Canada’s First Nations close borders over coronavirus, using ‘isolation as a strength’ – National Post

TORONTO — Canadian indigenous communities, already facing poor healthcare options, are closing their own lands’ borders to limit coronavirus exposure as Ottawa dispatches funds and tents to house and isolate sick patients in the country’s chilly north.

The communities are considered at heightened risk in the coronavirus outbreak because of difficult living conditions. The country’s 1.4 million indigenous people have higher levels of poverty and a lower life expectancy than other Canadians.

Canada has reported 772 coronavirus cases and nine deaths.

“We’ve closed the community border to outsiders. It means that only essential travelers, emergency personnel, are allowed in and out,” Chief David Monias of the Pimicikamak Cree Nation in northern Manitoba told Reuters.

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