446 Active Cases of COVID-19 in Northern Ontario Communities

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Rangers deliver food and other essentials to residents in their homes when a COVID-19 crisis forced Ginoogaming First Nation into a lockdown.
Rangers deliver food and other essentials to residents in their homes when a COVID-19 crisis forced Ginoogaming First Nation into a lockdown.

Thunder Bay – COVID-19 Update – Across Northern Ontario in First Nation communities, there are some rather significant COVID-19 numbers. Across the North there are 446 active cases of COVID-19 with 84 new cases reported today.

While Bearskin Lake had been at one point earlier in the year in a State of Emergency, as of today there are only five active cases of the virus in the community.

It is not the same for Kasabonika Lake where there are a reported 114 active cases, with 15 new cases reported today.

Mishkeegogaming has 84 active cases with 16 cases reported today.

Lac Seul has 36 active cases with 23 new cases today.

Pikangikum has 33 active cases right now with 4 new cases reported today.

Heading into these far north communities is only via air or winter road, and there are requirements for testing and self isolation.

Overall numbers are down from last week when Nishnawbe Aski Nation reported 645 active cases.

“While numbers may be in decline in some parts of the province, we continue see extremely high numbers of COVID-19 across our Nation. This virus and its variants remain a serious threat to our people and our communities, with some experiencing their highest numbers since the beginning of the pandemic,” says Grand Chief Derek Fox. “The move to lift restrictions may be justified based on data from some areas of the province, but this decision does not consider the significant impacts that will be experienced by our communities. Strict protocols have been enacted in many of our communities and will remain in effect at the discretion of local leadership. Our communities are self-governing, and their decisions regarding pandemic restrictions do not have to be made in step with the province. The decisions made by our leaders are final and must be respected by everyone concerned.”

The Canadian Rangers have been working in a number of communities over the pandemic.