By Victoria Gray
SIX NATIONS OF THE GRAND-COVID-19 infections continue to surge on Six Nations Friday, soaring more than three times higher than the infection rate in Toronto.
There were five new cases announced Friday and eight on Thursday bringing the total number of active cases in territory to 58.
There have been 53 new cases added in the last eight days, bringing Six Nations total positive cases to 227. There have been two deaths since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.
Since Christmas Six Nations has experienced a steady incline of cases, with more than 90 cases since December 25.
There are now 348 positive COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people on Six Nations an infection rate almost triple that of Toronto who still sitting at 142 per 100,000.
Since the provincial lockdown on December 27, cases in surrounding areas have dwindled, leaving Brantford with 22 cases per 100,000, Haldimand-Nofolk with 30 cases per 100,000 and Hamilton with 84 per 100,000 people. Brantford has reported no new cases in two days.
Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) and Six Nations Health have previously sent out a press release urging people not to cross the border into the United States and possibly bring infections back after Six Nations Police Services experienced an increase in the amount of requests they were receiving from Canadian Border Services to check on people to ensure they were isolating. Six Nations Police noted not all those who returned from cross-border travel were following the rules, but those people were not subject to fines.
Canada Border Services told Turtle Island News that 123,771 people identifying as First Nations people, entered Canada between March 2020 and December 2020, of those 119,264 Indigenous identifying people entered into an Ontario port. Of those Indigenous people who entered Ontario, 4 per cent came across in southern Ontario.
Between January 1 and 31 almost 14,000 First Nations people crossed the border into Canada. Of those, 13,345 people were entering Ontario ports, but less than 3 per cent entered in Southern Ontario.
SNEC and Six Nations Health Services have also urged all those who attended Mid Winter ceremonies recently to get tested for COVID-19. Candice Lickers, communications for SNEC, told the Hamilton Spectator that SNEC knew the ceremonies were happening amid the Black Level Alert Status, wherein people are not supposed to gather with anyone outside of their household. She also said SNEC provided PPE to those who attended ceremonies.
The Six Nations Assessment Centre is pumping out tests having completed 107 last week with only one person waiting for results currently.
The age group of those affected continues to be those from aged 20-39 and 40-64 and females continue to be most affected with 51.7 per cent of infections while males make up 48.2 per cent of the infections.