Well, knock me down with a feather: yet another Radisson is being used as a quarantine hotel in the Greater Toronto Area.
We were recently tipped off by an inmate — er, guest — that the Radisson Hotel in Mississauga, Ont., is being used as a quarantining facility. Our source sent photos of a clogged sink, urine-stained floors and other indignities that she is enduring. So we decided to visit this hotel, located at 175 Derry Road East.
Alas, as per usual, we didn’t get much tangible information. We were directed towards an employee who might be a manager, and she essentially told us to scram. I pointed out that since the hotel is presumably under contract to the federal government, shouldn’t Canadian taxpayers have a right to know where their money is being spent? The answer I received back was, “Ask Justin Trudeau.” (Yeah, I’m sure he’ll get right back to us…)
Unlike our visit last week to the “under construction” Radisson near Toronto’s airport, at least the police weren’t called (a minor miracle, given that there just happens to be a Peel Regional Police detachment directly across the street from the Mississauga Radisson).
Since the feds won’t answer our questions regarding these quarantine hotels, I reached out to the head office of the Radisson Hotel Group in Minnetonka, Minnesota. Some of the questions I posed included:
- Could you please let me know the dollar amount that Radisson is being paid by the federal government to use these properties? (I would imagine that this is public information, as these are tax dollars being used to fund the quarantine program.)
- A guest reached out to me with photographs of her room at the Radisson Hotel in Mississauga. She said the unit was filthy and that it had a clogged sink and urine stains abounded. I am curious how these units are cleaned and maintained when these hotels are operated as quarantine facilities?
- We have encountered a lack of transparency when visiting these hotels. For example, at the Radisson Hotel on Dixon Road, we were told by a security employee that the hotel was closed as it was "under construction." This was clearly not the case as there were no construction workers nor construction equipment present and there were clearly guests visible in the windows. Why is there such a lack of disclosure in terms of what is happening at these hotels?
- I understand that the Radisson Hotel Toronto East (which has been used exclusively as a property for refugees) has been “de-flagged.” Can you please tell me why this hotel is no longer a Radisson?
The response to my queries was this:
The safety and security of our guests, team members and the communities in which they serve is one of our highest priorities. We are aware of the situation regarding the Government of Canada and the Canadian Public Health Act and designated Radisson hotels in the Toronto area.
These hotels are independently owned and operate under a franchise agreement with Radisson Hotel Group. The contract with the Government of Canada and the Canadian Public Health Act was not executed by Radisson Hotel Group.
Translation: transparency remains an endangered species on this file, and so the mystery deepens…