While the province has announced its plan to allow Alberta businesses to reopen, restrictions remain in place in Maskwacis until further notice.
This includes the extension of the temporary closure of the Samson Cree Nation administrative office until the end of May and reduced office hours at the Ermineskin, Louis Bull and Montana offices. Emergency contact information and numbers can be found on the various websites and Facebook pages.
As part of protecting the various communities from COVID-19, both Montana and Ermineskin have placed checkpoints at various their various entrances while Samson and Ermineskin have instituted a daily 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew until further notice.
Samson continues to have its shelters for homeless and those in need of a place to isolate open, while Montana has set up two trailers with a total of eight rooms available to assist homeless residents during the pandemic.
There have been some recent cancellations announced due to the pandemic. This includes the annual economic development career fair hosted by Samson that was scheduled for this month along with the annual Ermineskin pow wow slated for July 3 to 5.
Not related to COVID-19 are the total fire bans that are in place on Samson and Ermineskin until further notice. However, people are encouraged to obey the ban as fire department responses place those essential workers at potential risk during the crisis and can also stretch emergency services to their limit.
Further help for Maskwacis residents is available for those looking for work and those in need of health care or mental health issues.
The Maskwacis Employment Centre is hosting an online readiness program until May 15, check out their Facebook page for information or contact them at 780-585-4450.
Meanwhile, Maskwacis Health Services is operating mobile testing for those with symptoms on each of the four First Nations as well as at the health centre. Anyone wanting a test or to find out when and where the mobile testing will be done should call MHS at 780-585-2020. More tips and other information can be found by going to their Facebook page.
The Maskwacis Mobile Mental Health team wants everyone to know they can connect to them for any services, individual or family care by calling them 24 hours a day at 780-362-2150. Their Facebook page also contains other helpful information.
Residents that require more information for the four Maskwacis First Nations can check out various Facebook pages or websites.
– Sources: newsletters and online information