Saturday, 10 January 2015

Inuit Drumming

"...Stan Nochasak, a Drummer & Visual Artist from Nain, Newfoundland & Labrador, gives honor to the Creator and his Ancestors through a traditional Inuit song. Stan channels his talent for creative art into keeping his aboriginal roots alive and proudly represents his people in various events within the Capital of our Province..."

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Second Annual Northwest Territories Anti-Poverty Roundtable

"...[R]epresentatives from community organizations, Aboriginal and community governments, non-government organizations and the private sector..." but no one on income assistance or living in social housing it seems...

Second Annual Northwest Territories Anti-Poverty Roundtable

"YELLOWKNIFE (November 5, 2014) - More than 100 delegates from across the Northwest Territories came together in Yellowknife over the past two days to hammer out an action plan to combat poverty in the NWT.

Participants in the Second Annual Northwest Territories Anti-Poverty Roundtable included representatives from community organizations, Aboriginal and community governments, non-government organizations and the private sector, representing every region of the NWT.  The event was hosted by the Department of Health and Social Services.

Minister of Health and Social Services Glen Abernethy, who also chairs the Social Envelope Committee of Cabinet, said that the purpose of the roundtable was to develop a territorial, multi-stakeholder action plan to combat poverty.  "Government is part of the solution but government can't be the entire solution - we can beat poverty by creating partnerships, creating relationships and working together."  Discussions at the session built on work initiated at a roundtable held in November 2013, following the publication of Building on the Strengths of Northerners:  A Strategic Framework toward the Elimination of Poverty in the NWT.

MLA Alfred Moses, Chair of the Legislative Assembly's Standing Committee on Social Programs, congratulated the gathering for a productive two days.  "With the passion and energy in the room, the expertise of people who have done great things in their communities and the attention of the leadership who are listening, we can make great progress."

Meeting Co-Chair Jim Antoine noted that an important theme was the sense of partnership, collaboration and cooperation.  Common themes that emerged from the discussion focused on homelessness, food security, the need for on-the-land programs, early childhood and wellness.  The commitments to action from the group will be incorporated into a draft territorial action plan document early in 2015.

The meeting began with a tribute to Chief Minnie Letcher of the Liidlii Kue First Nation in Fort Simpson, who served as co-chair of the Minister's Anti-Poverty Advisory Committee until her unexpected death last month.

Media inquiries:

Brenda Norris
Media Liaison
Government of the Northwest Territories
Tel: 867-669-2302
Email: "

Building on the Strengths of Northerners - A Strategic Framework toward the Elimination of Poverty in the NWT

Publication Date: 
June 2013

Building on the Strengths of Northerners is a strategic policy framework, the first step in a long-term plan to eliminate poverty in the NWT. It provides an overview of what we are doing now and what we need to do in the future to realize our vision of a poverty-free NWT.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

How to use the Canadian Federal govt's Lobbying Activity search

Canadian Federal Lobbyist meetings and registrations
"…In our infographic today, we attempt to help Canadians learn how to search for this type of information through the "Recent Registrations" and "Recent Monthly Communication Reports" search options on the lobbying commissioner's website.
These search functions are particularly useful to people who want to stay on top of what's going on in federal lobbying, such as which companies or groups have hired which lobbyists to represent them or which companies may be lobbying on new topics.
This infographic follows a series of others we've put out over the last few weeks that have identified how to use some of the other search functions available on the lobbying commissioner's website…."
— Nicholas Kyonka, Chief Executive Officer, Canadians For Responsible Advocacy

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Nunavut's Peter Irniq, Madeleine Redfern, and CBC's Jordan Konek win Indspire awards

RT @CBCNunavut: Congrats to Peter Irniq, Madeleine Redfern, and CBC's Jordan Konek. #Indspire awards announced today #cbcnorth

Culture, Heritage & Spirituality:
Peter Irniq – Inuit Nunavut

Peter is an Inuit cultural teacher who has lived most of his life in the Kivaliq Region of Nunavut. He was the executive assistant commissioner of the NWT from 1974 to 1975, then was elected to represent Keewatin Region for four years. He was named director of the Inuit Cultural Institute in 1992 and Director of Communications for Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated the following year. He was appointed Deputy Minister of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth with a mandate to be the guardian of traditional Inuit culture and language. Peter has also been recognized internationally for his artistic ability in designing inukshuks. His inukshuk for the 2010 Olympics was a highlight in Vancouver, and he has built Inukshuks in Paris, at Juno Beach in Normandy, in Buenos Aires, Mongolia, Washington D.C. and numerous other locations.

Public Service
Madeleine Redfern – Inuit Nunavut

Madeleine began her career as a businesswoman with a retail store in Ottawa, and began her extensive volunteering as President of the Tunngasuvvingat Inuit Community Centre, founding member of the Wabano Aboriginal Health Centre and the Ottawa Inuit Head Start programs. Following law school graduation, she became the first Inuit law clerk to clerk for the Supreme Court of Canada. In 2010, she became the Mayor of Iqaluit, and served for two years. Along with her positions with Ajungi Arctic Consulting and as Chair of the Legal Services Board, she also serves as an Advisory Board Member with Canadian Lawyers Abroad, as recent mentor with the Trudeau Foundation, and as a Northern Representative to EcoJustice Canada.

Youth: Inuit
Jordan Konek – Inuit – Nunavut

Jordan is a bilingual video journalist and reporter/editor for CBC North and has his own production company, Konek Productions. He developed his company while working as a researcher with the Nanisiniq Arviat History Project, filming activities related to the project in Yellowknife, Vancouver, and Ottawa. As co-director and co-producer, he hopes that this initiative will be an inspiration to Inuit youth. In 2011, he attended the COP 17 United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa and spoke at an international press conference about the Inuit perspective on climate change. An advocate for climate change, he also presented his work at the latest Inuit Studies Conference at the Smithsonian Institute and was a speaker at the International Polar Year conference in Montreal in 2011. He has also worked with the Canadian Rangers, assisting with the junior rangers program in Arviat, Nunuvut.

Monday, 27 October 2014

Fracking’s Slow-Motion Train Wreck Revealed In New Report

Well, turns out the United States' big fracking boom isn't all it's cracked up to be; Big oil will tell us anything to get us on board with their plan of continuing to frack when we should be building sustainable energy solutions.

"... If you are one of those people who smell the stench of bust behind today's fracking-fueled oil and gas boom, the Post Carbon Institute has an early Christmas present for you. In its latest report, the organization makes the case that US shale oil and gas reserves will peak and drop off rapidly, long before officially predicted by the US Energy Information Agency.

The new Post Carbon Institute report is titled "Drilling Deeper: A Reality Check on U.S. Government Forecasts for a Lasting Tight Oil & Shale Gas Boom." It was prepared by the same consultant who correctly predicted that official estimates of oil reserves in California's Monterey Shale 1 formation would fall off the cliff.


Fracking Boom, Fracking Bust, and The New Ghost Towns

The new Post Carbon report is focused on the impact that shale play estimates have on US energy policy. Press materials for the report also describe the financial symptoms of a bubble that's about to pop.

However, we're more interested in the report's implications for communities and individual property owners that host fracking or fracking wastewater disposal operations.

Those of you who know your Westerns are familiar with the "ghost town" phenomenon of abandoned mining communities that lost their raison d'être once the mining company pulls out.

In real life, the ghost town effect doesn't just mean a loss of employment. It can also saddle the community with a toxic environmental legacy that thwarts new economic activity.

You could make the case that mining boom towns wouldn't have existed in the first place if it wasn't for the mine, so no foul, no harm. But that doesn't apply to the current oil and gas fracking boom. In many areas it is intruding into established communities that already have a firm footing in sectors like agriculture or tourism, or that have the potential for long term economic grown.

The Post Carbon report underscores that the fracking boom is just that: a relatively short-lived boom. Given emerging evidence of the negative impacts of fracking and fracking wastewater disposal, communities that already host a healthy economic platform would be well served to pass on the opportunity to make a quick buck, and focus on more long term, sustainable sources of income.

For those of you new to the topic, those impacts are only just beginning to emerge because for many years fracking (short for hydrofracturing, a longstanding but formerly uncommon method for recovering oil and gas from shale formations) was largely confined to thinly populated areas in the western US, where it attracted little attention from the outside world.

However, a Bush-era exemption from federal water protection regulations has enabled thousands of fracking rigs to blossom in new territory, including the heavily populated northeastern and mid-Atlantic states.

As a result, fracking has become an incendiary issue for some communities, as has fracking wastewater disposal. That's on top of the meta-issue, which is the role of natural gas in climate change...."

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Yellowknife #NWT approves 'housing first' model for homeless

Yellowknife #NWT approves 'housing first' model for homeless
"…"Housing first is a principle that says before you can deal with mental health or addictions issues, people need a roof over their heads," says Mayor Mark Heyck.
The idea is to place people in homes rather than rely on emergency shelters.
Housing first doesn't require people to be sober to get a home.
Heyck says the city also has to do more to help homeless youth…
City council has adopted a five year plan to roll out the model.
The five-year Homelessness Strategy would set up a youth-specific housing complex.
It would have on-site support services to help youth gain independence.
The city hopes to be able to get up to $360,000 a year from the federal government to start the program….."

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Adventures in Yellowknife / Aventures à Yellowknife

Adventures in Yellowknife : In February 2014, the Canadian Tourism
Commission partnered with Northwest Territories Tourism to host 4
eminently talented photographers from Mexico, Brazil and Australia.
Their journey took them to Yellowknife, NT where their unique
experiences in Canada’s far north made for the trip of a lifetime.