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Prime Minister announces new supports for Indigenous peoples and communities

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The health, safety, and well-being of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples is a priority during the global COVID-19 pandemic. The Government of Canada will continue to support Indigenous peoples and communities during this time to help contain the spread of the virus and keep people safe.

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced over $200 million in new funding to provide support to Indigenous peoples and communities. The funding includes:

  • $120.7 million to help Indigenous early learning and child care facilities safely operate during the pandemic. The investment is expected to support over 35,000 First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nation children who access culturally relevant Indigenous early learning and child care programs. This funding will be co-managed through existing early learning and child care partnerships. It will assist Indigenous communities in addressing their most critical needs, including implementing enhanced cleaning protocols, hiring additional staff, and offering training.
  • $59 million for First Nations to adapt their on reserve community infrastructure. First Nations can use the funds to implement public health and safety measures in community buildings by adding hand washing stations, buying hand sanitizers, personal protective equipment for staff, and cleaning supplies, installing signage and barriers to promote physical distancing, and doing safety checks and upgrades to existing ventilation systems.
  • $25.9 million to provide immediate support to Indigenous post-secondary institutions in 2020-21. The investment will help these institutions address increased costs and financial uncertainty resulting from the pandemic, including putting in place supports to retain staff, automating services to process student applications and registrations, adapting courses for online learning, and implementing public health and safety measures for in-person services.

The Government of Canada continues to take a distinctions-based approach to address the needs of Indigenous peoples and communities. Today’s investment builds on the work already being done through the Indigenous Community Support Fund, as well as additional funding provided for communities and organizations working with Indigenous peoples living in urban areas and off-reserve.

We will continue to work with Indigenous peoples and communities to help them prevent the spread of COVID-19, keep people safe, and address the ongoing impacts of the pandemic.

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