BABB, Mon. – On a cloudy spring day, hundreds of people lined up in a car on the Canadian side of the border crossing that separates Alberta and Montana. They drove for hours and camped out in the car hoping to receive the hottest product of the season, the COVID-19 vaccine, from the Native American tribe who had given their overdose.
Last month, the Blackfeet in northern Montana provided approximately 1,000 surplus vaccines to indigenous relatives and others across borders to show the difference in the rate at which the United States and Canada distribute doses. Over 30% of adults in the United States are fully vaccinated, compared to about 3% in Canada.
Among those who were vaccinated across the Piegan-Carway border were the standoffs Sherry Crosschild and Shane Little Bear, about 30 miles (50 km) north of the border.
They prayed in Blackfoot before the nurses began to manage the shots, raising the sacred Chief Mountain to the Blackfoot people in the distance. According to Crosschild, the prayer was dedicated to those seeking evacuation from the virus.
Crosschild and her husband have family and friends in Montana, but have not been able to visit them except for essential trips since the border was closed last spring.
“It was stressful because we had some deaths in the family and they couldn’t come,” she said. “Only for support-they depend on us and we depend on them. It was hard.”
Over 95% of the approximately 10,000 residents of Blackfeet Reservation to be vaccinated are fully vaccinated after the state prioritizes the Native American community among the most vulnerable US population in the early stages of the vaccination campaign. I am vaccinated.
The tribe was vaccinated by both the Montana Department of Health and the Federal Department of Indian Health, and some doses remained unused. As the best-by date approaches, we turn to other Blackfoot nations, including the Blackfoot and three tribes that share the language and culture of southern Alberta.
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Montana crosses borders to give vaccines to neighbors
Source link Montana crosses borders to give vaccines to neighbors