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Haida-Gwaii shuts down visitor access to prevent spread of COVID-19

Last Updated Mar 18, 2020 at 6:08 pm PDT

The Gwaii Haanas legacy totem pole is seen after being raised in Windy Bay, B.C., on Lyell Island in Haida Gwaii on Thursday August 15, 2013. Despite a declining population, the archipelago's largest village of Queen Charlotte has almost no vacancy and both council and a housing report have pointed to Airbnb and increased tourism as a problem. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Summary

Haida-Gwaii is now self isolating, cutting off travel to the island to those who don't live there

Those who do reside there will be able to return home, and essential services won't be impacted by the decision

HAIDA-GWAII (NEWS 1130) – The island of Haida-Gwaii is now self-isolating in light of the global pandemic.

The Council of the Haida Nation is cutting off all travel for non-residents to the island indefinitely.

In a release, the council is also advising against all leisure travellers, to try to prevent anyone with the virus from coming to the island.

Given the remote geography, culture and limited healthcare resources the decision was made to protect Island citizens as well as Elders, language speakers and knowledge holders.

This won’t effect those who would be returning home to the Island, or impact any essential services.