As a senior, Premier Caroline Cochrane will be an early receiver of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine, but she is encouraging anyone who is eligible to get the shot as soon as possible.

Premiere Caroline Cochrane meets with border patrol at the NWT-Yukon border on Jan. 6. Cochrane said she wanted to get a first-hand view of how people coming into the territory are screened for Covid-19.
Photo courtesy GNWT

“I know that people are afraid and there’s all kinds of thinking out there,” she said. “But we need that herd immunity. When my time comes, we’re not bumping cues, it’s being doled out according to priority.

“But I’m over 60 and my time is coming soon, and I will be in that line-up, and I’m hoping that as many people as possible, at least 70 per cent of our population, will take the vaccines.

“It’s the light at the end of our tunnel.”

With vaccines beginning to roll out across the territory, Cochrane said she was encouraged by the intake so far.

Cochrane made the comments to Inuvik Drum following a recent trip through the Beaufort Delta Jan. 6 to see how the border control is handled first-hand.

She said she was impressed with how the system was set up and how the officers were all residents of the area.

“The biggest thing that stuck out for me was the staffing,” she said. “We have all Indigenous people working at the Yukon-Beaufort Delta border. Not only that, but the most amazing thing for me was they were all hired from Tsiigehtchic and Fort McPherson.

“That’s what we want to see.”

The trip is part of a series of visits she’s making around the territory to get a better grasp of how things are organized at the ground level.

She noted it was important to see how the GNWT works at the ground level.

“In the house there was a question on the border and the operation,” she said. “So I made a commitment that I would go down and see the Alberta border, but I always think that it’s important as a minister to know what we’re dealing with in terms of our programs and services, so when I made that commitment I decided I would also make the commitment to go up to the Yukon border.

“It’s so I can see the operation for myself, get an understanding, talk to the staff and actually see if operations need to change or are sufficient as they are.”

Cochrane added a perk of getting around is seeing the different regions of the territory, which she noted was very different from place to place.

She added the area around the Beaufort Delta was unique, and there was nothing like it further south in the territory.

“The little bit of sun you did have was amazing,” she said. “It was absolutely phenomenal. One thing I can say about the north is every single region that I’ve travelled to is spectacular in its own way and none of them are the same.

“It’s always a treat to go up to the Beaufort.”

Eric Bowling

Your source for all things happening in the Beaufort Delta. Eric jumped at the chance to write for the Inuvik Drum after cutting his teeth in Alberta. He enjoys long walks, loud music and strong coffee....

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