Fort Chipewyan Dealing With 10 COVID-19 Cases

COVID-19 is officially making its way to the remote community of Fort Chipewyan.

According to Allan Adam, Chief of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, 10 individuals have contracted the virus over the past several days.

These are reportedly not the first cases in the community as Peter Powder, Chief of the Mikisew Cree First Nation, stated back in October two members tested positive after leaving the hamlet for essential travel.

Speaking directly about the ACFN, Adam says a curfew remains from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. while all indoor social gatherings are prohibited.

“People have to understand we have to take these measures and the ones who are close contacts will have to go into quarantine,” he said during a live video on Facebook.

“The only way we can combat this is if we stay home.”

Fort Chipewyan has been undertaking measures throughout the pandemic.

This includes the curfew, setting up a checkpoint to ensure only essential travel enters the community, and more.

It’s been a big concern since the beginning after the last pandemic, the Spanish Flu, reportedly devastated the hamlet in the late 1910s.

“This is not a joke… stay away from people you don’t need to be around, this includes loved ones,” added Adam.

He is encouraging Fort Chipewyan residents to only travel to Fort McMurray for essential services including getting the COVID-19 vaccine.

The province has lowered the eligibility age for the Janssen and AstraZeneca vaccines to anyone born in 1991 or older, while those the same age living in the rural communities and First Nations can get the Moderna shot.

Adam also noted a clinic is expected to be up and running in Fort Chipewyan later this week. At this time, they’re expecting around 300 vaccines.

“Go get vaccinated if you can.”

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