COVID-19 Daily News Digest – June 4, 2020
Why Canada Needs an Indigenous-Specific COVID-19 Policy
By working with the Indigenous community, the government recognizes both their autonomy and unique experience, which inform policy decisions. In that respect, pressure must be placed on Indigenous Services Canada to continue their efforts in employing primary care nurses and health care providers in the face of daily health concerns, but especially with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Canada is asking families of murdered, missing Indigenous women to wait for action plan. Why?
But in the absence of a national action plan, what can Canadians do now? Maracle is so very tired of this question.
“If you really want to do something, you will, that’s the thing,” Maracle says. “I think (those non-Black protesters) thought to themselves: ‘I don’t want to live in a racist country, that’s not how I want to bring my children into this world.’”
Look to the United States for a moment, she says, and you’ll see that there are white people and non-Black people of colour participating in nationwide demonstrations over police brutality against Black people sparked by the killing of George Floyd.
Gaps in federal supports delayed help for Indigenous businesses, advocate says
“Many of the programs that were launched initially excluded Indigenous business,” she said at a House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs on May 29. “While the federal government has been responsive to our advocacy to close the gaps the associated delays created an increased negative impact that is unique to Indigenous businesses.”
As coronavirus restrictions decimate Guatemala’s economy, white flags are flying in desperation
“We are afraid that without our regular intervention, we will see the progress we’ve made in fighting malnutrition over the past nine years erode, and we will watch the descent of our community into starvation.”
“In the meantime, need is great and we are working diligently alongside other partner organisations and individual volunteers to make sure that our neighbours have enough to eat,” she said.
Doctors can’t treat COVID-19 effectively without recognizing the social justice aspects of health
By improving social determinants of health, health care leaders can transform our systems toward adequate COVID-19 prevention, testing and treatment for marginalized communities. But without a critical race lens, experts will still get it wrong. They still might assume that racial and ethnic disparities exist because they believe that race is biological – a longstanding myth. Rather, they must confront how structural racism is a root cause of health inequity.
Conservatives say Liberal Government shut out Wet’suwet’en chiefs from Indigenous Affairs parliamentary committee
“I have been hearing from the chiefs and members of the Wet’suwet’en, they are beside themselves and can’t believe they are being ignored by the Trudeau Liberals. They have so many questions and deserved to be heard by the federal government.”
John Ivison: First Nations success story threatened by COVID-19 lockdown needs a hand from Ottawa
However, even its frugal practises have struggled to cope with COVID. Daniels appeared before the federal finance committee this week and noted that the “induced coma” of COVID-19 had affected the revenue-raising capacity of all the FNFA’s borrowing members. “The risk management and credit enhancement features of the FNFA did not contemplate as many borrowing members being in financial stress at the same time,” he said.
First Nation opens its own COVID-19 assessment centre
It will run on an appointment-only basis and should help reduce the barriers of travelling to London to be swabbed.
“A lot of people in our community don’t have access to transportation, so getting to London is difficult,” said Kimberly Fisher, health director for the First Nation. “There’s also fear and stigma.”
How government inaction on MMIWG could harm Indigenous women
“They’re using the pandemic as an excuse. We’re in crisis as Indigenous women — the crisis of COVID and the crisis of violence — and they’re both inseparable,” says Lorraine Whitman, president of the Native Women’s Association of Canada, a non-profit organization. As the novel coronavirus persists, Whitman says, Indigenous women in Canada, who are already two and a half times more likely to experience spousal violence, continue to be at heightened risk while isolated at home. “In a perfect world, your home would be a great place to be,” she says. “But this isn’t a perfect world.”
Coronavirus: Drive-thru testing to expand to Curve Lake, Hiawatha First Nations and North Kawartha
“What we are seeing here is very indicative of what is going in other parts of the province. Even though our cases are lower and we don’t have as many, the proportion of where those cases are coming from seems to be in line with what is being experienced in other parts of the province,” said Salvaterra.
Mining industry profits from pandemic
Free of public oversight and scrutiny, governments have imposed restrictions on people’s freedom of association and movement to protect public health. But these severe and even militarised measures compromise people’s ability to defend their territories and their lives.
Land defenders face greater risk of targeted violence and some remain unjustly imprisoned, posing additional risks of infection. Governments have also deployed state forces (military and police) to repress legitimate, safe protests, especially in instances where there is long standing opposition to a company’s activities.
Lethbridge Indigenous students treated to special graduation day
“It’s still nice, with all the COVID-19, we are able to come here, still celebrate, enjoy social distancing, enjoy each other, take photos,” said Joey Beebe, a one of the graduates taking part.
“The expression on their face of course explains everything, but to see the smiles and just to have their parents pull up and to really share that moment and accomplishment,” said Chief Calf.
Native women confront missing and murdered task force over Trump’s role in crisis
None of the federal officials on the call directly responded to the question of resource extraction, which has been raised repeatedly ever since the Trump administration restarted the listening sessions last week. Native women have instead been directed — more than once — to read the executive order establishing the Presidential Task Force on Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives, which does not offer any room for criticism of the president.
Aboriginal youth support programs to ‘start all over again’ after forced COVID-19 restrictions
“Our programs have pretty much stopped … because our work is 100 per cent face-to-face,” she said.
“It is very worrying because you know that they’re going to come back and you’re going to hear all these things that happened, and you weren’t able to help”
One year ago, the National Inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women issued calls for justice. Now Indigenous people are issuing a call to action
The group is calling for action on the inquiry’s report released in 2019, which said Canada breached several international conventions on human rights in its relationship with Indigenous peoples. It issued 231 recommendations or calls for justice.
“The reason we’re doing this today is I haven’t seen a single solid foundation built yet … Canada, you know what’s going on, we don’t need to tell you anymore. Now, what are you going to do?” Harpe asked.
Why racial justice is climate justice
The whole picture represents the failures of the U.S. government to live up to its legal responsibility to tribes, to provide adequate, modern levels of social rights, healthcare, and welfare for all people. Communities like the Navajo Nation have been filling that gap by taking care of each other. There is a big mutual-aid effort underway right now at the Navajo Nation in which people are delivering food and supplies and medicine, and basically doing all of the things that the federal government has failed to do.
COVID-19 pandemic underlines importance of indigenous languages
The initiative to translate critical information in these languages has the ability to change person’s perception of these languages and save lives simultaneously. It was reported that people are responding positively towards the information transmitted in their languages and are following the necessary guidelines. This supports the position of Education Specialist, Hurisa Guvercin, that hearing the sound of one’s mother tongue gives trust and confidence. In addition to change in language attitudes, this project has numerous indirect benefits ranging from issues relating to language change, language identity, language maintenance and revitalization, language planning and policy, and language rights