COVID-19 concerns lead to voluntary 10-day lockdown in Fort McPherson, N.W.T.

·1 min read
Fort McPherson Mayor Richard Nerysoo said the voluntary lockdown was put in place on Jan. 15 when as many as 28 people in the community were self-isolating due to possible exposures to COVID-19.  (Mackenzie Scott/CBC - image credit)
Fort McPherson Mayor Richard Nerysoo said the voluntary lockdown was put in place on Jan. 15 when as many as 28 people in the community were self-isolating due to possible exposures to COVID-19. (Mackenzie Scott/CBC - image credit)

The community of Fort McPherson, N.W.T., went into a voluntary 10-day lock down Jan. 15 after 28 people had to go into self-isolation due to COVID-19 exposures.

People in the hamlet of 730 people are being asked to stick to their household bubbles. The hamlet and housing offices have closed.

"Just as a precaution and as a concern, we decided that's the easiest and best way to address COVID-19 in the community," Mayor Richard Nerysoo told CBC Northwind host Wanda McLeod.

Nerysoo said people should not visit around the community and should follow "all the rules that the chief public health officer has provided to us."

"They're not there to make things more difficult," he said. "They're intended to protect families and those that we love and we just need to follow them and then move forward."

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He said they want people who have tested positive to know they are cared for.

"We're going to deliver care packages whether or not it's cleaning supplies or maybe food," Nerysoo said. "We'll deal with the issues of grocery delivery if that's necessary. "

Nerysoo said the lockdown is an opportunity for people to go outdoors and do healthy things like chop wood, and spend time with their family on the land.

Over the next seven days, Nerysoo said the community leadership will "see where things are at" in terms of numbers.

He's been on the community radio station and said the hamlet will be finding other ways to keep people updated, including using the hamlet's Facebook page.

Nerysoo said he also appreciated the advice and support they've had from Aklavik, which also put in place a voluntary lock down earlier this month.

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