The public health order prohibiting non-essential travel to the entire Northern Administrative District is being amended to only the northwest, where the transmission of COVID-19 is present.

“Travel to and from all other areas of the north – commercial, domestic and recreational as outlined in the Re-Open Saskatchewan plan – is permitted starting today,” said the government in a news release.

An entire northern lockdown was put in place following a coronavirus outbreak in La Loche, but the government said it’s now regionalized to the northwest.

The Public Safety Agency said it will be clarifying to all people in the northwest that travellers can obtain goods while out of their community. This comes after several complaints of disrespectful behaviour by checkpoint staff were reported.

“The public health order will include clarity for northwestern community leaders, residents and checkpoint staff to ensure that people can obtain essential goods and services when travelling for medical purposes,” said the government.

The following communities are still under travel restrictions: Bear Creek, Beauval, Birch Narrows, Dene Nation, Black Point, Buffalo Narrows, Buffalo River, Dene Nation, Canoe Lake First Nation, Clearwater River Dene Nation, Cole Bay, Descharme Lake, Dillon, Dore Lake, English River First Nation, Garson Lake, Green Lake, Ile a la Crosse, Jan’s Bay, Lac La Plonge, La Loche, Little Amyot Lake, Michel Village, Patuanak, St. George’s Hill, Sled Lake, and Turnor Lake.

Seven new cases were reported Monday, four in Beauval and three in La Loche. 15 more people have recovered and five are in hospital.

(Photo: La Ronge checkpoint. By Sam Campling.)