Community partners in Sioux Lookout are working together to create additional COVID-19 isolation spaces and to further protect as many community members as possible, ahead of their planned mass vaccination clinics.

Sioux Lookout Mayor Doug Lawrance explains the community’s newest partnership to fight against the spread of COVID-19.

“Recognizing the need for greater local coordination, local agencies met under the umbrella of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout’s Municipal COVID Coordination Committee – The MC3, including representatives from about 15 agencies.”

Lawrance says community partners include the OPP, First-Step Women’s Shelter, Northwestern Health Unit, Kenora District Services Board, Meno Ya Win Health Centre, Tribal Councils, Red Cross, Sioux Lookout First Nations Health Authority, Community Living, Out of the Cold Shelter and municipal staff.

“There was a high level of cooperation at the meeting, with the common goal of doing all that we can to protect our community from the spread of COVID-19,” adds Lawrance, adding several agencies are coordinating to create isolation spaces for those in need through the committee.

“We know there are concerns in the community about the recent increase in cases. There is no reason to be alarmed. The Northwestern Health Unit is working hard on contact tracing and the vaccine rollout in our community. Residents can rest assured that we are able to handle the caseload at the present time.”

As of March 25, the Northwestern Health Unit has reported a total of 119 cases in the Sioux Lookout area, with 26 cases currently considered active. SLFNHA says 22 of those cases are located in First Nation communities in the Sioux Lookout area.

Mayor Lawrance adds the MC3 is working with the province and NWHU to identify additional vaccine priority groups in the Sioux Lookout area who may be at a higher risk than the general population.

“It’s very clear that vaccinations are key. As soon as it’s your turn to get vaccinated, we strongly encourage you to take it. Even if you don’t feel threatened by COVID-19, you may be a threat to others if you are not vaccinated.”

The Municipality of Sioux Lookout adds they’re searching for at least 10 volunteers to put in full or half-days at the community’s COVID-19 vaccination clinics, between April 1 and May 1.

Masks will be provided and must be worn. Duties will include door monitoring, queue monitoring, directing people to the right stations, wiping down chairs, handing out PPE and related tasks.

Those who are immunocompromised or over the age of 65 are not eligible to volunteer. Those interested are asked to email Tiffany – ea@siouxlookout.ca – with your name, phone number, email address, and availability. If you are a doctor or nurse who would like to volunteer to help immunize people, you are asked to please contact the Northwestern Health Unit directly.

Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms is asked to self-isolate, get tested and remain in isolation until your test results are known.

For more information:
SLFNHA: COVID-19 spreading in Sioux Lookout area