April 6, 2020
Nishnawbe Aski Nation COVID-19 Update
- Eabametoong First Nation has a confirmed case of COVID-19.
- The other passengers on the plane have been contacted (or in process of being contacted) by the Nursing Station in their community. Thunder Bay District Health Unit is following up with the pilots and any contacts in Thunder Bay Airport and the City of Thunder Bay.
- Our thoughts are with Chief Yesno, leadership, and community members as they navigate this difficult time. We thank Chief Yesno for coming on our call to update everyone on the various efforts to contain and address the virus in Eabametoong First Nation.
Recommendations to Communities
- NAN encourages daily meetings with Chief, health directors and nurses in charge at the community level to discuss actual level of supplies. Assign a council liaison to work with health staff and other key community staff.
- We are working with ISC/FNIHB and the province as best we can, but it is essential that we know the status of supplies/PPE in the communities.
- Working on getting them on the call Wednesday April 8.
- The Rangers are activating 2-3 members in each NAN First Nation community where they have patrols. There has been a delay in receiving their orders.
- As soon as they have their orders, they will have clear direction on what assistance they can provide to our communities, including those without Ranger patrols.
- Watay has been given an exemption and deemed an essential service.
- Their first priority is the safety of the workers, contractors and First Nations communities.
- Watay can halt the project; however, they are in a binding contract and will continue to monitor COVID-19.
- Watay will be having a call with the leadership this week and we will continue to provide updates as they become available.
NAN COVID-19 Task Team
An update was provided by Dr. Natalie Bocking:
- Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, now says that wearing a non-medical mask can help stop the spread of COVID-19.
- When a case of COVID-19 is identified in the community, the immediate step is to make sure the person any members in the household are isolated.
- This is followed by contact tracing to any individuals that this person may have come into contact with.
- On April 4, 2020, the Ontario Ministry of Health informed NAN and certain municipalities that they would not support the establishment of field hospitals in municipalities.
- We are continuing all advocacy work required to understand the increased capacity in urban centres such as Sioux Lookout, Timmins and Thunder Bay, and will update on this as soon as we have further information.
NAN Legal Services & NAN Justice
- There has been a proposed MOU protocol developed by Ministry of Attorney General -Indigenous Justice unit and NAN. This will be finalized today.
- Looking at possibilities for isolation locations when inmates are released, this is case by case at this time.
- Please send all community justice contacts to email@example.com.
Nishnawbe Aski Police Services – NAPS
- NAPS is signing an MOU with the officers’ Union to allow NAPS to look at waving provisions to the collective agreement regarding the scheduling of officers during COVID-19.
- 14 days on, 14 days off schedule will be implemented by next week.
- If arrests are made, all precautions will take place to have limited contact.
- NAPS will continue to liaise with the OPP on enforcement measures during COVID-19.
- Enforcement of community public health and safety measures– BCR templates have been developed for communities’ use, if they see fit.
- First Nations Border Closure – BCR Template (if a BCR has not been passed)
- Supplementary Border Closure – BCR Template (if a BCR has already been passed)
- Community COVID-19 Measures – BCR Template
- Full briefing note and BCR templates can be found on the NAN website.
- Grand Chief Fiddler will continue to do radio shows on Wawatay Radio, Tuesdays (Timmins) & Thursdays (Sioux Lookout).
- COVID-19 Tools and Resources are being translated into Oji-Cree, Ojibway, and Cree to assist the communities in spreading the awareness around COVID-19. They will be posted on the NAN website under COVID-19 Tools and Resources as they become available.
- Please continue to access our website as we are constantly updating it with the most up to date information: www.nancovid19.ca
NEXT CALL: Wednesday April 8, 2020 | 1p.m. EST/ 12p.m. CST
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