/ Articles / Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Tribe announces new COVID-19 safety measures for reservation

Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Tribe announces new COVID-19 safety measures for reservation

Tribal land access limits are designed with safety of all in mind

May 01, 2020

The Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians announced today, April 29, tribal land access limits on the Tribe’s Reservation until further notice. The Tribe’s No. 1 priority is the safety and security of all who live, work and visit Lac du Flambeau. 

“There are zero confirmed coronavirus cases on the Reservation as of this announcement,” LDF Tribal president Joseph Wildcat Sr. said. “We’re doing everything we can to keep it that way.”

After weighing numerous options, Tribal Council voted unanimously to close access to public boat landings, campgrounds, parks, trails, and tribal roads within the exterior boundaries of the Lac du Flambeau Indian Reservation until further notice. LDF Country Market, LDF Gas Station, LDF Smoke Shop, and LDF Tribal Government Buildings also are closed to visitors. 

“As our busy season approaches, we’re seeing more visitors to the Reservation who are not sheltering-at-home and we want to ensure we’re up front about what we’re doing to keep everyone as safe as possible,” Wildcat said. “The areas that are closed will be posted with signs to reduce confusion.” 

The Tribal Council issued a Shelter-At-Home Declaration on March 25 that asked visitors to the Reservation to self-quarantine for 14 days. Any visitors who fail to adhere to the self-quarantine timeframe outlined in the declaration may potentially expose everyone on the Reservation to COVID-19. Certain exemptions exist for work-related activity, but these exempt visitors must follow special safety protocols. 

“We truly appreciate all our visitors to our Reservation, and we’re hopeful we get beyond this pandemic soon, so we can open things back up,” Wildcat said. “Many people are making sacrifices to their everyday lives during this pandemic to protect community public health. We’re grateful for all who are striving to keep people as safe as possible.”  

As with the Shelter-At-Home Declaration, the LDF Police Department and Conservation Law Enforcement will work to ensure tribal land access limitations are observed. To answer questions from secondary homeowners and others interested in visiting the Reservation, Tribal Council has set up an email address: [email protected] 

“The last thing we want are families traveling to enjoy time on the Reservation, only to find out once they arrive that certain tribal lands are closed during the pandemic,” Wildcat said. “There’s no plans for checkpoints or barricades, but rather we are sharing information to help people understand what’s happening and why.” 

Chris Bartlet with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources said Wednesday the DNR is still talking to the Tribal Council about the state-owned Little Crawling Stone Lake boat landing.

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