More Nunavut communities take measures to keep COVID-19 at bay
“Public safety is our number one concern,” says Arviat’s hamlet council
Two more Nunavut hamlet councils say they will take special measures to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus into their communities.
These moves come after the hamlets of Cambridge Bay, Coral Harbour and Igloolik said last week that they wanted to limit non-essential visits to their communities to lessen the risk of infection with COVID-19.
The hamlet council of Baker Lake said on Friday, March 13, that all businesses and organizations in the community should cancel or postpone large meetings or sessions over the next month, and it asked for their support to do this.
“The request follows the Government of Nunavut’s announcement about their staff duty travel restrictions,” the hamlet said.
The hamlet also encouraged its roughly 2,200 residents to follow all advice from the GN’s public health unit on avoiding infection with COVID-19. That includes frequently washing your hands and staying home when sick.
The Hamlet of Arviat’s SAO, Steve England, said its council decided to focus preventive efforts on cancelling mass gatherings and boosting cleaning efforts in this community of about 3,000.
“The day-to-day activities, we’re trying to maintain as much as we can,” England said. “So everything that we’re focusing on now is what we can do.”
This includes distributing a large order of hand sanitizers, enough for everyone in town.
As well, the hamlet plans to purchase hand soap and bleach that will be made available to residents for house cleaning, he said.
Councillors also decided to hire eight more janitors to provide “continuous cleaning and disinfecting” in all major buildings in Arviat, including the airport.
“Public safety is our number one concern for all Arviarmiut,” the hamlet council said in its announcement.