A young person has taken their own life on the Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation.
The First Nation, located about 35 minutes south of Prince Albert, released a statement on their website Wednesday.
“It is with heavy hearts that we send our prayers out to the … family, and our entire community this day,” the statement said. “We have been working with all departments to arrange the needed support for all those who are affected by today’s sad news.”
A later statement announced that both of the community’s schools would close until Friday due to the tragic event.
Beardy’s councillor Kevin Seesequasis indicated, through a post on his Facebook page, that the young person’s life was lost “due to bullying.”
“What do you tell kids?” he asked. “How much clearer do you make it so they see that words and actions hurt?”
According to the First Nation, educational staff and community leaders met to discuss a path forward. A sharing circle was slated for Friday morning to give students a chance to “process their grief and emotions.” The statement also said that the First Nation will provide appropriate mental health, cultural and spiritual support.
The tragedy comes just days before Pink Day, on Feb. 22, a national event meant to raise awareness about the impact of bullying in schools.