Jordan's Principle makes sure all First Nations children can access the products, services and supports they need, when they need them. It can help with a wide range of health, social and educational needs. Jordan's Principle is named in memory of Jordan River Anderson. He was a young boy from Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba. From July 2016 to September 30, 2018,  more than 165,000 requests were approved  under Jordan's Principle. These included: respite care speech therapy schooling supports medical equipment mental health services and more A legal rule In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) determined that our approach to services for First Nations children was discriminatory. One way we are addressing this is through a renewed approach to Jordan's Principle. Since the ruling, the CHRT has issued a number of follow-up orders about Jordan's Principle. In May 2017, the CHRT ordered "substantive equality" under Jordan's Principle for First Nations children. This means giving extra help when it is needed so First Nations children have an equal chance to thrive. What we are doing We are supporting children who need help right away and making long-term changes for the future. For the long-term, we are working to build better structures and funding models. These will make sure First Nations children get the products, services and supports they need, when they need them. To do this, we are working closely with: provinces territories Indigenous partners service organizations In the short-term, a fund of $382.5 million has been set up. This pays for health, social and education products, services and supports that are needed right away. The fund will be available from 2016 to 2019. Local service coordinators have been hired in communities across Canada. They can help families who: have questions about Jordan's Principle would like to submit a request for products, services or supports under Jordan's Principle We fund these coordinators, who are staffed by: local tribal councils First Nations communities regional health authorities Indigenous non-governmental organizations, etc. We also have staff across the country dedicated full-time to Jordan's Principle. They work closely with the local coordinators to make sure all requests are processed as quickly as possible. Related links The boy behind Jordan’s Principle CHRT definition of Jordan's Principle Video: Jordan's Principle: Making sure First Nations children can get the services they need Video: Jordan's Principle Youth Public Service Announcements  (developed and made available by the  First Nations Child & Family Caring Society of Canada )
The Child First Initiative ensures Inuit children have access to the essential government funded health, social and educational products, services and supports they need, when they need them. Each province and territory has a regional representative to support applicants in accessing the Child First Initiative. Please submit your request for Inuit children to Indigenous Services Canada though the  regional representative  for your province or territory. Your regional representative for the Child First Initiative also supports Jordan’s Principle, which follows a similar set of process steps. The process outlined below for the Child First Initiative is tailored specifically to Inuit children, and your regional representative can provide further information and help you submit a request. The Government of Canada is working with Inuit partners, provinces and territories to develop a long-term Inuit-specific approach to help better address the unique health, social and education needs of Inuit children. To submit a request Step 1. What is covered Step 2. Who is eligible Step 3. Who to contact Step 4. Who can send requests Step 5. How to send a request Step 6. Processing requests Step 7. Reimbursements and retroactive requests Step 8. How to appeal decisions Step 1. What is covered Each child's situation is unique. Please contact your  regional representative  to discuss what coverage is available based on the child’s needs. Some examples of what could be funded include: Health wheelchair ramps addiction services cultural services from Elders mental health counseling assessments and screenings medical supplies and equipment therapeutic services (speech therapy, physiotherapy, occupational therapy) Social land-based activities specialized summer camps respite care programs based on cultural beliefs and practices Educational tutoring services educational assistants specialized school transportation psycho-educational assessments assistive technologies and electronics Step 2. Who is eligible All Inuit children, no matter where they live in Canada, can request funding through the Child First Initiative. They must be: recognized by an Inuit land claim organization and under the age of majority in their province/territory of residence Step 3. Who to contact Contact your  regional representative  or call the national call centre at 1-855-572-4453, which is available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Step 4. Who can send requests Requests can be submitted by: parents or guardians caring for a dependent Inuk child or an Inuk child above 16 years of age for themselves  or an authorized representative of the child, parent or guardian (written or verbal consent must be provided by the parent or guardian) A request for a group of children with similar needs from multiple families or guardians can be submitted by a community or a service provider. Examples of the types of services a group can request are: wheelchair ramps cultural support programs specialized school transportation   specialized education and communication equipment Step 5. How to send a request To start your request, contact your  regional representative  or call the national call centre at 1-855-572-4453, which is available  24 hours per day, 7 days per week. We are here to help. Having certain information ready when you contact us can help if you are seeking access to funding for a product, service or support. This includes: Proof of beneficiary enrollment with an Inuit land claim organization Please provide either: the child’s 'N' number (which identifies the child as a beneficiary of an Inuit land claim) or one parent’s 'N' number (which identifies the parent as a beneficiary of an Inuit land claim) or a letter or card indicating the child or one parent is a beneficiary of an Inuit land claim organization in Canada or a Nunavut or Northwest Territories health card a certification and authorization form filled out by your land claim organization (to be provided by your regional representative)     a summary of the child's history and unique needs  the product, service or support needed how often the product, service or support will be needed one time many times on an ongoing basis estimated costs (if known) copies of related prescriptions referrals from a health, social or education professional (if you have them) medical, educational, social assessments identifying the child’s need for the product, service or support if the request has been submitted in the past, the name of the provincial or federal program or service where the request was submitted and copies of documents submitted (if available) Step 6. Processing requests Your  regional representative  will review the completed request. A decision will be sent to you in writing after the request is processed. If your request is denied, you may initiate an appeal anytime within one year from the date the request was denied. Funding is provided for approved requests in one of two ways: We provide funding for the products, services or supports for the child or children. If the family, guardian, child or authorized representative has already paid for the approved product, service or support, then  reimbursement  of these expenses will be provided. Step 7. Reimbursements and retroactive requests Each child's situation is unique. For this reason it is important to confirm coverage with your  regional representative . Requesting a reimbursement Reimbursement may be provided if the approved product, service or support has already been paid for by the family or provided by a service provider/vendor. A reimbursement form is needed: to request reimbursement for costs already paid for service providers and vendors to request direct payment for services rendered Follow these three steps to request a reimbursement: Contact the  regional representative  or call 1-855-572-4453 so we can help you start the process and confirm that the product, service or support will be funded. Complete a reimbursement form (we can send you the form and help you fill it in). Send the completed reimbursement form to your  regional representative , including all relevant supporting documents. Receiving the payments Requests for a child or children in the same family or with the same guardian: the parent or guardian normally gets the payment if the child is under the age of majority in their province/territory of residence children over age 16 may get the payment if they submitted the request a vendor or service provider may be paid directly Request for a group of children from multiple families or guardians: payment will be made to the community or group that made the request vendors or service providers may be paid directly Retroactive requests Applicants who had previously submitted a request for an Inuk child since July 2016 under Jordan’s Principle are encouraged to call 1-855-572-4453 or call their  regional representative  to request a reimbursement. Step 8. How to appeal decisions If a request is denied, you may initiate an appeal anytime within  one year  of the date of denial. To do so, please send in a written request to your regional representative, they will work with you throughout the process. All requests for appeals must contain, at minimum: the child's name and date of birth the product or service requested the date of denial Although it is not required to initiate an appeal, you may also include additional information, such as professional assessments, or information that summarizes the child's history and unique needs. The appeal process can take up to 30 business days. Sending a request for appeal An individual can appeal a decision if they are: a parent or guardian of an Inuit child an Inuk child above 16 years of age an authorized representative of the child, parent or guardian Requests for appeals for a group of children from multiple families or guardians can be submitted by: the community or group that submitted the request For more information Please contact your  regional representative  or call 1-855-572-4453 if you have: any questions new information about any request that was submitted since July 2016 applied for funding under Jordan’s Principle and were denied or sent a pending letter knowledge of a case  where a request  for an Inuit child was partially approved or denied since July 2016, and would like the case to be reviewed
Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) works collaboratively with partners to improve access to high quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Our vision is to support and empower Indigenous peoples to independently deliver services and address the socio-economic conditions in their communities. Link Services and information Indigenous health Access the First Nations and Inuit primary care, public health and mental health services. Find support for former students of Indian residential schools. Education Find programs that support elementary and secondary education, provide financial support to First Nations and Inuit post-secondary students, and help Canadian post-secondary institutions develop courses. Water in First Nations communities Find out how the Government of Canada works with First Nations to end long-term drinking water advisories and improve water and wastewater systems on reserve. First Nations housing Find programs that support improved housing on reserve. First Nations community infrastructure Find programs to support community infrastructure such as schools, roads, and waste management facilities on reserve. Social programs Learn about the key social programs Indigenous Services Canada funds in First Nations communities and urban centres. Establishing a new fiscal relationship Learn about the steps being taken to move towards sufficient, predictable and sustained funding. Emergency management Resources for First Nations communities to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies. Consultation, engagement and the duty to consult Participate in ongoing engagements, learn what was heard in recently-held engagements and find out about the duty to consult. The path forward Learn about the five key priorities of the new department Indigenous Services Canada.
Crown-Indigenous Relations Canada (CIRNAC) and Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) provide funding for programs, services and initiatives to First Nations, Inuit and Northern communities, governments and individuals as well as to Aboriginal and Métis organizations. If you qualify as an eligible potential recipient and wish to enter into a funding agreement with the department, please submit the required  proposal, application or work plans . If you are searching for information about funding beyond specific programs, please go to  INAC 2018-2019 National Funding Agreement Models  and  ISC 2018-2019 National Funding Agreement Models . Some funding programs accept proposals through open calls with specific deadlines. Visit the  calls for proposals  web page for details. Name of funding program Assisted Living Program Band Support Funding Capital Facilities and Maintenance Program Circuit Rider Training Program Climate Change and Health Adaptation Program Climate Change Preparedness in the North Program Community Opportunity Readiness Contaminated Sites Management Program Education Partnerships Program Elementary and Secondary Education Program Emergency Management Assistance Program Employee Benefits Family Violence Prevention Program First Nation Adapt Program First Nation and Inuit Cultural Education Centres Program First Nation Infrastructure Fund First Nation On-Reserve Housing Program First Nation Student Success Program First Nations and Inuit Skills Link Program First Nations and Inuit Summer Work Experience Program First Nations Child and Family Services Program First Nations Land Management Regime High-Cost Special Education Program Housing Subsidy Program in British Columbia On-reserve Income Assistance Program Indigenous Representative Organizations - Basic organizational capacity funding Indigenous Community-Based Climate Monitoring Program Inuit Cultural Education Centres Grant Program Lands and Economic Development Services Program Nation Rebuilding Program New Approach for Housing Support in British Columbia New Paths for Education Program Northern Contaminants Program Northern Contaminated Sites Program Northern Responsible Energy Approach for Community Heat and Electricity Program Nutrition North Canada Post-Secondary Partnerships Program Post-Secondary Student Support Program Professional and Institutional Development Program Reserve Lands and Environment Management Program Specific Claims Tribunal of Canada funding Strategic Partnerships Initiative Tribal Council Funding University and College Entrance Preparation Program Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples  
An array of new programs gives students an opportunity to tackle issues of importance to their local communities. Original Link Hillary Scanlon didn’t plan to be a global studies major, nor did she set out to be an entrepreneur. In high school, an affinity for math and science led her to the health sciences program at Wilfrid Laurier University. Finding more of a calling in the global studies program in her second year, Ms. Scanlon took an introductory course through Laurier’s social entrepreneurship option through the faculty of arts, where an idea lit a fuse. The idea was born out of another unplanned event in Ms. Scanlon’s life, which was a loss of vision. By the midpoint of her undergraduate studies, she had lost almost all of her eyesight due to a rare neurological condition called opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome. A lot changed in a short period of time. “You’re just kind of thrust into this world that’s no longer accessible to you,” Ms. Scanlon says. “The very simple tasks that I was able to do on my own, independently and quickly, became a challenge.” One of those tasks was being able to properly dispose of waste, compost and recyclable containers in public spaces. Out of a sense of challenge and frustration, Ms. Scanlon began work to address the problem. She was sure she didn’t want to do it alone. “I tell people, ‘I’m still learning how to be blind. I’m not an expert in the experience,’” she says. To create a product designed to make waste bins on campus more easily detectable to people who are blind, Ms. Scanlon consulted with staff and clients of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and other experts, including custodial staff who deal with garbage and recycling units regularly. By May 2017, a few months after she took the introductory course, Ms. Scanlon successfully applied for $4,500 in seed funding from Laurier. A year later, after  developing the project  through a capstone course in social entrepreneurship, she secured $30,000 in funding from the office of sustainability to bring the idea to completion on campus, with a rollout that began this fall. All of that work makes Ms. Scanlon a “social entrepreneur,” a term that is gaining traction on Canadian university campuses. This past summer, going into her fourth year, she was hired as Laurier’s first “student social entrepreneur in residence.” The position was created as a peer mentorship component of the  social entrepreneurship  (SE) option. Established in 2014, the SE option is open to all students at the university, though most come from the faculty of arts where the program is housed, according to program coordinator Edmund Pries. That’s in part because faculties such as engineering and science have stringent credit requirements, and there are other paths such as the  Science Maker Lab , that form the lattice of entrepreneurship options at Laurier, says Dr. Pries. The SE option includes three core courses – including the capstone course – and other course combinations offering a global studies experience and hands-on learning opportunities with community partners in the Kitchener-Waterloo region. Definitions abound when it comes to social entrepreneurship, in part because it is a relatively recent term (even more so in the context of higher education). There are some well-established academic programs in social entrepreneurship in the U.K. and the U.S. And, in the past decade, there’s been a groundswell of programs and initiatives taking shape on Canadian campuses, both within and outside of the formal curriculum. While entrepreneurship is traditionally understood as a business concept, social entrepreneurship – particularly in a campus context – can straddle many disciplines. “A social entrepreneur, in the broadest sense, is someone who is starting things for the social good, and the container – be it a business, co-op, not-for-profit or charity – is secondary,” says Chad Lubelsky, program director for the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation’s  RECODE initiative . Launched in 2014, RECODE provides funding for universities and colleges in Canada to improve social innovation and social entrepreneurship initiatives on their campuses. Among its recent activities, RECODE has joined with Universities Canada (publisher of  University Affairs ) to develop shared metrics and a digital platform to create an inventory of “social infrastructure” services and programs at Canadian universities. “On some campuses, [social entrepreneurship] is already strong and very present,” Mr. Lubelsky says. “Its role is to provide students with what’s sometimes called a 21st-century education, a real-world application to their learning on real issues, and building core skillsets. It also helps create a more permeable boundary between the campus and community.” At the start of her second year as a business student in 2016, Kimberley Venn entered the  Change Lab  at Simon Fraser University, an interdisciplinary, 13-week course that’s billed as a “once-in-a-degree experience.” Students in a small cohort team up to develop and test a venture-based response to a chosen problem. In this iteration of the course, students were tasked to address a health-related challenge in the Vancouver community. The Change Lab is offered through SFU’s venture accelerator and social innovation incubator called  RADIUS  (which stands for Radical Ideas Useful to Society), one of many such spaces that have cropped up at Canadian universities over the years. “I was really wanting a hands-on learning experience,” says Ms. Venn. “All of my classes throughout university had been stereotypical in terms of their lecture style. I heard about this program and thought it’d be a really great change of pace.” Ms. Venn and two science students in her cohort, Iman Baharmand and Alec Yu, took their in-class collaboration to another level, winning the  Oxford Global Challenge  last year with a research project on reducing medical waste in Vancouver hospitals. The international competition, organized annually by the University of Oxford’s  Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship , challenges students to “map the system” of a social, economic or environmental problem by researching all factors at play instead of going straight to the solution. Kimberley Venn (second from left) and her team reacting to the news that they had won the Oxford Global Challenge. “We had brought this gigantic container full of medical waste to drop on stage, to show everybody how much was being wasted in one surgery or one room visit,” Ms. Venn recalls. “It was pretty nerve-wracking because there was a time cut-off and Q&A.” In the end, it was all worth it. The team took home top prize and got to attend the  2018 Skoll World Forum  this past April, a gathering to address global challenges through social entrepreneurship. Another organization dedicated to supporting students in developing entrepreneurial responses to community needs is the international non-profit  Enactus . More than 1,700 Enactus groups exist worldwide, with 64 located on Canadian campuses. Student teams are guided by faculty and business leaders to develop projects that address challenges in their community. Each year, Enactus hosts a series of regional and national competitions showcasing students’ team projects, leading up to a final international contest. In 2016, the team from  Memorial University won the Enactus World Cup , held that year in Toronto, beating out 34 other teams from around the world. Student pitch competitions designed to foster entrepreneurial ideas have been a mainstay for several years now in the faculty of engineering at the University of Ottawa. Kevin Kee, dean of the faculty of arts at U of Ottawa, saw a similar need for arts students to have exposure to these types of opportunities. “We all know the world of work is changing, and universities have the opportunity to take up that challenge,” he says. “We saw a special opportunity for us in our bachelor of arts for our students to develop entrepreneurial thinking in a social entrepreneurship context.” To that end, the faculty of arts created an option in entrepreneurship, in partnership with the faculty of management, whose students in turn take courses on business ethics through the faculty of arts. In addition, this fall, a $1-million gift from an anonymous donor is being used to launch an initiative,  Ventures , that will give arts and social science students access to hands-on learning opportunities in entrepreneurship and social innovation. By the end of five years, 30 courses in arts and social sciences will have project-based learning components where student teams will be asked to develop solutions to challenges identified by community partners. The donation has also opened up funds to hire a social innovator-in-residence to help professors with events like pitch competitions in these classes. Memorial University, in September 2019, expects to welcome the first cohort of 20 students into a new  MBA program in social enterprise and entrepreneurship . The program had an ambitious launch date set for this fall after being approved in December 2017, but the admissions period has been extended. “From an academic standpoint, it is going to be the only MBA program in which social enterprise is going to be intertwined with the entire curriculum,” says Isabelle Dostaler, dean of the faculty of business administration at Memorial. “We want to use this concept of a living lab. We’re bringing the reality into the classroom and sending the classroom out there,” she says. The 12-month program aims to prepare students to become leaders “for a new way of doing business” focused on sustainability. In the wake of marketing efforts, applications have come in from as far away as Belize, Cameroon, Egypt, Uganda and Zimbabwe. Incoming students are required to have two years of work or volunteer experience and by the end of the program will complete a four-month internship. Over the past decade, social enterprises have played a larger role in the economy of Newfoundland and Labrador, to which Memorial has a formal responsibility in its mandate. “The program is so novel and so well aligned with what our faculty and university are good at, but it’s also well aligned with Newfoundland. This is a society of people who really look out for each other. It’s a province with its financial struggles,” says Dr. Dostaler. In May 2018, the provincial government  released an action plan  to increase the number of social enterprises in the province, defined as organizations that sell goods or services to “further a social, community, cultural or environmental purpose.” Social enterprises, the government notes in its action plan, reinvest profits into their core mission, generating a return on investment that is both social and financial. Memorial’s  Centre for Social Enterprise  is noted as one of the key partners in the province’s strategy. Founded in 2016, the centre brings together undergraduate students and social enterprises in a range of sectors, from fisheries to poverty reduction. The centre also has a strategic alliance with the university’s school of social work, school of music and faculty of business administration, providing students with work-integrated learning placements in community organizations. “The experiential learning aspect is quite important. Part of that is career exploration, ‘What could this mean for me?’” says Nicole Helwig, founding manager of Memorial’s CSE and a social innovation fellow at the  Cambridge Centre for Social Innovation  at Cambridge University in the U.K. “We’re really trying to nurture social entrepreneurs and, in many cases, the word ‘entrepreneur’ doesn’t really resonate with students,” she says. “It’s interesting that we’re able to broach these kinds of skills in a way that may be more accessible to students.” In addition to making social entrepreneurship a viable option for students across disciplines, universities are recognizing the importance of engaging students from diverse backgrounds in these opportunities. Saint Paul University, for example, has established 10 scholarships, each worth $10,000, to encourage Indigenous students, first-generation students and students from developing countries to get involved in social innovation. Over the past few years, the higher education and business sectors have been keen as well to promote Indigenous entrepreneurship in ways that will benefit First Nations communities. To get from Lianna Spence’s village of Lax Kw’alaams to Prince Rupert, B.C., a municipality of 12,000 people, you would have to take a seaplane or boat. Prince Rupert is on Kaien Island at the mouth of the Skeena River, 725 kilometres west of Prince George and at least a 17-hour drive from Vancouver. It’s in this small port city that Ms. Spence, who is raising a young daughter, has established a business – called  Art from Ashes  – as a carver, jewellery maker and tattoo artist. Lianna Spence. A turning point in her life, says Ms. Spence, was taking part in a program called  Aboriginal Canadian Entrepreneurs , or ACE, a partnership between the University of Victoria’s Peter B. Gustavson School of Business and the Haida-owned and operated Tribal Resources Investment Corporation. “Artists are very introverted. But taking that course, I was like, the world is my oyster,” says Ms. Spence. “It gave me the courage to go out there and really talk to people.” ACE, which operates in 26 First Nations communities in B.C., provides business education to Indigenous participants looking to launch or develop a startup venture in the region, while building skills that can be useful for employment or to further their education. The program received a $1-million donation in April from the Bank of Montreal to expand its programming to First Nations communities on Vancouver Island. When projects come to the north, many of them resource-based, “that brings in a tide of employment,” says Brent Mainprize, a business professor at UVic who co-developed the program several years ago. However, “when the tide ebbs, there’s unemployment. One of the aims of the program was having Indigenous people provide a skill they already have. Those businesses sustain themselves over the long term.” When a spot came available in the ACE program, Ms. Spence jumped at the opportunity. “Someone just dropped out and there was a seat open,” she says. “Learning how to be in class every morning before 9:00 and having that schedule, meeting different professors every few days, it definitely tests your strength.” The program imparts a “cash, culture and community” framework to developing a business, Dr. Mainprize says. “In Indigenous communities, we know from a number of elders and business leaders that were part of designing this program, the success of bringing the individual along in the venture’s success is paramount. It might mean employing people in the community … giving back.” Many strides have been made to reduce barriers to entry into the program and to tailor its goals to each First Nation in which it is offered. “It became really clear that if we’re just another university creating another entrepreneurship or Indigenous program delivered on beautiful campuses, we’re actually by design creating a barrier to about 80 percent of people in rural or remote communities,” says Dr. Mainprize. “We heard loud and clear, we need to come into the community upon invitation and bring the community the program they want.”
The work and wealth and spinoffs generated by the LNG Canada project and the pipeline will also be spread beyond First Nations, and beyond B.C., too. Yes, the development of LNG in B.C. and the LNG Canada project will mean jobs, careers, business opportunities and revenue for First Nations, for First Nations people, and for First Nations communities. You’ve heard that before, so let me look at LNG Canada’s go-ahead announcement from a slightly deeper angle: The difference that it will make to daily life and economics in our First Nations communities, on and off-reserve. Let me start with these points: • Did you know that an Indigenous family in B.C. is lucky to earn half what a non-Indigenous family earns? • Did you know that Indigenous people in Canada are more than twice as likely to be unemployed than non-Indigenous people? And did you know that the National Aboriginal Economic Development Board has made these findings: • If Indigenous peoples had the same education and training as non-Indigenous peoples, the resulting increase in productivity would mean an additional $8.5 billion in income earned annually by the Indigenous population. • If Indigenous peoples were given the same access to economic opportunities available to other Canadians, the resulting increase in employment would result in an additional $6.9 billion per year in employment income and approximately 135,000 newly employed Indigenous people. • If the poverty rates among Indigenous peoples were reduced, the fiscal costs associated with supporting people living in poverty would decline by an estimated $8.4 billion annually. • Overall, if the gap in opportunities for Indigenous communities across Canada were closed, it would result in an increase in GDP of $27.7 billion annually or a boost of about 1.5 per cent to Canada’s economy. National Chief Perry Bellegarde of the Assembly of First Nations sums up the Canadian picture this way: • “In 2015, Canada ranked ninth in the world for quality of life, according to the United Nations Human Development Index. If you apply those same principles to Canada’s Indigenous community, that ranking drops to 63rd. • “This gap represents everything we talk about: it represents the 1,200 missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls; it represents the high youth suicide rate, the 132 boil-water advisories; it represents the cap on post-secondary funding, the disproportionate number of people in jails.” Shell Integrated Gas & New Energies Director Maarten Wetselaar, front left, LNG Canada CEO Andy Calitz, front right, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, back right, applaud after a final investment declaration was signed by LNG Canada joint venture participants to build an LNG export facility in Kitimat, during a news conference in Vancouver on Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2018.   DARRYL DYCK / THE CANADIAN PRESS So I see the green light for LNG Canada as meaning not just jobs and revenue. To me, it means a chance for affected First Nations to take a small step toward narrowing that gap between their standard of living and that of non-Indigenous Canadians, and beginning to deal with a myriad of social problems. To be clear, I mean ‘a step’ and only a small step. A construction job on the LNG Canada plant, or an environmental-stewardship job on the Coastal GasLink pipeline that will supply it with gas, is not going to miraculously close the gap between nine and 63. And to maximize this opportunity, much work still lies ahead for skills development, procurement and capacity building for government and communities. We must continue to work collaboratively to make sure the negative impacts are closely monitored and managed and that we do everything we can to make the positive impacts sustainable and meaningful. If we do it right, short-term jobs can turn into careers, and lifelong careers mean lifelong changes and improvements in standards of living. As the old Chinese proverb says: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” The work and wealth and spinoffs generated by the LNG Canada project and the pipeline will also be spread beyond First Nations, and beyond B.C., too. The two projects will also generate billions in taxes for all levels of government, and that means support for education and health care and social programs that all of us use, Indigenous and non-Indigenous. And, since the environment is a primary concern for First Nations people, let’s note that the Resource Works Society finds the LNG Canada project would make B.C. carbon-neutral, and would be like taking 19 million cars off the world’s roads. Let me close with this thought from Perry Bellegarde, which will be helped by the LNG Canada and Coastal GasLink projects: ‘We’re still here, but we don’t want to be in 63rd anymore. We’ve got to close this gap, which really is in the best interest of Canada.’ Karen Ogen-Toews is a former elected chief of the West’suwet’en First Nation in northern B.C., and is a qualified social worker. The First Nations LNG Alliance that she heads is a collective of First Nations who are participating in, and supportive of, sustainable and responsible LNG development in B.C.
October 12, 2018  by Derek Clouthier Original link SASKATOON, Sask. — Recent statistic show that in 2016 there were 315 truck drivers who spoke a Cree language, and the numbers have been in decline for the last 15 years. More truck drivers in Canada speak Greek, Gujarati, Hebrew, or Creole languages than do Cree. Compare that to the number of Punjabi and Hindi speaking drivers, which numbers 35,085 in total, and it puts the lack of Aboriginal drivers in perspective. With the well-documented shortage of qualified drivers in Canada, and North America as whole, Indigenous workers are clearly an untapped resource for many in the industry.  But that does not mean this group has gone totally unnoticed. Northern Resource Trucking (NRT) is one carrier looking to entice more Indigenous workers into the industry. Launched in 1986, the company was originally structured as a partnership between the Lac La Ronge Indian Band of La Ronge, Sask., with a 51% share, and Trimac Transportation with 49%. In 1995, the partnership expanded to include northern Aboriginal and Metis communities. At present, NRT is 71% Aboriginally-owned, many of the owners representing the northern communities impacted by the development of the uranium industry. Wendy Featherstone is the human resources manager for NRT, and she said there are several challenges when it comes to recruiting Indigenous workers into the industry. “One of the easiest ways to get into trucking is by having a family member as a truck driver, or having trucking as a necessary part of an associated business, like farming or construction,” said Featherstone. “The more exposure people have to trucking and mechanics, the easier it is to learn the business and pass the required training and tests. Even obtaining a truck to take the road test can be a barrier for people.” Featherstone said for Indigenous Peoples, trucking has historically not been a traditional industry in their culture, and the only way to learn and experience what it’s all about is through training, which is expensive. Northern Resource, however, has been proactive in this area, creating its own training school based out of La Ronge. “We have had hundreds of students graduate through our training program, and it increases the pool of drivers available,” said Featherstone, “not only to NRT, but to other companies in northern Saskatchewan, as well.” Deb Steel, news director for the Aboriginal Multi-Media Society of Alberta, said the most important thing when it comes to attracting Indigenous Peoples to industries like trucking is relationship building, as well as knowing which groups are already working with those communities. “If there is a need in an Indigenous community, there is a group trying to fill that need,” said Steel. “Take for instance, Women Building Futures, a company that trains women in the trades and industry professions. From the grassroots to the corporate level, like the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business, a simple call will get you a referral to the right source and qualified, trained and experienced staff. And that call might just open up other opportunities for your business.” Steel said there are huge networks of companies working together to employ Indigenous workers, as well as Aboriginal businesses as sub-contractors and experts in their field. “Let’s remember that 60% of First Nations people live off reserve, and Indigenous Peoples also include Metis, Inuit, and non-status peoples too,” she said. “That’s 1.4 million people across the country. That’s a lot of potential.” A lot of potential indeed. A study completed by Trucking HR Canada this past May indicates that 46% of Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples are under the age of 24, and more than half live in cities. Canada’s Aboriginal communities are made up of 60.8% First Nations, 32.3% Metis, and 4.2% Inuit. The study says some of the barriers in recruiting Aboriginal workers include assumptions about the industry, a lack of understanding of what kind of jobs exist in the industry, and on the employer side, a misconception of what Indigenous Peoples look for in a career. Terry Shaw, executive director of the Manitoba Trucking Association (MTA), said his association shares and promotes Trucking HR Canada’s research with its members. Trucking HR Manitoba submitted an application for the Manitoba industry sector council, and one of the four targeted objectives was to solicit partnerships with the Aboriginal community, an effort that is not new to the MTA. “The MTA has previously partnered with the Centre for Aboriginal HR Development and we applied for program funding for a Class 1 training program,” Shaw pointed out, adding that they also recently met with representatives from the Aboriginal Business Council and the Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce. Shaw said there is a large Aboriginal population in Manitoba, a younger population, which means partnering with the community makes sense for the industry. Arrow Transportation Systems out of Kamloops, B.C., is another carrier that offers a professional driver training program for Indigenous Peoples. A partnership between Arrow, BCT Projects, Thompson River University, and Columbia Transport Training, the effort is an attempt to combat the driver shortage in the industry and high unemployment in First Nations communities. “We have a history of building long-standing working relationships with First Nations communities based on trust, respect, and cooperation,” said Kevin Gayfer, regional manager of Arrow. “Our partnerships with First Nations groups have been established through formal joint ventures and informal collaborative initiatives. Arrow plans to build on these unique partnerships while providing employment opportunities for First Nations communities.” The program provides training and education through Thompson River University to acquire a Class 1 licence. Graduates then do on-the-job training with Arrow’s driver mentor program. Dave Earle, president and CEO of the B.C. Trucking Association, said his association does not have any specific policies to address the hiring of more Indigenous workers, but recognize the need to engage this under-represented group. “Engaging Canada’s Indigenous Peoples is important for the continued success of our industry,” said Earle. “We have begun working with public and Aboriginal training centers to better understand the needs of Indigenous persons and the obstacles that they face entering our industry.” Earle said the price tag attached to provincial licensing programs can be a barrier to individuals looking to acquire a commercial licence. “The expense of quality training and a lack of financial supports is another issue we are working with government to mitigate,” he said. Featherstone said her company’s ability to train its own drivers has been the key to their success. “The routes that we travel are directly through some of our partnership communities,” she said. “No one knows the roads or the needs of the communities better than those members, so it makes sense that we direct our training there.” Featherstone said other carriers have also benefited from NRT’s training program. “Our graduates and drivers are in high demand from not just other trucking companies, but other industries as well,” she said. “We have had our graduates move on to successful careers in mining, milling, policing, construction and countless other careers. The key to the success of our drivers, both with us and elsewhere seems to be the training and the safety standards that are in place.” Steel said relationship building with Aboriginal communities has been happing for some time. “They won’t be starting from scratch or inventing the wheel,” Steel said. “There are huge benefits to this relationship building. If your head is in the place where you are willing to learn about working with Indigenous populations, then there are plenty of folks who will help guide that effort.”
Original Link Band argues First Nations peoples should be consulted before federal legislation is even tabled   John Paul Tasker  ·  CBC News  ·  Posted: Oct 10, 2018 6:42 PM ET | Last Updated: October 10   Ivstitia (Justice) guards the entrance of the Supreme Court of Canada as the Peace tower is seen in the background in this file photo. The top court will rule on whether the federal government has a duty to consult with Indigenous peoples before tabling legislation that may affect their constitutional rights. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press) Supreme Court rules Ottawa has no duty to consult with Indigenous people before drafting laws The Supreme Court of Canada will deliver a ruling Thursday on an issue that has become increasingly fraught: the Crown's constitutional duty to consult with Indigenous peoples — and a decision in favour of the First Nation in question could have sweeping consequences for Canada's legislative process. The Mikisew Cree First Nation, a band in northern Alberta, is appealing a ruling from the Federal Court of Appeal that said there is no obligation for cabinet ministers to consult with First Nations peoples before introducing legislation that may have an impact on their constitutionally protected Aboriginal and treaty rights.   The problem for this First Nation stems from the former Conservative government's 2012 omnibus budget bill, the Jobs, Growth, and Long-Term Prosperity Act, a piece of legislation that dramatically amended the Navigable Waters Act and overhauled the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. Frank Iacobucci hailed as right pick to rescue 'failed' Trans Mountain process Ottawa to scrap National Energy Board, overhaul environmental assessment process for major projects They say the changes — essentially reduced regulatory oversight of waterways and a less burdensome environmental review process — affected their protected hunting, fishing and trapping rights; these rights were guaranteed by the Crown when it signed Treaty 8 in 1899, and enshrined as constitutional rights after the passage of the 1982 Constitution Act. The minister, they argue, should have consulted with them before making considerable changes to a legislative framework that could undermine treaty-protected rights. Government lawyers have argued the legislative process should be beyond judicial review.    If the top court sides with the Mikisew, the legislative drafting process could face massive — and potentially onerous — new changes that would demand First Nations peoples be consulted before any bill that could affect their rights is even tabled in Parliament. The decision will be made public at 9:45 a.m. ET on Thursday. Broad implications While there is presently an obligation on the executive to consult with Indigenous peoples before making a decision that could affect their rights, the government has said the legislative process is wholly separate and does not trigger a duty to consult as it would be an impractical interference that would severely impede in the policy-making process. Federal lawyers also argue that forcing Ottawa to give Indigenous representatives a seat at the table diminishes Parliament. It could also put more value on some rights than others, giving treaty rights preference over other Charter rights, they have argued in court. Presently, the Crown typically carries out its obligation to consult with potentially impacted First Nations through other means, like with the National Energy Board when a natural resources project could infringe on protected Aboriginal rights or through a Crown consultation team — as was done by the Liberal government in the case of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project. Supreme Court quashes seismic testing in Nunavut, but gives green light to Enbridge pipeline In August, the Federal Court of Appeal found the Crown consultation team in that case did not adequately consult with Indigenous peoples as it was not a meaningful or two-way dialogue between government and First Nations. It said government consultants were glorified "note-takers" that simply reported Indigenous concerns back to cabinet. While they could have imposed restrictions on the project, they did not. On these grounds, the second-highest court quashed cabinet approvals for the multi-billion dollar project. Thus, the duty to consult has become a matter demanding more attention. The appeal is being closely watched. Five provincial attorneys general and seven Indigenous groups have filed as interveners. ABOUT THE AUTHOR   John Paul Tasker Parliamentary Bureau John Paul (J.P.) Tasker is a reporter in the CBC's Parliamentary bureau in Ottawa. He can be reached at