Nez Perce Tribe logo

(March 27, 9:55 a.m.)

LAPWAI -- Based on several confirmed cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in its region, the Nez Perce Tribe has elected to enact a Stay-At-Home Order for the Nez Perce Reservation effective immediately until further notice. 

“At this time, we find it in the best interest of our people to further emphasize social distancing. There is so much we don’t know about this virus, yet we do know that social distancing is effective,” stated Nez Perce Tribe Executive Committee Chairman, Shannon Wheeler.

Under the Stay-At-Home Order residents are required to stay home to the maximum extent possible. Trips outside of the home should be limited to only those of necessity, such as getting essential supplies. This does not mean individuals cannot go outdoors, but social distancing must be maintained and publicly used equipment must be avoided.

Children should not be out in the public vicinity unless accompanied by a person 18 years of age or older at any time. A curfew will be implemented for everyone, on the Nez Perce Reservation, between the hours of 12:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. This curfew will be waived for those working at their work sites or those traveling by automobile through the area.

Social distancing is deliberately increasing the physical space between people to avoid spreading illness. This includes distancing from any individual outside of the immediate household. All non-essential cultural, social and recreational gatherings of individuals will be prohibited, regardless of size. Gatherings will include, but are not limited to, parties, sporting games, weddings, sweat lodge gatherings, etc. Gatherings of members of the same household will be permitted.

Nez Perce Tribal Police Officers will be continuing their regular community policing patrols. Officers will be providing education to community members about the order and encouraging the practice of social distancing. If children under the age of 18 are found in the public vicinity without adult supervision, they will be escorted home.

“We as a community need to come together right now. This order is not to protect one person, but rather to protect everyone; protecting you from contracting the virus, but also ensuring you won’t unknowingly infect someone else. We have just over 3,500 enrolled tribal members, even just one loss is detrimental,” said Chairman Wheeler. “To overcome this pandemic, we need everyone. Help us help everyone; stay home.”

If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911. NPTPD can be reached through Whitcom dispatch by calling (208)843-5214 for Lapwai and (208)935-7777 for Kamiah. If you are in need of medical assistance, call Nimiipuu Health at (208) 843-2271. If you are in need of any other assistance call (208)621-4854.

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