COVID-19 travel restrictions relaxed in Inuit region of Atlantic Canada
Travel between communities in the Inuit region of the Atlantic Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador is now permitted as of June 3, the local government said on Wednesday.
The Nunatsiavut Government put the travel ban in place on March 19 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the time it called for a stop to travel to and from the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area, as well as between Nunatsiavut’s communities, whether by airplane or by snowmobile, unless it was “absolutely necessary.”
But as COVID-19 cases continue to fall in the province, the government said non-essential intercommunity travel could again be permitted, as long as those travelling had not been directed to self-isolate or self-monitor because of coronavirus symptoms.
Labrador has had a total of six confirmed COVID-19 infections since the pandemic began, but all individuals have since recovered. There are currently no active cases.
Travel restriction from outside region still in effect
Public health directives will still need to be respected, authorities say.
“The Nunatsiavut Government continues to remind all travelers to practice generally-accepted public health protocols to help prevent potential exposure and spread of COVID-19,” the news release said.
The government said it was still discussing when and how the restriction on non-essential travel to the Labrador Inuit Settlement Area from outside the region should be lifted.
Nunatsiavut’s population of 2,560 is spread out between five communities along the Atlantic coast: Nain, Hopedale, Makkovik, Postville and Rigolet.
Write to Eilís Quinn at eilis.quinn(at)cbc.ca
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