Leave no one behind - support Saskatchewan's most vulnerable people during COVID-19

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Dear Premier Moe, 

The COVID-19 crisis has been one of the most challenging situations that the people of Saskatchewan, Canada, and the world have ever dealt with. From each individual right up to the largest corporations and government institutions, we are all having to re-arrange our lives to adapt to the new reality. 

Your government has done a good job in your response to the crisis in many ways. You have communicated the seriousness of the virus and the importance of social distancing and isolation. You have acted quickly and decisively when it has come to limiting public gatherings and closing down non-essential services and businesses. It appears that with the help of the people of Saskatchewan, your actions are significantly slowing-down the spread of COVID-19 and saving many lives in the process. 

But our work is not yet done. We need to make sure that nobody is left behind in our response, including our communities’ homeless and most vulnerable members. They are still at risk because their basic needs are not being met. As we are learning, when one group is at risk, we are all at risk from COVID-19.  

Community organizations and leaders in Saskatoon and across the province have been working with each other to a degree never seen before. These efforts are helping to make sure that lines of communication are open and clear, resources are used wisely, and that challenges and opportunities are identified early. These front-line organizations and workers also have their fingers on the pulse of what is happening at the ground level and are able to react quickly to what our communities need most.

Right now, we are asking that you listen to these front line leaders and rise to meet the challenge by taking quick, strong, and decisive action on the requests outlined in the March 30 letter issued by Mayor Clark, Councillor Gough, City of Saskatoon Director of Emergency Planning, Saskatoon Tribal Chief, Chief of Police, Chief of Fire, Board of Police Commissioners, President of University of Saskatchewan, CUMFI, and the Safe Community Action Alliance. 

  1. Increase funding support for urban Indigenous populations.
  2. Approve “block funding” for all existing shelter services so that they can separate and physically distance clients and decreased transmission within Saskatoon Shelters
  3. Immediately implement a hotel-based shelter service in collaboration with the community agencies who serve the vulnerable sector, the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Provincial Government
  4. Resolve confusion about reporting processes, wait-times, available resources, and options for alternate hotel accommodations and costs.

Together we can survive this crisis and come out the other side stronger and healthier. 

Thank you for your consideration.