Virtual roundtable to be held in Winnipeg to help address Indigenous vaccine hesitancy
By Dave Baxter
Journalist of the Local Journalism Initiative
An organization that works to support Indigenous people in Winnipeg hopes an upcoming event will convince more citizens to get vaccinated and give those who are vaccine hesitant credible and reliable information about COVID-19 vaccines.
The Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Center will host a virtual roundtable on Tuesday night that they say will address vaccine hesitancy within the urban Indigenous community.
The event, according to the organization, will feature “an esteemed panel of health and science professionals” who will answer questions about vaccines and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“We know that our community has and continues to face barriers and hesitation when accessing vaccines,” Rosalyn Boucha, communications manager for the Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Center, said in a press release announcing the event.
“Many of us at the Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Center have faced the same uncertainties and fears throughout the pandemic, and that is why we feel it is so necessary to create opportunities for our families to be able to connect with Indigenous health professionals and Elders in our community.
Boucha said the event will focus on giving people information about vaccines so they can make their own “informed decisions” about whether or not to get vaccinated against COVID-19, and they also hope to dispel myths and misconceptions about vaccines.
“This event will be a safe space for families to ask questions directly, and we hope it helps them feel comfortable making informed decisions,” she said.
Panellists, which will be moderated by Professor Niigaan Sinclair of the University of Manitoba, will include Dr.
Marcia Anderson, public health lead for the First Nations Pandemic Response Coordination Team, Dr. Ryan Giroux, a pediatrician from the Métis Nation of Alberta, and Dr. Lisa Monkman, a Anishinaabe family physician based in Dauphin.
Knowledge Keeper Ed Azure from the University of Manitoba will also take part in the discussion.
According to the Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Centre, the event will kick off its new project Protecting Our Future, which will work in the days and months to come to tackle myths and misconceptions about COVID-19 by providing “accessible, culturally relevant and scientific” information. provided information to the community in a safe and reliable manner. »
“The hoped-for results will be people getting vaccinated to protect themselves, their people and their future,” Boucha said.
Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Center said anyone looking for more information on how to participate in the virtual event can visit the Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Center’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram pages.
– Dave Baxter is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter with the Winnipeg Sun. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.
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