MCFN Chief and Council and the COVID-19 Working Group are continuing to actively take precautions and actions to address the potential impacts of COVID-19 within our Nation.

At this time, MCFN has returned to no active case of COVID-19 in the community. Miigwech for everyone’s diligence in keeping our risk of exposure low.

Operational Updates

As a reminder the offices will be closed for Christmas holidays, beginning at noon on Dec. 18. We will reopen on Jan. 4, 2021, at our regular times. Please enjoy the holidays, but please be mindful of how important it is to keep diligent with COVID-19 precautions.

Please note, if you require emergency assistance relating to Social and Health Programs, you can contact their land line at 905-768-1181, and leave a voice mail for the relevant party. These messages are then relayed to relevant staff members via email. If you require emergency administrative support, please contact Kailey Thomson, Chief Operating Officer at 905-979-2957. You also have the option to reach out to any member of Council. If you require other information or supports, you are encouraged to look to our website and social media for relevant contact numbers and resources.

Ekwaamjigenang Children’s Centre

Following suit with Lloyd S. King Elementary, MCFN Chief and Council have now determined that the childcare centre will remain closed to the public until at least March 19, 2021. An evaluation of this date will take place at the beginning of March and a decision will be made as to whether this date will be extended. Chi-miigwech for your continued patience while we take the difficult steps necessary to keep our youth and overall community safe from COVID-19.

Community Wellness Second Allocation Distribution

The third release of payments taken place this week and will resume once the organization reopens in January of 2021. Please remember that all applicants must obtain the updated application form from either our website or from the Lands, Membership and Research office. Miigwech to our LMR and Finance department for their expedient approach to getting these applications processed for the membership.

COVID-19 Fatigue

As we move into our ninth month of the pandemic, it is recognized people are tired. We miss our family, we miss our friends, we miss our community. That being said, it is so important right now, that we don’t let ourselves become lax with the Public Health guidelines. We need to keep our bubbles tight, we need to wear our masks and we need to keep our hands clean.

As we prepare for Christmas, it is important to be mindful of important steps we can take to keep everyone safe. If you intend to enjoy the holidays with extended family, even though this is not recommended, we encourage you to keep your bubble small and if anyone in the household is showing symptoms, please stay home. This will help to reduce everyone’s potential risk. Keeping one another safe is the priority.

COVID Alert App

As you may already be aware of, Canada has implemented a free COVID-19 exposure notification app as a tool to protect yourself and your loved ones. The app uses bluetooth to exchange random codes with nearby phones, and alerts a carrier if they have been in contact with a user who has reported a positive testing within the last 14 days.

We encourage you to take a look at the information available, and determine if you would like to have this app available for your use. Information can be sourced at the following address:

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19/covid-alert.html

Masking Reminders

Public Health are now recommending people wear 3 ply face masks to reduce their risk of exposure. Cloth masks or face coverings should be changed and cleaned if they become damp or soiled. You can wash your cloth mask by putting it directly into the washing machine, using a hot cycle, and then dry thoroughly, or by washing it thoroughly by hand if a washing machine is not available, using soap and warm/hot water. Always allow it to dry completely before wearing it again

Non-medical masks that cannot be washed, should be disposed of properly in a lined garbage bin, and replaced as soon as they get damp, soiled or crumpled. Do not leave discarded masks in shopping carts or on the ground where other people may come into contact with them.

It is important to remember the following when using non-medical masks and face coverings:

  • masks with an exhalation valve do not protect others
  • never share your non-medical mask or face covering with someone else
  • do not handle a non-medical mask or face covering belonging to someone else
  • do not allow other people to handle or touch your non-medical mask or face covering

Vaccine Update

The goal of Canada’s COVID-19 immunization response is to enable as many Canadians as possible to be immunized as quickly as possible against COVID-19, while ensuring that high risk populations are prioritized. Through advance purchasing agreements, enough vaccines have been secured to provide all Canadians with access to vaccinations. Immunization will begin with the arrival of limited doses, which will be prioritized to high-risk populations, such as the elderly, residents and staff of congregate living arrangements such as long-term care facilities, front-line health-care workers, and those in living or working conditions with elevated risk for infection or disproportionate consequences, including Indigenous communities.

At this point, we anticipate that the vaccine may be available to our community in the late summer.  MCFN Chief and Council and the COVID-19 Working Group will continue to keep an eye on this situation and will update accordingly.

Precautions

MCFN Chief and Council would like to remind everyone how important it is to take personal precautions to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our community. These include:

  • Wearing a mask when in any public or communal place, or when social distancing is not possible.
  • Regular handwashing with soap and warm water is required. If not available, sanitizing your hands with an alcohol based sanitizing solution is recommended.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Ensure you practice good respiratory hygiene. Cover your cough or sneeze with your bent elbow or tissue, then dispose of the tissue immediately.
  • Be cognizant of travel advisories. Be aware of areas deemed restricted, controlled and locked down. If you travel outside of Canada, it is important to self-isolate upon re-entry to the country.
  • If you feel ill, stay home. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and follow their instructions.

Public Health Information

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please contact the following public health offices and follow their instructions:

  • Haldimand Norfolk Health Unit COVID-19 Hotline 519-426-6170, ext. 9999
  • Six Nations COVID-19 Assessment Centre – 1-855-977-7737 or 226-446-9909
  • Brant County Public Health – 519-751-5818 or via email at covid.assessment@bchsys.org
  • Outside of regular business hours, you can contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000

Please note, the MCFN Community Health Office is not a public health office, although it does assist with contact tracing and wellness checks for those who reside on MCFN.

We cannot stress enough, how important it is to follow the public health guidelines. We learned during the first wave, that we can effectively curve the spread of COVID-19 when we work together.  Let’s keep our community safe. Merry Christmas to everyone, stay safe.

The MCFN Chief and Council are responsible for making decisions that impact the Membership. If you have any concerns, please contact any member of the table.

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