Local News Archives for 2021-04

Reported Variants of Concern Cases are Spread Across Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reported 264 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 241.  They also reported four new deaths with one each in Regina, Far North East, South Central and a residence pending.  Of the new cases 79 are in Regina, 63 in Saskatoon, 25 in South East and 24 in North West with numbers in the teens in other zones.  Of the total 41,098 reported cases 2426 are considered active and 38,181 people have recovered. As of Thursday reported variants of concern are at 6794 with the highest numbers in Regina with 3717, Saskatoon at 765, South East 700, South Central 510, Central East 296 and North West 203 with lower numbers in other zones including three in Far North East.

             

81 percent of Saskatchewan residents over age 60, 61 percent of those 40 plus and 41 percent of those 18 plus have received their first dose of vaccine.

New Cases of COVID-19 Continue to be Low in the Northern Health Region.

Manitoba Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Jazz Atwall announced 290 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 7.2 percent.  He also reported one additional death in the Winnipeg region. Of the new cases 187are in the Winnipeg region with much lower numbers in other regions including 17 in Northern health.  Of the total 38,729 reported cases 2375 are active and 35,380 individuals have recovered. A total of 2095 variants of concern cases have been reported with 830 active.

             

Atwal says they are not considering a lockdown to help reduce numbers.  He explains they have to balance that risk of negative impacts of not putting new restrictions in and overloading our acute care systems noting you see what happened in Ontario and other countries where the whole system collapsed.  He says obviously they are not going down that road, that’s not going to happen here but there are negative consequences to shutting everything down on social health, on mental health so they have to look at both sides of it and find that balance and that’s what they’re striving for from a public health perspective.

             

Eligibility for the AstraZeneca Covishield vaccine has expanded to include people aged 30 to 39 with priority health conditions.

There Will Be More Support for Youth Employment This Summer.

The Manitoba government will provide more than 25 million dollars to support youth employment opportunities this summer through two programs. Premier Brian Pallister says the first is a new program.  He explains the new 15 million dollar Manitoba Youth Jobs Program is a wage subsidy program that will run from May to September this year and it will support more than two thousand Manitoba businesses and organizations who will be the drivers of Manitoba’s economic recovery.  He says it will provide meaningful employment opportunities for over they anticipate six thousand Manitoba youth.  He adds the program will provide employers with a fifty percent wage subsidy for eligible employees up to a maximum of 25 thousand dollars per employer.

             

The province is also investing more than ten million dollars in the Green Team grant programs to help an estimated two thousand youth find summer employment.  Urban and Home Town Green Teams allow municipalities and non-profits to hire youth aged 15 to 29 to work on community project between May 1st and September 30th.  You can find more information on the Manitoba government website www.gov.mb.ca.

Creighton Residents Will Pay A Bit More in Taxes.

Mayor Bruce Fidler says unfortunately the Town’s taxes are going up slightly.  The mill rate has had to be increased to 1.8 from 1.7 although it is the first time in a long time since this has been done.  With some revenue lost and a difference in the assessment this year by the Saskatchewan Assessment Management Agency the Town has to make up a little revenue.  The increase will not be a big jump as the Town wants to keep it as low as possible and keep services as best they can. Fidler says Town projects and services will carry on as normal and even better adding the Town has a number of projects going on this year and they have to keep revenue up so a small tax hike had to be done.

 

April is Parkinsons Awareness Month.

During This Awareness Month, Parkinson Canada is calling for better care for those affected by the neurological disorder.

 

Jon Collins, a vice-president with the organization explains the big focus on their messaging in April is really around the issues of diagnosis and making sure people with Parkinson’s can access care in communities throughout the country.  He says the No Matter What campaign really speaks to what happens after someone is diagnosed and it’s their intentional effort to tell stories that are real, that are meaningful and that are motivated.  He notes they want people with Parkinson’s to feel seen in that content and that means really being honest and sometimes Parkinson’s is difficult but then celebrating the resilience people show in overcoming the symptoms.

Collins says around 100, 000 people live with Parkinson’s in the country, and the disease is on the rise.

 

Learn more about Parkinson Canada’s campaign by visiting www.parkinson.ca.

New COVID Case Numbers Continue to be High in Winnipeg While Vaccine Age Drops Again in Saskatchewan.

Manitoba public health reported 228 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 7.2 percent.  They also reported two additional deaths both in the Northern health region being a woman in her 50s and a man in his 60s. Of the new cases 177 are in Winnipeg with much lower numbers in other regions including 11 in Northern health.  Of the total 38,439 reported cases 2263 are active and 35,203 individuals have recovered.  The total number of variants of concern cases is now 19 hundred of which 754 are active with a total of 49 reported in the Northern health region.

             

Meanwhile Saskatchewan public health reported 205 new cases this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 239.  They also reported one new death in the North West zone.  Of the new cases 73 were in Regina, 32 in Saskatoon and South East 24 with lower numbers in other zones including one in Far North East.  Of the total 40,824 reported cases 2408 are considered active and 37,929 people have recovered.  As of Wednesday 6572 variants of concern have been identified.  Effective tomorrow eligibility in the provincial age based immunization program moves to age 40.

A Winter Drill Program has Wrapped Up Near Snow Lake.

Wolfden Resources Corporation has completed a five hole 23 hundred meter winter diamond drill program on their Rice Island nickel, copper, cobalt, platinum group elements project in Snow Lake.  Three of the four holes that targeted the nickel rich Keel and Feeder Zones intersected encouraging sulphide mineralization and the fourth hole passed below the east plunging mineralization.  The fifth hole that tested a regional airborne conductor and magnetic target yielded a 138 meter long zone with approximately 40 percent sulphides.  The drill program was funded in part with support of a 230 thousand dollar grant from the Manitoba Government Mineral Development Fund.

             

Vice-President of Exploration Don Dudeck says the drilling was a success with respect to intersecting additional mineralization of the Keel and Feeder zones resulting in the potential to increase the known resources of the deposit.  He adds they will follow up in the next round of drilling.

Education Week and Music Month Were Part of the Flin Flon School Board Meeting.

Board Chair Murray Skeavington thanked everyone who works in the field of education for all their hard work and dedication this past Tuesday as last week was proclaimed Education Week in Manitoba. The month of May is Music Month in Manitoba and although the last while has been tough on music programs he says the Division has one of the best in the province.

             

Superintendent Tammy Ballantyne asked that all parents and community members inform themselves about Bill 64 and what it means for the Division’s students and our community.  Town hall meetings are being planned for the near future but you are asked to follow the Trustee Facebook page from the Flin Flon School Division for more information or contact any Trustee.

 

The Vaccine Age Continues to go Down in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reported 213 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 245.  They also reported four new deaths with three in the Saskatoon zone and one in Regina.  Of the new cases 81 were in Regina, 47 in Saskatoon. 31 in South East and 12 in both South Central and Far North West with single digits in other zones.  Of the total 40,614 reported cases 2443 are active and 37,685 people have recovered.  As of Tuesday reported variants of concern cases total 6444 with Regina at 3584, Saskatoon 711, South East 662 and South Central 486 with lower numbers in other zones including three in Far North East.  Effective today the eligible age for vaccines is 42 and older.  Eighty percent of Saskatchewan residents over 60 have received their first doses.

New Cases of COVID-19 are Low in the Northern Health Region.

Manitoba public health reported 186 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 7.5 percent.  They also reported three new deaths with one each in Northern health which was a woman in her 20s, Winnipeg and Southern health regions. Of the new cases 124 are in the Winnipeg region and 27 in Prairie Mountain with lower numbers in other regions including only five in Northern health.  Of the total 38,211 reported cases 2206 are active and 35,034 individuals have recovered.  A total of 1688 variants of concern cases have been reported with 656 active and 47 reported in the Northern health region.

             

Vaccine appointments for anyone 18 and older are still available at pop-up clinics in Flin Flon and The Pas and you can make an appointment by calling 1-844-MAN-VACC.

A World First is Developing West of Flin Flon.

Foran Mining Corporation has announced its McIlvenna Bay deposit 65 kilometers west of Flin Flon will become the world’s first carbon neutral copper development project.  The Company has partnered with leading carbon measurement firm and sustainability advisory firms Carbonzero and Synergy Enterprises to accurately record its emissions and purchase verified offsets for the carbon emitted from all exploration activities over the past ten years at the Deposit.  The offsets which neutralize emissions produced through land use changes and clearing, fuel use for exploration and travel to and from the site will be purchased in the coming weeks and will help provide funding for a mix of projects including a wind power project in Guatemala and a forest protection project in Inner Mongolia.

             

Executive Chair of Foran Dan Myerson says they are exploring all kinds of exciting initiatives in line with their audacious mission noting this is just the first.  He adds McIlvenna Bay will host a centralized mill to support their other world class deposits and they intend to be around for a long time to come.

A non-profit business organization says the federal budget was a "mixed bag" when it came to supports for independent businesses.

A Regional Director for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business Jonathan Alward explains while they’re glad to see the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and Rent Subsidy be extended to November, the amount of money applicants would receive will decrease as Ottawa expects businesses to recover by then.

 

 Alward touches on the Canada Emergency Business Account which has also received an extension. He explains the deadline to apply for the Emergency Business Account loan has also been extended to June although we know a lot of businesses have already done so and received the funding a long time ago and it’s going to be released to a lot of business owners that didn’t know what would happen for them with these supports beyond June but it’s not a very long time and they’re going to be having less and less money every month accessible through these programs and that’s certainly a concern.        

 

Alward goes on to say most of the unease comes from whether jurisdictions across the country will be in a place to focus on recovery as opposed to just helping businesses survive in the summer as we see more COVID-19 cases crop up.

Reported Cases of COVID-19 Have Topped 38 Thousand in Manitoba and Cases are Rising in Saskatoon.

Manitoba public health reported 217 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 7.5 percent.  They reported no additional deaths. Of the new cases 156 are in the Winnipeg region, 30 in Prairie Mountain health, 15 in Southern health,12 in Northern health region and five in Interlake Eastern.  Of the total 38,025 reported cases 2173 are considered active and 34,884 individuals have recovered.  A total of 1309 variants of concern cases have been reported so far with 559 active and 30 reported in the Northern Health region.

             

Meanwhile Saskatchewan public health reported 224 new cases this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 248. They also reported six new deaths with three in South East, two in Regina and one in South West zone. Of the new cases 70 are in Saskatoon, 43 in North West, 30 in Regina with lower numbers in other zones.  As of Monday 6301 variants of concern has been identified with Regina at 3513, Saskatoon 687 and South East 643 with much lower numbers in other zones. 186 people are in hospital with 42 in intensive care.

Plans are Underway for Flin Flons Blueberry Jam Music Gathering 2021.

The Blueberry Jam Music Gathering Committee reports despite the slow pace of vaccine delivery and the

 

concern about Covid variants they are optimistic there will be enough progress to allow Blueberry Jam concerts by

 

staying modest and spreading the music out to locations other than the campground stage. They note ensuring the

 

safety of our community will be done by following the guidance on outdoor gatherings just over three months from now. They

 

are staying with the basics of a music gathering and are not planning for a beer garden, food concessions, merchandise, or

 

portapotties. They are still looking at August 5th to 9th for hour-long concerts with reserved seating in small groups at

 

locations around Flin Flon where the required spacing is possible. By July 1st they expect the situation will be clear enough

 

to announce details. They add while we wait for August, the Blueberry Jam production team will work creatively with their

 

technical artists and performers to keep the spirit of Blueberry Jam alive through both pre-recorded events and live-

 

streamed events on their Facebook group. 

The Flin Flon Credit Union held their 80th Annual General Meeting Wednesday night by teleconference.

General Manager Kory Eastman reviewed the strong deposit growth in 2020 as total assets were up 15% to 68.7 million dollars and wealth management was up 16% ending with just under 17 million dollars in assets under management. Overall the loan portfolio fell 6.4% as demand lagged during the pandemic and government programs injected significant money into many businesses and households. Overall profitability was impacted by the slashing of interest rates in March of 2020 and the Credit Union recorded a net income after tax and allowance for bad loans of 152 thousand dollars. This was down slightly from the prior year but considering the year it was not unexpected. It was noted  with future employment figures becoming clear at Hudbay heading into 2022 and with vaccinations making their way into the public the outlook for lending is positive in our area and the Credit Union is expecting to make gains in all areas of operations moving forward through the pandemic recovery.

The Board of Directors saw a change as Ian Lee’s recent appointment to serve the remainder of Frank Fieber’s term was ratified  as Frank retired after 25 years on the Board.

Copies of the summary financial statements are available for download from the Flin Flon Credit Union website at www.ffcu.ca.

 

Reported Cases of COVID-19 Have Topped 40 Thousand in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reported 245 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 252.  They also reported one death in the Far North West zone. Of the new cases 80 are in Regina, 39 in Saskatoon, 32 in South Central and 25 in South East with lower numbers in other zones.  Of the total 40,177 reported cases 2538 are considered active, 37,163 people have recovered and 187 are in hospital with 45 in intensive care.  As of Sunday 6204 variants of concern have been identified with the highest numbers in Regina with 3511 and Saskatoon climbing to 639 and South Central to 472 with lower numbers in other zones.

 

Updated COVID-19 Restrictions are Coming to Manitoba.

Manitoba Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin announced with rapidly increasing COVID-19 case numbers especially in variants of concern we are at critical point.  He announced new public health orders effective Wednesday at 12:01 AM including no visitors will be allowed at private residences either indoors or outdoors with certain exceptions including one visitor for people who live alone, no indoor gatherings will be permitted and outdoor gatherings of up to ten persons will be allowed in public outdoor spaces only, cultural and faith based gatherings will be limited to 25 percent capacity or a maximum of ten people whichever is lower, spectators at outdoor sports and recreation facilities will be limited to one parent or caregiver per youth and retail stores are limited to 25 percent capacity with a cap of 250 patrons whichever is lower.

             

These new orders will be in effect for four weeks taking us past the long weekend.

             

Roussin announced 210 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon and one additional death in the Winnipeg health region.  Of the new cases 157 were in the Winnipeg region, 19 in Prairie Mountain and only 15 in Northern health with lower numbers in other regions.

Manitoba is expanding COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to include all adults who live or work in the Northern Health Region.

Health and Seniors Care Minister Heather Stefanson announced beginning today all adults who live and work in the north are eligible. She says this recognizes the increased risks facing people in the north particularly as variants of concern become more prevalent in Manitoba. All adults who live in the Northern Health Region are now eligible to make a COVID-19 vaccine appointment.  Anyone who regularly works in the region in any role is also eligible.

              

You can make an appointment by calling 1-844-626-8222 or online at protect.mb.ca.

You Can Hear From the Candidates Starting Tomorrow.

A Meet the Candidates forum is being held in advance of the May 12th by-election for two vacant City Council seats.  Due to COVID restrictions the forum will be recorded and made available for viewing starting tomorrow with a You Tube link posted on the City of Flin Flon Facebook page and on their Website www.cityofflinflon.ca.

             

The four candidates are Leslie Beck, Bill Hanson, Carrie Hume and Tom Therien. They will all face questions posed by moderators Kory Eastman and Dianne Russell on behalf of the City of Flin Flon and the Flin Flon and District Chamber of Commerce with an opportunity to outline their goals and plans for our City.

             

The by-election is being held on May 12th with advance voting on May 6th both in City Hall Council Chambers from 8 to 8 following public health guidelines.

 

Get the Vaccine That is Available to You.

That’s the message from the CEO for the Northern Health Region Helga Bryant.  She says we are now into two years of this pandemic but there’s a light at the end of the tunnel called the COVID-19 vaccine.  She explains when you get vaccinated you not only protect yourself but you protect your community and those around you so she encourages, in fact pleads with everyone to get vaccinated today with whatever vaccine is available to you.  She says we must get vaccinated and continue to practice the fundamentals – wear a mask, wash your hands and watch your distance adding let’s do this northern Manitoba and we will come out of this together.

             

Bryant asks you to watch the Northern Health Region website or Facebook page for all upcoming vaccination clinics.

 

Manitoba and Saskatchewan Reported the Same Number of New COVID-19 Cases Over the Weekend.

Manitoba public health reported 535 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend bringing the five day test positivity rate up to 7.1 percent.  They also reported three additional deaths with two in Winnipeg and one in Prairie Mountain health region.  Of the new cases 371 were in Winnipeg, 46 in Northern health and 59 in Prairie Mountain.  They reported five active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage,Sherridon district.  Of the total 37,598 reported cases 2024 are active, 34,607 individuals have recovered and 139 are in hospital with 37 in intensive care.  The total number of reported variants of concern cases is 1309 of which 558 are active with 30 reported so far in the Northern health region.

             

Saskatchewan health also reported 535 new COVID-19 cases bringing the seven day average of new cases to 251.  They reported four new deaths with two each in Regina and the North West zone.  Of the new cases 191 were in Regina, 97 in Saskatoon and 45 in North West with lower numbers in other zones.  Of the total 39,932 reported cases 2515 are considered active, 36,942 people have recovered and 186 are in hospital with 49 in intensive care.  6026 variants of concern cases have been reported with the Far North East still holding at two.

Reported Variants of Concern are Going Up in Southern Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reported 245 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 251.  They also reported one new death in the Regina zone.

             

Of the new cases 75 are in Regina. 40 in Saskatoon, 27 in South East, 23 in North West with numbers in the teens and single digits in other zones including Far North East with nine.  Of the total 39,392 reported cases 2463 are considered active, 36,458 people have recovered and 186 are in hospital with 52 in intensive care.  As of Thursday 5691 variants of concern have been identified in the province with the higher numbers still in Regina with 3286, South East 596, Saskatoon 576, South Central 444 and Central East 236 with much lower numbers in other zones.

Variants of Concern COVID-19 Cases are Climbing in Manitoba.

Manitoba public health had announced they were going to expand eligibility for COVID-19 vaccines in high priority communities. This afternoon they announced the first three communities are in Winnipeg including Downtown East, Point Douglas South and Inkster East.  All people 18 and over who live or work in specified jobs in the area are now eligible for immunization due to high case counts and socio-economic factors. They will release more communities early next week.

             

They reported 179 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 6.5 percent.  There were two additional deaths in the Winnipeg region with one linked to the B.1.1.7 variant of concern.  Of the new cases 103 were in the Winnipeg region and 29 in Northern health with lower numbers in other regions. Of the total 37,069 reported cases 1739 are considered active, 34,366 individual have recovered and a total of 1201 variants of concern have been reported with 499 active with the Northern health region at 25 reported cases.

The Active Families Benefit Has Returned in Saskatchewan.

The Saskatchewan government has introduced The Active Families Benefit Act 2021.  This legislation will re-establish the Active Families Benefit to increase youth participation in sports, culture and other recreational activities.

             

The benefit will provide families with an annual income of less than 60 thousand dollars with up to 150 dollars per year per child or 200 dollars per year for children who are eligible for the federal Child Disability Tax Credit.  This investment is part of the 2021-22 budget and will be retroactive to January 1st this year.  Parents who enroll their children in sport, culture and recreation activities in the 2021 calendar year are reminded to keep their receipts so they can claim the benefit with their 2021 tax filing.

             

The benefit is expected to assist 20,500 families or 34 thousand children at an investment of four million dollars per year.

 

A Drill Program North West of Flin Flon is Being Expanded.

Eagle Plains Resources has been notified by option partner Rockridge Resources that it has expanded the drill program underway at the Knife Lake Project 136 kilometers north west of Flin Flon.  The drill program has expanded from 16 hundred meters in six to eight drill holes to 21 hundred in 10 to 12 drill holes and will focus on discovering VMS style copper deposits along newly defined conductors as well as at depth underneath the Knife Lake VMS deposit.  They report Gilbert Lake North and South targets where very little historical exploration has been carried out have begun to be tested with encouraging mineralization intersected in the first few holes highlighted by 2.03 percent copper, 9.88 grams per tonne silver, 0.19 grams per tonne gold and 0.36 percent zinc over 37.6 meters.  They add there is strong discovery potential in and around the deposit as well as regional targets on the property.

New COVID-19 Cases are Spread Across Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reported 254 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 248.  They also reported one new death in the South Central zone.  Of the new cases 76 are in Regina, 31 in Saskatoon, 29 in South East, 19 in Central East, 17 in South Central and lower numbers in other zones including nine in Far North East. Of the total 39,137 reported cases 2505 are considered active, 36,182 people have recovered and 177 people are in hospital with 48 in intensive care.

             

As of Wednesday 5521 variants of concern have been identified with the larger numbers in Regina with 3206, South East 575, Saskatoon 560 and Central East 229 with lower numbers in other zones with Far North East remaining at two.

Manitoba Has Seen a Bump Up in COVID-19 Cases.

Manitoba public health reported 261 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 6.4 percent. They also reported one additional death from the Prairie Mountain health region linked to the Russell Health Centre.  Of the new cases 159 were in the Winnipeg region, 36 in Northern health, 31 in Southern health, 25 in Interlake Eastern and ten in Prairie Mountain health region.  They noted there are now only six active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon district. Of the total 36,890 reported cases 1682 are considered active and 34,246 individuals have recovered.  Ongoing reviews of active case information has allowed for the removal of an additional 910 cases from active to recovered.  The total of reported variants of concern cases is 901 with 277 active with 23 in the Northern health region.

Flin Flon RCMP Report Being Threatened at the Detachment.

At approximately 11:45 Monday night two RCMP officers heard strong rapid knocking at the detachment locked front door.  An officer opened the locked employee entrance and observed a man looking into the police vehicles and when he heard the door open he took an aggressive posture and ran towards the door which was closed before he gained access.  The officers exited from another door to attempt to apprehend the man.  They report he again advanced on the officers in an aggressive manner and did not follow the officers command to stop.  One officer deployed a Conducted Energy Weapon and they were able to gain control of the man who was taken into custody.

             

A 36 year old man from The Pas has been charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest and he had a warrant for his arrest for failure to comply with a probation order.

 

Today is Recognized as Earth Day.

The Flin Flon Environment Council is asking you to remember Earth Day today. Recycling Centre Administrator Deb Odegaard explains the day has evolved over the years.  She says Earth Day has been going since 1970 and the focus has changed from pollution and oil spills to now we’re more concerned about climate change and green house gases and really focusing on a circular economy where we recover and reuse as much as possible rather than the straight line that has been the way we’ve done things where you make something, use it up and throw it away.  She adds it’s very important that we do take care of our earth because it has to take care of us.

             

If you have any questions on Earth Day or recycling you can contact Deb at the Recycling Centre at 204-687-6169.

A Few Manitobans Continue to Face Fines for Private Gatherings.

The Manitoba government has provided an update on ongoing enforcement efforts to protect Manitobans from the spread of COVID-19.  At total of 121 warnings and 21 tickets were issued for the week of April 12th to 18th including fourteen 1296 dollar tickets to individuals for various offences, four 5 thousand dollar tickets to businesses and three 5150 dollar tickets to individuals under the federal quarantine act.  Eight of the fourteen 1296 dollar tickets issued were in relation to gatherings in private residences or outdoors.  They do note that most Manitobans are doing their part to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and are following the fundamentals.

             

Since enforcement efforts began in April 2020 a total of 3804 warnings and 1180 tickets have been issued resulting in more than 1.6 million dollars in fines to businesses and individuals.

The Vaccine Age is Lower in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health reports effective 8 o’clock tomorrow morning the eligibility in the provincial age based immunization program moves to age 44.  52 percent of Saskatchewan residents age forty plus have received their first dose,

             

They also reported 231 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 253.  They announced four new deaths all in the Regina region.  Of the new cases 75 are in Regina, 68 in Saskatoon, with much lower numbers in other zones. Of the total 38,883 reported cases 2551 are considered active, 35,863 people have recovered and 185 are in hospital with 49 in intensive care.

             

As of Tuesday 5302 variants of concern have been identified with 3118 in Regina, 543 in Saskatoon , 542 in South East, 417 in South Central and much lower numbers in other zones with Far North East remaining with two.

More People Are Eligible for Vaccines in Manitoba.

Front line police and fire fighters are now eligible to make appointments to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Manitoba.  Eligibility to be immunized at a super site or pop-up clinic has also been extended to include individuals aged 50 or older and First Nations people aged 30 or older.  The province is also planning to open vaccinations to anyone 18 and over living in high risk geographic areas with details to be released Friday. Eligibility for the AstraZeneca vaccine includes all individuals aged 40 and over.

             

Manitoba public health reported 162 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 6.3 percent.  They also reported one additional death in the Northern health region.  Of the new cases 76 were in Winnipeg, 30 in Northern health, 24 in Southern health, 19 in Prairie Mountain and 15 in Interlake Eastern regions. Of the total 36,632 reported cases 1833 are active and 33,838 individuals have recovered. A total of 774 variants of concern cases have been reported to date with 238 active and 18 are still reported in the Northern health region.

Roads, Water and Sewer and Airport Upgrades Were Part of Last Nights Flin Flon City Council Meeting.

Council agreed to enter into agreement with HMTQ Canada represented by the Minister of Transport for assistance through the Airports Capital Assistance Program for replacement of the Aerodrome beacon to maintain safety levels at the airport and the sand storage shed at the airport. They also agreed to apply for assistance from the Municipal Service Delivery Improvement Program for water and sewer improvements to replace wood shavings with proper insulation is sewer boxes as well as for road, sidewalk and gutter improvements by conducting an engineering study that would create a systematic approach for road maintenance and in identifying decision making to help the municipality in creating an operational and maintenance plan and in prioritizing their annual maintenance activities based on the available budget.

             

Council was advised by letter that United Steelworkers Local 7106 will not be hosting their annual Day of Mourning ceremony on April 28th due to COVID-19.  They have asked the City and businesses to lower their flags to half mast and ask people to take a moment of silence that day for all those we have lost.

The Manitoba Government is Looking for Input on K to Grade 12 Education From Students.

The provincial government is inviting students from all diverse backgrounds and all corners of the province to have a seat on the Minister of Educations Student Advisory Council.  Education Minister Cliff Cullen says the Council will enable youth to discuss and provide input on aspects of the education system and how they affect the children and young people who experience it today, create a network of students across Manitoba and provide feedback on department initiatives and work collaboratively with fellow council members.

             

The Council will be made up of up to 20 Manitoba youth aged 14 to 18 and will report directly to the Minister of Education.  Council members will serve a 12 month term starting in August.  In addition to meeting with the minister they will meet with government staff and education stakeholders.

             

For more information and how to apply visit www.bettereducationmb.ca.  The deadline for applications is May 10th, successful applicants will be announced in June and the Councils first meeting will be held in August.

 

Public Health Orders Have Been Extended in Saskatchewan.

Due to increased COVID-19 transmission risks throughout Saskatchewan the Chief Medical Health Officer has extended all current public health orders until May 10th.  The orders will be reviewed at that time.  The current orders restrict all private indoor gatherings to immediate households only and limit outdoor gatherings to a maximum of ten people.  Physical distancing of at least two meters between households must be maintained.

             

Saskatchewan public health reported 249 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 247.  Of the new cases 102 are in Regina and 55 in Saskatoon with numbers in the teens or single digits in other zones including Far North East with two.  Of the total 38,651 reported cases 2640 are active and 35,546 people have recovered.  195 people are in hospital with 51 in intensive care.  As of Monday 5,057 variants of concern cases have been identified in Saskatchewan with the largest numbers in Regina at 2990 followed by South East with 500, Saskatoon with 497 and South Central with 404 and lower numbers in other zones.

COVID-19 Outbreaks Have Been Declared Over at Facilities in Flin Flon and Thompson.

Manitoba public health reported 203 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to six percent.  They also reported one additional death in the Prairie Mountain health region.  Of the new cases 138 are in the Winnipeg region, 27 in Prairie Mountain and 25 in Northern health with lower numbers in other regions. The number of active cases reported in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon district is12.  The outbreaks at the Flin Flon Personal Care Home and the Grassroots Early Learning and Child Care Centre in Thompson have been declared over.  Of the total 36,470 reported cases 1783 are considered active and 33,727 individuals have recovered.  The total reported variants of concern stands at 774 with 238 active and 18 cases have been reported in the Northern health region.

The Important Role of Volunteers is Being Recognized This Week.

This is Volunteer Week in Canada and the 20th Anniversary of the International Year of the Volunteer.  Manitoba Lieutenant Governor Janice Filmon and Saskatchewan’s Russ Merasty joined other Vice-Regal colleagues in a release saluting the millions of Canadian volunteers who bring life and energy to our country.

             

They note the theme this year is Our Past Our Future recognizing the growth and development of the volunteer sector and setting the tone for imagining and creating opportunities for the next twenty years.  They state volunteers simple word yes to serving their communities creates a world of possibilities.  The affirmation enables tens of thousands of projects and organizations to enhance life in Canada.  It opens the doors for millions of personal encounters that add joy and encouragement to Canadians and it creates opportunities for volunteers themselves to enjoy learning, growing and feeling deep satisfaction.

The David Foster Foundation is looking to shine a spotlight on the importance of organ and tissue donation this month.

CEO Michael Ravenhill explains this is an especially vital issue for Canada as we have the lowest organ and tissue donor rates when compared with other developed countries.

 

Ravenhill adds the waiting list for organ and tissue transplants in Canada is lengthy. He says over 45 hundred Canadians are currently waiting for life saving organ transplants and each year upwards of about 16 hundred people are added to that wait list so you put it into perspective of those on the wait list the number of deaths work out be roughly five deaths per week and one death every 30 hours and in a country so blessed it just doesn’t need to happen, we can change those stats.

 

One organ donor can save up to eight lives and improve the quality of life for up to 75 people and it only takes two minutes to register.

 

Ravenhill encourages Manitobans to learn more about organ and tissue donation and consider becoming donors.

 

You do so by going to www.davidfosterfoundation.com.

COVID -19 Recoveries Have Topped 35 Thousand in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 243 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 253.  There were no new deaths reported.  Of the new cases 82 were in Regina, 47 in Saskatoon, 27 in North West and 22 in South East with numbers in the teens and single digits in other zones.  Of the total 38,401 reported cases 2626 are considered active and 35,310 people have recovered.

             

4833 variants of concern have been identified with 2919 in Regina, 472 in South East, 462 in Saskatoon, 391 in South Central and 107 in South West with lower numbers in other zones including Far North East with two.

           

The eligible age for booking vaccination appointments has been lowered to 48 years Saskatchewan.         

Stricter Restrictions Have Been Presented in Manitoba to Control Increasing COVID-19 Numbers.

Manitoba Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin says new public health orders are being introduced to slow the spread of variants of concern and protect Manitobans and the health care system against the third wave. He says contact tracing shows increasing numbers of gatherings so new restrictions effective immediately will include gathering sizes so that includes a return to allowing only two designated individuals per household again with certain exceptions, they’re limiting outdoor gatherings on public and private property to ten people maximum, they’re reducing capacity at faith based and cultural gatherings to 25 percent or 50 people whichever is smaller, wedding and funeral gathering sizes are again reduced to ten.  He adds in addition orders affecting retail locations and malls will come into effect at midnight on Wednesday when the capacity limits will reduce from 50 percent to one third or a maximum of 333 patron whichever is lower and these orders will be in effect until May 12th.

             

Roussin reported 108 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon with 63 in the Winnipeg region and only five in Northern health with numbers in the teens in other regions. No variants of concern numbers were released.

 

There is Help Available if You Are Living With an Ongoing Health Condition.

A Get Better Together program will be available in Flin Flon and The Pas starting on May 5th.  Regional Community Health Developer Christa McIntyre says it’s a free interactive group program that will be available online. She explains Get Better Together is a six session program and its designed for individuals living with any type of ongoing health issues and in the six weeks individuals can build confidence to better manage their illness through group support and discussion on a wide variety of topics such as healthy eating, physical activity, managing pain and fatigue, action planning and much much more.

             

The virtual Get Better Together program will begin online May 5th and run for six weeks. For information or to register in Flin Flon you can call Christa at 204-681-3145 and in The Pas call Russell at 204-627-6419.

Students Can Apply for a CIBC Bursary to That Includes Post Secondary Schools in This Area.

Applications for the CIBC Future Heroes Bursary Program are now being accepted. The program aims to help post secondary students realize their ambitions of pursuing a career in health care. Under the program 125 entrance bursaries will be awarded for the 2021-22 academic year.  Each bursary recipient will receive a total of 25 hundred dollars toward one academic year with the recipients receiving their funds this August.

             

Applications for first year students enrolled in eligible health care programs enrolled in one of 50 partner post secondary schools across Canada will be accepted until May 12th.  In Manitoba these schools include University College of the North, Assiniboine Community College, Brandon University, Red River College, University of Manitoba and St. Boniface University and in Saskatchewan Northlands College, Cumberland College, Parkland College, Saskatchewan Polytechnic, University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan.

             

For information Google CIBC Future Heroes Bursary Fund and click on 99 scholarships.

A COVID Outbreak at the Hospital in The Pas is Over While Younger People in Saskatchewan Have Been Vaccinated.

Manitoba public health reported 353 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.6 percent.  They also reported four additional deaths with two in Winnipeg and one each in Northern health and Prairie Mountain.  On Saturday the outbreak at St. Anthony’s Hospital Psychiatric Unit in The Pas was declared over.  Of the new cases 223 were in Winnipeg, 60 in Northern health, 30 in Prairie Mountain and 27 in Southern health.  There are 15 active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon district, 13 in Thompson Mystery Lake and 20 in The Pas, OCN, Kelsey.  On Saturday they noted a total of 710 variants of concern have been reported with 287 active with seven in the Northern region.

             

Meanwhile Saskatchewan reported 538 new cases of COVID-19over the weekend. They also reported three additional deaths with one each in Central East, North West and North Central zones.  Of the new cases 106 were in Regina, 41 in South East and 32 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including two in Far North East. As of Saturday 4664 variants of concern cases have been identified in the province with 2857 in Regina, 452 in South East and 441 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including two in Far North East.  They also note 49 percent of Saskatchewan residents age 40 plus have received their first dose of vaccine.

 

New Cases of COVID-19 are Spread Over Several Zones in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 221 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 264.  They also reported two additional deaths with one each in the North West zone and the South East zone.  Of the new cases 57 are in Regina, 25 each in Saskatoon, South Central and South East zones, 21 in North West, 18 in South West, 11 in Central East and single digits in other zones including five in Far North East.   Of the total 37,615 reported cases 2603 are considered active and 34,550 people have recovered.

             

The current number of variants of concern is 4326 with the larger number in the south and central zones including 2731 in Regina.  The Far North East still reports two cases.

             

They also report 58 percent of Saskatchewan residents ages 50 and over have received their first dose of the vaccine.

A COVID-19 Outbreak Has Been Declared in the Flin Flon Personal Care Home

Manitoba Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Jazz Atwal announced 127 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.1 percent.  He also announced no additional deaths.

 

Of the new cases 75 were in the Winnipeg region and 29 in Northern health with lower numbers in other regions.  An outbreak has been declared at the Flin Flon Personal Care Home and it has been moved to the critical level.  The total number of variants of concern cases in the province is now 704 with 315 active.  Atwal says they are reviewing current restrictions and they don’t want to have to introduce public health measures but they are working on finalizing their plans and they’ll be sharing information on any new restrictions in the coming days and what they introduce will depend on the numbers they’re seeing and the epidemiology of the cases over the next short period of time.

             

Eligibility to be immunized has been expanded to include individuals age 57 or older and First Nations people aged 37 and older and information is expected next week on expanding to include first responders and all adults living in communities with the highest risk including people with frontline public facing roles in those communities.

Public Health Orders Must Continue to be Followed.

Northern Health Region CEO Helga Bryant has given an update on the current COVID-19 situation in the region.  She explains we’re still having quite a few cases and of course the contacts that are associated with those cases but most of those continue to be recovering successfully at home on self-isolation so they certainly have capacity both in public health and in acute care and they wish the cases were less as that’s always their goal to get down to zero cases but they are doing fine in terms of their capacity.

 

Now that variant COVID-19 cases have been reported in the north Bryant stresses the importance of continuing to follow the public health orders in place even if you’ve been vaccinated.

 

She adds northerners have the opportunity to get ahead of the third wave of the virus given the size of our population and encourages residents to get the vaccine once they’re eligible.

 

That way we can avoid another round of strict protocols that would be put in place on households, schools, workplaces, and businesses during the summer months.

 

Free Computer Courses are Continuing for People in The North.

University College of the North in Flin Flon is offering free computer courses.  The College’s Craig Cowper says they have a number of introductory courses with their partner Tech Manitoba running through to the end of June.  He explains these are virtual courses that people can sign up and then do from their homes in the evenings.  He says they have courses like Introduction to Excel, Introduction to iPads, Intro to Digital Pictures and even one on email, social media and privacy and each one of these generally runs from 6 to 9 in the evening for three consecutive days and they’ve got staggered registrations throughout the months of April, May and June.

             

For information or to register for these courses you can contact Craig at the Northern Mining Academy at 204-687-7038 or email crcowper@ucn.ca.

With nearly one in two Canadians diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime the Canadian Cancer Society is asking for support to continue the fight against the disease.

Spokesperson Brad Stevenson says a major fundraiser for the Society is the Daffodil Month campaign explaining how this year’s campaign is looking.  He explains in a normal year the campaign might see tens of thousands of volunteers take to the streets across the county whether that means going door to door to collect donations, selling live daffodils or pins on the street or running fund raising events so the campaign had a major volunteer element in previous years. Obviously he says they’re not asking Canadian to join them that way this year, in fact they need to meet physical distance requirements so they will not be selling daffodils and their fresh flowers or canvassing door to door but donations have never been needed more so this year they’re asking Canadians to donate online, perhaps give a direct donation or create a digital daffodil in honor of someone they love by going to www.cancer.ca/daffodil.

 

Stevenson adds for more than 70 years the organization has been able to fund research, provide support systems for those who have cancer and shape health policies thanks to their fundraising efforts.

 

The Vaccine Age Continues to go Down in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 293 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 284.  They also reported two additional deaths with one each in Regina and the South East zone.  Of the new cases 87 are in Regina, 74 in Saskatoon, 24 each in North West and South East zones, 22 in Central East and single digits in other zones.  Of the total 37, 384 reported cases 2599 are reported active and 34,325 people have recovered.  They also report 4183 variants of concern have been identified to date.

             

They note in an effort to protect residents as quickly as possible the eligible age for booking vaccination appointments online or by telephone has been lowered to 48 years effective tomorrow.

A New Variant of Concern is in Manitoba.

           

Manitoba public health announced 149 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.3 percent.  They also reported one additional death in the Interlake Eastern region. They also advised the first case of the P-1 variant of concern first identified in Brazil has been confirmed in Manitoba. The total number of reported cases of concern is 647 of which 288 are active.

             

Of the new COVID cases 73 are in Winnipeg, 57 in Northern health and ten in Interlake Eastern with single digits in other regions.  Active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon district are now at 20.

             

Of the total 35,688 reported cases 1528 are considered active and 33,205 people have recovered.

A Drill Program Near Snow Lake Will Benefit From a Grant.

Rockcliff Metals has announced a six hole 18 hundred meter drill program has started at their Rail property 38 kilometers southwest of Snow Lake. The drill program will be subsidized by a 300 thousand dollar grant from the Manitoba Mineral Development Fund.  President Alistair Ross says a program such as the Mineral Development Fund is a great incentive and highlights the Manitoba government is aligned with their industry and is willing to assist in the discovery and mine development in the province.

             

The focus of the Rail drill program is to test geophysical VMS type anomalies south of the existing Rail Deposit with a focus on opportunities for significant expansion at the Rail Property.  The property is part of the Company’s Preliminary Economic Assessment that envisioned the development of the Tower high grade copper deposit in parallel with the refurbishment of the leased Bucko mill followed by the development of the copper rich Rail Deposit.

Self Isolating Was the Focus of The School Board Meeting This Week.

The Flin Flon School Division Trustees had a reminder for families and students at their latest meeting Tuesday.  If you’ve been travelling out of province you are to self isolate for two weeks upon your return.  If anyone is showing symptoms but is not known to be exposed they should isolate and get tested.  That person needs to isolate until they have a negative test result and are free of symptoms for 24 hours or ten days from symptom onset if they choose not to be tested.  Even if household members have no symptoms they should also isolate until a negative result is received.

             

The Board also passed a motion that the Division rarify the agreement in committee with the Flin Flon Teachers Association dated April 6th, 2021 subject to ratification by the Teachers Association. The second motion passed was to refer Bill 64 discussions to Strategic Planning.

Reported COVID-19 Cases Have Topped 37 Thousand in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 193 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 217. They also reported one death in the South East zone.  Of the new cases 66 are in Regina, 40 in Saskatoon, 20 in North East with numbers in the teens or single digits in other zones.  Of the total 37,085 reported cases 2525 are active and 34,102 people have recovered.  3901 variants of concern have been identified with the large numbers still in Regina with 2532, 378 in South East, 333 in South Central and 328 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including two in Far North East.

             

They also note in an effort to protect residents as quickly as possible the eligible age for booking vaccination appointment online or by telephone has been lowered to 52.  Fifty-five percent of residents age 50 plus have received their first dose.

Vaccine Eligibility is Being Reviewed in Manitoba.

Manitoba public health reported 80 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate down to 5.3 percent.  They also reported three additional deaths with one each in Prairie Mountain, Winnipeg and Southern health regions. Of the new cases 53 are in the Winnipeg region and 16 in Northern health with single digits in other regions.  The number of active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon District is 17.

             

The Medical Lead for the Vaccine Implementation Task Force Dr. Joss Reimer says the age for vaccine eligibility has been changed so people aged 59 and older and First Nations aged 39 and older are now eligible to make an appointment to get the vaccine.  She wants to assure Manitobans that they are also looking closely right now to determine how they can best protect people at risk of COVID-19.  She notes they already know that certain areas of the province are seeing higher case counts and rates of transmission.

             

Reimer says she wants to see everyone in the province vaccinated and they are reviewing the use of pop-up clinics.

             

Of the total 35,539 reported cases 1439 are active and 33,146 individuals have recovered.  The total variants of concern cases reported is now 560.

 

Hudbay Reports Positive COVID-19 Cases in Flin Flon and Snow Lake.

In a statement to media Hudbay confirms there are a total of seven positive cases of COVID-19 at their Snow Lake and Flin Flon operations with most in Snow Lake.  They are also aware of a number of potential additional cases for which test results are pending.  They add all affected individuals are in self-isolation as are all known close contacts and contact tracing is being conducted by public health.

             

Hudbay adds it appears workplace transmission is likely to have occurred and is investigating how this happened and will take all remedial steps to prevent further transmission.  They are also providing rapid PCR testing to all those who work in Snow Lake.

             

Operations at their Stall mill remain temporarily suspended due to not having sufficient team members to operate the plant which is expected to start up this week.

 

Now is the Time to Register Younger Students for Creighton School.

Creighton Community School is now accepting Pre-K and Kindergarten registrations for the 2021-22 school year. Principal Patti Korchinski explains Pre-K parents and Kindergarten parents can pick up applications for the 2021-22 school year at the school or they can get them off of their website at www.creightonschool.com. She notes Pre-K students should be born in 2018 and Kindergarten students should be born in 2016 for the fall.

             

Parents registering children will need a copy of the child’s birth certificate and their address and phone number.  The deadline to register is May 7th.

 

Manitoba Wants to Hear Input on Education in the Province.

Education Minister Cliff Cullen has announced the creation of a number of task forces and advisory panels that will help shape the future of Manitoba’s education system.  He says they want to engage Manitobans in the process.  He announced they will be launching a Parent Engagement Task Force made up of government MLAs and parents as well as school and community leaders.  He explained this Task Force will lead 15 regional town halls to hear Manitobans on how to improve parental voice and engagement and be respectful of their time.  He adds this group will also hold workshops with Parental Advisory Councils and school leaders to explore parental involvement.

             

The province is also creating advisory groups that will provide a representative voice in helping advance priority actions and he will be holding a Minister’s listening tour of the province in the coming months to hear from teachers and school leaders across the province.

 

A Change in Public Health Orders is in Effect in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan public health announced a change to the public health order will come into effect immediately limiting household bubbles to immediate households only for all of the province.  Worship gathering sizes will allow no more than 30 people effective this Friday.

             

Saskatchewan public health reported 228 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of new cases to 271.  Of the new cases Regina has 117, Saskatoon 44, North West 31 and Central East 22 with numbers in the teens and single digits in other zones. Of the total 36,892 reported cases 2555 are considered active and 33,880 people have recovered.  3813 variants of concern have been identified in the province with the larger numbers in Regina with 2505, 329 in South Central, 302 in Saskatoon and 111 in Central East with lower numbers in other zones.

 

A Variant of Concern Has Been Found in Northern Manitoba.

Manitoba public health reported 132 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to six percent.  They also reported two additional deaths in the Winnipeg region.  They reported the first case of a variant of concern in northern Manitoba without specifying where in the region.  The total number of variants of concern cases reported so far in the province is 479.

             

Of the new COVID cases 89 are in the Winnipeg region and 34 in Northern health with single digits in other regions. Of the total 35,459 reported cases 1438 are considered active and 33,070 individuals have recovered.

             

In partnership with the Chief and Council from Mathias Colomb Cree Nation provincial health officials have lifted the public health orders in place for that community.  All other general public health orders remain in effect for the community.

Local Area Artists are Reminded the Deadline is Approaching to Enter the Northern Juried Art Show.

The 44th annual Northern Juried Art Show is being hosted by The Pas Arts Council with the entry deadline May 1st. One of the organizers James Dean says the show will be online this year but is still open to Manitoba artists living north of the 53rd parallel including Creighton and Denare Beach.  He says artists are limited to three entries in a variety of categories including oil painting in one category, another is acrylic painting and mixed media, number three is water color, four is drawing and print making, five is digital arts and photography, three dimensional art like jewelry and stained glass with category two stone, wood, clay, metal as we know we have some carvers in the north, fiber arts is number eight and they are pushing their youth ages 13 to 17 as they really want the youth to take hold of the arts in their category.

             

There is also a special theme depicting Manitoba Waterways.  Registration forms have been mailed to artists who have entered in the past.  If you need a registration form and more information on how to enter online visit their website www.thepasartscouncil.ca.  Winners will be announced May 27th.

The Ronald McDonald House Charities in Winnipeg is increasing its capacity, which will benefit families living in northern and rural communities.

The new house will go from 14 bedrooms to 40 and will have larger rooms for family comfort as well as increased family programming which will support the physical and emotional wellbeing of families while their child goes through medical treatment

 

Patricia Kandiurin, a mother from Churchill whose family stayed at the Ronald McDonald House in Winnipeg when her youngest son was receiving treatment after he was born prematurely says she’s thrilled to hear the facility is increasing capacity.  She explains she’s really glad they’re expanding because the House was always full and when you have 14 families there it gets a little bit overwhelming sometimes but it’s so nice to have people there that you can talk to about what you’re going through and relate to them.  She adds it’s comforting and to have many more families like that it just makes the Ronald McDonald family bigger.

 

In 2019, 205 families were on the wait list for Ronald McDonald House with an average number of nights on the waitlist being four.

 

First Responders in Saskatchewan Will Soon Be Vaccinated.

Saskatchewan health reported 300 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 261. They also reported one death in the Regina zone.  Of the new cases 96 are in Regina, 72 in Saskatoon, South East and Central East 22 each with the remaining zones in the teens or single digits including Far North East with three.  Of the total 36,604 reported cases 2549 are considered active and 33,600 people have recovered.  Variants of concern total 3485 with the highest number in Regina with 2423, South East 348, South Central 309 and Saskatoon 181 with much lower number in other zones including one in Far North East.

             

Saskatchewan’s vaccine delivery plan will begin to target first responders including police officers, fire fighters and public health inspectors through mobile vaccination units once current priority populations are complete.

Manitoba Could Be Looking at Stronger Restrictions.

Manitoba Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin reported 114 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate up to 6.2 percent.  He reported no additional deaths.  Of the new cases 62 are in the Winnipeg region, 36 in Northern health and single digits in other regions.  Roussin says public health orders must be followed to keep numbers down.  He explains they have seen the early stages of a wave, they’ve tried to message how important it is for people to follow the fundamentals to reduce the amount of contacts but what they’ve seen in their contact tracing is just increasing numbers of contacts of cases, increasing issues with gatherings especially in private residences, increasing issues with returned travelers who don’t isolate as per the order now resulting in many other households as contacts.

             

Roussin adds we know what to do and if we don’t act now we’ll be back to much stricter restrictions very soon including possibly outdoor mask use and reduced gathering numbers.  Confirmed cases now total 35,327 and 1370 are active with variants of concern case numbers not released today.

Funding is Available to Install Electric Vehicle Charging Stations.

An organizing group is looking into holding a North American EV Rally in 2022.  The group’s Volker Beckmann from Thompson says Manitoba has one of the lowest electricity rates in North America and an abundant supply of clean sustainable energy yet Manitoba’s EV infrastructure is seriously lacking in the north. He explains even if they wanted an electric car in Flin Flon or Thompson for example from Tesla he could order one and they deliver it to your door but you wouldn’t be able to drive to Winnipeg because the distances in between are too far so we need somebody to take a look at that and there’s different ways that could be done in terms of getting EV infrastructure into the north and that’s missing right now unfortunately noting Manitoba is the furthest behind in EV development compared to the rest of the provinces in our country.

             

Beckmann says we need the province or Manitoba Hydro to support the installation of level three charging stations in each community to allow residents and visitors to reach all parts of the province and allow for events like an EV rally.  He adds there is funding available to communities for installations until June 22nd with information at www.nrcan.gc.ca.

 

A Drill Program West of Flin Flon Continues to Show Impressive Results.

Foran Mining Executive Chairman Dan Myerson reports outstanding drill results continue to amass from their largest drill program to date at McIlvenna Bay 65 kilometers west of Flin Flon on the Hanson Lake Road.  He says they continue to define a high grade copper and gold trend that includes 22 meters of continuous mineralization with 2.95 meters grading 6.88 percent copper equivalent of the Massive Sulphide lens and 18.05 meters grading 2.71 percent copper equivalent from the underlying Copper Stockwork Zone.  Myerson adds these holes continue to deliver beyond their expectations.

             

The winter drill program has been underway since mid-January. The infill segment of the 30 thousand meter program has focused on increasing Foran’s knowledge of the deeper parts of the deposit to convert the current inferred resources to the indicated category with all five holes drilled to date returning high grade results.

A COVID-19 Outbreak in The Pas Has Been Declared Over and Total Reported Cases in Saskatchewan Topped 36 Thousand.

Manitoba public health reported 247 new cases of COVID-19 over the weekend bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.9 percent.  They also reported one additional death in the Winnipeg region.  Of the new cases 136 are in Winnipeg and 60 in Northern health with lower numbers in other regions. The number of active cases in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridan district is reported to be 14. An outbreak has been declared over at St. Anthony’s General Hospital ACIU unit in The Pas. Of the total 35,213 reported cases 1312 cases are active and 32,952 individuals have recovered.  As of Saturday the total number of variants of concern was 412.

             

Saskatchewan health reported 557 new cases on the weekend bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 249.  They also reported one additional death in the Central East zone.  Of the new cases 120 are in Regina and 78 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including two in Far North East.  Of the total 36,305 reported cases 2504 are considered active and 33,345 people have recovered. As of Saturday 3271 variants of concern have been detected with larger numbers in Regina with 2271, 310 in South East, 286 in South Central and 171 in Saskatoon with lower number in other zones including one in Far North East.

 

A Record Was Set For Daily Vaccine Doses in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 358 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 242. They also reported six additional deaths with four in Regina and one each in Saskatoon and South East zone.  Of the new cases 108 are in Regina, 64 in Saskatoon, 63 in South East and 30 in North West with lower numbers in other zones. As of Thursday 3086 variants of concern have been identified with the largest numbers in Regina with 2189, South East 283, South Central 266 with much lower numbers in other zones.  Of the total 35,748 reported COVID cases 2337 are considered active and 32,959 people have recovered.

             

An additional 11,634 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been given which is the highest number of daily doses administered to date. A total of 256,280 vaccines have now been administered in Saskatchewan.

The Number of COVID-19 Case in Manitoba is Going up.

Manitoba public health reported 176 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.5 percent.  They also reported three additional deaths with two in the Winnipeg region and a man in his 20s in Northern health.  Of the new cases 84 are in Northern health and 77 in Winnipeg with single digits in other regions.  They announced 37 new cases of variants of concern with 31 in the Winnipeg region, three from Prairie Mountain, two in Interlake Eastern and one in Southern health bringing total cases to 376.

             

Medical Lead for the Manitoba Vaccine Implementation Task Force Dr. Joss Reimer says guidance has been updated for those eligible for the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine available at Pharmacies. She explained this vaccine is for people aged 55 to 64 who have a serious health or medical condition that puts them at higher risk for severe outcomes related to COVID-19.  She adds the vaccine can also be used for people who are 65 and older and they’ve asked the providers to prioritize those who may face challenges or barriers to going to a Super site or pop-up clinic.

             

Of the total 34,969 reported cases 1180 are considered active and 32,840 individuals have recovered.

The Budget Doesn't Always Reflect Actual Spending.

Flin Flon MLA Tom Lindsey says he is still reviewing the details in the Manitoba budget but he sees nothing specifically for the north.  He notes there is a difference in announcements in the budget and actual spending.  He explains when you look at the money they budget every year then you look at the money they actually spent its two entirely different figures.  He says they under spend several budgets so when they announce the funding it sounds really good but then at the end of the year when we look at what actually got spent there’s so many areas, post secondary education, health and on and on that get under spent so while they make the big announcements about big numbers that’s not what really happens and then we see the results, we see our health care in worse shape than it ever has been in the north.                   

             

Lindsey adds when it comes to the budget he was really looking for something more from the government.

It Was a Busy Month for both the Fire Department and Ambulance Service.

At their meeting Tuesday night Flin Flon City Council received the Fire Chiefs report for March.  It indicated six calls to assist EMS with patients.  There were also two clean up events as a result of extensive damage to the second floor rooms and office rooms of the Fire Hall that occurred when the roof drains leaked water from the roof through to the main floor.

             

On March 9th they were called to a trailer fire on Tamarack Drive where they found a fire had completely engulfed a home. They cleared homes in the area and extinguished the fire.  They were later called back when a small flame was seen on the roof in the attic space.  They put it out and searched for any other possible fire spread.

             

They were called to two motor vehicle accidents.  On March 22nd there was a two vehicle collision on Green Street where they did traffic control until RCMP and EMS arrived and on the 26th a vehicle had left the road and rolled down an embankment just south of Channing.  They found both occupants on the side of the road with minor injuries.

             

The total fire loss for the month was estimated at 220 thousand dollars.

The Age for a Vaccine in Saskatchewan is Dropping.

Saskatchewan health reported 205 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 226.  They also reported two additional deaths with one each in the South East and Saskatoon zones. Of the new cases 91 are in Regina, 32 in Saskatoon, 23 in South East and 21 in South Central with single digits in other zones including four in Far North East.  There are now 2948 variants of concern identified in the province with the larger numbers in Regina with 2107, Saskatoon 189, South Central 260 and South East 246 with lower numbers in other zones including four in Far North East.  Of the total 35,376 reported COVID cases 2141 are considered active and 32,788 people have recovered.

             

Effective 8 tomorrow morning Saskatchewan’s vaccine booking system eligibility will be expanded to individuals 55 years and older and you can book at appointments by calling 1-833-saskvax or online www.saskatchewan.ca/covid19-vaccine.

Public Health Orders in Manitoba Have Been Extended to the End of the Month.

Manitoba public health officials advise minor amendments have been made to current public health orders. The changes allow liquor cart sales on golf courses and increasing the maximum attendance at self-help meetings to 25 effective tomorrow.  Due to increasing test positivity rates and the risk posed by variants of concern in Manitoba at this time, public health orders are being extended to April 30th.

             

Public health announced 137 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the total reported cases to 34,793.  They also announced three additional deaths in the Winnipeg region.  Of the new cases 60 are in the Winnipeg region, 55 in Northern health and 18 in Prairie Mountain with lower numbers in other regions. The total number of cases of variants of concern is now 339 with 40 new cases reported with 35 in Winnipeg region, two each from Interlake Eastern and Prairie Mountain and one from Southern health region.

A Hudbay Project in Nevada is Showing a Promising Future.

Hudbay Minerals has announced the results of its preliminary economic assessment of its Mason copper project in Nevada United States.  They report the Mason project is a large greenfield copper deposit and is one of the largest undeveloped copper porphyry deposits in North America.  Mason’s measured and indicated resource estimates are approximately twice the size of Hudbay’s Constancia Peru and Rosemont Arizona deposits. The 2021 Mason preliminary economic assessment contemplates a 27 year mine life with average annual copper production of approximately 140 thousand tonnes over the first ten years of full production. The Mason deposit is planned to be a traditional open pit shovel/truck operation with a copper sulphide mineral processing plant.

             

Hudbay continues to compile and interpret historical data relating to its land package near Mason and once this is done they expect to complete a geophysical survey to refine exploration targets in preparation for a potential drilling campaign later this year.

Flin Flon Voters Will Be Going to the Polls Next Month to Elect Two City Councillors.

Four Candidates have filed papers to run for two vacant seats on Flin Flon City Council.  They include Leslie Beck, Bill Hanson, Carrie Hume and Tom Therien.  The winners will serve on Council until November of 2022.

            

 Voting will take place on Wednesday May 12th from 8 in the morning until 8 in the evening with all polls at Flin Flon City Hall Council Chambers. Advance voting will be held at the same location on Thursday May 6th from 8 to 8.  COVID-19 protocols will be in place at all polls similar to those in place in last fall’s by-election. Those who require mail in ballots may apply to the Senior Election Official no later than three days before Election Day to vote by mail.

            

The vacancies were created by the death of Councillor Colleen McKee and the departure from the city by Councillor Barry Kreller.

 

Public Health Orders in Saskatchewan Have Been Extended.

Saskatchewan health reported 189 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 226.  They also reported two additional deaths with one each in the North Central and Regina zones. The Chief Public Health Officer is extending the provincial public health orders announced March 9th to remain in effect until April 26th and will be reviewed at that time.

             

Of the new cases 74 are in Regina, 43 in Saskatoon, 23 in South East with lower numbers in other zones including one in Far North East.  They also reported 2830 variants of concern have now been identified in the province with 1986 in Regina, 178 in Saskatoon, 245 in South Central and 232 in South East with lower numbers in other zones including four in Far North East.

             

Of the total 35,171 reported cases 2138 are considered active and 32,588 people have recovered.

You Can Provide Your Input on the Manitoba Immunization program.

Two telephone town halls focused on the provinces COVID-19 immunization campaign will be held next week.  Participants will include Health Minister Heather Stefanson, Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin and Dr. Joss Reimer and Johanu Botha from the Vaccine Implementation Task Force.  The session for rural and northern Manitoba will take place Tuesday, April 13th at 6:30 pm.  Registration is open until noon on the day of the event. To participate you can register at engagemb.ca.

             

Meanwhile Manitoba public health reported 107 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 4.8 percent.  They also reported one additional death in Winnipeg region.

             

Of the new cases 51 are in Winnipeg and 49 in Northern health with single digits in other regions. They also announced 22 new variants of concern cases with 21 in the Winnipeg region and one from Prairie Mountain health bringing the total to 299. Of the total 34,656 reported COVID cases 1294 are active and 32,419 individuals have recovered.

The Bombers, Bylaws and Hens Were Part of the Flin Flon City Council Meeting Last Night.

Council passed on final reading a bylaw to approve and ratify an agreement between the City and the Flin Flon Bomber Hockey Club.  The bylaw given first reading at their last meeting related to just over 27 thousand dollars owed to the City as a result of the playoffs being cut short two seasons ago and no season this year.  The agreement specifies the amount will remain on the books but should the Club’s annual profits exceed 100 thousand dollars payment will be due on the outstanding balance.                                                                              

             

Council referred a letter to Engineering Services requesting a bylaw change to allow fowl animals in the city referring to a learning experience for children and the ability to raise hens and sell eggs locally.

             

Mayor Cal Huntley officially declared the week of July 2nd to 11th as Flin Flon Pride Week.       

Councilor Ken Pawlachuk says about a third of the properties in our city don’t have house numbers which is a problem in an emergency, about a third have no front steps and there are properties that are desperately in need of upgrading so it’s time to enforce city bylaws and take a stand against this. Mayor Cal Huntley suggested people should report properties in violation and encouraged Councilor Pawlachuk to develop any ideas he has on how to make it work.

Trivia Night Comes to Your Home Friday Night.

Flin Flon Recreation is offering a Zoom Trivia Night Friday.  Recreation Programmer Kelcey Andersen says one will be for kids and the second for all ages and how it will work is half an hour before the start time, so that’s 6:30 for the younger ones, 7:30 for older ones she’ll be posting a Zoom link up on Facebook.  So if you go to that link click in and you’ll join a Zoom meeting with her and the other participants and then you’ll need a different screen as they’re going to be using an awesome program called Kahoots so the quiz will be run through there and she’ll be able to talk you through it at that point as well.

             

The link will be found on the City of Flin Flon Facebook page. If you need more information you can email Kelcey at kandersen@flinflon.ca.

Reported COVID-19 Cases are Approaching 35 Thousand in Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan health reported 217 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 226.  They also reported three additional deaths with two in Regina and one in the North Central zone.  Of the new cases 97 are in Regina, 36 in South East, 30 in Saskatoon, 17 in Central East with lower numbers in other zones.  Of the 34,980 reported cases 2195 are considered active, 32,342 people have recovered and 202 are in hospital with 44 in intensive care.

             

As of Monday 2677 variants of concern have been identified in the province with 1898 in Regina, 232 in South Central, 214 in South East and 163 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including four in Far North East.

             

One out of every ten Saskatchewan residents in their 50s, one third of residents in their 60s and more than two thirds of resident in their 70s have now received their first dose of vaccine.

Travel Restrictions Are Important to the North.

Manitoba Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin announced 62 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.3 percent.  He also reported two additional deaths with both in the Winnipeg region. Of the new cases 33 are in Winnipeg and 23 in Northern health with single digits in other regions.  He reported five new cases of variants of concern all from the Winnipeg health region bringing the total in the province to 275.

             

Roussin reminded residents of the importance of restrictions on travelling to the north.  He explained we want to avoid non-essential travel period but people who are travelling especially to areas where we know transmission is at increased risk, have crowding issues, access to health care issues in those areas so we want to be extra careful so he has the northern travel restrictions and also the advice to get tested prior to travelling to the north.  He adds it’s important to try and keep numbers down especially as we’re seeing an increasing proportion of our cases being related to variants of concern that we need to keep those variants out of our northern communities.

             

Of the total 34,549 reported COVID cases 1255 are considered active and 32,352 individuals have recovered.

You Have Easy Access to Local Arts and Crafts.

The Flin Flon Arts Council introduced their Uptown Emporium to members of the community last week. The Council’s Crystal Kolt explains they held a very successful annual Arts and Crafts Sale online before Christmas and that led to the Emporium with online as well as in person shopping for local and regional arts and crafts.  She says it did show them that there were a lot of people during COVID that were still making products and there were a lot of people still looking for something unique and it’s been part of the Flin Flon Arts Council’s five year plan for  a few years already to be able to have a presence on Main Street and to really have all the specialty products that are made in our communities.

             

Kolt adds there are always new vendors coming into the Uptown Emporium.

             

You can shop in person at 78 Main Street from 10 to 5 Tuesday to Saturday, online at www.uptownemporium54.com or phone 204-687-4913 with curbside pick up and delivery as well.

Pop Up Clinics Have Been Postponed in Manitoba Including Flin Flon and The Pas.

Delays in two deliveries of Moderna vaccine to Manitoba from the federal government will affect upcoming appointments at pop-up clinics. A delivery of 28,300 doses expected the week of March 22nd did not arrive until April 3rd.  In addition 28,400 doses expected this week will not arrive until next week.

             

All 24 pop-up clinics scheduled from April 12 to 15 throughout the province will need to be rescheduled due to this supply disruption with approximately 7200 people affected. This includes Flin Flon on April 13, 14 and 15th and The Pas April 14th.  The province will be reaching out to affected people by phone, email and text to advise them of this change.  Individuals may choose to book at appointment at a super site or wait for another pop-up to be re-scheduled.  These pop-up clinics will be re-scheduled based on vaccine deliveries.

Manitobans have the opportunity to highlight the worst roads in the province thanks to CAA's Worst Roads campaign.

In a press release the company states the campaign highlights the need for all levels of government to invest in the quality of our roads.

 

The Government and Community Relations Manager with CAA Manitoba Heather Mack says people can nominate a road for a number of reasons.  She explains you can really choose any type of issue so it could be if you are a cyclist you have a huge challenge and it could be a pothole, it could be something missing from infrastructure like a curb that’s collapsed, it could be something that’s unsafe so it’s up to you to decide how you define the worst road but they want to hear about all of them.

 

Mack says nominations for the worst road run until April 18th at www.caaworstroads.com with the results of the campaign likely released sometime in May.

A COVID Outbreak Was Declared at the Hospital in The Pas Over the Weekend While Cases Again Jumped in Saskatchewan.

Manitoba public health reported a total of 316 new cases of COVID-19 Friday to Monday bringing the five day test positivity rate to 5.1 percent.  They also reported three additional deaths with two in Winnipeg and one in Prairie Mountain region.  An outbreak was declared Saturday at St. Anthony’s Hospital Psychiatric Unit in The Pas.  Of the new cases 150 were in Winnipeg, 113 in Northern health and 38 in Prairie Mountain with lower numbers in other regions.  Nine active cases are reported in the Flin Flon, Snow Lake, Cranberry Portage, Sherridon district.  Of the total 34,487 reported cases in the province 1280 are considered active.  The total of screened or sequenced cases relative to the variants of concern is 270.

             

Meanwhile Saskatchewan health reported 974 new cases Friday to Monday bringing the seven day average of daily new cases to 218.  They also reported five additional deaths with two each in Regina and Saskatoon and one in South East zone. Of the new cases 461 were in Regina, 158 in Saskatoon, 91 in South East, 77 in South Central with lower numbers in other zones including 16 in Far North East. Of the total 34,763 reported cases 2202 are considered active. As of Sunday 2453 variants of concern have been identified by screening with the largest numbers in Regina with 1758, South Central 204, South East 195 and Saskatoon with 151with the Far North East reporting four.

A Small Number of New Variant Cases Were Detected in Both Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Manitoba public health reported 59 new cases of COVID-19 this afternoon bringing the five day test positivity rate to 3.9 percent.  They also reported two additional deaths with one each in the Northern and Southern health regions.  Of the new cases 32 are in the Winnipeg region and 16 in Northern health with single digits in other regions. With seven cases removed due to a data correction the total number of reported cases is 34,174 with 1179 cases active, 32,058 individuals have recovered and 148 are in hospital with 30 in intensive care. They also reported three new screened or sequenced cases of variants of concern have been detected all in the Winnipeg health region bringing the total number of variant cases to 270.

             

Meanwhile Saskatchewan health reported 199 new cases bringing the seven day average of new cases to 206.  Of the new cases 115 are in Regina, 28 in South East and 14 in Saskatoon with lower numbers in other zones including three in Far North East.  Of the total 33,789 reported cases 1949 are considered active, 31,404 people have recovered and 193 are in hospital with 34 in intensive care.  As of Thursday a total of 1682 variants of concern have been identified by screening with the largest number in Regina with 1348, south central with 129, South east with 109 and Saskatoon with 53.  The province is expanding vaccine eligibility to people 58 and older as of tomorrow.

Nordic Minerals Has Expanded Its Mineral Holdings Near Flin Flon.

The President of Nordic Minerals has announced the acquisition of a new 48 hectare mineral claim at Douglas Lake.  The claim adjoins Nordic’s 449 hectare mineral claim located in very close proximity to Hudbay Minerals Triple Seven Mine at Flin Flon.  They report previous exploration on the mineral claims has resulted in the Saskatchewan Mineral Deposit Index recognizing two mineralization occurrences with a drill hole showing copper and zinc and a trench showing copper, gold and silver.

             

Nordic has recently received drilling permits and intends to undertake a drilling program at its Douglas Lake Saskatchewan property this summer.

 

The Library Wall Can Be Your Canvas.

The Flin Flon Arts Council is looking for artists for the Pine Root Mural Festival.  The Council’s Danielle Yungworth says they are looking for a mural for the Flin Flon Public Library wall facing the Post Office.  She explains if somebody wants to submit just a design, if somebody wants to apply as a solo artists to come paint, if they want to apply as a group of five or three they are completely open so all the information is on the Arts Council Facebook page, on the Pine Root Mural Festival Facebook page and the Public Library Facebook page.

             

The application form can be found on the Arts Council website www.flinflonartscouncil.ca along with other information.  The deadline is 4 pm April 16th.  This is the Festival’s second project following the raven painting along the Perimeter Highway last year.

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