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More military support heading to Manitoba’s Shamattawa First Nation

Click to play video: 'Shamattawa First Nation pleads for help' Shamattawa First Nation pleads for help
WATCH: The COVID-19 crisis is deepening in the Shamattawa First Nation in Manitoba. – Dec 9, 2020

More military help is on the way to help the hard-hit Shamattawa First Nation battle COVID-19.

Defense minister Harjit Sajjan says a request for more Canadian Armed Forces personnel has been approved as the community in northern Manitoba struggles with extremely high transmission of the virus.

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There are currently 17 members on the ground, including 11 from CFB Shilo, just east of Brandon.

The first group of six Canadian Rangers arrived on Dec. 6 to work alongside other members of the community for humanitarian assistance and addressing the emergent needs of the community.

The 11 Shilo members arrived Wednesday.

Read more: ‘This is an unfolding nightmare’: Shamattawa First Nation COVID-19 outbreak worsens

The Rangers were also helping with distributing care packages, food, firewood, and information about COVID-19.

The First Nation was experiencing a test positivity rate of around 50 per cent just a week ago, and the district including Shamattawa currently is seeing a rate of seven cases for every 100 people — five times that of Winnipeg.

There’s no word on how many more Forces members are on their way to Shamattawa or when they will arrive but the CAF says they will stay in the community until the emergency has passed.

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