Indigenous Services Canada has provided an update on its progress in lifting long-term drinking water advisories on reserve for October.

In October, three long-term drinking water advisories were lifted, and one long-term advisory was added on public systems on reserve:

  • One long-term drinking water advisory was lifted by Alexis Creek in British Columbia on October 12th. Upgrades were made to the pump house and an ultraviolet disinfection system was installed to restore clean water to the community. The advisory had been in place since April 1999.
  • One long-term drinking water advisory was lifted by Fond du Lac Denesuline First Nation in Saskatchewan on October 19th. A filter media was replaced in the water treatment system, and training was provided to the plant’s water operators and monitors to restore clean water to the community. The advisory had been in place since July 2017.
  • One long-term drinking water advisory was lifted by Lac La Croix in Ontario on October 25th. Repairs and upgrades to the water treatment system were completed to restore safe drinking water to the community. The advisory had been in place since February 2017.
  • One long-term drinking water advisory was added for the community of Nekaneet in Saskatchewan on October 26th. Indigenous Services Canada is working with the First Nation to address the issues that led to the advisory. The Ministry expects to lift the advisory in November.

“More progress was made in October 2018 on our government’s commitment to lifting all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve,” said Minister of Indigenous Services, Jane Philpott in a statement.

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Two short-term advisories that were at-risk of becoming long-term were also lifted:

  • The community of Deschambault Lake at Peter Ballantyne Cree Nation in Saskatchewan lifted a short-term advisory on October 23th after a new water treatment plant was commissioned.
  • Makwa Sahgaiehcan First Nation in Saskatchewan lifted a short-term advisory on October 26th after operational issues resulting from a power outage were resolved.

Earlier this week, Piapot First Nation of southern Saskatchewan made national headlines after their water treatment plant caught fire and burned down. According to the Regina Leader-Post, the Nation’s government is working with the federal and provincial government’s to ensure access to water in the short term. Piapot First Nation completed major upgrades to its water treatment plant in 2011, which the community’s primary source of drinking water.

Seventy-four long-term drinking water advisories have been lifted on public water systems on reserve since November 2015. Indigenous Services Canada continues to work with First Nations partner to end the remaining 67 long-term advisories and prevent further short-term advisories from becoming long-term.

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