Susan Bell

Susan Bell is a digital reporter with the Cree Unit in Montreal.

Latest from Susan Bell

Badly needed elders' homes delayed by COVID-19 in northern Quebec Cree communities

Three 32-bed homes were slated to open by the end of 2021. They now won't open until the summer or fall of 2022 because of a desire to keep outside construction workers away from Cree communities to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Quebec Cree pass mandatory self-isolation law

"We were concerned with the laws coming from the government of Quebec. They didn't necessarily make sense for us and at times they were contradictory," said Paul John Murdoch, secretary of the Cree Nation Government.

As deconfinement looms, Cree communities begin asymptomatic testing for COVID-19

Since last week, the Cree health board in northern Quebec has added the ability to carry out 140 screening tests per week on vulnerable populations such as elders and those who aren't showing symptoms, but who have travelled from high risk regions such as Montreal and Ottawa.

Mohawk hunter supplies Mother's Day meal of traditional goose meat to Cree patients in Montreal

Cree Public Health asked hunters like Bob Patton Jr., a Mohawk from Kahnawake and Raymond Duff, a Cree living in Ottawa to harvest geese to help Cree get a taste of home during the COVID-19 lockdowns.

Lessons from H1N1 flu in 2009 helped Quebec Cree communities prepare for COVID-19

In 2009, the H1N1 flu virus hit Kitty's home community of Chisasibi hard — hospitalizing people at a rate 33 times higher than in the rest of Quebec. 

'Not ready' to reopen: Cree and non-Indigenous leaders in James Bay united, ask for more time

"We don't have the big hospitals and specialized care. Should COVID-19 spread, we don't have the capacity or the resources to deal with it," said Cree Grand Chief Abel Bosum.

Cree Nation mourns 1st known Cree death from COVID-19

“It was our deepest hope that our Cree Nation would be spared the worst consequences of this virus. Unfortunately, and despite our best efforts, we have lost a dear elder,” said Cree Grand Chief Abel Bosum. 

Spring melt meant this northern Quebec snowmobile misadventure wouldn't quit

Emergency rescue was demanding, but nobody expected the rescuers to need rescuing.

Cree health board chair announces her husband has been diagnosed with COVID-19

News comes as number of COVID-19 cases assigned to the Cree territory increases to eight.

12-year-old Eastmain hunter opens goose hunt amid calls to follow COVID-19 bush guidelines

This year, officials with the Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay are asking hunters to take special precautions and measures to stay safe while away for Goose Break because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

'Medicine within the dance': from health-care worker to hoop dancer

Since the outbreak of novel coronavirus, Makhena Katerie Rankin Guérin has brought her hoop and jingle-dress dancing to the seniors living in lockdown at Symphony Senior Living Orléans, where she works.

Cree School Board suspends in-school learning until at least the fall

Schools in northern Quebec Cree communities will remain closed until at least the fall, a decision announced late yesterday by the Cree School Board executive committee and made in collaboration with local government and health officials. 

Drive-by birthdays organized by police and firefighters in northern Quebec village

The police and fire departments in the fly-in community of Whapmagoostui, Que., have started organizing birthday greetings with sirens and songs. Four-year-old Sammy Salt was pleased.

Makivik president demands Quebec premier reconsider decision to reopen mines

The head of the organization representing Inuit in northern Quebec is outraged over a provincial government decision allowing mines to reopen in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic, and is asking for a one-on-one meeting with the premier. 

Cree youth turn to social media to promote COVID-19 safety awareness

The Cree Nation Youth Council launched a series of daily #StayAtHome challenges in late March that include goose calling, hand washing, fiddle dancing among others.