Working Together with Saugeen First Nation to Fight COVID-19

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The Grey Bruce Health Unit has been working together with Saugeen First Nation Chief Lester Anoquot and Band Council to address the COVID-19 outbreak in the community.

On Wednesday, June 30, Saugeen First Nation Chief and Band Council declared a State of Emergency in response to the emerging COVID-19 crisis.

Measures undertaken by the Chief and Band Council to control the spread of COVID-19 include full closure of all band services and businesses for a two week period and a full closure of ALL SAUGEEN FIRST NATION SERVICES AND BUSINESSES beginning Friday, July 2 at 12:00 noon.

The Chief and Band Council will re-assess at the end of the two week period (Thursday, July 15) and determine if the closure of Saugeen First Nation services and businesses can be lifted or if it will be extended.

Band residents are being asked to stay at home for the two week closure and avoid gatherings of any kind. Facilities are being made available for those without a permanent residence.

In response to the State of Emergency, Saugeen First Nation Chief and Band Council directed the Saugeen First Nation COVID Crisis Team to work directly with Grey Bruce Health Unit and other medical experts to determine necessary next steps to ensure control of COVID-19 within and outside of our community.

The Grey Bruce Heath Unit has no jurisdiction within the community but works in collaboration with the Saugeen First Nation COVID Crisis Team and community health services through permission of the Chief and Band Council. This work includes a multipronged approach of supporting the community health team through deploying staff to conduct COVID-19 testing, case and contact management, providing information and education on isolation to cases and contacts, supporting with IPAC – Infection Prevention and Control, supporting vaccine clinics and mass vaccination, and providing information on vaccine safety and effectiveness.

“The Grey Bruce Health Unit team is proud that the Chief Anoquot and Band Council have offered us the opportunity to collaborate, and we are honoured for their confidence in us as a partner.” said Dr. Ian Arra. “We are confident that under the leadership of the Chief and Band Council, and with our shared commitment to health, our teams will be successful in bringing under control the recent surge in COVID-19 cases in the community.”

We thank all agencies, partners and individuals for their support in testing, vaccines and other contributions to assist.

Saugeen First Nation is an Indigenous community governed by the Chief and Band Council. Health services in the community operate under the direction from the Chief and Band Council. Communication on details regarding the fight against COVID-19 within the Saugeen First Nation community is most appropriate coming directly from Chief Anoquot and Band Council or with their approval. 

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