Sioux Valley flood evacuees still in hotel rooms, 2 months on
About 140 members of Sioux Valley Dakota Nation have been out of their homes since late June
About 140 people from a Manitoba First Nation remain out of their homes since their community was flooded this summer, and some evacuees say how the evacuation is being handled has not made things easier for them.
The Sioux Valley First Nation northwest of Brandon, Man., was flooded in late June, and those who were forced out of their homes are still being housed in temporary accommodations this week.
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"I'm ready to go home now," said Candace Sioux, who has been raising her family from a hotel in Brandon, where about 100 of the evacuees are staying.
In addition to cramped quarters, Sioux said evacuees have had to switch hotels due to other bookings -- her family have moved three times this summer.
"I feel like we're being a burden to these people — the staff that is here — the way we've been treated," said her husband, Cameron Sioux, who has been undergoing regular dialysis treatments.
But some of the evacuees say their meals must be eaten from one designated room at restricted meal times. The adults get only one meal option while the children have two, they added.
"It felt like it was residential school, them all eating together and you have to eat what they want you to eat," Candace Sioux said.
Meanwhile, about 50 of the Sioux Valley flood evacuees are students who have to take a bus for three hours each way to attend school back at the First Nation.
The situation won't change until the First Nation's flood-damaged homes are fixed — something that Candace Sioux said isn't happening quickly enough.
"I don't think they're going fast enough at all," she said. "They need more crews out there, because they were saying they were only doing five houses at a time."
There are 66 homes that need repairs and mould remediation, but Sioux Valley Chief Vincent Tacan said the work must be done right and cannot be rushed.
"These things take time. We want these houses to be safe when people move back," he said. "There is a lot of paperwork that needs to be done, there's a lot of accountability steps."
Tacan said by next week, about five families can start moving home each week.