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Kelly Lake Cree Nation says landmark Supreme Court decision bolsters land claim

Kelly Lake Cree Nation leaders in B.C. say the landmark Daniels vs. Canada case, which ruled that Métis and non-status Indians are the responsibility of the federal government, bolsters their fight for title to their territory.

Candice Makhan never accepts Facebook friends she doesn’t know. For some reason, she decided to accept a random request from Ruth Castellanos.

Both got sick in the spring and joined a Facebook support group for those with lingering COVID-like symptoms. So Castellanos reached out and started sharing. Turns out neither tested positive for the virus, though they’ve still been able to bond over the experience, swapping support and stories of similar symptoms they’re still having.

“At least something positive came out of it,” said Castellanos, who lives in Flamborough, Ont., near Hamilton.

Making new friends seems unlikely right now, with the pleas to stay home and apart. But the pandemic has forged new friendships like this one that probably wouldn’t have happened otherwise.

Both Makhan and Castellanos are still off work, shuttling between specialist appointments and uncertain what’s going on with their bodies. Makhan says it means a lot to have someone who understands what she’s going through. She knows family and friends mean well, but Castellanos just gets her, she says.

Makhan and Castellanos did not know each other before the pandemic — and they’ve yet to meet in person. They are building their friendship by messaging back and forth on Facebook, sharing medical updates, support and inspirational videos. (Submitted by Candice Makhan)

“We can share a lot of experiences that are very common. Some frustrations, some disappointments, some excitements,” she said.

It’s a slow-burning friendship. They’ve mostly messaged about COVID-19 but are gradually learning more about each other’s personal lives — their families, how they ended up where they are, their hopes for the future.

“I don’t think that once we’re better this [the friendship] is going to end … I’ve made a really good friend here,” said…

Haydn Watters

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