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19 members of Squamish Nation test positive for COVID-19

"I know that it is scary, but we will get through this," says Squamish Nation co-chair
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All Squamish Nation offices are closed, including Totem Hall in Squamish. File photo/Squamish Chief

Nineteen Squamish Nation members have tested positive for COVID-19 and that number is likely to grow.

The Nation announced Friday that all its offices, including Totem Hall, were temporarily closed due to multiple positive COVID-19 cases among its members.

On Sunday, Aug. 30 the Nation announced the 19 confirmed cases.

In a Facebook live video, Squamish Nation co-chair Kristen Rivers said the First Nation is notified of cases through a connection with the Vancouver Coastal Health and the First Nations Health Authority developed specifically for use in First Nations communities.

They plan to update members of the number of cases daily, she said.

Rivers said Sunday that approximately 10 symptomatic people are awaiting results.

“Not to be alarmed if you see the number go up,” she said. “It means that the people who have contracted the virus are doing their job and letting people know that they have been in contact with.” 

The Nation’s emergency response team has brought care packages to all those impacted, she added, and will continue to bring food and/or medicine to those who are sick or isolating.

 “Just because the offices are closed does not mean we are not working,” Rivers said, adding that council and staff are working from home.

“It is really important you know we are here for you… We are in this together and we are going to get through this together. I know that it is scary, but we will get through this.”

If you believe you may have symptoms of COVID-19, call 8-1-1.

Testing is done at Squamish Hospital or on the North Shore at the Primary Care Centre on Esplanade, and a testing site located in the Centennial Theatre parking lot.

Read more from The Squamish Chief