Kanesatake Health Center Joint Statement

In collaboration with all branches of its Government, its staff, chiefs and collaborators, the Mohawk Council of Kanesatake is adopting the following measures in order to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. The measures take effect immediately and reflect the recommendations made by Federal and Provincial Health Authorities.

Council operations

The MCK offices are closed to the public, but remain open and/or some of its staff work from home when possible in order to prevent service interruptions and to continue to process essential payments.

Note that the Grand Chief and Chiefs are still in the office daily.

RL-31 forms will still be available to fill out over the phone. The income tax volunteer program is suspended until April 1, 2020. For any information, please contact Amber Hannaburg (450) 479-7069 or Josée Craig (450) 479-7016

Emergency preparedness

The emergency preparedness response team has been activated and is working in collaboration with KHC and MCK with daily briefings. The response team is in place to ensure that the community is up to date and receiving all pertinent information for prevention and is prepared to activate further resources/personnel in response to any situation that may arise.

For any questions or concerns call Vice Chief Patricia Meilleur (514) 923-7805.

Strong preventive recommendations to our businesses and their owners

The health and safety of all our members goes beyond the control of MCK. Local businesses that choose to remain open on Kanesatake territory must do so by implementing all of Health Canada’s recommendations in regards to social distancing, disinfecting, etc. in order to ensure that all staff and customers are safe. Nonetheless, WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND TO CLOSE BUSINESS’ DOWN WHICH WILL IN TURN HIGHLY REDUCE THE RISK OF EXPOSURE TO OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS.

The emergency response team will be visiting each business owner as well as assessing and recommending safe practices that need to be put in place.

The following departments and buildings have been closed to the public:

  • Crime Prevention Shakotihente:se
  • Day scholar class action applications: Please call Chief Valerie Bonspille (450) 479-8373 ext. 108
  • Economic Development: For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call:
  • Patrick Gelinas (450) 479-8373 ext. 151
  • Education Center: For any emergency, please call Diane Nelson at (450) 479-8373 ext. 229
  • Finance & Program Administration: For any emergency, please call Leona Bonspille at (450) 479-8373 ext. 120
  • Health Center doors are closed but we remain available to respond to you should you leave a message by phone or send us email (walk-in clinic closed until further notice). We are providing essential services only
  • Home Care Services’ normal operations (home cleanings) are currently suspended, In-Home Support Workers are in touch with the elders on a daily basis to make sure that they are well, in good spirits and that all their basic needs are met. Measures are also being taken to support high risk and high priority clients.
  • Home & Community Care Nurses are in touch with their clients either by phone and/or will continue to provide dressing changes for their clients as needed.
  • Housing and Infrastructure: For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call Shirley Bonspille (450) 479-8373 ext. 131
  • Lands and Estates: For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call Amanda Simon (514) 220-2331
  • Membership: (closed until further notice)
  • Ratihen:te High School: For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call Scott Traylen (450) 479-8373 ext. 402
  • Rotiwennakehte/Aronhiatekha Elementary School & Daycare: (closed until further notice) please contact Scott Traylen (450) 479-8373 ext. 402
  • Ratihontsanonhstats Environment: for emergencies or other urgent matters, please call Eugene Nicholas (514) 240-0726
  • Riverside Elders Home (closed to the public and visitors until further notice)
  • Social Assistance (closed to the public, monthly statement of beneficiary declaration and evaluations are suspended until further notice). For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call: Mary Simon (450) 479-8373 ext. 127
  • Tsi Ronterihwanonhnha ne Kanien’keha Language and Cultural Center (closed until further notice)
  • Tsi Rontswa’Ta: Khwa Early Childhood Center: (closed March 16-27, 2020 will be re-evaluated)
  • Tsi Shakotiio’tenhseraienwá:se Employment and Training Service Center (KHRO): For emergencies or other urgent matters, please call Michelle Lamouche (450) 479-8373 ext. 302

Public works

Will continue to operate unless otherwise instructed by their supervisor.

MCK employees

Employees that are required to stay home as a result of these measures will not be penalized and will be paid as usual. However, we are asking our employees to remain available to the employer in the event of an emergency, even for tasks that are not part of their normal duties, exceptional circumstances call for exceptional measures.

School breakfast & lunch program

If any school closures have anyone concerned about any child not being able to eat breakfast or lunch, please let us know. Feel free to send us a private message through the MCK Facebook page, email (communications@kanesatake.ca), or Chief Valerie Bonspille ext. 108 and we will do everything we can to help.

About the virus and its potential consequences

COVID-19 is very contagious and capable of asymptomatic spread (spreading from unaware contaminated people who show no signs of symptoms). The coronavirus represents severe risks including hospitalization to close to 1 in 5 people and can even be deadly, especially to elders and people with pre-existing conditions. No one can afford to take this situation lightly as they will put their family’s and their community’s health at risk.

Preventing the spread of the virus

  • Wash your hands often with soap for at least 20 seconds
  • Practice social distancing (stay 6 feet away from people)
  • Limit your social interactions in person and stay home as much as possible
  • Cough etiquette (Coughing/sneezing into a tissue or into your sleeve)

What to do if you or someone close to you gets sick

First and foremost, STAY HOME! Anyone who is feeling sick must monitor their health situation very closely and stay home in order to prevent further contamination. Make sure that you know how to spot differences in symptoms experienced from a regular cold, the flu and COVID-19.

If you suspect that you might have contracted the disease, it is very important that you call this number: Public Health 1-877-644-4545. A nurse will help you evaluate your case and if necessary, schedule an appointment for you at one of the COVID-19 screening clinics.

Please also make sure to advise Public Health and Council, and please share with us a list of people you’ve interacted with, events and meetings you’ve attended and places you’ve been. We will keep your identity anonymous, but at least, this way we can be proactive in tracking the virus in the community and monitor if necessary potential cases.

Traveling members

We strongly recommend that any member that have travel and vacation plans consider postponing or cancelling their trips in order to limit their exposure, and consequently, the community’s exposure to COVID-19.

** Members returning from abroad MUST isolate themselves for a 14-day period and call 1-877-644-4545**

Call for solidarity

The MCK is doing all that it can to prepare the community for the outbreak. It is in difficult times such as these that we, as a community, must work together, help-out one another and take care of each and every one of us. In this line of thought, we will be creating a Facebook group that will let members post messages to share things that they need, and people can then message them if they can help them meet these needs (ex: help to deliver groceries and medication, food, etc.)

For further information, please follow the MCK Facebook page and mail-outs. If you would like to be added to the email list, please send an email to communications@kanesatake.ca.

Keep safe, we will get through this together.

Nia:wen ko:wa,

Grand Chief Serge Otsi Simon               Joyce Bonspiel-Nelson

Mohawk Council of Kanesatake             Director of Kanesatake Health Center