First Nation community cut off by landslides still hasn't heard from government

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By Charlie Carey, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Almost two weeks after mudslides and flooding washed away whole sections of communities along the Nicola River in British Columbia’s Interior, Shackan Indian Band has still not heard from the provincial government and is going it alone in caring for its community members.
One of five First Nation communities situated along Nicola Valley’s Highway 8 between Merritt and Spences Bridge, Shackan Indian Band Chief Arnold Lampreau went door-to-door in pouring rain last Monday, asking his community members to evacuate immediately as rising waters were imminent.
The night before, Lampreau was called by one of his band councillors, Lindsay Tighe, telling him the neighbouring community of Coldwater Indian Band was on evacuation alert. Not taking it too seriously to begin with, it wouldn’t be until the morning he realized he needed to act.
“I looked out into my field and there was already water in my field, and the water was rising quite fast and furious,” Lampreau said. “So right off the bat, I told my wife Lenora that we need to get out and we have no time to wait.”
Evacuating firstly to Merritt, band members were redirected again after that city itself was placed on evacuation notice. Nine days later, members now find themselves temporarily housed in shelters across the Interior, including Salmon Arm, Kamloops, and even a...continued.

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