WINNIPEG -- Members of the Canadian Armed Forces have been deployed to help with the COVID-19 situation on a remote Manitoba First Nation.

On Thursday, approximately 35 personnel were sent to Red Sucker Lake First Nation. The remote fly-in community declared a state of emergency on Friday, Dec. 11.

A National Defence spokesperson said the group sent to help consists of a medical team, support and general duty personnel, and leadership from CFB Shilo and CFB Edmonton. The spokesperson noted a liaison and reconnaissance team from CFB Shilo were dispatched on Monday, alongside other federal, provincial, and community partners. 

Along with the state of emergency, Red Sucker Lake First Nation also issued a full lockdown order. 

On Monday, Chief Samuel Knott told CTV News 23 households had at least one positive or probable positive COVID-19 case. Knott himself, as well as his family, had also tested positive for the virus. 

He said he didn’t know how the virus got into the community and wasn’t able to say how many cases there have been. 

A National Defence spokesperson said the military will help produce and distribute food, firewood, and care packages. They will also assist local authorities in setting up alternate isolation accommodations to protect the community and its most vulnerable members. 

The military will also provide accommodation and transportation to help other government agencies operating in the area, and will help in providing medical care and support, said the spokesperson. Personnel will also integrate into the local Emergency Operations Centre command post. 

The Canadian Armed Forces will remain on the First Nation until their support is no longer needed. 

Red Sucker Lake First Nation is located approximately 540 kilometres northeast of Winnipeg near the Ontario border. 

-With files from CTV’s Charles Lefebvre