New COVID-19 case confirmed at Nunavik Nickel mine

Worker likely infected outside of region and is now in isolation, says health board

An aerial view of the Allammaq underground mine operation at Canadian Royalties’ Nunavik Nickel mine site, where an employee has tested positive for COVID-19. (Photo courtesy of Canadian Royalties)

By Nunatsiaq News

Nunavik health authorities have confirmed a new case of COVID-19 at Canadian Royalties’ Nunavik Nickel mine site.

The employee likely got infected outside of the region and is now in isolation, the Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services said in a news release on Wednesday, Oct. 7.

The news comes just two weeks after two other workers at the mine site tested positive for the virus, though both cases were later determined to be false positives.

After a six-month leave, Nunavik employees have only just started a phased return to the mine site as of Sept. 29. But the health board stressed that Nunavimmiut are not at risk.

“No one in Nunavik is considered to be a significant contact with the infected person, [meaning] contact that has been close enough to the infected person to allow the virus to circulate,” the health board said.

“This situation is therefore not a threat to workers and to Nunavimmiut.”

Nunavik has seen a total of 19 cases of the virus since April, but only two of those cases are current: one in Kuujjuaraapik and another in Inukjuak.

A third case was confirmed last week for a Nunavik resident visiting Montreal, although that individual will be isolated there until it’s safe to travel again.

The health board says its goal is to maintain low to no numbers in the region.

To do that, health authorities are hiring new health care staff to oversee quarantine and screening resources for people coming in and out of the region, a key tool in reducing the risk of the virus spreading.

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(4) Comments:

  1. Posted by concerned on

    I thought people (workers or not) are tested before entering an airplane before heading north. It doesn’t seem so.

    • Posted by also concerned on

      I isolated in a hotel for 14 days before flying up here and there were quite a few people in the plane who had not quarantined and we were all sitting together. The only testing that happened was a quick temperature check before boarding the plane. I heard about the government approving some test that can return a result in 15-20 mins. If those tests prove to be effective then it would be a good idea to do that test for everyone before getting on the plane.

      – MA

  2. Posted by Ahtn on

    You have endangered nunavik by opening them. Sending our inuit people too. If anything should happen to someone’s daughter or son, you have blood in your hands professionally, spiritually n mentally. How can one infected person not infect another? Is he she invincible while still having the virus? Send our people back home you’re playing with human lives.

    • Posted by Mine Worker from Nunavik on

      Are you going to pay my rent , if i have to stop working

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