Memo: Public Health Enforcement Update

News Type: 
Advisories

YELLOWKNIFE 29 July 2020 – In a pandemic, it’s not just an individual or a friend being put at-risk by not following the rules – it’s everyone.

The Compliance and Enforcement Taskforce continues its work to raise awareness with individuals and organizations on the Public Health Orders, and take appropriate action to gain compliance.

The territory’s Compliance and Enforcement Taskforce has issued one Summary Offense Ticket Information charge for an offense under the Public Health Orders since last week.

On July 22, the individual was charged for failing to follow self-isolation protocols. The ticket was issued in the South Slave region. The resulting ticket was $1725 – which includes a $225 Victims of Crime Surcharge.

No further details on location or name will be announced to prevent undue stigma and public-shaming due to the comparatively low number of charges.

This brings the territory’s total of Summary Offense Ticket Information charges laid for non-compliance with public health orders to eight.

Licence Plates And You

A common concern the enforcement team is hearing relates to out-of-territory license plates.

We appreciate the vigilance of residents who have taken the time to report to our team and share on social media. It’s heartening to see so many joining the push to keep our territory safe.

However, the many incidents we have investigated related to these have not resulted in a charge.

This is because by-and-large, folks seem to be following the rules. Anyone can come to our territory to work, live or study. But like your friends or neighbours who may have travelled down to Alberta or BC recently, they must self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival with very few exceptions.

They are being provided with direction to head straight to their place of isolation or to an isolation centre. They are told that if they do need to stop for something essential like gas, they must keep strict physical distance. And in the case they don’t show up at an isolation centre, we are able to follow-up because of the information we collect.

And remember – once someone has completed their self-isolation period, they are allowed to travel within the territory just like you.

So be kind to each other – because no matter where we’re from, we’re all facing this pandemic together.

Reporting Still Important

This isn’t to say that we don’t want to hear from you if someone’s not following the rules.

There are a few things we find particularly troubling:

  • Not practicing physical distancing on the way to self-isolation – like in gas stations, for example.
  • Not following self-isolation protocols.
  • Misrepresentation of purposes – like by indicating their purpose as work or traditional harvesting and instead participating in leisure travel and putting smaller communities at risk.
  • Entering communities and socializing on-the-way to self-isolation.

Take Control in the Situation

If you witness anything like this, you do have control in the situation.

If you feel comfortable doing so, remind them politely that rules are in-place for a reason, and that our territory is working hard to rise to the challenge of COVID-19.

If you don’t feel comfortable, call 1-833-378-8297 or email ProtectNWT@gov.nt.ca to file a complaint. Include as much information as possible in your complaint. We take these investigations very seriously.

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