Provincial and Community Shutdown – Update #16

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The original PDF notice is available here

  • Date: January 15, 2021
  • From: COVID-19 Task Team and HFN Council
  • Re: Provincial and Community Shutdown – Update #16

Aaniin Hiawatha Citizens, HFN Residents and OSM Residents,

As you have likely heard, Ontario declared a State of Emergency on January 12 2021. Further to this declaration, a Stay-at-Home Order was issued, and took effect at 12:01am on January 14, 2021.

Enhanced Provincial Shutdown Measures:

This announcement followed a grim update on modelling projections for COVID-19 cases and deaths in the Province. In the new modelling, it was indicated that at a growth rate of 5% cases/day, we would be facing 20,000 new cases daily by

Mid-February. At a growth rate of 7% cases/day, we could be facing 40,000 new cases daily by mid-February.

On the worst days in the recent weeks, we have seen 7% growth rates/day.

Ontario hospital ICUs are nearing capacity, some in the hardest hit areas are full already. This means limited ability and delays in helping those who experience other medical emergencies such as heart failure, strokes or severe accidents. It also means cancelling and postponing more surgeries and delaying treatment of cancer patients. The challenge for expanding any existing intensive care units extends beyond opening beds – staffing these unique healthcare spaces also requires specialized medical professionals.

The Peterborough hospital has already started to take non-COVID-19 patients from other hospitals, in order to open space for other patients. Many hospitals across the province will be engaging in these exchanges to support one another. Peterborough hospital is also looking to prepare auxiliary facilities to increase their capacity.


In response to the increase in COVID-19 Cases, COVID-19 deaths, COVID-19 hospitalizations and the projected modeling the Province of Ontario has:

  • ● Declared a State of Emergency
  • ● Issued a Stay-at-Home Order (until February 11, 2021):
    • ● Which requires everyone to remain at home except for essential purposes, such as, grocery shopping, pharmacy or accessing health care.

Ontario Stay-At-Home Order:

Every individual shall remain in their place of residence at all times unless leaving their place of residence is necessary for one of the following purposes:

  • ● Work, school and child care
  • ● Obtaining goods and services
  • ● Assisting others
  • ● Health, safety and legal purposes
  • ● Multiple residences and moving
  • ● Travel
  • ● Gatherings
  • ● Animals

Exceptions include:

  • ● A person living alone can join one other household and that person and that household cannot have anyone else join.
  • ● A single parent can join one other household and that parent and that household cannot have anyone else join.
  • ● Outside gatherings can occur with up to 5 people and masks should be worn.
  • ● Indoor organized gatherings such as a wedding, funeral are permitted with a maximum of 10 people.

Further information on the Stay-At-Home Orders can be found at:

O. Reg. 11/21: STAY-AT-HOME ORDER (

Individuals who are found to not be observing the Stay-at-Home Order can be fined from $750.00 up to $1000.00.

Individuals can either be issued a ticket for a set fine amount – set fines for orders include:

  • ● Fail to comply with an order: $750.00
  • ● Obstruct any person exercising a power in accordance with an order: $1,000.00
  • ● Obstruct any person performing a duty in accordance with an order: $1,000.00

If you are reporting an incident that require police investigation/enforcement please call 1-888-310-1122, this is the 24-hour dispatch that will have OPP or the on-duty Hiawatha Police Officer investigate the incident.

The Officers will investigate and lay charges where there are reasonable grounds to believe an offence (ie: violation of the Stay-At-Home order) has been committed. 


In response to Ontario’s Orders and in continuing with the shutdown guidelines we have already put into place, Hiawatha First Nation guidelines includes:

  • ● Stay-At-Home Order in place
  • ● Remain closed to visitors/general public
  • ● Do not bring guests/visitors or their vehicles into the community for visits, gas or otherwise
  • ● All non-essential businesses will remain closed until further notice
  • ● Unorganized indoor gatherings are not permitted
  • ● Outdoor gatherings will be limited to 5 people, and masks must be worn
  • ● Our Administration and Health Offices will remain closed until further notice
  • ● All payments to Hiawatha First Nation must be sent by mail
  • ● The Youth Centre will remain closed until further notice
  • ● No programming will occur in the month of January, and online programming is being planned for February
  • ● Community Surveillance will continue until further notice
  • ● Home renovations should remain on hold, excepting emergency situations (in the case of emergency repair – ensure masks are worn by yourself and the repair person) and physical distancing of 6 feet 
  • ● ORRS will remain open with continued safety measures/precautions in place
  • ● Our gym has been, and will remain open, following the existing restrictions and safety measure/precautions in place, this is in recognition of the mental health aspect of accessing the facility
  • ● Child Care Centre has been deemed essential and re-opened under the strict regulations of the Ministry


The COVID-19 vaccines which have been approved are now being used in Canada. First Nations LTC homes and Health Workers have been included in the initial Phase I vaccine roll-out, and are now being vaccinated. On January 11, 2021 we hosted Dr. Salvaterra from the Peterborough Public Health Unit (PPH) for an information session.:

PPH Vaccine Presentation:

The number of vaccines in Canada is limited at this time however it is the hope to have all First Nations vaccinated by April/May 2021. We are working with PPH to develop a plan for our Community’s vaccination roll-out and we will keep you updated as we know more.


ORRS – as of January 18, 2021 ORRS will be open on weekdays (Monday-Friday) from 3:00pm-7:00pm, and on weekends (Saturday and Sunday) from 7:00am-11:00am. The store will continue to be available to HFN Citizens, HFN Residents and OSM Residents within the Hiawatha boundaries only. Deliveries can be arranged. Please contact ORRS for more information.

Election – Hiawatha’s 2021 – 2023 election vote will proceed as planned on January 20, 2021. We strongly recommend that you use the mail-in voting process. You can request a ballot from our Electoral Officer, Sheila Coppaway at 705-295-6317.

It is important to note that you return your ballot to Sheila Coppaway in-person as there is not enough time to mail back the completed ballots. Sheila has noted to call her for a ballot and she can either deliver it to you or you can pick it up. Once completed you can call her to set up a time to hand-deliver your ballot back to her.

Our COVID-19 Task Team continues to monitor the situation and meet regularly. Up to date information can be found on our website:

In closing, we would like to acknowledge that we understand this has been an incredibly difficult time for everyone. We thank you for all your efforts to keep your loved ones and Community safe.

We ask that you continue to be safe wherever you go, as we are vulnerable to this virus. Our life is sacred, as was our Ancestors and our Seven Generations to come. To preserve our sacredness together, we must remain apart to protect our loved ones, our Elders, our Knowledge Keepers, our Children and all our Citizens. We continue to ask that everyone follow the measures in place just a little while longer.

We also wish to express our gratitude to all of you, as we continue to have no confirmed cases to date. This is an achievement which speaks to the dedication and care each of us has exhibited to keep everyone safe. We thank you for all your efforts and we are here for you in the struggles of isolation, missing contact with loved ones and any issue you may be encountering – please reach out if you are in need of help.

“Our Citizens and Community remain our first priority and we will work to mitigate risks for best possible outcomes moving forward through the COVID-19 pandemic.”