The Ahousaht First Nation has closed its community to non-residents in light of the COVID-19 global pandemic. (Westerly file photo)

COVID-19: Ahousaht First Nation closes community to non-residents

“We’re really being proactive on this,” Ahousaht Elected Chief Greg Louie.

The Ahousaht First Nation has closed its community to non-residents as a precautionary measure against the spread of COVID-19, Ahousaht Elected Chief Greg Louie confirmed to the Westerly News on Monday.

The isolated island community, located a roughly 30-minute boat ride from Tofino, is closed to tradespeople for at least two weeks and to tourists indefinitely.

“It is a big announcement, but the reasoning is simple; on our island, we don’t have very far to go, we’re all very family-oriented, very social people and leadership wants to ensure the safety of our community members,” Louie said. “We have a lot of contractors and subcontractors who come into our community and some of them are from out-of-province, so that was another reason.”

READ MORE: Borders, cases, bans: What you need to know about Canada and B.C.’s COVID-19 response

He said work on a $21 million sewage treatment facility and other projects involving out-of-town labourers have been put on hold.

“We deactivated the work today and we’ll do a reassessment in about two weeks,” he said. “With regards to tourists, it might be longer because tourists are coming from all over the world and we want restrictions on that.”

READ MORE: Aboriginal tourism growing in Ahousaht

He added closing the community to non-residents was “an easy decision” due to the “ever-changing, hour-to-hour situation with COVID-19” and that social gatherings within the community have been cancelled, including sports and cultural events.

“We’re really being proactive on this,” he said.

He said Ahousaht residents can still travel in and out of the community for groceries and appointments and Ahousaht’s leadership are monitoring the situation closely and following provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry’s daily updates on the global pandemic.



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

READ MORE: B.C. bans gatherings of 50+ people to slow COVID-19 transmission

READ MORE: COVID-19: SD70 superintendent urges families not to travel outside Canada

READ MORE: Pacific Rim Whale Festival postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Flying hot dog strikes Saanich pedestrian

Police called to 4200-block of Quadra Street for hot dog incident

Sidney can ‘only educate and encourage’ people to social distance

CAO says municipality lacks legislative authority to enforce social distancing in public

View Royal fire chief calls for realistic solutions to ‘mess’ at Thetis Lake

Emergency crews harassed while extinguishing brush fire, rescuing drunk 15-year-old during long weekend calls

Ocean Boulevard could open after Labour Day

Colwood council expected to discuss options later this month

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Dinosaurs revived for animatronic auction in Langley

More than 500 robot dinosaurs, fossils, and exhibition gear are going on the block Aug. 6

B.C. paramedics responded to a record-breaking 2,700 overdose calls in July

Province pledges $10.5 million for expansion of overdose prevention response

Canada signs deals with Pfizer, Moderna to get doses of COVID-19 vaccines

Earlier in July both Pfizer and Moderna reported positive results from smaller trials

Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

J.T. Miller leads Vancouver with goal and an assist

Cyclist in hospital after being hit by load of lumber hanging from truck on B.C. highway

A man is in hospital with broken ribs, punctured lung and a broken clavicle and scapula

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Most Read