MOHAWK COUNCIL OF AKWESASNE AND SAINT REGIS MOHAWK TRIBE JOINT COVID-19 (NOVEL CORONAVIRUS) INFORMATIONAL BRIEFING (March 14, 2020)
JOINT RESPONSE TO COVID-19
The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe (SRMT) and the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne (MCA), including health and emergency staff, are working together to provide information to the community and to ensure readiness in regard to the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) pandemic. The health of our entire community is a priority.
Please refer to our websites for previous informational updates: www.srmt-nsn.gov and www.akwesasne.ca.
- A case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in the city of Rockland, Ontario, which is part of the Eastern Ontario Health Unit’s jurisdiction that Akwesasne also belongs to. Rockland is 40 km east of Ottawa. The 31-year old patient is believed to have contracted the virus in New York City. She returned from the trip on March 11th, symptoms appeared on March 12th, and she tested positive today, March 14th.
- The Mohawk Council advises community members to self-isolate when returning from “hot spots” including New York City, in order to protect our community and vulnerable sector.
- At this time, no visitors are allowed at MCA’s long-term care facilities – Tsiionkwanonhso:te and Iakhihsohtha. This decision has not been made lightly and we appreciate the understanding of our families and community members as we strive to protect our residents. Your loved ones will continue to receive professional care that includes a great amount of love from staff at the homes. More information about these restrictions will be shared in the days ahead.
- MCA asks the community to take enhanced measures to protect our elders and vulnerable.
- Mohawk Council of Akwesasne Grand Chief Abram Benedict states, “We want to remind the community to stay calm and take practical measures to avoid contracting the disease, and more importantly to avoid transmitting it to the vulnerable members of our community. Social distancing, hand-washing, but most of all – avoiding others when you are sick – will help us through this. Akwesasne, we have long prided ourselves on resilience dating back to our earliest ancestors, and we have been through many difficult times together in our own lifetime. This is no different; working together and caring for each other will go a long way.”
- If you are feeling distress or have concerns related to COVID-19, MCA’s Wholistic Health & Wellness Program is prepared to assist you. Contact them at 613-575-2341, Ext. 3115. The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe’s Mental Health staff can also assist and can be contacted at 518-358-3141.
- There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Akwesasne. At this time, anything to the contrary is rumour. The closest case of COVID-19 in New York State is in Saratoga, New York, and the closest case in Ontario is now in Rockland, Ontario. In Quebec, the closest case is in Montreal.