Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (The Canadian Press)

Feds provide more funds to help remote Indigenous communities cope with pandemic

The new funding is on top of the $305-million Indigenous Community Support Fund

The federal government is to spend millions more to help remote and rural Indigenous communities cope with the COVID-19 crisis.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to announce today significant new funding for First Nations, Inuit and Metis communities, part of which is intended to help them bolster their public health response to the pandemic.

That could include measures such as hiring more health workers, building isolation facilities or purchasing medical supplies and equipment.

Another part of the funding is to help residents in these remote communities pay for the pandemic-induced increase in their cost of living.

And a third part is to help communities build women’s shelters amid reports that domestic violence has spiked as families have been forced to isolate themselves to curb the spread of the deadly virus that causes COVID-19.

The new funding is on top of the $305-million Indigenous Community Support Fund, which the federal government created in March to help First Nations, Inuit and Metis communities prepare for and cope with the pandemic.

Of that $305 million, $15 million was allotted to organizations that serve urban and off-reserve Indigenous People, who make up more than half of Canada’s Indigenous population. The government last week added another $75 million for off-reserve organizations.

Residents of remote Indigenous communities are considered among the most vulnerable during the pandemic.

They often have no ready access to health care and many live in over-crowded conditions that are ripe for spread of disease and make it difficult to isolate those who may have been exposed.

While there have been some isolated outbreaks, the worst fears of officials about COVID-19 spreading like wildfire through Indigenous communities have so far not materialized.

However, officials warn the crisis is far from over and Canada could face a second wave of COVID-19 cases in the fall.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusIndigenous

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kimberley Health Care Auxiliary reopens thrift shops

Kimberley and Marysville locations now open

Birthday wishes come true as Kimberley girl reunited with her cat

Cat was missing for a month, reunited with owners because SPCA was able to trace microchip

Gray Creek Pass now open

The Gray Creek Pass is now open again, after a new bridge… Continue reading

Cranbrook RCMP looking for vehicle, driver involved in hit and run

RCMP are looking for the owner of a white Toyota Corolla that fled the scene

From baseball stars to forest fires: Southeast Fire Centre water bomber has an interesting past

Tanker 489 is stationed in Castlegar this year, but in the 1960s it belonged to the L.A. Dodgers.

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

Most Read