The Thompson Local News

Ashton calls on federal government and employers to do more for northern Manitoba workers amid COVID-19

MP Niki Ashton is calling on the federal government to take more measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in northern Manitoba workplaces.

 

Ashton says Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller needs to address three key issues to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the north. Those are having broader access to testing sites in the region, addressing the need for equipment, and infrastructure for self-isolation.

 

Ashton also touched on the report by a Winnipeg newspaper that Manitoba Hydro has flown at least five possibly symptomatic employees out of the Keeyask construction site as a precaution, which has surrounding First Nations communities calling for construction to be suspended.

 

"What we're hearing from government now is that we shouldn't be involved in gatherings of more than 50 people. Keeyask is an inclosed living space of 1, 300 people. People that are travelling from across the country."

 

She adds that this isn't the time to give the benefit of a doubt, saying "because five people are shipped out, everything is okay".

 

A press release from Manitoba Hydro has stated that they are scaling back work and have suspended travel in and out of the Keeyask site, which is to be completed by Mar. 21. The company adds that for employees who remain at Keeyask, it is continuing to follow the measures outlined by the provincial and federal governments and the World health Organization.

 

For the full interview with Ashton, tune in to Thompson Today at 12:40 and 5:10 this afternoon.

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