March 24, 2021




Our beer vendor has now been open for two and a half weeks. During that time violent assaults and assaults with weapons have both increased by 100%. There has also been over a 60% increase in people being lodged in the RCMP’s cells. Additional people have had to be secured elsewhere due to COVID restrictions and still others have been transported to Thompson General Hospital. CFS has had to intervene in a number of situations to protect our children and youth.

If our community wants to continue to have a beer vendor the VIOLENCE MUST STOP NOW. Being able to buy beer locally does not mean that there can be a free for all. Violence is never acceptable and neither is neglect of children. We have never told people they can’t drink. However, anyone who drinks must be prepared to drink responsibly. This means that if our community is to continue to enjoy the privilege of having services similar to other communities, we must act responsibly in using those services and the products purchased, in this case beer.

Given the violence that has been occurring, we are going to reduce the vendor hours for the next two weeks to give people a chance to reflect and change their behaviour. If things do not improve then we will have to discuss whether there should be a vendor in our community. The new hours are as follows:

  • Thursday, March 25th and Friday, March 26th – CLOSED
  • Saturday, March 27th – OPEN from 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm
  • Sunday, March 28th – CLOSED
  • Monday, March 29th, Wednesday, March 31st and Friday, April 2nd (Good Friday) – CLOSED
  • Tuesday, March 30th, Thursday, April 1st and Saturday, April 3rd – OPEN from 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm
  • Sunday, April 4th and Monday, April 5th (Easter Sunday and Easter Monday) – CLOSED

We are still in the middle of a pandemic. The events of the past two weeks have stressed our service capacity beyond its limits. If COVID should hit the community we would not have the capacity to deal with it because of the number of violent incidents. The violence in our community is rising at the same time that the number of variants are also rising everywhere. While the variants are not yet in northern Manitoba, more and more people have been asking to travel to Winnipeg where the variants are now in schools and personal care homes as well as the general population. Hundreds of people have gone to Thompson over the past month. Until 70% to 80% of the Canadian population is vaccinated there will continue to be significant risk of transmission of the virus.

Recent data indicates the variants are hitting younger people harder and many are ending up in hospital and in ICUs with severe illness. What we have been seeing over the past couple of weeks is a recipe for disaster to hit our community just as we are rolling out the vaccines this week and next. Getting everyone vaccinated is critically important for trying to get our lives back to normal.

Therefore, if you have not done so, please fill out a consent form for the vaccine (which is similar to the form completed for all vaccines) and make arrangements to attend the Multi-Plex. We are inquiring about clinics for our Citizens who do not live in the community. In the meantime, we have arranged for almost 1600 doses of the Moderna vaccine for vaccinations in the community starting tomorrow. Let’s get those doses into arms quickly.

Remember Health Canada and the National Advisory Committee on Immunization have reviewed all the data and concluded that all of the vaccines that have been approved are safe and effective in the fight against COVID-19. The benefits of being vaccinated far outweigh any risks.

The health and safety of each of us is the responsibility of all of us. Stay well, get vaccinated and help us get back to normal. Ekosani!