Arctic Indigenous network builds resilience to Covid, climate disruption
“There has been increasing focus on using Indigenous stewards to harvest country food as a way to address food insecurity,” said Stephen Ellis, the leader of MakeWay’s Northern Programme.
“Indigenous stewards have also been put to work providing emergency response services, such as delivering food and PPE within communities, moving families into outpost camps to promote social distancing, and so forth.”
“For many people, Covid has given us an opportunity to think about our food systems and our food sources,” said Lori Tagoona, a senior associate at MakeWay in Northern Canada.
COVID-19 in Indigenous communities: 2,477 active cases on-reserve
Over 1,000 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on First Nations reserves over the last week, according to the latest data from Indigenous Services Canada.
The federal department reported 2,477 active cases, with 1,218 new cases since last week. Communities in the Prairies continue to grapple with the virus, with cases soaring in Manitoba.
Dozens of soldiers are on the ground in Shamattawa, a remote fly-in First Nation 745 kilometres northeast of Winnipeg, as it battles as an outbreak. It’s the province’s hardest-hit community, with recent test positivity rates hovering between 70 and 80 per cent.
May 2021 be the year land is once again refuge for Indigenous people
At the beginning of the pandemic, and at a time when Canadian government officials were locking down daily life and telling Canadians to stay home, Dene National Chief Norman Yakeleya echoed the words of his Elders and told his people, “go to the land.” Many did. Those that had the means went to cabins and canvas tents in the bush where good ventilation and physical distancing was normal. They went to places where fish, game, plant medicines and clean water were readily available. They set up camps where the basic necessities of life required the physical and emotional labour of everyone in camp.
Coronavirus: Canada ‘must do everything we can’ to protect Indigenous communities from COVID-19, official says
Dr. Evan Adams, deputy chief medical officer at Indigenous Services Canada, said on Wednesday that 50 per cent of First Nations communities in the country have experienced a COVID-19 outbreak, and that there have been 55 on-reserve fatalities. “We must do everything we can to protect Indigenous communities, particularly our elders, from COVID-19,” he said.
Moderna coronavirus vaccine ‘dry run’ underway, key to reaching Indigenous communities
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Major General Dany Fortin said the dry run, or rollout practice, was similar to the one performed last week by the Canadian government for the Pfizer and BioNtech vaccine, which involved confirming vaccine orders, and testing shipping, tracking, delivery and storage.
Fortin added this will make it easier to deliver Moderna’s vaccines to locations identified by the provinces and territories so they can be rolled out quickly, pending approval from Health Canada.
Chief of Peguis First Nation rejects premier’s call to end holiday gatherings
“This is well-meaning but mistaken,” Premier Brian Pallister said on Tuesday.
The First Nation is saying that unlike other communities in the province, it has a low COVID-19 case count and because of its own lockdown procedures it will allow visits.
“I really don’t care what the premier has to say,” said Chief Glenn Hudson. “We feel we’re doing it safely and we have every right as First Nations to do this. I know we’re on federal land.”
‘Sense of urgency, purpose, and unity’ that greeted TRC’s Calls to Action in 2015 seems to have stalled, says Chief Littlechild
Alberta presents a contradiction when it comes to responding to the recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Indian Residential Schools.
In a virtual news conference Dec. 15 marking five years since the TRC issued its final report, Chief Wilton Littlechild, one of three TRC commissioners, blasted Alberta’s UCP government for rolling back the previous NDP government’s commitment to implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, but held up the commanding officer of the Alberta RCMP for working to advance reconciliation.
UNDRIP, said Littlechild, is the framework to achieve reconciliation across all governments and sectors of society. Six provinces, including Alberta, are calling for the federal government’s UNDRIP implementation legislation to be further delayed.
Saskatchewan casino COVID-19 closures impact Indigenous organizations
Danner said for every dollar CCDF lends to entrepreneurs, $15.31 comes back to the province in socioeconomic benefits
Despite “tenacious” and “determined” entrepreneurship, the pandemic is weighing on organizations like the CCDF.
“This business model is not sustainable,” Danners said. “We need all sectors of the province to recover. That includes casinos here.”
As 1st Manitobans get COVID-19 vaccine, questions linger about distribution, access on First Nations
“Our elders, we want them to be given priority, and anyone who is immune-compromised, is what we are hoping for,” said Jerry Daniels, grand chief of the Southern Chiefs’ Organization, which represents 34 First Nations and 80,000 people in southern Manitoba — nearly half of whom live off reserve.
“The future will tell us what’s going on here with the way that the province has allocated” the vaccine, he said, and “how it’s going to actually roll out.”
Further waste water testing shows COVID-19 signal ‘steadily falling,’ N.W.T. top doctor says
Kandola said since Dec. 9, the territory received two new waste water results. She said the falling signal is “good evidence” that there has been no further cases.
However, as the holidays approach, Kandola said it’s increasingly important that people follow the health restrictions in place.
“We need to rely on each other more than ever,” she said, adding that includes wearing a mask in public spaces, maintaining small crowds and large spaces and washing hands frequently.
To tackle vaccine hesitancy, Canada can’t ignore race, racism: health experts
To get ahead of this, experts are urging federal and provincial public health officials to better target messaging and approach to specific groups (including those with disabilities) because they said the approach right now isn’t cutting it.
“It’s quite sad and unfortunate,” Dr. Sajjad Fazel, a public health researcher at the University of Calgary, told CTVNews.ca on Tuesday. “And that’s why you have this gap (in vaccine confidence).”