‘Ottawa’ Ontario’s Emergency Team to Remain in Attawapiskat
The Ontario government says it will extend the stay of its Emergency Medical Assistance Team in Attawapiskat and increase psychosocial supports in the beleaguered community.
The team, deployed a month ago after the remote community declared a state of emergency because of mass suicide attempts, was due to leave this week, something that concerned Chief Bruce Shisheesh.
He wrote on Twitter that the community still needed the team’s support, saying it would be back to “square one” if it left. “We still have 50 identified high-risk cases.”
Ontario Health Minister Eric Hoskins said in a statement that he spoke to Shisheesh on Monday afternoon “and assured him of our ongoing commitment to Attawapiskat.”
The EMAT team — which was deployed for the first time for a mental health emergency — will remain in Attawapiskat, Hoskins said, and will work with local health authority staff to “ensure that they have the resources they need to care for the community.”