‘Imminent Threat’: Nisga’a Lisims Declares Local Emergency Over COVID

Decision comes after ‘alarming rise’ in cases.

Source: Nisga’a Lisims Government

Facing dozens of new COVID cases in the Nass Valley, the Nisga’a Lisims Government executive is taking unprecedented action to help contain further spread. 

“The NLG Executive held an extraordinary meeting to consider declaring a State of Local Emergency,” reads a statement it released this week. “The decision was unanimous.” 

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The state of local emergency will be in effect from January 12 of this year to January 19. During that time, travel between Nisga’a Villages will be prohibited and there will be increased security monitoring, along with measures to enforce the B.C. government’s already existing restrictions on social gathering. 

“Nisga’a Enforcement Officers will have the power and authority to issue fines to individuals who are in contravention,” the statement reads. 

The announcement comes as 68 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Nass Valley since December 28. “We have heard from our medical health professionals that the virus is not moving, people are moving,” said President Eva Clayton. “We need to remain still to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities.” 

The emergency declaration also allows Village Governments to provide “goods and supplies that are essential for those individuals who test positive for COVID-19, as well as their immediate family,” but it urges people “to leave those goods and supplies at the door and not enter the premises.”

Currently there are 28 active cases in the region. 

Written by Skeena Strong

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