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Onigaming First Nation rocked by suicides

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Compiled by Shari Narine







Onigaming First Nation declared a state of emergency Oct. 31 following the suicide of an 18-year-old man in the community. The most recent death is the fourth suicide on the reserve in the past year, along with a number of suicide attempts. By declaring a state of emergency, the band council and Grand Council Treaty 3 say they are calling on governments, health care providers, the justice system and social services agencies to find ways to deal with the “crisis situation” in Onigaming. Chief Kathy Kishiqueb said both the federal and provincial governments know about the state of emergency and she has been in talks with Ontario Children and Youth Services minister. “We have to work collectively and to encourage our children, our youth, and our people to deal with their problems in more healthy ways. We have to give our children and youth their voice,” said Ontario Regional Chief Stan Beardy.