Hay River is entering two weeks of strict gathering limits while the Kátł’odeeche First Nation is entering containment, starting at the end of Tuesday.
The move from the NWT’s chief public health officer comes with 24 active Covid-19 cases reported in those communities as of Tuesday.
Dr Kami Kandola’s office said there was community spread in Hay River and a “sudden increase” in cases at the First Nation that could not be traced.
In Hay River, households can’t have visitors, indoor gatherings are limited to 10 people, and outdoor gatherings are limited to 25. Essential businesses are exempt but non-essential businesses’ previous exemptions are cancelled. Schools will be closed.
Containment for the Kátł’odeeche First Nation means no gatherings beyond your household and non-essential businesses must close. The school will move to remote learning.
“Non-essential travel in and out of Kátł’odeeche First Nation Reserve Lands is not recommended at this time,” read an advisory from Dr Kandola’s office.
“It is recommended that households designate one person to travel to Hay River to obtain essential supplies such as groceries or gas. This individual should not be symptomatic or a close contact of Covid or medically advised to isolate. They should be fully vaccinated or declared recovered from Covid-19 by a healthcare provider in the past 180 days.”
In both communities, restrictions take effect at the end of Tuesday and will remain in place until at least the end of November 2.
“There is evidence of community transmission where people with recent Covid infections have no known link to an established source,” said Kandola’s office.
“There are now active cases in four of the five Hay River and Kátł’odeeche First Nation schools.
“The chief public health officer is hopeful that by implementing these additional restrictions for a 14-day period, it will act as a circuit breaker to limit the spread of Covid-19 in Hay River, allow for the safe reopening of schools, and a return to relaxed restrictions on gatherings.
“It is recommended to avoid non-essential travel in and out of Hay River for the duration of this order.”