April 9, 2021Media Statement Regarding Employee COVID-19 Vaccination
As a company owned by Alaska Native shareholders and dedicated to improving the lives and preserving the culture and heritage of our people, BSNC is deeply concerned about the disproportionate toll COVID-19 is taking on our Native communities, and particularly our cherished Elders.
A little more than a century ago, the influenza pandemic of 1918 killed between 30% and 40% of our region’s adults and elders. Countless young children were left orphaned, without ties to family to learn from and pass along traditions, culture and language.
That pandemic left a painful scar on our region and negatively affected our Native customs and traditions in ways that endure to this very day. BSNC is proud of our continuing role in helping to restore and revitalize these sacred traditions in honor of our ancestors who perished during the last pandemic.
Unlike the flu that devastated the Seward Peninsula a century ago, severe illness and death from COVID-19 can be prevented. At BSNC, we believe that the best way to protect the health and lives of our people and honor our elders and ancestors, is by supporting widespread vaccination efforts.
As a result, and after careful consideration, BSNC has taken the step of requiring all employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 once the vaccine is available to them. Reasonable accommodations that do not cause undue hardship will be granted to employees with valid, documented medical reasons or religious objections on a case-by-case basis.
We understand that some employees may have questions and concerns about vaccinations, and we are making every effort to address them by sharing information from credible scientific and government sources.
January 12, 2021Memo Regarding COVID-19 Vaccination
Happy New Year! I think we all are glad that 2020 is over. Last year was like no other, and I appreciate all you did to keep our business operations running smoothly, and ensuring that your co-workers, community and family are safe and healthy.
While 2020 was challenging, we are optimistic about the future. This is due in part to the new COVID-19 vaccine, which will be key to ending the pandemic. While the Nome and Anchorage offices remain closed, we are looking forward to the day we can safely bring our employees back to work.
I strongly believe that receiving the COVID-19 vaccination is necessary for business continuity and safety. As the COVID-19 vaccines become more widely available, I encourage all employees to get vaccinated. I personally have received a COVID-19 vaccine, and will receive my final shot today. I did so to help protect my family, co-workers, and community. I believe that getting vaccinated as soon as possible will do the same for you.
Please take a moment to review additional information about the vaccines – listed below. As we wait for greater availability of the vaccines, please continue to observe CDC safety guidelines, as well as state and local mandates.
The federal government is currently providing all COVID-19 vaccines, and there are no out-of-pocket costs for you or your family members.
Starting Jan. 11, the vaccine is available to people ages 65 or older. Other groups will follow. Please visit the Alaska COVID-19 Vaccine webpage for more information on when you are eligible to receive the vaccine and to schedule your appointment. If you are in Nome, please check the Norton Sound Health Corporation webpage for up-to-date information.
We understand you may have questions about the vaccine, and the Alaska COVID-19 Vaccine webpage can provide answers to your questions.
We are happy to answer any additional questions you may have via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 25, 2020BSNC Donates to Sobermiut
BSNC has made a $1,500 donation to Sobermiut, Inc. for their Anchorage Native Community “Feeding Our Elders” Fundraiser. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sobermiut’s Anchorage Native Community Council has developed this fundraiser to help provide Alaska Native Elders traditional and staple foods. Learn more and donate to the fundraiser here: https://www.facebook.com/donate/147426596566012/2983432298382013/
March 22, 2020COVID-19 Social Distance / Quarantine Contest
BSNC is holding a COVID-19 social distancing/quarantine contest for shareholder and descendant kids and their families! Write a poem or story, make a video or art or create a funny meme about how you are practicing social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Simply post your creation, maximum 3 entries per person, to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, use the hashtag #BSNCCommunityWellBeing and DIRECT MESSAGE us your post. Please also list the appropriate age group. You will then be entered in for a random drawing to win these AMAZING prizes!
Grand Prize: Samsung Galaxy S-20 Ultra
First prize: A brand new bicycle
Second prize: Samsung Galaxy Tab A Kids
Third prize: $50 Amazon gift card
First prize: Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Second prize: Nintendo Switch
Third prize: $100 Gift Card
First place: Microsoft Surface Pro X
Second place: Power Beats Earphones
Third place: Polaroid Camera
First place: Apple Watch
Second place: Air Pods
Third place: $50 Gift Card
During this time, it is critical to focus on our communities’ well-being which means staying home to keep others safe. BSNC welcomes all photo or video submissions showing how you or the kids are keeping busy. Any art medium will be accepted in digital form. The deadline is April 10 at 12 p.m. and the winners will be announced shortly thereafter.
March 20, 2020COVID-19 Emergency Elder Dividend Distribution
BSNC Announces Special Emergency Elder Dividend Distribution
The Bering Straits Native Corporation (BSNC) Board of Directors has voted to declare a special Elder dividend distribution of $250. This special distribution will be paid through the BSNC Beringia Settlement Trust on a tax-free basis to original BSNC shareholders who are 65 years of age or older on March 20, 2020, the date of record. Checks will be mailed or deposited the week of March 23.
“This action was taken out of care and concern for our Elder shareholders as they prepare for the COVID-19 pandemic,” said BSNC Board Chairman Henry Ivanoff. “We hope this dividend helps Elders during these trying times.”
March 20, 2020BSNC Announces Emergency Dividend Distribution
The Bering Straits Native Corporation (BSNC) Board of Directors has voted to declare a special dividend of $3.00 per share to be distributed the week of March 23. The average BSNC shareholder who owns 100 shares of stock will receive $300. This dividend distribution will be paid through the BSNC Beringia Settlement Trust so that it will be tax-free to our shareholders.
“The BSNC Board recognizes that the coronavirus epidemic has caused an unprecedented public health crisis,” said BSNC Chairman Henry Ivanoff. “I encourage all shareholders to prepare for possibly long-term disruption in travel and the food supply, and practice social distancing by staying at home as much as possible.”
“In providing for a special dividend distribution, we want to do what we can to help our shareholders deal with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said BSNC President & CEO Gail R. Schubert. “We have adapted to many changes, are resilient and look out for each other. This is an important traditional cultural value. I pray that you and your loved ones remain safe and healthy during this pandemic.”
BSNC will continue to closely monitor guidance from the CDC and state health agencies regarding this pandemic and continuously update its shareholders through its regular communication channels, including the Agluktuk newsletter, our social media outlets and on BSNC’s COVID-19 public resource webpage at www.beringstraits.com/covid-19-update/. We are happy to help answer any questions you may have via email at email@example.com.
March 20, 2020BSNC Makes Donation to the Food Bank of Alaska
BSNC has made a $5,000 donation to the Food Bank of Alaska. Last year the Food Bank of Alaska distributed more than 7.5 million pounds – 6.2 million meals – statewide to 150 partner food pantries, soup kitchens, senior centers and children’s programs. Last year the Food Bank of Alaska donated more than 105,000 pounds of food to the following communities in the BSNC region: Brevig Mission, Golovin, Koyuk, Nome, St. Michael, Shaktoolik, Stebbins and White Mountain.
Our hearts go out to people who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including many who have lost jobs and are in need of food. Today in Anchorage, the Food Bank’s Mobile Food Pantry will be located in Mt. View at 5 p.m. at the New Hope Baptist Church, 333 N. Price Street. For more information or to donate, go to foodbankofalaska.org.