In the wake of recent deaths and self-harm-related injuries, on July 14 Tataskweyak Cree Nation declared a state of emergency for the community of Split Lake, located approximately 140 kilometres northeast of Thompson, Man.
“I am extremely saddened to hear about the situation in Tataskweyak Cree Nation,” said Grand Chief Garrison Settee in a press release. “My thoughts are with the community as they grapple with another loss of a young person due to suicide.” Nine youth have died of suicide in the community over the last 14 months, four of which occurred in the last two months.
Tataskweyak Cree Nation is calling on agencies including Health Canada, Indigenous Services Canada, the provincial government and the RCMP for additional support for mental health care and long-term solutions.
“We have reached a breaking point and our community is under crisis with alcohol and drugs contributing to it,” reads a July 14 press release from the nation.