Manitoba First Nation bans public gatherings amid COVID-19 struggles

WINNIPEG — A Manitoba First Nation is banning all public gatherings as the community continues to grapple with COVID-19.

In partnership with the province, Cross Lake First Nation is implementing a halt on all public gatherings starting February 13.

In Saturday’s daily COVID-19 bulletin, the province said, “People should only leave their residence to seek testing or medical care, or to send one person from a household for essential supplies.”

Cross Lake residents who work in essential services can leave their homes for work, but non-medical masks must be worn.

According to an update on the community’s Facebook page, 15 children and some elders have been confirmed positive with COVID-19 from homes that have already had the virus. The post also states a team is set up in an arena to test people is seeing many symptomatic individuals.

The most recent update from Manitoba First Nations COVID-19 Pandemic Response Coordination Team on Friday, the total number of COVID-19 cases in Manitoba First Nations is 9,292. Of the total cases, 4,103 cases are on-reserve.

The Northern health region currently has the highest number of active cases in any part of the province, with 731.

Cross Lake First Nation is located approximately 800 kilometres north of Winnipeg and is 230 kilometres south of Thompson.

According to the community, the total population on and off-reserve is 8,146 members and is the second largest in Manitoba.

CTV News has reached out to chief and council but has not heard back as of yet.

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