During Monday’s press conference, the premier was grilled about the decision by reporters, who pointed out that he’s also denied personal support workers a pay raise and paid sick days.
“Frankly, a lot of people are calling this a complete waste of money,” the CityNews reporter said.
Ford defended it, however, calling it a “good investment” that will create new jobs in “software, firmware and hardware engineers and machine learning.”
“You have to look at the long-term investment and we felt like it was a good investment, so we moved forward on it,” he said.
The TraceSCAN bracelets, made by a company called FaceDrive in partnership with the University of Waterloo, are designed to beep or vibrate when users are within six feet of one another.
If COVID-19 cases are reported, health officials can check an online dashboard to see who may be at risk of exposure. Those who are at risk will then receive a notification, similar to Canada’s COVID-19 Alert app.
They will not be made mandatory, says the government, and are now undergoing pilot tests.