COVID-19 Daily News Digest – October 27, 2020
First Toronto stationary Indigenous-led COVID-19 testing centre opens
Toronto’s first stationary, Indigenous-led COVID-19 assessment and testing centre is now open. Maleeha Sheikh with how advocates say a site like this is so needed during the coronavirus pandemic.
OPP commissioner defends officers’ conduct at site of Indigenous land dispute
Demonstrators at the site they’re calling 1492 Land Back Lane said Carrique’s post is an out-of-context attempt to reframe the violence and further escalate tension.
“I think it’s really despicable content that you show a one-minute clip out of context,” camp spokesperson Skyler Williams told reporters Monday.
Globe Climate: Climate policies largely ignore First Nations’ access to traditional food
What the report makes clear is that climate change is compounding the inequalities long experienced by Indigenous people in Canada, but also that the country’s climate-change policies aren’t helping to address the problems. One key recommendation from Human Rights Watch is its call for Ottawa to reconsider the design of the federal carbon tax, which it says will likely drive up food prices in remote communities.
How Indigenous Groups in the Amazon Are Fighting Back Against Covid-19
“Indigenous people have been hit badly by coronavirus, worse than anyone else. And at the same time, they have stepped up as no one else [has],” said Margarita Mora, managing director of partnerships at the nonprofit group Nia Tero, which works closely with Indigenous communities.
“People tend to see them as hapless victims and passive, but they’ve been very active [during the pandemic], as they always have been,” said Glenn Shepard, an anthropologist at Brazil’s Emilio Goeldi Museum who studies and works closely with Indigenous groups in the country. “They’ve never really left it up to someone else to take care of themselves, or they’d be gone.”
Unrepresented & Alone – A UNPO Perspective on Coronavirus
The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization has published a policy paper with key recommendations to the international community and to national governments on the impact of COVID-19 on unrepresented nations and peoples. The paper highlights that the disproportionate impact that the pandemic has had on minorities, indigenous communities and other unrepresented peoples is largely caused by the marginalization and denial of their right to self-determination. Beyond a mere political question, it is an amplification of public health and other rights-based disparities faced by these communities.
First Nations people urged to cancel travel to Winnipeg, Northern Manitoba
In a bulletin, the PRCT encouraged all First Nations communities to move to the orange alert level in the Manitoba First Nations COVID-19 Alert Levels, emphasizing the restrictions on gathering sizes.The team also urged all First Nations to limit close contacts outside of their homes. Since Friday, 64 new First Nation cases have been identified in Manitoba, which brings the total number of cases in First Nations people in the province to 513.
How Indigenous Communities in Canada Organized an Exemplary COVID Public Health Response
The border closure and community-based response to COVID-19 uphold the principle of self-determination in which Indigenous peoples have a right to determine their own paths to healing and health for their communities. Other examples include the innovative educational materials and public health campaigns that have been created by many diverse Indigenous communities. These materials build on prevention, isolation and containment measures put forward by public health institutions, but are grounded in the local context of the various nations, and their language, culture, physical and social environment.
Indigenous-led clinic to help Quebec community still shaken by Joyce Echaquan’s death
“When we launched this, we even had pregnant women wanting to know if they could have their babies here, because they don’t want to go to the hospital,” Brazeau said in a recent interview.
The clinic will operate two afternoons per month, serving patients who are Indigenous and do not already have access to a doctor. Patients need to make appointments, and if the clinic cannot accommodate their needs, staff will try to guide and accompany them to other services, Brazeau said.
Trump says we’re ‘learning to live’ with Covid. Maybe if you’re white
Native Americans and Indigenous peoples likewise show alarming trends. In 23 states, the cumulative incidence of Covid-19 was 3.5 times more frequent among Indigenous people than among non-Hispanic white people. Even more troubling is data that illustrates that there is frequent practice of racial misclassification where Indigenous peoples are forced to pick between white, Black, Hispanic or “other” which essentially erases the ability to track outcomes and effectively erases and discounts the entire Indigenous experience.