Dzawada'enuxw First Nation

Dzawada'enuxw First Nation

September 28, 2010 18:56 ET

DZAWADA'ENUXW FIRST NATION VILLAGE FLOODED & EVACUATED

Attention: Assignment Editor, Environment Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor KINGCOME INLET, BC, NEWS RELEASE--(Marketwire - Sept. 28, 2010) - 97 members of the Dzawada'enuxw First Nation of Kingcome Inlet, BC were evacuated by helicopter from the remote and isolated community on the Kingcome River on Saturday September 25, 2010.

The Kingcome River flooded its banks and caused severe devastation to the village infrastructure and homes. This was a result of the torrential downpour of rain leading up to the weekend experienced in the North Vancouver Island region.

"The Dzawada'enuxw First Nation members who have been evacuated need a sustained and strategic assistance plan from Indian and Northern Affairs Canada. We invite Minister John Duncan to visit our village and see for himself the extent of this natural catastrophe and the challenges that we will face in our near future" says Chairman Joe Willie.

Initial reports of damage to Kingcome Village are very troubling. It is not safe to go back to the village for some of the following reasons shown below:

"A majority of the homes in our community have sustained both water damage and structural damage. Many homes electrical systems have been compromised as well. We have witnessed damaged infrastructure such as disrupted septic systems which of course add a serious Health Risk to our village members if we were to return prior to repairs being made," says Chairman Joe Willie .

Given the remoteness of the village, availability of storage for personal belongings and building materials as well as crew accommodation; the eventual rebuild will face a host of logistical issues, which will need to be overcome. These of course will add to the overall cost and timeframe for repairs.

The 67 adults & 30 children members of the Dzawada'enuxw First Nation who were evacuated are staying in Alert Bay, BC where the 'Namgis First Nation and Village of Alert Bay are doing everything they can to accommodate an entire community with their own.

In closing Chairman Joe Willie says "The Dzawada'enuxw First Nation are a proud Nation with a deep history within British Columbia. Our valley has contributed untold wealth into the coffers of BC and Canada through forestry. We fully expect that our First Nations needs are to be met in a timely manner so our children can return to their homes."
IN: ENVIRONMENT, HEALTH, OTHER

Contact Information

  • Joe Willie, Chairman
    Primary Phone: 250-974-8203