The GN announced May 19 there have been 119 complaints made regarding the enforcement of public health measures, which is further broken down by CPHO as order breaches, gatherings, health concerns, isolation breaches, masks, outdoor gatherings and unknown.

One person was escorted to isolation, one fined and there was one relocation. There have been 11 written warnings issued and 36 verbal warnings made.

The fine was issued to an individual who tested positive to COVID-19 who was seen in the community breaking their isolation period.

Five individuals were arrested during COVID-19 related incidents. The arrests were for causing a disturbance and mischief that did involve alcohol, no charges were laid in relation to the current public health orders.

The RCMP have responded to numerous Public Health Act complaints and have noted most people have been cooperative and have left or dispersed when asked to leave to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The relocation involved individuals who were unwanted at someone’s residence, which was in breach of the public health orders, and RCMP members had to relocate the individuals to their own dwelling.

“This virus isn’t going to disappear and it’s up to all of us to keep ourselves and others safe,” said Nunavut Premier Joe Savikataaq.

“We have the vaccines and we hope to have enough of the 12 to 18-year-old (population) vaccinated soon, let’s use every possible dose we have. It’s up to you and to all of us.”

New exposure risk

Iqaluit’s Qajuqturvik Food Centre has also seen a potential exposure risk happen with one of it’s staff members testing positive.

“Due to a potential exposure to COVID-19 at the Iqaluit soup kitchen, the facility is closed today to allow time for staff to be tested, depending on the results the kitchen may reopen tomorrow,” said Dr. Michael Patterson, Nunavut’s chief public health officer.

In the meantime, the City of Iqaluit will be offering meals to those who need it until the Food Centre can reopen.

Additional surveillance testing will be taking place in the community as well.

“Here in Iqaluit we will be widening our surveillance testing to include residential buildings that have had more than one unit with a confirmed COVID-19 case,” Patterson said.

These buildings can include apartments, townhomes and similar units with more than one household.

Invitations to go for testing will be sent to people in these buildings and the tests will be voluntary.

There are a total of four buildings in Iqaluit where surveillance testing will be taking place.

“If you receive a notice to get a test I urge you to co-operate, this will help identify cases and reduce the risk of further spread of the virus.”

The GN will not be publicly releasing which buildings will be subject to testing.

Local state of emergency extended

On May 19 the City of Iqaluit had extended its state of local emergency, as per the act, the order will be in effect for seven days unless cancelled sooner or extended.

During this state of local emergency, municipal enforcement will be supporting the CPHO public health measures with education, compliance, issuing violation fines, the closure of non-essential businesses and making sure gatherings and mask wearing measures are in place in public spaces, taxis, businesses and company vehicles.

The reopening of the Elders Home in Iqaluit is currently still a work-in-progress, with the facility having to be evacuated due to a staff member testing positive for COVID-19.

“We are currently in negotiations to have new management in place,” said Health Minister Lorne Kusugak

They will be also doing some minor renovations while the facility is not being used at this time, including replacing a few windows, kitchen renovation and cleaning up the building.

“Then they will be brought back as soon as possible,” he adds.

As of May 19 there are four new cases of COVID-19 and five recoveries made in Nunavut, all in Iqaluit.

There are currently 63 active cases of COVID-19, 62 of which are in Iqaluit and one in Kinngait. Sixteen people under the age of 18 have been dianosed with COVID-19 within the last seven days.

The Baffin Correctional Centre (BCC) has three remaining active cases as of the morning of May 19 and no new recent transmission on-site.

A total of 16,794 Nunavummiut have received their first dose of the Moderna vaccine, while 13,520 have received both doses. There have been 176 recoveries since this outbreak began last month.

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