In a Sept. 28 update on the Lake Babine Nation (LBN) website, Chief Gordon Alec addressed the community and confirmed the presence of two positive Covid cases within the LBN community in Woyenne.
“It has hit our community and there are two positive cases that have been reported, and the members are self isolating right now,” said Chief Alec.
The chief also asked the community to remain vigilant in wearing masks, washing hands frequently and protecting elders who are must susceptible.
“It likely won’t be the last case in the community and we have to remain cautious and careful of our behaviours. As members of Lake Babine Nation this responsibility is for everyone. If you don’t feel well, please stay home,” he urged.
“The responsibility falls on everyone. Doing your part, support those in your community who are not feeling well. Remember our members, are isolating and are doing so to protect our community and deserve recognition for this,” added Chief Alec.
He also informed the community that the chief and the council were meeting regularly to discuss updates and ensure the community remained safe. He also said that each member who was self isolating, was being followed by Northern Health (NH) and LBN nurses. He said that the NH was responsible for providing direction on when members who are infected, can return to the community, and return to work.
The NH region has been seeing a rise in Covid cases in the past few days. On Tuesday, in a joint statement by the Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Deputy Minister of Health Stephen Brown, six new cases were reported in Northern Health with a total increase to 309 cases since the start of the pandemic. Over the weekend, 14 cases were reported in the region.
As of today, across the province, a total of 9,013 cases have been reported of which, 7,485 have recovered, 20 are currently admitted to ICU, 69 are currently hospitalized and there have been a total of 234 deaths.
The two positive cases within the Lake Babine Nation come just days after the 13 active cases reported within the Nak’azdli Whut’en First Nation near Fort St. James and 14 new cases in the Witset First Nation near Smithers. There has also been a Covid-related death of a woman, an elder from the Nak’azdli Whut’en First Nation. This rise in cases among the various First Nations communities within the NH region, has prompted the Burns Lake Band in Burns Lake, to put in place measures to restrict visitors and outsiders to their community.
“As cases go up in BC we need to protect our people from the pandemic so chief and council decided to restrict visitors,” said Burns Lake Band Chief Dan George, adding that this decision was based on cases both, nearby and those that were far, and was a proactive measure.
There hasn’t been any information as to why the province in general and NH region specifically is seeing a rise in cases. No additional information on the two cases found within the LBN was given out either. However, the Chief urged the community to stay vigilant.
“In conclusion, each of us has a responsibility in keeping our community safe. We need to support each other and provide encouragement to our neighbors, and loved ones,” he said.