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COVID-19 GN Update - November 6, 2020

06 November 2020

COVID-19 GN Update

Premier’s update

Good afternoon. Originally this was meant to be a standard update, but as you know, we now have a confirmed case of COVID-19 in Sanikiluaq. This is Nunavut’s first confirmed case.

On behalf of the Government of Nunavut, I’m sending best wishes to the patient, their family and the whole community. You’re in our thoughts and we are here to help.

Nunavut now has one confirmed case of COVID-19. The total number of persons followed to date is 3803. There are 583 persons currently being followed.

Dr. Patterson will speak shortly about what we know so far and next steps in tracing and containing the spread of the virus.

Nunavummiut, please remember, a confirmed case in the community is not a reason to panic. Continue to practice social and physical distancing, wash your hands, and stay home if you are feeling unwell. Please limit your contact with others.

This is not the time for blame or shame. Please do not spread rumours or misinformation. They serve no purpose and help absolutely no one.

Thanks to you all your continued dedication to following our public health measures. To everyone doing their part, keep it up!

As we head into the dark season and staying inside more often, we need to stay more focused and attentive than ever.

Stay well. Stay healthy. Stay safe. Remember - Your actions. Everyone’s Health.


Chief Public Health Officer update

Good afternoon,

Today we received confirmatory results of a positive case of COVID-19 in Sanikiluaq.

The individual and their family are isolated. We have initiated contact tracing in the community and our rapid response team is on standby to help manage the situation should it become necessary

Effective as of noon today, all travel to and from the Belcher Islands, including the Hamlet of Sanikiluaq by any means is prohibited.

There are exceptions for emergency medical travel, critical entry for medical response, flight emergencies, and cargo. Hunters may also leave the community but may not travel to any other community or populated area outside the Belcher Islands.

It is also advised that hunters leaving the community closely monitor for symptoms and return home if any develop.
In addition, all for profit and not-for profit business in Sanikiluaq must close, with the exception of Grocery stores; Fuel and motor vehicle service stations; the Canada Post corporation; Financial Institutions. Restaurants open for take-out service may remain open under strict rules including, all customers must remain 2 metres apart at all times and no more than 10 people are permitted to line up for service at one time.

In addition, all schools, including Nunavut Arctic College, federal, territorial, and municipal government offices must close to all but essential work.

All gatherings are restricted to five people and there shall be no gatherings in homes.

Currently, the common travel areas between the NWT and Churchill, Manitoba are still open for travel from all other communities.

I want to reassure Nunavummiut that we are responding quickly to this case and to remind them that now is a time for support, kindness and understanding.

Thank you.


As part of the Government of Nunavut’s (GN) effort to protect Nunavummiut against the risk of COVID-19, GN Departments are implementing the following:

Department of Health Services

Unless it is an emergency, we are asking that people in Sanikiluaq call the health centre first and get direction. Anyone with questions about COVID-19 are asked to call the hotline at 1-888-975-8601.

Total (all health isolation locations)  
Traveler type Guests in Isolation as of Nov. 5
Medical 431
Public 243
Total 674

Traveller repatriation summary:

Departure date # of travellers from health isolation sites
Nov. 6 46
Nov. 7 0
Nov. 8 32
Nov. 9 80
Nov. 10 41
Total 199

Critical Worker Requests

As of Nov. 5, there were 7943 requests, 3933 of which were critical worker requests.

Request status # %
Approved (includes critical and non-critical) 5595 66.9%
Denied 279 3.3%
Pending 208 2.5%
Common Travel Area Approved 2283 27.3%
Total 7943 100%

Department of Education Services

K-12 Schools

According to Nunavut’s Chief Public Health Officer, Sanikiluaq is now in Stage 4: Community Transmission of COVID-19 until further notice.

All schools in Sanikiluaq are closed to students, staff, and the public until further notice from the Chief Public Health Officer. All instruction in Sanikiluaq will be conducted remotely.

Teachers/school staff will be contacting their students and families as soon as possible.

To see how the Department of Education is keeping students safe visit:

The school closure in Sanikiluaq will not affect staff pay.

The department recommends that the Sanikiluaq District Education Authority (DEA) staff not attend work.

Funding to the Sanikiluaq DEA will not be affected, and the Sanikiluaq DEA is encouraged to continue to pay their employees as normal.

Early Learning and Child Care

Because of the confirmed case of COVID-19, child care facilities in Sanikiluaq have been recommended to close by the Chief Public Health Officer.

Government of Nunavut funding to licensed child care facilities in Sanikiluaq will continue as normal.


Department of Family Services

Sanikiluaq Child Welfare Protection

If you are concerned about the safety and wellbeing of a child and/or youth, call your local Community Social Services Office:

• Family Wellness (CSSW): (867) 266-8738
• Family Wellness Supervisor (867) 857 3201 or (867) 857 6786
• Territory-wide contact: 1-844-FW-CHILD (1-844-392-4453)

If you are concerned about the services that a child or youth are receiving or have comments or compliments to share, contact us at 1 855 522-5201 or email us at

Social services and local RCMP contact information for each community can be found on the Family Wellness section of our website at

RCMP - (867) 266-1111

Sanikiluaq Income Assistance Regional Contact Information

Kivalliq: Toll free 1-800-953-8516 ext 1602
Kivalliq Regional Office: 867-645-5040 ext 1602 or ext 1600
Sanikiluaq Income Assistance office: 867-266-8393 or 867-266-8739
Sanikiluaq Career Development Information
Kivalliq – 1-800-953-8516

Adult Learning Training Support

Adult Learning Training Support (ALTS) students currently enrolled in the Office Administration Certificate program in Sanikiluaq will continue to receive their training allowances to the end of the fiscal year.


Department of Justice Services

Community Justice

In-person meetings for Community Justice are restricted to emergency situations where the client has no access to a phone or safe location to contact our service providers over the phone. Individuals are asked to contact the on-call Family Abuse Intervention Act (FAIA) line if they have any questions or need support using the following number 1-844-534-1038. The call will be assessed to determine the support needed and directed to a Community Justice Specialist who can help with applications and resource referrals.

Community Corrections

The Sanikiluaq Community Corrections office will be closed to the public until further notice. All Sanikiluaq community corrections clients are to report by phone to the Community Corrections Officer using the following number: 1-888-770-7696


Department of Human Resources Services

GN offices in Sanikiluaq are closed to the public.

All non-essential Government of Nunavut (GN) employees in Sanikiluaq are to work from home. Your supervisor will work with you to provide any needed equipment or resources to work from home. Suggestions and tips for working from home can be found on the GN Intranet site: http://intranet/covid19/ and will be sent via email. You can access your work emails by logging into Microsoft Office 365 on your computer at or downloading the Microsoft Outlook app on your smart phone.

All essential GN employees in Sanikiluaq will work at their workplaces and follow the Health, Safety and Wellness Checklists for GN Workplaces and the Return to the Workplace Checklist for GN Employees, read the COVID-19 Questions and Answers and follow posted health and safety signage to prevent the spread of COVID-19. You can find the checklists, questions and answers and posters on the GN Intranet site: http://intranet/covid19/.

Contact if you don’t have access to the GN Intranet site and require copies of any of the resources posted there.

At this time, GN employees in all other communities are to report to work as normal.

There’s help

The GN encourages our employees and their family members to explore how our Employee and Family Assistance Program can help at this time. The Employee and Family Assistance Program includes a toll-free confidential phone number, 1-800-663-1142, that employees and/or their family members can call at any time to talk to a trained counsellor in any of Nunavut’s official languages, and also includes online resources and tools at


Department of Environment Services

The Department of Environment continues to provide services Nunavut-wide as usual, following recommended public health measures. The department will continue to respond to problem wildlife and spills.
• For wildlife response in Sanikiluaq, call 867-222-0167, 24 hours a day.
• All spills are to be reported to the Nunavut Spill Line at 867-920-8130, 24 hours a day:

Nunavummiut’s health is our shared responsibility! Remember: wash your hands and surfaces, practice social distancing, listen to the advice of health officials, and stay home if you’re sick.