Government of Canada COVID-19 Update for Indigenous Peoples and communities
As of October 21, Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) is aware of these confirmed cases of COVID-19 for First Nations communities on reserve:
- 1100 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19
- 322 active cases
- 72 hospitalizations
- 763 recovered cases
- 15 deaths
First Nations reserves avoided first-wave crisis, but officials warn of troubling new surge
Indigenous Services Canada said the rising caseload has been linked to private and public gatherings held in places where participants didn’t wear masks or didn’t practice physical distancing.
Earlier this month, a First Nation community in Saskatchewan shuttered its schools and went into lockdown after a series of religious services where participants didn’t wear masks, sparking concerns about transmission. A Manitoba First Nation took similar action after 19 people tested positive for COVID-19.
Open Letter from Carrier Sekani Tribal Council calls for northern B.C. healthcare task force
CSTC is calling on you to create an Indigenous-led task force that will mobilize northern B.C. hospitals to address inequities in care for Indigenous people, including our member nations. This is not a problem that Indigenous people should have to face individually as they seek the medical care they are entitled to, but a systemic barrier to healthcare equality and the responsibility of the Ministry of Crown Indigenous Relations in the spirit of reconciliation and in keeping with your mandate to improve government capacity to respond to the unique realities of Indigenous Peoples.
Indigenous communities are standing on the frontlines of COVID-19 and the climate crisis
All of this amounts to a fork in the road: We can either double down on the unjust and unsustainable systems that brought us into the simultaneous crises of climate change and COVID-19, or, as our awareness grows, we can learn and listen to those most impacted, and work to change the policies and systems that got us here.
At the same time, global allies of Indigenous peoples will be confronted with their own struggles closer to home – struggles that must also involve a fundamental questioning of a flailing economic system and its prospects. However, by working to fix long-term problems and mobilizing quickly in times of crisis, Indigenous peoples are moving us all closer to the world we want. We must learn from them as we all work to create a healthier, more just and equitable future for all.
Indigenous Services moves to end water crisis in Neskantaga First Nation ‘as quickly as possible’
“No water to bathe. No water to flush toilets. No water servicing homes, the nursing station, the band office, the school,” Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler wrote in a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday afternoon.
“We are in the middle of a global pandemic. You are aware that remote and isolated communities are even more vulnerable to the risks of the COVID-19 virus. I reiterate — there is absolutely no access to water in this community.”
Proportional funding essential for homeless Indigenous people in North Bay
“I was on the site at that particular moment when Boots on the Ground did arrive. They provided a food pouch. I was quite surprised to see that and it was distributed amongst the people that were camped on city hall property,” he said. “It was obvious to me; the main individual was probably suffering from fatigue and I don’t think they had a proper meal in some time. I gather they (Suswin Housing Navigator Workers) provided the food pouches. That was good to have happened for sure.”
Indigenous mobile health unit combines traditional and modern medicine for treatment
Anishnawbe Health Toronto developed its mobile health unit after witnessing a rise in homelessness and overdoses brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. The nurses, doctors and social workers tour the city’s homeless encampments and other areas to test and treat people in need of medical attention.
“We are providing COVID testing and for people that are homeless, transient and living rough, and also primary health care,” Jane Harrison with the Anishnawbe Health Toronto Mobile Unit told CTV News.
Researchers Find Doubts About COVID-19 Vaccine Among People Of Color
At a meeting Thursday of experts advising the FDA on COVID-19 vaccines, the concerns of front-line workers and people of color were read aloud verbatim, highlighting the crucial project of communicating the safety and effectiveness of a vaccine in an environment of deep political distrust.
Winckler noted that the participants’ concerns often shared certain themes: concerns about the speed of the process, distrust of government and government agencies, distrust of the health care system, and concern that politics and economics will be prioritized over science.
First Nation, Metis leaders call on province to consult on Lake Manitoba drainage outlet
“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person meetings have been placed on hold, however, Manitoba Infrastructure has presented alternate engagement strategies with communities including additional information sharing and opportunities for virtual communication.”