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Memo from Grand Chief- March 23, 2020

Memo from Grand Chief- March 23, 2020

We are providing this update as follow-up to our call at 1:00 pm EST/ 12:00pm CST on Monday, March 23, 2020.

Download a copy of the memo

Information will be continuously updated at

  • Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) has a process in place to follow up on issues and requests about COVID-19 via
  • The province of Ontario has declared that all non-essential workplaces and businesses must close effective Tuesday March 24th at 11:59 pm for 14 days. NAN is following up on the detailed list that will be released tomorrow, March 24.
  • Musselwhite Mine is suspending most operations at the site, they will not be completely shut down as they need to maintain vital infrastructure.
  • NAN is following up on how to implement/enforce measures communities have put in place to keep their community safe (blocked entrances, non-essential travel, etc.).

How to Contact NAN & NAN COVID-19 Task Force

  • Please send all inquiries regarding COVID-19 to
  • This e-mail will be constantly monitored. All inquiries will be directed to the appropriate resources who will respond as quickly as possible.

NAN COVID-19 Task Team

An update was provided by Michelle Gervais:

  • Best practices must continue to be followed including hygiene and social distancing.
  • All non-essential travel should be discontinued in and out of the community.
  • There should be no gatherings greater than 20 people, including church.
  • Options for additional screening for individuals that come off flights from Sioux Lookout or Timmins will be followed up on by the COVID-19 Task Team.


  • ISC announced the process to access emergency funding on March 20. A memo was distributed to NAN Chiefs & Tribal Councils along with the funding guidebook.
  • Wabun Tribal Council developed a template that has been approved to share with other NAN communities and is attached to this memo.


  • NAN will continue to work with Wawatay Radio to arrange times to do live broadcasting.
  • Public service announcements in Oji-Cree and Ojibway are available on the NAN website that can be used on local radio stations. NAN is working on completing the translation into Cree.
  • We will be circulating a memo regarding the NAN communication process with Federal and Provincial governments so that all Communities, Tribal Councils and Health Authorities are aware and can contribute to the process.


  • Information has been sent to all NAPS officers instructing on how to self-isolate and monitor.
  • Officers residing in southern Ontario have been mandated to self-isolate for 14 days prior to going into a NAN community for their shifts.
  • 4 emergency relief teams are being developed to assist with surge capacity.
  • A long-term strategy will be developed to keep officers in the region and available for response in communities.
  • NAPS expressed the requirement of exceptional circumstances funding.
    • Grand Chief will follow up with Minister Jones.
  • NAPS will continue to follow up with the OPP to determine their processes in protecting the NAN communities that have OPP detachments from COVID-19.


  • The province of Ontario is in direct discussion with school boards to determine next steps including graduations, graduation requirements and working towards solutions so that no student loses a school year.
  • Provincial funding will not be cut and will continue into the next year.
  • Ontario will work with Oshki-Wenjack regarding student placement hours.
  • NAN will continue to follow up and provide updates going forward.

Urban Community Members

  • NAN is gathering information from municipalities and urban organizations on supports for urban member and will share as soon as possible.

Stay updated.

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