With cases on the uptick, NWT extends public health emergency

A file photo advising of a border checkstop ahead in Fort Smith. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio

The public health emergency that gives the NWT’s chief public health officer additional powers during the pandemic is to be extended into mid-November.

With four new cases in the past week, plus a new presumptive positive in Inuvik, extension of the emergency was entirely expected.

Declaring the emergency provides the powers needed for the territory to institute measures related to self-isolation and travel restrictions, among others.

The declaration must be either renewed or cancelled every two weeks by law. On Wednesday morning, the territory said it was being renewed for a 16th time since the pandemic began.



It’ll now run until at least November 10, and almost certainly for months beyond that unless there is an extraordinary shift both in the NWT and farther south.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated considerably across Canada in recent weeks as the country’s caseload surged to its highest point in the pandemic,” said the territory in a short statement explaining the rationale for extending the emergency.

“The public health emergency is required to continue to decisively respond to shifts in the NWT’s own public health situation, and maintain preventative measures.”