Nunavut mine goes into “lockdown” to reduce risk of COVID-19 – by Jane George (Nunatsiaq News – March 29, 2020)

Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. says its Meliadine mine in Nunavut is in “complete lockdown” for the next 28 days, with no movement of personnel except for emergency situations, to help prevent the potential spread of COVID-19.

The measures, which take effect on Monday, March 30, were announced by the company following a social media uproar created by an employee of one of the mine’s contractors who made dismissive remarks about the mine’s efforts to screen for the new coronavirus.

That’s although the company told Nunatsiaq News that the measures had already been decided on beforehand. These are the comments that angered many in Rankin Inlet who have been worried about the spread of the new coronavirus into their community of about 3,000. (Screen shot)

The spark for this weekend’s renewed outrage was a widely circulated exchange between an employee of Outland Québec-Tangmaarvik, which supplies kitchen and catering services at Meliadine, and a Facebook friend.

The employee said that he had just returned from the mining camp and that he had not been tested for COVID-19, “so the coronavirus is ganna spreand all over nunavut lol..” The contractor has since fired the employee.

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