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Gimaa Toulouse Addresses the Sagamok Community June 19, 2020
Posted: Jun 19, 2020

Gimaa Toulouse Addresses the Sagamok Community

June 19, 2020   4:33pm          [6 minutes, 30 seconds]

 

In his address, Gimaa Toulouse,

· Advises caution if traveling to Sudbury or Saulte Ste. Marie given the recent reported cases of COVID-19 by those cities’ Public Health Units. 

· Announces the Sagamok Anishnawbek organization’s target date for reopening for business in July 6. 

· Explains the expectation of traffic coming in and out of the Sagamok community at the road access checkpoint as “ On the way out, you will be asked if you are going to Sudbury or the Sault and if you say yes, they will give you something to help you, to protect you.  And we are going to continue monitoring traffic coming in.  The purpose of that is to make sure that we have information, the data, so that in the event that we have a positive case, we can trace it.”

 

Gimaa Toulouse says that there has been zero cases of COVID-19 in the Sagamok community since the pandemic started and with the First Wave seemingly over, a safe Community Celebration bringing families together to “celebrate our victory over the first wave” is being scheduled for July 11. 

 

He says that though there are now positive cases reported by Sault Ste. Marie and Sudbury Public Health Units, there are no travel restrictions imposed upon Sagamok residents and visitors from these areas. 

 

He says that he understands that Sagamok residents have had a taste of freedom with the recent easing of travel restrictions.  “We don’t really want to change that.”

 

“Also, we trust that you have learned the things to protect yourself, your family and your community.”

 

“All we are saying is if you can, don’t go there.  That’s all.  Upon leaving, we are asking that you be extremely careful.  We will be providing some safety equipment: mask, sanitizers.” 

 

“We entrust you to do that.” 

 

Gimaa says that the Sagamok Anishnawbek organization is targeting a reopening date of July 6, with new safety protocols and workspace features to help protect visitors and staff from the transmission of illness in Sagamok places of business and work.  Plexiglass guards have been installed in service areas and hand wash stations at the entrance of each public building. 

 

Noting the coming long weekend with Solstice celebrations and Aboriginal Day on Monday, Gimaa asks everyone to make sure they practice safe behaviors. 

 

Gimaa tells Sagamok community members to consider the significance of Aboriginal Day as the firs wave dies down, saying the holiday is, ”pretty important because we are alive.  There have been other times when people have used disease to get rid of us.  But we have survived.  That’s our history and we need to be proud of it, regardless of what other have done to eradicate us by way of diseases or trying to killy our culture, we managed to survive and we are resilient people.”

 

Explaining what traffic can expect when leaving and entering the community, Gimaa says, “ On the way out, you will be asked if you are going to Sudbury or the Sault and if you say yes, they will give you something to help you, to protect you.  And we are going to continue monitoring traffic coming in.  The purpose of that is to make sure that we have information, the data, so that in the event that we have a positive case, we can trace it.”

 

Watch Gimaa Toulouse's Community Address on June 19 here: