The World Health Organization has just raised the global pandemic flu alert to level 6 – “the world is now at the start of the 2009 influenza pandemic”, according to WHO Director General Dr Margaret Chan at a press conference earlier today. The Wellesley Institute has produced research and policy reports in recent days that raise the question of whether the pandemic flu plans of the Ontario government cover every one. Everyone is affected by a pandemic, but not everyone is affected equally. For instance, the standard advice of a “home quarantine” for people suffering from flu or flu-like symptoms doesn’t work for people who are homeless or precariously housed. Similarly, the advice to stockpile 72 hours worth of food won’t work for the estimated one million Torontonians who relied on foodbanks last year.