excellence in the Innovative Treatment or Technology category at the 2014 Paramedic Chiefs of Canada conference in Vancouver. The award, presented on Thursday, June 12, celebrates Sneath’s efforts to establish HIV Point-of-Care Testing (POCT) which is delivered to clients through the Main Street Project Community Paramedic Program.

“Paramedic Sneath has worked hard to bring better patient care and safety standards to Winnipeggers,” said Mayor Sam Katz. “His commitment to frontline community healthcare has made a great impact in our city.”

“Medical Supervisor Sneath and the project team have shown pride and determination in their work and have demonstrated the true meaning of patient advocacy in every aspect of this program’s development and in their daily work,” said Christian Schmidt, Deputy Chief, Fire/EMS Operations & 911 Communications, WFPS. “Their efforts have resulted in significant and measurable healthcare improvements and cost savings which have had positive impacts for the patients and the emergency medical system in our community.”

The Main Street Project is a not-for-profit organization located in the downtown area of Winnipeg that houses some of the most vulnerable citizens in the City of Winnipeg. In 2009, the WFPS partnered with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) to place a paramedic on staff at the Main Street Project to provide medial assessments, emergency care, and input on policy decisions. Part of this care is administering HIV Point-of-Care Testing (POCT).

POCT is a way for WFPS to work with the Manitoba HIV Program and other local HIV prevention groups to identify HIV within the community and prevent the spread of the disease. While administering POCT, the paramedic at the Main Street Project not only provides patients with the most appropriate care, but also delivers education and educational materials directed at prevention strategies.

The Paramedic Chiefs of Canada is a national forum for industry representation, a repository for EMS best-practices information, and an organization that supports and promotes EMS leadership development.

Update on Insect Control Branch programs

Released: 12:30 p.m.

Winnipeg, MB - Today, the Winnipeg Public Service provided an update on insect control activities.

Nuisance Mosquito Control Program

The Public Work’s Department’s Insect Control Branch continues an aggressive larviciding program and is asking Winnipeggers to help “Fight the Bite” by eliminating any standing water on their property, as approximately 50 per cent of standing water sites are located on private property. Homeowners can take the following steps to eliminate standing water on their properties:

  • Dump It! - containers
  • Drain It! - eavestroughing or unused containers
  • Cover It! - rain water collection containers
  • Fill It! - low-lying areas
  • Treat It! - biological larvicide

Winnipeg received significant rainfall over the weekend; in some parts of the City, the accumulation was equivalent to the average rainfall normally received for the entire month of June. The second generation of summer nuisance mosquitoes began to hatch in the numerous water bodies in and around Winnipeg.

The Insect Control Branch will continue using all resources, which include approximately 160 staff and four helicopters, to check and treat approximately 30,000 hectares of potential larval development sites in Winnipeg and the surrounding 10 kilometre treatment area. The Superintendent of Insect Control is monitoring conditions on a daily basis, and is ready to implement the range of control measures available as nuisance activity and environmental conditions vary.

Adulticiding Factor Analysis

Today, June 17, 2014, the City-wide New Jersey Light Trap count is 9. The Adulticiding Factor Analysis (AFA) rating is MEDIUM.

With an AFA of MEDIUM, the Insect Control Branch continues to larvicide and utilize residual treatments where there are localized emergences of adult mosquito populations on City of Winnipeg property such as parks, cemeteries and rights-of-way.  Residual permethrin treatments, an environmentally friendly product made from the chrysanthemum flower, will be applied directly to localized areas of long grass, bushes and shrubs where adult mosquitoes rest during the day.

General Information

Property owners not wanting insecticides applied on or adjacent to their principal residence may register as “Anti-Pesticide Registrants” in the event an adult nuisance mosquito control program is required. Those who wish to register must provide identification that ties the registrant to the address being registered for a buffer zone. A photocopy or scanned document like a driver’s licence or utility bill will suffice as acceptable identification proving primary residence.

There are four different options to register:

Personal notification by telephone and/or email is also available by:

For more information, please contact 311, open 24 hours every day by phone at 311 or by email at, or visit the City’s Insect Control website.

Gopher/Richardson ground squirrel control locations

Released: 14:58 p.m.

Winnipeg, MB - Today, out of an abundance of caution, the Winnipeg Public Service provided an update to the public regarding the total locations where gopher/Richardson ground squirrel control operations have been suspended. During a proactive review of the work approval process, three additional parks were identified as having gopher control product applied and subsequently ceased since June 9. The additional parks are: Stanley Knowles Park, Wellington Park and Westview Park.

The following is a complete list of parks where gopher control products were applied prior to June 9:

  • Stanley Knowles Park
  • Wellington Park
  • Optimist Park
  • 2080 Ness (athletic fields across from the former Silver Heights Community Club)
  • Vince Leah Community Club
  • Little Mountain Park
  • Westview Park

Two additional parks, John Blumberg Park and Woodsworth Park, were also approved for gopher/Richardson ground squirrel control. However, the contractor confirmed operations were suspended before treatment could be initiated in these locations.

Last week, the City suspended gopher/Richardson ground squirrel control operations in parks, and, as an added precaution, City crews were sent out to monitor parks where gopher control was applied. Inspections were also initiated in the three additional parks and will continue until the end of this week.

The City has a contract with a professional pest control company to treat parks in certain areas where gopher/Richardson ground squirrel infestations are reported by staff or the public. In most cases it is the public that call us to report this issue as a safety concern. Gopher/Richardson ground squirrel treatment in various parks has been going on for decades. Gopher/Richardson ground squirrel control products have also been applied in Brookside Cemetery but not on City golf courses.

Gopher/Richardson ground squirrels burrow potentially dangerous holes in turf areas that can become difficult to notice while the public are walking, playing or running in the park, potentially leading to injuries. Dogs can sustain leg injuries as well.

Last update: June 19, 2014