Covid-19 Daily News Digest – April 2, 2020
OHRC issues policy on government’s human rights obligations during the COVID-19 pandemic
The OHRC’s Policy statement on a human rights-based approach to managing the COVID-19 pandemic calls on governments to:
- Approach preventing and treating COVID-19 as a human rights obligation
- Respect the rights of First Nations, Métis and Inuit (Indigenous) peoples
- Set strict limits on measures that infringe rights
- Protect vulnerable groups
- Respond to racism, ageism, ableism and other forms of discrimination
- Strengthen human rights accountability and oversight.
Philpott says NAN communities prepared but will be tested as virus confirmed in Sioux Lookout
She said many communities were quick to restrict access and curtail large gatherings. Some of the 49 NAN communities flights have been limited and non-members are asked to stay away unless they provide an essential service.
B.C. Government announces latest supports for those impacted by COVID-19
The task force will help advise the cross-government economic response to COVID-19 and will take the form of a weekly conference call between Horgan, Finance Minister Carole James, Jobs Minister Michelle Mungall, members of the Business Council of B.C., BC Chamber of Commerce, Vancouver Board of Trade, Surrey Board of Trade, the BC Federation of Labour, First Nations organizations and the not-for-profit sector.
First Nations concerned that crowded housing creates greater risk of coronavirus exposure
“We must take every precaution necessary to keep people and our communities safe,”Ashton wrote. “This includes testing. We know jurisdictions that have implemented expanded testing have fared better than others. I urge your government to immediately respond to the urgent need for testing in Flin Flon and across our North. This is about saving lives.”
Fifteen cases of COVID-19 in Indigenous communities to date, Canadian minister reports
“Communities are taking exceptional measures to prevent the spread of virus, including restricting travel in and out of communities, self-isolation and quarantine of returning travellers. And we will continue to adapt plans and provide surge capacity as the situation evolves,” Miller said.
COVID-19 cases in First Nations spur leaders to call for field hospitals
Chief Jason Henry of the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point First Nation, near Sarnia, Ont., said he is in discussions with the Department of National Defence in the hopes of turning two arenas into a self-isolation centre and a regional field hospital to serve eight surrounding First Nations, along with the surrounding county and municipality
$12 million coming to NWT Indigenous communities to help respond to COVID-19
The money will be allocated based on community remoteness and “well-being”. Remoteness is measured as the proximity to surrounding communities and population size. ISC also has a Community Well-Being Index which measures socio-economic scores for residents in a given community, including education, labour force activity, income and housing.
Police investigate COVID-19 threats to Chinese restaurant, Indigenous people
“This is a time when we should all be coming together to encourage one another and keep everyone safe,” Calgary police hate crimes co-ordinator Const. Craig Collins said Wednesday.
Acho Dene Koe sets up $500K Covid-19 fund, orders supplies
The First Nation’s funding is split into areas such “authorization to purchase food, supplies, and fuel at both the Northern Store and the Liard Fuel Centre,” based on the guidelines given by the federal and territorial governments.
Bootleggers are an old NWT problem. Covid-19 is a new worry.
“Even those of you who are on the wrong path, we’re here for you, we can help you, we can help get you the right help you need … I can’t change you, but I can help you. And that’s what I’d like to do.”
Potential Disproportionate Effect Of COVID-19 On Incarcerated Indigenous Australians
The disproportionate incarceration of Indigenous Australians is considered one of Australia’s largest shortcomings in relation to its human rights record. In 2018, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners accounted for just over a quarter (28%) of the total Australian prisoner population, while the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population aged over 18 years of age amounted to only 2% of the entire population. Morbidity rates for respiratory diseases, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and particular cancers, including lung cancer, are also higher amongst Indigenous Australians in comparison to their non-Indigenous counterparts. These illnesses are also included in the list of pre-existing conditions that increase the likelihood of death by COVID-19 should a patient contract it.
eSupply Canada Ltd. to support Indigenous communities with office supplies in response to COVID-19 pandemic
Former Saugeen councillor Steven Vanloffeld wants to support Indigenous communities and businesses during the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic by offering office supplies at cost to staff who are working at home.
Northern Superior Region Anishinabek First Nations announce closures amidst COVID-19 pandemic
“If things break out in [Thunder Bay], step three is full closure of the community,” Chief Collins says. “We’re not there yet. We’re learning how to deal with this as [is] every Canadian across the country, every First Nation across the country.