Siksika First Nation puts evening curfew into place to contain COVID-19

On Saturday, the Siksika Nation said there were 11 active cases in the community, one more than was reported Friday. Global News

Siksika First Nation has put a curfew into place in an effort to contain a cluster of COVID-19 cases in the community.

On Friday evening, Chief Ouray Crowfoot made the announcement in a Facebook video after a meeting of council.

“Council has decided to institute a temporary curfew on the nation,” Crowfoot said.

The curfew begins at 11 p.m. and ends at 5 a.m. daily.

“Should you require to be out past this curfew, for work or other specific reasons, we can address these exceptions on an as-needed basis,” Crowfoot said.

On Saturday, the First Nation said there were 11 active cases in the community, one more than was reported Friday.

Health officials in the community said they are actively investigating 287 people, and 102 individuals or households are in isolation — two of which live outside of the Siksika Nation.

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Councillor Ruben Breaker spoke to Global News Saturday, saying the high number of active investigations doesn’t mean there are that many cases.

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“It speaks to the overcrowding of our homes,” Breaker said. “Some of our homes have 10, 12 people in there. And if one person who is exposed to a positive case… it goes home to a home of 10 people.

“They’re not all positive — a lot of tests are coming back now and they’re negative.”

Crowfoot assured residents during his update that the band office will remain open, with sanitizing and other safety measures. While Crowfoot said that as many people who can should work at home on the nation, some may still be needed in-person.

He said that the council also met with Alberta Health Services, along with federal Indigenous Relations Minister Marc Miller and provincial Indigenous Relations Minister Rick Wilson.

“These meetings were primarily to address the shortcomings, the shortfalls in resources and funding in regards to this pandemic,” Crowfoot said.

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“The reasons we put these precautions in place is to help contain this virus and to return back to some kind of normalcy at Siksika,” Crowfoot said.

Siksika First Nation is located about 100 kilometres east of Calgary.

Click to play video: 'Number of COVID-19 cases ‘under investigation’ on Siksika Nation have tripled'
Number of COVID-19 cases ‘under investigation’ on Siksika Nation have tripled

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