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Sarnia vigil held to remember Saskatchewan man, to promote healing in the community – The Observer

February 23, 2018

Around 30 people met in front of Sarnia City Hall Thursday evening to honour the life of a Saskatchewan First Nation man whose life was abruptly taken in 2016.

Dunlop United Church minister Adam Kilner led a candlelight vigil in remembering 22-year-old Colten Boushie, the Cree Red Pheasant First Nation man who was shot in August 2016. Gerald Stanley was acquitted earlier this month of all charges in Boushie’s death, sparking nationwide protests.

But rather than focusing on Stanley’s trial, Kilner along with others – including Mayor Mike Bradley, St. Paul United Church’s Rev. Matthew Stevens and Order of Ontario recipient Aamjiwnaang First Nation’s Geraldine Robertson – spoke about the need for healing, the need for reconciliation and the need for heightened public awareness about the inequality that exists between First Nation and non-First Nation people, so that tragedies such as Boushie’s could be avoided in the future.

“This is not a protest but a vigil,” Kilner said. “We want to sow the seeds of unity tonight.”

Read More: http://www.theobserver.ca/2018/02/23/sarnia-vigil-held-to-remember-saskatchewan-man-to-promote-healing-in-the-community

Saskatchewan trial reveals flaws in Canadian system – BC Local News

Only about 500 out of the 44,000 farmers in the province are First Nations

Feb. 23, 2018

The recent trial of Saskatchewan farmer Gerald Stanley, which found him not guilty in the death of Colten Boushie, an Indigenous man who went onto his farm with several others, has created a fair amount of division.

READ MORE: Colten Boushie’s family meets with federal ministers (Feb. 12, 2018)

As some longtime readers of the Times might recall, in 1987 and 1989 your editor, then just a reporter with this newspaper, walked from Clearwater to Toronto. Purpose of the walk was to have been a round-the-world pilgrimage to India and back to honor Mahatma Gandhi, as well as to publicize a petition calling for reform of the United Nations.

Walking across the Prairies left me with some insights to the situation behind what happened on the farm near Biggar on Aug. 9, 2016, though, obviously, not the details.

Read More: https://www.bclocalnews.com/opinion/saskatchewan-trial-reveals-flaws-in-canadian-system/

FCM: National forum helps shape future direction of Indigenous – local government relations

February 23, 2018

The first national Indigenous – Local Government Partnership Forum, which took place February 21-22, served as an opportunity to share Indigenous and local government perspectives on success factors for building relationships.

The forum was organized by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), the Council for the Advancement of Native Development Officers (Cando) and the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources, with funding provided by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC).

Participants included representatives from First Nations, Métis Nations/Settlements, their neighbouring local governments, representatives from the Government of Canada and provincial government, as well as representatives of other Indigenous and non-Indigenous organizations.

As a platform to share different perspectives on the future direction of Indigenous-local government relations, the forum provided opportunities to share tools and resources and explore how to collaboratively foster reconciliation. It also showcased examples where cultural training as well as Friendship Accords have greatly reduced barriers to greater First Nation and municipality collaboration.

Many First Nations and municipalities across Canada are already engaging in collaborative efforts like Friendship Agreements, joint land use planning, municipal-type service agreements and economic development collaboration on issues like tourism, employment, and business development. FCM’s First Nation-Municipal collaboration programs, the Community Economic Development Initiative and the Community Infrastructure Partnership Project, funded by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, aim to facilitate and develop these efforts. The partnerships fostered by these initiatives have proven to be important community-building influencers in the time of truth and reconciliation and can serve as a model for greater collaboration moving forward.

“It’s been a terrific two days of sharing and learning. It’s inspiring to see how mistrust and misconception have evolved to understanding and collaboration. I’m proud of the role that Cando has played in facilitating the CEDI program, in partnership with FCM, and funded by the Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, in order to help communities achieve a high level of engagement. This is hard work, but we now realize that it’s critical if we are to move forward. This Partnership Forum has shown us that Indigenous and local government collaboration works and so Cando encourages that the CED I program be not only extended but expanded to meet the growing demand from many more communities.”
— Keith Matthew, Cando President

“The journey of reconciliation will take a committed national effort over generations. The partnerships we are forming and conversations like the ones we had throughout this event are important steps on the road stretched out ahead of us. This work would be impossible without our partners at Cando, the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources and Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. Our collective commitment to this national priority is helping pave the way toward reconciliation.”
— Jenny Gerbasi, FCM President

Information and interview requests:

FCM
(613) 907-6395
media@fcm.ca

Cando
Paul Macedo
(780) 990-0303 ext 236
paul.macedo@edo.ca

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
Céline Hotte
819 953 1160
celine.hotte@canada.ca

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is the national voice of municipal governments, with nearly 2,000 members representing more than 90 per cent of the Canadian population.

For more information, please contact:

FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, media@fcm.ca

NT5

Governments of Canada and Manitoba are making early learning and child care more inclusive, accessible and affordable for families

Governments sign a bilateral agreement

February 23, 2018                            Winnipeg, Manitoba

The governments of Canada and Manitoba are making significant investments in early learning and child care systems to foster children’s social, cognitive and emotional development and give them a real chance to succeed in life. Today, Dan Vandal, Member of Parliament for Saint Boniface—Saint Vital, on behalf of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, and the Honourable Scott Fielding, Minister of Families for Manitoba, announced a bilateral agreement that focuses on the increased quality, accessibility, affordability, flexibility and inclusivity of early learning and child care, with consideration for families more in need of child care services.

The agreement, which allocates close to $47 million over three years and aims to create an estimated 1,400 new and newly subsidized early learning and child care spaces in Manitoba, supports investments in:

  • creating affordable child care spaces through enhanced capital funding and operating subsidies to support lower-income, French language and newcomer families as well as underserved communities;
  • building sector capacity through education, training and skill development;
  • developing a rural and Northern strategy to improve access to high-quality and affordable child care services;
  • developing a new service and funding approach to support inclusive, active and meaningful participation of children with varying abilities and providing grants to community service organizations offering supportive family services to hire early childhood educators; and
  • undertaking community engagement to successfully implement bilateral initiatives and support public reporting.

This announcement follows a historic agreement, made on June 12, 2017, by the Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers Responsible for Early Learning and Child Care on a Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework. The Framework sets the foundation for governments to work towards a shared long-term vision where all children across Canada can experience the enriching environment of quality early learning and child care.

By taking care of our children today, we are growing and strengthening the middle class for years to come. The bilateral agreement is supported by long-term Government of Canada investments in early learning and child care announced in Budgets 2016 and 2017, totalling $7.5 billion over 11 years. This is another step to help ensure that Manitoban children get the best start in life.

Quotes

“The experiences of parents across Canada are vast and varied, but one thing we can all agree on, is that it is important for our children to access high quality child care. That is why the Government of Canada is working hard with provinces and territories to ensure the unique needs of early learning and child care are met everywhere. I am thrilled that the Government of Manitoba and Government of Canada have announced today’s agreement that will have an important impact on Manitoban families and children.”

– The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

“This bilateral agreement will help to deliver better child care for families across the province and is a big step forward in our collective efforts to ensure that the children of Manitoba get the best start in life.”

– Dan Vandal, Member of Parliament for Saint Boniface—Saint Vital

“We are pleased to collaborate with the Government of Canada on our commitment to high-quality, affordable licensed child care that focuses on key areas to better respond to the unique needs of our province. The investment will focus on new and newly funded, affordable and accessible spaces, building capacity of child care facilities, strengthening the workforce and improving child care services in rural and northern Manitoba.”

– The Honourable Scott Fielding, Minister of Families for Manitoba

Quick facts

  • Federal Budgets 2016 and 2017 proposed to invest $7.5 billion over 11 years, starting in 2017–18, to support and create more high-quality, affordable child care across the country, particularly for families more in need. Of this investment:
    • $95 million will go towards closing data gaps to better understand child care challenges and needs and track progress;
    • $100 million will go towards early learning and child care innovation; and
    • a portion will be dedicated to strengthening culturally appropriate early learning and child care for Indigenous children.
  • The federal government is working with each province and territory to enter into three-year bilateral agreements that will address the early learning and child care needs unique to its jurisdiction and funding allocation. Bilateral agreements with seven other provinces and territories have been announced: New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, Prince Edward Island and Yukon.
  • Through the bilateral agreements, the Government of Canada will provide provinces and territories with $1.2 billion, over the next three years, for early learning and child care programs. Governments will report annually on progress made in relation to the Framework and bilateral agreements.
  • A separate Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework is being co-developed with Indigenous partners to reflect the unique cultures and needs of First Nations, Inuit and Métis children and families.
  • Over the three-year bilateral agreement, the Manitoba action plan, aligned with the Multilateral Early Learning and Child Care Framework, aims to:
    • create an estimated 1,400 new and newly subsidized early learning and child care spaces for children under the age of six;
    • deliver core professional development training to up to 100 facilitators, providers and facilities;
    • certify up to 20 new rural/Northern educators;
    • pilot a new family group child care model to serve children and families from smaller and diverse communities;
    • pilot a service and funding approach focused on coordinating services to better meet the complex, life-long support needs of an estimated 700 children with disabilities in early learning and child care facilities; and
    • provide up to eight grants to community organizations offering supportive family services to enable them to hire an early childhood educator to provide quality programming for children moving through a significant transition with their family.

Related products

Associated links

Contacts

For media enquiries, please contact:
Émilie Gauduchon-Campbell
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
819-654-5546

Andrea Slobodian
Press Secretary
Executive Council
Government of Manitoba
204-945-1495204-807-0857
andrea.slobodian@leg.gov.mb.ca

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559
media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca

NT5

Call for Vendors, Artisans and Community Groups for City Events – City of Thunder Bay

February 22, 2018 – The City of Thunder Bay is inviting food vendors, product and service vendors, artisans and community groups to apply to participate at the City’s annual events series.
Opportunities include over 22 event days throughout the year, with two major single-day events and two event series. All events are free to the public and collectively draw thousands of attendees, including:

  • Thunder Bay Youth Arts Showcase: May 1-7
  • Kite Festival: Sunday, June 3
  • Canada Day on the Waterfront: Sunday, July 1
  • Teddy Bears Picnic: Tuesday, July 10
  • Live on the Waterfront: July 11 to August 29 (Wednesday evenings and special feature on Saturday, July 28)
  • Movie Nights on the Waterfront: Aug. 17, 18, 24, 25, 31 and September 1
  • Culture Days – Saturday, Sept. 29
  • SnowDay on the Waterfront: Monday, Feb. 18, 2019

The City also has an Open Call for Talent for its upcoming event season.

Application deadlines are as follows:

  • Call for Talent – Feb. 28
  • Call for Food Vendors – March 9
  • Call for Vendors – March 9
  • Call for Artists and Artisans – March 9
  • Call for Community Groups – March 9

For more information, and application forms, visit: thunderbay.ca/events, or email culture@thunderbay.ca.

– 30 –

Contact: Ash Young, Cultural Development & Events Supervisor, 628-5250 or ayoung@thunderbay.ca

NT4

DNA phenotyping used to create scientific approximation of mother of deceased baby – City of Calgary

Calgary, AB, 21 February 2018

The Calgary Police Service has used DNA phenotyping to create an image that has a likeness to the mother of a baby that was found deceased in a dumpster on Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017. A composite sketch of the baby is also being released.

Investigators have recently sought the services of a DNA technology company in Virginia that specializes in DNA phenotyping, the process of predicting physical appearance and ancestry from unidentified DNA evidence.

This is the first time that CPS investigators are using this technology. After a plea to the public on Tuesday, Dec. 26, 2017, numerous tips were received. These tips have all been investigated and each person of interest has been eliminated, leading to no further investigative avenues to explore at this time.

Based on biological material found at the scene, a scientific approximation indicates that the mother is likely of mixed race with a fair skin complexion, possibly of European or Indigenous descent. Her hair is described as dark, likely brown or black. She has hazel eyes that may also appear green. Investigators want to make clear that the image that has been produced is not a definitive composite sketch.

The images are available on The City of Calgary Newsroom.

Autopsy results have indicated that at some point after birth the child was breathing on her own. Identifying the mother is seen as a necessary step to determine what led to the baby being placed in the dumpster and who is responsible for placing the baby there. This remains an undetermined death and, therefore, the mother is not being sought as a suspect.

Anyone who believes they have information on the identity of this woman or the events that led up to this incident is asked to contact the Homicide Tip Line at Homicide Tip Line at 403-428-8877,They may also call the Calgary Police Service at 403-266-1234 or Crime Stoppers anonymously through the following methods:

TALK: 1-800-222-8477

TYPE: www.calgarycrimestoppers.org

Case #17551669/3079

NT5

Terrace Area Integrated Solid Waste Management Program Receives 4 Awards

The Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine is pleased to announce, the Regional District along with their Terrace area residents and businesses, are recipients of four awards recognizing their efforts to make the Terrace Area Integrated Solid Waste Management Program a success.

The North Central Local Government Association Community Leadership Award is the result of Terrace area residents and businesses dedication to utilize the organics and diversion programs. This award was accepted by Chair Philip Germuth on behalf of the Regional District Board in May 2017, in the category of Environmental Sustainability. This award is intended to showcase communities that are front runners in specific categories. Leadership Awards are also a means of sharing best practices and successes to other northern BC communities.

The Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM), Community Excellence Award in the category of Leadership & Innovation, Green Initiatives, was accepted by Chair Philip Germuth on behalf of the Regional District Board, at the UBCM conference in September 2017. UBCM leadership awards showcase municipalities and Regional Districts that are leaders, show innovation and creativity, and create successful pathways and incentives for others to follow.

The Community Energy Association presented the RDKS with a Climate and Energy Action Award, in the category of Corporate Operations. This provincial award was accepted by Chair Philip Germuth on behalf of the Regional District Board, at the UBCM conference in September 2017 by the Honourable George Heyman, Minister of Environment & Climate Change Strategy. Community Energy Association awards are presented to municipalities or Regional Districts that have implemented a project which best integrates energy and climate planning into the corporate planning and development processes.

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities 2018 Sustainable Community award, in the category of Waste, was accepted by Director Alice Maitland on behalf of the Regional District Board in February 2018. Sustainable Community awards celebrate the most innovative environmental initiatives in Canadian cities and communities, they recognize sustainability leaders and trailblazers across Canada.

Additional details of the award can be found here.

“The closure of the Thornhill Landfill, and construction of the transfer station, and Forceman Ridge – all expertly designed and constructed – confirm what we have long recognized: The commitment by Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine to do the right thing”

British Columbia Ministry of Environment & Climate Change

In addition to this praise by industry and our Municipal affiliations, the Provincial government has also recognized the Regional District by confirming, “The solid waste management planning process, careful landfill siting, genuine and meaningful First Nations and public consultation, and design and construction of the of the facilities clearly demonstrate that the Regional District has gone above and beyond. Forceman Ridge is the most environmentally protective landfill in its class, in Canada, possibly North America at this time”.

The Regional District recognizes this praise would not have come without the support of the Terrace area residents and business through involvement in the development stage and to subsequently participate in the diversion of recyclables and organics.

The Forceman Ridge Waste Management Facility supported by the new solid waste programs will provide the community an effective, environmentally responsible service for many generations.

Let’s continue to work together to make positive changes for our communities and the environment.

NT4

The system, everything… in Tina’s life failed her’ – Winnipeg Free Press

Outraged Indigenous leaders take aim at ‘injustice’ while family makes plea for peace after man accused of killing 15-year-old Sagkeeng teen walks free

She entered the courtroom crying, and Thelma Favel’s tears did not stop once the jury declared its verdict.

“My baby girl, my baby girl, my baby girl.”

From the centre of a prayer circle that surrounded her, moments after an 11-member jury acquitted Raymond Cormier of second-degree murder in the death of 15-year-old Tina Fontaine, the woman who raised Tina cried.

She cried as family, friends, supporters and Indigenous leaders spoke the words to the Lord’s Prayer. She cried as a complement of sheriffs led Cormier out a back door of the Winnipeg courtroom, his ankles still in chains. She cried as the courtroom emptied, as the circle enveloped her and guided her into the hallway.

Read More: https://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/the-system-everything-in-tinas-life-failed-her-474920433.html

Media Advisory – Global climate research agenda to be developed at Cities and Climate Change Science Conference in Edmonton

February 22, 2018

On March 5 – 7, the City of Edmonton will host the first-of-its-kind CitiesIPCC Cities and Climate Change Science conference, where scientists, policymakers, researchers and development experts will gather to advance global understanding of climate change, its impacts on cities and the critical role cities play in solving this challenge. The conference will be marked by the establishment of a global research agenda, which will create a blueprint for new scientific research to support effective climate action strategies in cities around the world.

Date: Monday, March 5 – Wednesday, March 7
Time: all day
Location: Shaw Conference Centre, 9797 Jasper Avenue

Media wishing to attend must RSVP to CitiesIPCC@gpg.com by February 23 to request media accreditation.

Plenary sessions will be livestreamed for those interested in participating in the conference remotely at https://goo.gl/Z5Wwpu.

The CitiesIPCC partner organizations providing practical support to the Cities and Climate Change Science conference include the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), C40 Cities, Cities Alliance, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, Future Earth, SDSN, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment), UN-Habitat, and World Climate Research Program (WCRP).

Conference participants will include:

  • Don Iveson, Mayor of Edmonton
  • Hoesung Lee, IPCC Chair, Republic of Korea
  • Youba Sokona, IPCC Vice-Chair, Mali
  • Valérie Masson-Delmotte, IPCC Working Group I Co-Chair, France
  • Hans-Otto Pörtner, IPCC Working Group II Co-Chair , Germany
  • Debra Roberts, IPCC Working Group II Co-Chair, South Africa
  • Jim Skea, IPCC Working Group III Co-Chair, United Kingdom
  • Ramon Pichs-Madruga, IPCC Working Group III Vice-Chair, Cuba
  • Diana Ürge-Vorsatz, IPCC Working Group III Vice-Chair, Hungary
  • Jeffrey Sachs, Director of UN SDSN
  • Aromar Revi, Director of Indian Institute for Human Settlements at UN SDSN
  • William Cobbett, Director of Cities Alliance
  • Emilia Saiz, Secretary General of UCLG
  • Amy Luers, Executive Director of Future Earth
  • Anne-Helene Prieur-Richard, Director of Montreal Global Hub of Future Earth

The conference program can be found here.

Media contact:

CITIESIPCC@GPG.COM
Mary-Ann Thurber
Communications Advisor, City of Edmonton
780-442-1698

NT4

Environmental groups pinning hopes on major spending for conservation in budget – CBC

Environmentalists are looking for up to $1.4 billion in new funding

Feb 23, 2018

Environmental and conservation groups are convinced that there will be a significant amount of money — up to $1.4 billion dollars — in next week’s federal budget for conservation.

They say all signs point to a growing political commitment to meeting Canada’s international goal of protecting 17 per cent of its land and fresh water by 2020.

“There is a huge amount of support for that scale of investment and there is a lot of momentum building,” said Alison Woodley, national conservation director for the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, in an interview with CBC.

“This is the scale of investment we think is necessary.”

Read More: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/conservation-land-water-federal-budget-1.4548142

Carlson: Reconciliation can never be about merely ‘starting fresh’ unless it also involves making right – Leader-Post

Settler colonialism empowers certain groups and disempowers others; it provides control of resources to some and marginalizes others.

February 23, 2018

The Indigenous anger following the acquittal of Gerald Stanley in the Colten Boushie murder trial, and the indignation of many non-Indigenous people to that anger, must be seen within the larger context of Canadian settler colonialism — a system of ongoing colonial displacement of Indigenous people from their lands and resources. Until settler colonialism is meaningfully dismantled, reconciliation will be impossible.

When I talk with non-Indigenous people about the historical injustices that Indigenous people have endured, I am often greeted with the response, “Well, we can’t change the past.” As a historian, of course I agree. In my view, the point can never be to try and alter the past, but rather must be to develop a sophisticated understanding of our past so that we can create the circumstances in the present that will enable us to change the future.

Settler colonialism empowers certain groups and disempowers others; it provides control of resources to some people and economically marginalizes others; it enables some to negotiate pathways to educational success and it discourages others from even participating, etc.

Read More: http://leaderpost.com/opinion/columnists/carlson-reconciliation-can-never-be-about-merely-starting-fresh-unless-it-also-involves-making-right

NAN Statement as Jury delivers Not Guilty verdict in Death of Tina Fontaine

THUNDER BAY, ON (February 22, 2018): Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Acting Grand Chief Anna Betty Achneepineskum has issued the following statement regarding today’s not-guilty verdict in the second-degree murder trial of Raymond Cormier in the death of Tina Fontaine:

“It is very disturbing that just weeks after the acquittal in the Colten Boushie murder trial the death of another Indigenous youth has gone unexplained and no one is held accountable. Our hearts and prayers are with Tina Fonatine’s family and friends and all of the leaders who supported the family during these very difficult proceedings. This is a very discouraging outcome and sends a message that there are no consequences to killing Indigenous youth. The recent acquittal in the Colten Boushie case showed how the legal system continues to fail First Nations and exposed systemic racism in the justice system. The tragic death of Tina Fontaine also shows the failure in the child welfare system. Many of these issues are well documented, and we will continue to support the families and leaders who are demanding accountability and change.”

The body of 15-year-old Tina Fontaine was found in the Red River in Winnipeg on August 17, 2014.

A jury found Gerald Stanley not guilty of second-degree murder in the death of 22-year-old Boushie on February 9, 2018. The 22-year-old from Red Pheasant First Nation died of a gunshot wound to the head on Stanley’s farm near Biggar, Saskatchewan, in August 2016.

For more information please contact: Michael Heintzman, Director of Communications – (807) 625-4965 or cell (807) 621-2790 or by email nan%23on%23ca|mheintzman

NT5

Crown’s ‘very thin case’ against Raymond Cormier made conviction unlikely, lawyers say – CBC

Charged with 2nd-degree murder in death of Tina Fontaine, 15, Cormier was acquitted by jury Thursday

Feb 23, 2018

While the acquittal of Raymond Cormier on a charge of second-degree murder in the death of Tina Fontaine shocked many people, legal experts say there wasn’t much else the jury could do.

“This was a very thin case. There was really very little evidence,” said Scott Newman, spokesperson for the Criminal Defence Lawyers’ Association of Manitoba.

Cormier, 56, pleaded not guilty to killing the 15-year-old Indigenous girl, whose 72-pound body was pulled from the Red River near the Alexander Docks on Aug. 17, 2014.

He was found not guilty by a jury of seven women and four men who deliberated for about 13 hours over Wednesday evening and into Thursday afternoon.

Read More: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/raymond-cormier-acquittal-tina-fontaine-1.4548210

Statement from Mayor Brian Bowman on Today’s Outcome in the Raymond Cormier Criminal Trial

February 23, 2018

Winnipeg, MB – Mayor Brian Bowman issued the following statement in response to today’s outcome in the Raymond Cormier criminal trial:

My heart and my thoughts are with Tina Fontaine’s family, and members of the Sagkeeng First Nation. The death of this young woman – bright, full of promise, but at the same time vulnerable and in need of protection – was a tragedy.

Winnipeggers and Canadians may have differing views on today’s outcome in this case. I think it is important, however, to be mindful that for many people, today is a day marked by grief, anger, and broken hearts.

No one can be blind to the racial tensions in our country.  The work of the Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls is shedding light onto a dark past of violence and a history of racism in Canada. All of us have a responsibility to challenge racism and discrimination when we see it. And all of us need to work to repair the broken relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

There’s no question in my mind that we all failed Tina. And we are all continuing to fail other young Indigenous people in communities across our country. I believe Canada is the greatest country in the world – a land of tolerance, diversity, and civility – but until we all confront the shame and tragedy of our country’s racism and treatment of Indigenous people we will fall short of that great country we know Canada to be.

When I declared 2016 a Year of Reconciliation in our city, I had great hope. I think there have been positive steps forward, and I remain hopeful. But the pain and prejudices that go back for generations cannot be healed in a year or two. We are striving for profound changes in culture, attitudes, and actions – and that takes time.

I believe the progress we’ve made is tangible, despite the despair we feel thinking about the loss of young people like Tina or the level of violence our community witnessed against Rinelle Harper. With determination, however, we can continue our journey of reconciliation. And despite how many in our community may be feeling today, now is not the time to let our pain, our fear, or our prejudices hold us back. Now is not the time for the commitment we all made as a country many years ago – a commitment to peace and partnership with Indigenous people – to be interrupted or forgotten.

NT5

TMAC Reports Operating and Financial Results for Fourth Quarter and Year 2017

TORONTO–TMAC Resources Inc. (TSX: TMR) (“TMAC” or the “Company”) is filing its Annual Financial Statements, Management’s Discussion & Analysis and the Annual Information Form for the year ended December 31, 2017. The documents may be found on the Company’s website at www.tmacresources.com or, once filed, on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Please read this news release in conjunction with these documents.

Jason Neal, President and Chief Executive Officer of TMAC, stated, “While progress is being made, as discussed in our January 16, 2018 news release, TMAC had a challenging fourth quarter, capping a difficult 2017. Though the mine has been performing well, the processing plant has had material ramp up issues and a number of important initiatives are underway to drive improvements. As a result, financial results for Q4 were weak, but performance is expected to improve as 2018 continues assuming our expectations are met from ongoing investment and attention on processing improvements.”

Gil Lawson, Chief Operating Officer of TMAC said, “The operations’ team is continuing to systematically work through the processing plant de-bottlenecking to improve throughput and identify opportunities to increase recovery. We are seeing consistent throughput after making changes in the crushing circuit screen sizes and since the installation of the spider-head . Metallurgical studies have identified that free fines gold is available to recover in the flotations tails and we will be installing a Falcon B concentrator to address this. We are also focused on enhancing leach recovery with the testing of a chemical leach enhancer.”

Mr. Lawson went on to say, “Importantly, the operations’ team has been substantially strengthened with the hiring of a senior operation’s metallurgist in the position of Assistant General Manager and, additionally, a Director of Metallurgy. Dan Gagnon, our General Manager, and I joined in late 2017 and we have made important improvements to the performance and culture at site, and, with the new additions to the team, we expect to further accelerate our momentum towards establishing a best in class operation”.

FOURTH QUARTER AND YEAR 2017 HIGHLIGHTS

Financial results:

  • Net loss totalled $25.3 million (Q4-2017: $12.5 million), or $0.30 per share (Q4-2017: $0.14 per share) on a basic and fully diluted basis.
  • 46,990 ounces of gold were sold during the year ended December 31, 2017 for proceeds of $76.9 million (US$59.7 million). 17,350 ounces of gold were sold in the three months ended December 31, 2017 for proceeds of $28.2 million(US$22.1 million).
  • Realized an average price for gold sold of $1,636 (US$1,270) per ounce during the year ended December 31, 2017 and $1,622 (US$1,275) per ounce during the three months ended December 31, 2017.
  • Cash costs and All-in Sustaining Costs (“AISC”) per ounce of gold sold were $1,658 (US$1,288) and $2,418 (US$1,870), respectively, during the year ended December 31, 2017 and $1,568 (US$1,228) and $2,138 (US$1,683), respectively, during the three months ended December 31, 2017.
  • Cash and cash equivalents were $42.0 million and restricted cash was $43.9 million at December 31, 2017.

Finance:

  • On November 9, 2017, the Company completed an equity financing for aggregate proceeds of $53.0 million via a $31.4 million private placement with RCF and Newmont and a concurrent marketed overnight public offering of $21.6 million from a syndicate of underwriters at a price of $7.00 per common share of the Company.
  • On July 26, 2017, entered into an Amended and Restated Credit Agreement for total borrowings of US$160 million with repayment terms to be over a five-year period.

Management team:

  • Jason Neal joined the TMAC management team as Director and President and Chief Executive Officer on February 15, 2018.
  • Catharine Farrow retired from her position as Director, effective November 16, 2017, and Chief Executive Officer, effective December 31, 2017.
  • Gord Morrison retired from his position as President and Chief Technology Officer, effective December 31, 2017, and continues his involvement with TMAC as an executive advisor focusing on the advancement of the geological understanding of Hope Bay.
  • Gil Lawson joined the TMAC executive team as Chief Operating Officer effective August 31, 2017 and Dan Gagnon joined the Hope Bay management team as General Manager on October 8, 2017.
  • John Roberts retired from his position as Vice President, Environmental Affairs, effective December 31, 2017, and continues his involvement with TMAC as an executive advisor to Oliver Curran, who was promoted to Vice President, Environmental Affairs, effective January 1, 2018.

Operations:

  • Achieved commercial production effective June 1, 2017
  • Mined 53,500 tonnes of ore at a grade of 9.4 grams per tonne (“g/t”), containing 16,200 ounces of gold in the fourth quarter of 2017, resulting in a total of 150,700 tonnes of ore mined at a grade of 11.5 g/t, containing 55,700 ounces of gold for the year. A strong correlation between the block models and detailed geological mapping and chip sampling continues to be observed in the mine, demonstrating confidence in Mineral Reserves estimates.
  • Processed 69,600 tonnes of ore at a grade of 13.7 g/t, containing 30,700 ounces of gold in the fourth quarter of 2017, with 21,200 ounces of gold being produced at an average recovery of 69%. After the installation of the dewatering cone in early November 2017, the recovery for November and December improved to an average of 74%, while the average for the ten months ended October 31, 2017 prior to its installation was only 62%.
  • 55,150 ounces of gold were produced in 2017, of which approximately 5,820 ounces remain as gold in process at December 31, 2017.
  • 49,070 ounces of gold were poured during the year ended December 31, 2017, of which 46,990 ounces were sold and the remaining 2,080 ounces were doré or refined at year end.
  • The Plant averaged 84% of design throughput in December after the installation of the dewatering cone at the beginning of November 2017. A traditional “spider head” cyclone distributor was delivered to site and installed in the Plant on January 24, 2018. Since that day to February 19, 2018, this modification, along with new screens in the secondary crushers, have resulted in an improvement in Plant stability and an increase in Plant throughput to an average of 977 tonnes per day, or 98% of designed throughput.
  • Deportation studies (gold grain size studies) have determined that some of the Doris gold is finer grain material than the high-pressure jig can fully capture and has resulted in the ordering of Falcon B concentrators for each concentrator line (“CL”) which are specifically designed to capture more of the fine grain gold. The Falcon B concentrators are currently being engineered.
  • Ore stockpiles at December 31, 2017 were estimated to contain 66,600 tonnes of ore at an average grade of 13.8 g/t, or 29,400 ounces of contained gold.

Exploration:

  • The successful initiation of exploration at Boston in 2017 demonstrated the potential for “bulk stoping” within the wide, high-grade core of the B2 zone and added to the geological understanding of ore distribution.
  • The 2017 gold in till sampling and regional mapping programs have defined several high priority exploration targets within the Doris-Madrid corridor and north of Boston.
  • The Doris BTD East Limb definition drilling and resource estimate was completed and incorporated into the June 30, 2017 Mineral Resource Mineral Reserve (“MRMR”) statement. Sill development was initiated in 2017 and development ore is currently being mined.
  • The annual MRMR statement dated June 30, 2017, indicated a 2.9% increase in Proven and Probable Reserve and a 9% increase in Measured and Indicated Resources over the previous statement.

Environment and permitting:

  • The Nunavut Impact Review Board (“NIRB”), in consultation with the Nunavut Water Board, has accepted the final Environmental Impact Statement and is commencing the public and technical review of TMAC’s proposal for development and mining at the Madrid and Boston gold deposits relating to the Company’s application for both Project Certificates and Water Licences submitted on December 21, 2017.

Table 1: Summary of operating & financial highlights for the periods ended December 31, 2017

Description Units Three months endedDecember 31, 2017

Year ended

December 31, 2017

Mining:
Ore mined tonnes 53,500 150,700
Waste mined tonnes 66,100 263,100
Total mined tonnes 119,600 413,800
Average grade g/t 9.4 11.5
Contained ounces ounces 16,200 55,700
Development metres 984 5,021
Processing:
Ore processed tonnes 69,600 208,900
Grade g/t 13.7 12.6
Contained gold ounces 30,700 84,660
Recovery % 69 65
Gold produced ounces 21,200 55,150
Gold sold ounces 17,350 46,990
Stockpile:
Ore on surface tonnes 66,600 66,600
Average grade g/t 13.8 13.8
Contained gold ounces 29,400 29,400
Description Units

Three months ended

December 31, 2017

Year ended
December 31, 2017
P&L summary(1):
Revenue (ounces) ounces 17,350 34,860
Revenue $millions 28.2 56.4
Cost of sales(2) $millions 34.3 68.8
Profit (loss) from mining operations $millions (6.1) (12.4)
General and administrative $millions 4.9 15.5
Financing costs, net $millions (4.5) (15.9)
Foreign exchange gain (loss) $millions (1.0) 10.6
Net profit (loss) $millions (12.5) (25.3)
Per share $ (0.14) (0.30)
Cost of sales(2) $/oz 1,977 1,974
Cash cost(3)(4) $US/oz 1,228 1,288
AISC(3)(4) $US/oz 1,683 1,870
USD results
Revenue $USmillions 22.1 44.5
Average realized sales price(3) $US/oz 1,275 1,278
Average spot price of gold – London PM Fix $US/oz 1,275 1,274
Cost of sales(2) $USmillions 26.8 53.6
Cost of sales(2)(5) $US/oz 1,547 1,538
CAD results
Average exchange rate CAD/USD 1.27 1.30
Revenue $millions 28.2 56.4
Average realized sales price(3) $/oz 1,622 1,618
Average spot price of gold – London PM Fix $/oz 1,622 1,620
Cost of sales(2) $millions 34.3 68.8
Cost of sales(2) $/oz 1,977 1,974
CAPEX Summary:
Sustaining $millions 4.5 16.0
Expansion(6) $millions 6.0 56.9
Exploration and evaluation $millions 2.5 11.7

(1) The profit and loss for the year ended December 31, 2017 only covers the period from June 1, 2017 onwards, the date for accounting recognition of commercial production, for many items including revenue, cost of sales, cash cost, AISC and ounces sold
(2) Includes depreciation and a net realizable value write-down of $3.3 million and$4.8 million in the three months and year ended December 31, 2017, respectively
(3) Refer to non-IFRS measures in the MD&A filed on TMAC’s website
(4) Cash cost and AISC refers to results after achieving commercial production
(5) Translated using exchange rates at the time of incurring the expenditure
(6) Expansion includes pre-commercial production costs and associated gold sale proceeds

2018 OBJECTIVES

Doris operations and capital expenditure:

  • Ore production will mainly come from the fully developed Doris North zone and the developed stopes in the Doris BTD zone. Ore production will be supplemented with ore from sill development in the Doris Connector (“DCO”) and other areas of the Doris BTD zone. The mine plan is designed to provide all the ore to be processed while maintaining the stockpile balance.
  • Mine between 420,000 and 470,000 tonnes of ore at an average for the year between 11 and 14 g/t gold with total tonnes, including waste, being between 670,000 to 740,000 tonnes. Mining grades in 2018 to date are averaging about 9.9 g/t but since the beginning of February have averaged 15.1 g/t as mining has transitioned from lower grade development areas to higher grade zones.
  • Underground development will continue in the Doris BTD and DCO zones and will include a decline towards the Doris Central zone to support 2019 and 2020 production from Doris at an estimated total cost of $23 million for 2018.
  • The stockpile will be used to augment the ore being sent to the Plant. It is expected that the stockpile will end 2018 at approximately the same level as at December 31, 2017.
  • Continue the ramp up of the Plant to design capacity. Install, commission and commence ramp up of the second CL by mid-2018 that will increase the throughput of the Plant. Improvements made to the first CL will be incorporated into the second CL as part of the installation and commissioning thereof.
  • The recently installed spider head distributor for the cyclones is expected to increase gold recoveries within the first CL once the Falcon B concentrator is installed.
  • TMAC expects its lowest cash balances to be in the third quarter at the height of the sealift. Ramp up of the second CL and the expected improvement in recoveries is important to generate the needed cash flows for the sealift.
  • Unit costs of production in 2018 are sensitive to grade, throughput and recovery rates. Costs in the first quarter of 2018 are expected to be in line with the costs incurred in 2017, with unit costs reducing as throughput and recoveries improve. Once the commissioning of the second CL is complete, the unit costs are expected to decline due to increasing throughput by the end of the year. Maintenance costs are expected to decline from the high levels experienced in 2017 as improvements in the Plant are implemented.
  • Expansion capital expenditures required to increase the processing capacity of the Plant by the installation and commissioning of the second CL to a design capacity of 2,000 tonnes per day are estimated at $4 million.
  • Sustaining capital expenditures, excluding underground development, to construct and acquire additional Doris surface infrastructure, including equipment, construction of the south dam in the tailings impoundment area, construction of a marine outfall pipeline and to continue the ramp up of the Plant to its design capacity are estimated to total $24 million, including $8 million relating to the Plant.

Exploration:

  • The Exploration and Geoscience programs for 2018 are designed to support several aspects of exploration at Hope Bay ranging from immediate production support, through advanced exploration, to the generation of regional targets in preparation for drilling. A key strategy of the exploration program is to develop and maintain a project pipeline consisting of prospective exploration targets at various stages of evaluation. Expenditures on exploration will increase once the Plant produces excess cash flow.
  • Conduct 22,000 metres of underground definition diamond drilling on the Doris BTD Extension and DCO zones to support stope design and a resource update to facilitate conversion to reserve.
  • 6,500 metres of surface diamond drilling are planned to refine the geological understanding of the Madrid North Naartok deposit to support the advanced exploration and bulk sampling program.
  • Regional exploration will include diamond drilling, sonic drilling and gold in glacial till sampling. A total of 4,000 metres of diamond drilling is planned.

Environment and permitting:

  • Obtain a project certificate for Madrid and Boston once NIRB completes the review of the environmental impact statement submitted in December 2017. NIRB recommends project certificates for approval by the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations Northern Affairs (“CIRNA”), formerly Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC).

Madrid and Boston projects:

  • Management continues to pursue the opportunity to replace the cash collateralized letters of credit issued for environmental rehabilitation security with surety bonds. Surety bonds could release approximately $25 million of cash currently deposited as collateral for letters of credit as well as additional environmental reclamation security that is expected to be placed with various entities during 2018. If surety bonds are obtained, the additional cash would allow for the initial investment in Madrid that includes the acquisition of equipment, the initiation of surface infrastructure and the commencement of underground development required in 2018 to extract a bulk sample in 2019.
  • Long-term planning and the development of exploration targets at Boston is ongoing and programs will be executed as funds permit.

CONFERENCE CALL AND WEBCAST

Senior management will host a conference call on Friday, February 23, 2018 at 10:00 am (ET).

Webcast access:
A live audio webcast of the conference call will be available at http://services.choruscall.ca/links/tmacresources20180223.html. An archive of the webcast will be available on the Company’s website.

Telephone access:
Please call the numbers below five to ten minutes prior to the scheduled start of the call.
Toronto local or international 1 (416) 915-3239
Toll-Free (North America) 1 (800) 319-4610

CONFERENCE ATTENDANCE

February 25 – 28, 2018
Terry MacGibbon, Executive Chairman, will present on Wednesday, February 28, 2018at 9:30 am ET at the BMO Global Metals and Mining Conference to be held in Hollywood, FL, USA.

March 4 – 7, 2018
The Company will be at Booth #2500 at the PDAC 2018 International Convention, Trade Show & Investors Exchange, Toronto, ON, Canada and will be speaking in 801B .

SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL INFORMATION

Scientific and technical information was prepared by, and all other scientific and technical information contained in this document was reviewed and approved by Gil Lawson, P.Eng., Chief Operating Officer of TMAC, and David King, P.Geo., the Vice President, Exploration and Geoscience of TMAC, each of whom is a “qualified person” as defined by NI 43-101.

ABOUT TMAC RESOURCES

TMAC holds a 100% interest in the Hope Bay Project located in Nunavut, Canada. TMAC is an emerging gold producer with the Doris Mine pouring first gold in the first quarter of 2017 and Madrid and Boston expected to commence production in 2020 and 2022, respectively. The Company has a board of directors with depth of experience and market credibility and an exploration and development team with an extensive track record of developing high grade, profitable underground mines. TMAC’s shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbol TMR.

TMAC Resources Inc.
Jason Neal
President and Chief Executive Officer
416-628-0216

or

Ann Wilkinson
Vice President, Investor Relations
416-628-0216
www.tmacresources.com

or

Renmark Financial Communications Inc.
Daniel Gordon: dgordon@renmarkfinancial.com
Tel: (416) 644-2020 or (514) 939-3989
www.renmarkfinancial.com

NT4

On final day of Nunavut hearings, Susan Aglukark names her childhood abuser – Nunatsiaq.com

February 23, 2018

“Now the community knows what you did”

RANKIN INLET—Susan Aglukark started off this week’s hearings of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls with a song that urged women not to suffer in silence.

She didn’t plan to. The well-known Nunavut singer and recording artist ended the federal commission’s three-day hearings in Rankin Inlet Feb. 22 with powerful testimony about the man who sexually abused her when she was a child.

Aglukark said she decided to name her abuser this week when she discovered he faced a new assault charge—this time involving a family member.

“Norman Ford, you didn’t win,” Aglukark said at the hearing, forcefully. “Not now, not ever. Now the community knows what you did.”

Read More: http://www.nunatsiaq.com/stories/article/65674susan_aglukark_calls_out_her_childhood_abuser_in_final_day_of_nunavut_/

Argonaut Gold Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year Financial and Operating Results

Fourth Quarter Net Income of $5.2 Million and Cash Flow from Operations of $11.7 Million

Toronto, Ontario – (February 22, 2018) Argonaut Gold Inc. (TSX: AR) (the “Company”, “Argonaut Gold” or “Argonaut”) is pleased to announce its financial and operating results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2017.  The Company reports quarterly and full year net income of $5.2 million and $23.9 million, respectively, or earnings per share of $0.03 and $0.14, respectively, derived from the sale of 31,025 and 123,554 gold equivalent ounces1 (“GEO” or “GEOs”), respectively, which generated cash flow from operations before working capital changes of $11.7 million and $45.9 million, respectively.  During 2017, the Company produced 126,704 GEOs, including pre-commercial production from the San Agustin mine of 2,932 GEOs. All dollar amounts are expressed in United States dollars unless otherwise specified (C$ represents Canadian dollars).

CEO Commentary
Pete Dougherty, President and CEO stated: “We made several significant investments during 2017 that we feel will reward our shareholders in both the near and long term.  We made two acquisitions, the San Juan mineral concession adjacent to the El Castillo mine and the Cerro del Gallo project in Guanajuato, Mexico.   At El Castillo, we have already begun mining oxide ore in the San Juan concession area, while at Cerro del Gallo we intend to complete metallurgical test work and prepare an internal economic analysis on the project during 2018.  We completed construction of the San Agustin mine 28% under budget and with zero lost time incidents.  With the San Agustin mine online and functioning at design capacity, and the throughput enhancements scheduled at El Castillo and San Agustin this year, we are now in a position to capitalize on our 2017 investments and lift our production by more than 65% over the next two years with the anticipation of generating solid free cash flow during 2018 and 2019.  Furthermore, I’m proud of our team for the safety performance improvements we made at our operations, the respect we have shown for the environment and communities in which we operate and our ability to deliver production towards the upper end of our guidance range.”

The San Agustin project was in pre-production development until September 30, 2017.  Therefore, GEOs produced prior to the declaration of commercial production effective October 1, 2017 are excluded from the revenue, sales, net income, adjusted net income, cash flows from operations, cash cost and all-in sustaining cost figures for the year ended December 31, 2017 presented in this release.

1 GEOs are based on a conversion ratio of 70:1 for silver to gold for 2017 and 65:1 for 2016.  This is the referenced ratio for each year throughout the press release.

3 months ended  December 31 Change Year ended December 31 Change
2017 2016 2017 2016
Financial Data (in $USD millions except for earnings per share)
Revenue $39.5 $35.3 12% $155.1 $144.8 7%
Gross profit $8.2 $7.0 17% $31.3 $30.6 2%
Net income $5.2 $0.5 940% $23.9 $4.3 456%
Earnings per share – basic $0.03 $0.00 $0.14 $0.03 367%
Adjusted net income1 $6.4 $5.7 12% $14.9 $14.5 3%
Adjusted earnings per share – basic1 $0.04 $0.04 0% $0.09 $0.09 0%
Cash flow from operating activities before changes in non-cash operating working capital $11.7 $8.5 38% $45.9 $35.0 31%
Cash and cash equivalents $14.1 $42.1 (67%)
Debt $8.0 $0.9 (789%)
Gold Production and Cost Data
GEOs loaded to the pads2 68,108 68,201 0% 217,224 240,692 (10%)
GEOs projected recoverable2,3 38,774 36,143 7% 126,755 125,462 1%
GEOs produced2,4,5 34,987 34,384 2% 126,704 122,097 4%
GEOs sold2 31,025 29,865 4% 123,554 117,176 5%
Average realized sales price $1,276 $1,186 8% $1,257 $1,239 1%
Cash cost per gold ounce sold1 $755 $746 1% $787 $795 (1%)
All-in sustaining cost per gold ounce sold1 $897 $894 0% $922 $938 (2%)

1Please refer to the section below entitled “Non-IFRS Measures” for a discussion of these Non-IFRS Measures.
2Gold equivalent ounces (“GEO” or “GEOs”) are based on a conversion ratio of 70:1 for silver to gold for 2017 and 65:1 for 2016.  This is the referenced ratio for each year throughout the release.
3Recoverable ounces – El Castillo expected recovery rates: ROM oxide 50%, crushed oxide 70%, ROM transition 40%, crushed transition 60%, crushed sulphides argillic 30% and crushed sulphides silicic 17%; San Agustin expected recovery rates: gold 66% and silver 16%; La Colorada expected recovery rates: gold 60% and silver 30%.
4Produced ounces are calculated as ounces loaded to carbon.
5Year ended December 31, 2017 includes GEOs produced by San Agustin prior to declaration of commercial production effective October 1, 2017.

2017 and Recent Company Highlights:

  • Corporate Highlights:
    • Acquisition of the San Juan mineral concession adjacent to the El Castillo mine, increasing the mineral concession footprint from 200 hectares to 620 hectares.
    • Acquisition of the Cerro del Gallo project in Guanajuato, Mexico.
    • Successful C$45 million equity financing, including the over-allotment option, primarily allocated toward the San Juan mineral concession acquisition and subsequent infill drill program.
    • Received nationally awarded Environmental Socially Responsible Company recognition at both El Castillo and La Colorada for the fifth consecutive year.
    • Entered into zero cost collar Mexican peso (“MXN”) to US dollar (“USD”) contracts for $30 million with weighted average downside protection of 17.9 MXN:1 USD and participation up to 22.5 MXN:1 USD from January 2018 to December 2018.
    • Increased corporate revolver from $30 million to $50 million with an accordion feature providing for total availability of up to $75 million.
  • El Castillo:
    • Operated with safety results significantly better than industry standards.
    • Achieved full year production of 59,000 gold ounces, only a 5% decrease from 2016 despite a 37% year-over-year reduction in crushing capacity due to the relocation of the West crusher to San Agustin in the month of March.
    • Completed an approximate 25,000 metre infill drill campaign on the acquired San Juan mineral concession.
    • Increased Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources during the first six months of 2017 by approximately 55% net of depletion (see press release dated September 21, 2017).
    • Initiated design improvements in the CR2 crusher to increase crushing capacity from approximately 5,000 tonnes per day to 14,000 tonnes per day.
    • Began construction of the Victoria leach pad.
  • San Agustin:
    • Project constructed with an initial capital investment of approximately $31 million, which is 28% under budget from the initial capital estimate of $43 million.
    • Achieved first gold pour on September 18, 2017.
    • Achieved commercial production effective October 1, 2017.
    • Completed construction with zero lost time incidents.
  • La Colorada:
    • Operated the entire year without a lost time injury.
    • Compania Minera Pitalla S.A. de C.V., Argonaut’s wholly owned subsidiary that owns its La Colorada mine, was awarded distinction at the highest level for their accomplishments as an Environmentally and Socially Responsible (ESR) company in the small to medium size category.
    • Invested in stripping the El Creston pit, the next pit to be mined in the life-of-mine plan.
    • Completed construction of Northeast leach pad phase three and initiated construction on phase two.
  • Magino:
    • Completed Feasibility Study.
    • Advanced Environmental Assessment process.
    • Signed Collaborative Agreement with the Red Sky Métis Independent Nation and Community Benefits Agreement with Missanabie Cree First Nation.
    • Continued to consult with and work towards agreements with other Indigenous communities.

Financial Results – Fourth Quarter 2017
Revenue for the three months ended December 31, 2017 was $39.5 million, an increase from $35.3 million for the three months ended December 31, 2016.  During the fourth quarter of 2017, gold ounces sold totaled 29,912 at an average realized price per ounce of $1,276 (compared to 28,891 gold ounces sold at an average price per ounce of $1,186 during the same period of 2016).

Production costs for the fourth quarter of 2017 were $23.9 million, an increase from $22.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2016 primarily due to the increase in gold ounces sold.  Cash cost per gold ounce sold (see Non-IFRS Measures section) was $755 in the fourth quarter of 2017, comparable to $746 in the same period of 2016.  Depreciation, depletion and amortization (“DD&A”) expense included in cost of sales for the fourth quarter of 2017 totaled $7.4 million, an increase from $5.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2016, due to the increase in the average DD&A expense per ounce in work-in-process inventory.  As a result of the non-cash impairment loss on non-current assets recorded during the year ended December 31, 2015, the average DD&A in work-in-process inventory decreased throughout 2016.  During 2017, the average DD&A in work-in-process inventory began increasing as the effect of the non-cash impairment loss on average DD&A lessened.

General and administrative expenses for the fourth quarters of 2017 and 2016 were $2.9 million.

Losses on foreign exchange derivatives for the fourth quarter of 2017 were $0.6 million, compared to nil in the fourth quarter of 2016, primarily due to unrealized losses on the Company’s outstanding zero-cost collar contracts on the Mexican peso.

Other expense for the fourth quarter of 2017 was $1.2 million, comparable to $1.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Income tax recovery for the fourth quarter of 2017 was $2.8 million compared to income tax expense of $2.2 million in the same period of 2016.  The change is primarily due to the recognition of a deferred tax asset related to the net operating losses (“NOLs”) from prior years of its subsidiary, Minera Real del Oro S.A. de C.V. (“MRO”), which were not previously recognized as the utilization of the NOLs became probable with the declaration of commercial production at the San Agustin mine effective October 1, 2017.

Net income for the fourth quarter of 2017 was $5.2 million or $0.03 per basic share, an increase from $0.5 million or $0.00 per share for the fourth quarter of 2016.

Financial Results – Year End 2017
Revenue for the year ended December 31, 2017 was $155.1 million, an increase from $144.8 million for the year ended December 31, 2016.  Gold ounces sold totaled 120,041 at an average realized price per ounce of $1,257 (compared to 113,853 gold ounces sold at an average price per ounce of $1,239 for 2016).  Gold ounces sold increased in 2017 primarily due to the commencement of commercial production at the San Agustin mine effective October 1, 2017.

Production costs for the year ended December 31, 2017 were $98.8 million, an increase from $94.2 million in 2016, primarily due to the increase in gold ounces sold.  Cash cost per gold ounce sold (see Non-IFRS Measures section) was $787 for the year ended December 31, 2017, comparable to $795 in the same period of 2016.  DD&A expense included in cost of sales for the year ended December 31, 2017, totaled $25.0 million, an increase from $23.5 million for the year ended December 31, 2016, due to an increase in ounces sold, as many of the mining assets are amortized on a unit-of-production basis.  Additionally, included in cost of sales for 2016 is a non-cash impairment reversal of $3.6 million related to the net realizable value of work-in-process inventory at the El Castillo mine, as a result of an increase in the price of gold during 2016.

General and administrative expenses for year ended December 31, 2017 were $11.7 million, an increase from $10.6 million for the year ended December 31, 2016, primarily due to employee transition costs.

Finance expenses for the year ended December 31, 2017 were $1.3 million, an increase from $0.6 million for the year ended December 31, 2016, primarily due to accretion on deferred cash consideration related to the acquisition of the San Juan mineral concession adjacent to the El Castillo mine.

Gains on foreign exchange derivatives during the year ended December 31, 2017 were $2.0 million, compared to nil for the year ended December 31, 2016, primarily due to the realized gains on the Company’s zero-cost collar contracts on the Mexican peso.

Other income for the year ended December 31, 2017 was $1.8 million, an increase from other expense of $4.8 million in 2016, primarily due to differences in foreign currency translation effects.

Income tax recovery for the year ended December 31, 2017 was $2.8 million compared to income tax expense of $10.0 million in the same period of 2016.  The change is primarily due to the foreign exchange effects of the strengthening Mexican peso on the calculation of deferred taxes during 2017, compared to the weakening Mexican peso during 2016 and the recognition of a deferred tax asset related to the NOLs from prior years of its subsidiary, MRO, which were not previously recognized as the utilization of the NOLs became probable with the declaration of commercial production at the San Agustin mine effective October 1, 2017.

Net income for the year ended December 31, 2017 was $23.9 million or $0.14 per basic share, an increase from $4.3 million or $0.03 per share for the year ended December 31, 2016.

Read More: http://www.argonautgold.com/news_events/news/news_release/index.php?content_id=377

NT4

TC PipeLines, LP Announces Officer Appointments and Director Nominations

HOUSTON, Feb. 23, 2018 — News Release — TC PipeLines, LP (NYSE:TCP) (the Partnership) today announced the appointment of Nathan Brown as President and Director of TC PipeLines GP, Inc., the general partner of the Partnership (the General Partner), and William Morris as Vice-President, Principal Financial Officer and Treasurer of the General Partner, both effective May 1, 2018.

Mr. Brown will succeed Brandon Anderson who will be resigning his positions as President and Director effective May 1 to focus on his other responsibilities with TransCanada Corporation, the ultimate parent company of the General Partner (TransCanada).

Mr. Brown currently serves as Principal Financial Officer and Controller of the General Partner, a position he has held since May 2014.  His main occupation is Vice-President, U.S. Gas Pipelines Financial Services of TransCanada where he is responsible for the accounting of TransCanada’s U.S. natural gas pipelines.  Mr. Brown also served as Manager of accounting for TransCanada’s U.S. Pipelines West from November 2009 to May 2014 and as Director of Financial Services for TransCanada’s U.S. Pipelines from May 2014 to February 2018.

Mr. Morris currently serves as the Vice-President and Treasurer of the General Partner, a position he has held since November 2017, and served as Treasurer of the General Partner from December 2012 to November 2017.  He will succeed Mr. Brown as Principal Financial Officer of the General Partner.  His principal occupation is Director, Finance and Assistant Treasurer of TransCanada, a position he has held since November 2015.  Previous to that, he was Director of Corporate Finance from November 2012.  From September 2001 to November 2012, Mr. Morris was Director of Risk Management for TransCanada and Manager, Risk Management for the previous five years.  Prior to joining TransCanada, Mr. Morris spent 12 years working in both the public accounting and banking industries.

On February 22, 2018, the Board of Directors of the General Partner nominated Nadine Berge and Sean Brett for appointment to the Board of Directors, effective May 1, 2018, to replace Catharine Davis and Joel Hunter, who will not be standing for reappointment upon expiration of their current term.

Ms. Berge is Director, Corporate Compliance and Legal Operations with TransCanada, a position she has held since December 2014.  Ms. Berge’s portfolio involves directing the corporate compliance area across Canada, the US and Mexico, as well as leadership of operational matters for the TransCanada legal department in all three jurisdictions. Since joining TransCanada’s legal department in May 2005, Ms. Berge has held positions of increasing responsibility prior to her current role, most recently as Senior Legal Counsel.

Mr. Brett is Vice-President, Risk Management with TransCanada, a position he has held since August 2015 and in which he is responsible for financial risk management.  Since joining TransCanada in March 1997, Mr. Brett has held a number of positions, including Vice-President and Treasurer from July 2010 until August 2015.  Mr. Brett previously served as Vice President, Commercial Operations in 2010 and Treasurer of the General Partner from 2007 to 2008.

TC PipeLines, LP is a Delaware master limited partnership with interests in eight federally regulated U.S. interstate natural gas pipelines which serve markets in the Western, Midwestern and Northeastern United States. The Partnership is managed by its general partner, TC PipeLines GP, Inc., a subsidiary of TransCanada Corporation (NYSE:TRP). For more information about TC PipeLines, LP, visit the Partnership’s website at www.tcpipelineslp.com.

Media Inquiries:
Mark Cooper/Terry Cunha
403.920.7859 or 800.608.7859

Unitholder and Analyst Inquiries:
Rhonda Amundson
877.290.2772
investor_relations@tcpipelineslp.com

NT4

All of us should be ashamed’: Calls for change after jury finds Raymond Cormier not guilty – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 23, 2018

By Bill Graveland

THE CANADIAN PRESS

WINNIPEG _ Supporters of Tina Fontaine plan to hold a walk in Winnipeg today to honour the girl a day after the man accused of killing her was found not guilty.

A jury acquitted Raymond Cormier, 56, of second-degree murder after 11 hours of deliberation.

The verdict was met with anger and sadness by Indigenous leaders who say the 15-year-old girl was completely let down by the social safety net that was supposed to protect her.

“The CFS (Children and Family Services) system has definitely failed Tina Fontaine, the Winnipeg Police Services failed Tina Fontaine and Canadian society failed Tina Fontaine,” said Kevin Hart, the Assembly of First Nations regional chief for Manitoba.

“Everybody right now across this country should be ashamed of themselves for the injustice that just occurred here.”

Tina’s body, wrapped in a duvet cover and weighed down with rocks, was pulled from the Red River in Winnipeg eight days after she was reported missing in August 2014. Cormier was charged more than a year later.

Tina was being sexually exploited after coming to Winnipeg from Sagkeeng First Nation, 120 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

The jury heard how Tina’s relatively stable upbringing spiralled out of control when her father was murdered. Her mother came back into her life and Tina had gone to visit her in Winnipeg, where the girl descended into life on the streets.

She and her boyfriend met the much-older Cormier in the summer of 2014. The jury heard Cormier gave the couple a place to stay, gave Tina drugs and had sex with her.

Fontaine was in the care of social services and was staying at a Winnipeg hotel hotel when she disappeared.

Her death prompted renewed calls for an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women.

Federal Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett said the high-levels of violence against Indigenous women and girls is unacceptable.

She said Fontaine’s death galvanized Canadians to demand measures to stop the ongoing tragedy of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.

“The families of these women and girls – and the whole country – need answers to the systemic and institutional failures that lead to the murder of Tina Fontaine and far too many other Indigenous daughters, mothers, sisters, aunties, and friends,” Bennett said.

“We need to examine all the factors that lead to these violence acts, including: policing, child welfare, health care, and the social and economic conditions.”

Sheila North, grand chief of Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak, an organization that represents northern Manitoba First Nations, said everyone involved in Tina’s life failed her.

“We as a nation need to do better for our young people. All of us,” said Sheila North, grand chief of Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak, an organization that represents northern Manitoba First Nations.

“All of us should be ashamed.”

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INDEX: NATIONAL JUSTICE POLITICS

Tahoe Reports Strong 2017 Financial Results And Updates 2018 And Multi-Year Gold Guidance

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – February 22, 2018 – Tahoe Resources Inc. (“Tahoe” or the “Company”) (TSX: THO, NYSE: TAHO) today announced solid financial and operating results for the fourth quarter and twelve months ended December 31, 2017. The Company’s balance sheet remains strong, with cash and cash equivalents of $125.7 million at December 31, 2017 and very little debt.

Ron Clayton, President and CEO of Tahoe, commented: “Tahoe achieved record gold production of 445,900 ounces in 2017, realizing the high end of its annual gold production guidance range of 400,000 to 450,000 ounces. The strong gold production for the year was driven primarily by La Arena. The outstanding performance from the gold business in 2017 underscores the increasingly meaningful contribution of the gold segment to the overall financial performance of the Company. Despite the challenges in Guatemala during the second half of 2017, I am very pleased to report earnings of $81.8 million for the year, or $0.26 per share. Looking forward, I expect 2018 will be a pivotal year for the Company. We remain optimistic that based on legal precedent, the Guatemalan Constitutional Court will issue a favorable ruling reinstating the Escobal mining license. We are focused on a positive resolution at the Casillas roadblock, located 16 kilometers from the mine, which, in conjunction with a favorable court ruling, will put us in position to resume operations at Escobal. In the meantime, we are executing on our strategy to complete our two near-term development projects in Canada and Peru by late summer, which will position us to achieve our target of 500,000 ounces of gold production in 2019.”

Key Financial and Operating Results

Q4 2017 Summary & Highlights:

Strong operating and financial results from gold segments – Q4 2017 gold production totaled 105.8 thousand ounces. Production and costs in Q4 2017 reflected strong results at all of the Company’s gold mines, with total cash costs and AISC of $648 and $1,033 per ounce, respectively.

Q4 2017 earnings were impacted by Escobal and a one-time non-cash depreciation charge – Q4 2017 earnings were negatively impacted by the cessation of mining activities at the Escobal mine which resulted in no material revenue for the quarter from the mine and care and maintenance costs of $11.1 million ($0.04 per share) and a one-time pre-tax $11 million cumulative adjustment ($0.04 per share) during the quarter to true-up the depletion related to the purchase price on the acquisition of the Peruvian mines in 2015. Except for these items, reported earnings for the quarter would have been positive on the strength of the gold segment alone.

Near-term expansion projects remain on time and in-line with guidance – Both major expansion projects – the Shahuindo crushing and agglomeration expansion and the Bell Creek shaft project – remained on track during the quarter and within their respective estimated total project spend of $80 million each.

2017 Summary & Highlights:

Record gold production of 445.9 thousand ounces – The Company achieved record gold production of 445.9 thousand ounces in 2017, achieving the high end of the annual gold production guidance range of 400,000 to 450,000 ounces, which was revised upward in September 2017. The strong gold production for the year was driven primarily by La Arena in Peru, which exceeded its guidance due to on-going positive mine plan reconciliation with both higher grade and additional ore tonnes mined. The outstanding performance from the gold business in 2017 underscores the increasingly meaningful contribution of the gold segment to the overall financial performance of the Company.

Gold operations met or exceeded 2017 revised guidance including lower costs

Silver production reflects suspension at Escobal – The Company produced 9.9 million ounces of silver during 2017 at total cash costs of $6.15 per silver ounce and all-in sustaining costs of $8.91 per silver ounce. Silver production reflects the impact of the Escobal suspension, where no production has been recorded since July 2017.

Positive cash flow and earnings – Cash flow provided by operating activities before changes in working capital totaled $287.0 million for 2017, despite the ongoing suspension at Escobal in Guatemala. The Company generated positive earnings of $81.8 million, or $0.26 per share, for 2017. Earnings reflected the impact of the suspension at the Escobal mine, where no material revenues have been recorded since July 2017, and $24.9 million ($0.08 per share) in care and maintenance costs have been incurred during the second half of the year.

Shahuindo expansion remains on track – Construction of leach Pad 2B continued in Q4 2017 as planned and is scheduled to be placed into production in Q3 2018. Commissioning of the 12,000 tpd crushing and agglomeration circuit was substantially completed in early February 2018 and the production ramp-up was initiated. Construction of the 24,000 tpd circuit has begun with commissioning of the full 36,000 tpd plant scheduled for mid-year 2018. Of the $80 million guidance for the crushing and agglomeration circuit, approximately $48.8 million has been spent through December 31, 2017. The project remains on schedule and within guidance.

Bell Creek shaft expansion in-line with guidance – The Bell Creek shaft project remains on track for commissioning in mid-year and on track with its $80 million budget. Excavation of the third and final pilot raise from the shaft bottom is complete and slashing of this raise to the final dimensions has begun. Pilot raises for the underground ore and waste bins are complete and slashing of the raises is underway. Surface construction is focused primarily on the hoist room and headframe. Mechanical installation of the hoists started in early February and the headframe civil work is progressing with a projected start of steel installation by the end of Q1 2018. Of the $80 million guidance for the Bell Creek shaft project, approximately $51.6 million has been spent to December 31, 2017. The project remains on schedule and within guidance.

Strong cash position with $125.7 million at year-end – Despite the on-going interruption of mining operations at Escobal, Tahoe ended the year with cash and cash equivalents of $125.7 million.

Strengthened Financial Position with Amended $175 Million Revolving Credit Facility

On February 16th 2018, the Company closed its revised revolving credit facility with its bank syndicate. The Company now has access to a $175 million revolving credit facility plus a $25 million accordion feature, for total access of $200 million in capital. The revised facility matures on July 19, 2021. This facility is structured on the strength of Tahoe’s gold business alone, and access to the facility does not rely on, nor have covenants related to, the operation of Escobal. The Bank of Nova Scotia and HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. are the co-leads for the facility.

In addition, on February 20, 2018, the Company repaid the $35 million in debt in Peru that was due on April 9, 2018 from existing cash balances. Subsequent to this repayment, the company has no debt outstanding and approximately $8 million in capital leases.

2018 Gold Guidance and Long-term Outlook

Tahoe Resources’ gold guidance for 2018 and multi-year gold outlook is provided below. While Tahoe expects the Guatemalan Constitutional Court to rule in favor of reinstating the Escobal mining license based on existing legal precedent, the Company will not be providing guidance or long-term outlook for silver production or costs until steady operations at Escobal resume and the export credential is issued.

Read More: http://www.tahoeresources.com/tahoe-reports-strong-2017-financial-results-and-updates-2018-and-multi-year-gold-guidance/

NT4

Lancet series calls on Canada for concrete action on Indigenous, global health – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 23, 2018

By Geordon Omand

THE CANADIAN PRESS

OTTAWA _ Canada’s appalling record on Indigenous health is undermining its efforts to be a global health leader.

That’s according to research published this week in one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious medical journals, which calls on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to start backing up his lofty rhetoric with concrete action.

The Lancet, a peer-reviewed journal founded nearly two centuries ago in the United Kingdom, is showcasing the Canadian medical system for the first time in a series of articles and commentary authored by a collection of scholars and public figures across Canada.

The glaring contrast in between Indigenous and non-Indigenous health outcomes is one of the central themes, which include poorer rates of chronic disease, infant mortality trauma, suicide and overall life expectancy.

“It looks to us as though there is a developing country within Canada’s borders,” said Lancet executive editor Jocalyn Clark.

“If you can’t be a leader at home on Indigenous health and equity, how can Canada be the leader we need it to be internationally?” she added. “People are getting really impatient and instead of promise we need progress.”

Clark called Trudeau’s progressive agenda a reason for optimism, adding that now is the time for action as Canada takes over the G7 presidency for 2018.

One of the articles focuses on Canada’s historic role as a middle power that, up until the government of former Conservative prime minister Stephen Harper, excelled at using diplomacy and collaboration to advance global health initiatives, punching above its weight.

But overseas aid development from Canada has declined in recent years, the study finds, with contributions hovering around 0.26 per cent of gross domestic product, placing Canada 15th among the 35 countries belonging to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

“Canada’s new policy directions must be backed by resources,” writes Timothy Evans, head of health and nutrition at the World Bank, in an accompanying commentary.

“The failure to come anywhere close to achieving the development assistance target … raises legitimate questions about whether ‘Canada is back.’ ”

Stephanie Nixon, a health researcher and co-author behind one of the series papers, said that while overall aid from Canada may have stalled, the proportion of that assistance earmarked for health initiatives has risen in recent years.

The abdication of international leadership in the era of U.S. President Donald Trump and populist-fuelled turmoil rocking Europe has left a vacuum that Canada is well placed to fill, Nixon said _ but Canadian political leaders will have to back up the messaging with action.

“Our sense is that Canada has got its talk right. Now it’s time for Canada to get its walk right as well,” she said.

Another piece in the series charts the development of universal health care in Canada from its origins as a provincial program to cover hospital costs rolled out by then-premier of Saskatchewan, Tommy Douglas. Author Danielle Martin warned that without continuous innovation and update, medicare risks losing relevance.

“You don’t sort of say, ‘Well, we’ve done universal health coverage,’ and then pack it up and go home,” said Martin, a Toronto-based physician and public health scholar.

One concrete step for change is the expansion of medicare coverage to include prescription drugs, she said.

“Imagine an international reader of a journal like this looking at the Canadian system and saying, ‘Wait, what do you mean you have a modern, universal health-care system that doesn’t include prescription drugs?’ No other developed country has made that choice. It’s absurd.”

The series also includes commentary from Trudeau, who lays out his vision for global health and gender equality.

Canada’s focus is on three areas, he said: comprehensive sex education, reproductive health services and investment in family planning and contraceptives.

“Everyone benefits when women and girls can participate freely and fully in our economies and societies,” Trudeau said.

Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott says in an accompanying note that Canada is quadrupling the number of mental health wellness teams for Indigenous communities across the country and is investing in health infrastructure in the country’s remote regions.

Lancet editor Clark said the series applauds the successes of Canada’s health-care system while at the same time shining a spotlight on some of its challenges, which include coping with an aging population and longer-than-average wait times for elective surgery.

The aim is to showcase Canada to the international community and also push for change domestically, she said.

“I’m a Canadian, so I recognize that in Canada, we tend to be quite insular when we talk about our health-care system,” Clark said.

“As the series argues, Canada tends to be a little too comfortable in its own beliefs about how great its health-care system is. That limits Canada from probably being as strategic as it needs to be on these issues.”

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INDEX: HUMAN INTEREST HEALTH NATIONAL SOCIAL SCIENCE PHARMA POLITICS

Detour Gold Reports 2017 Year-end Mineral Reserves and Resources

TORONTO , Feb. 22, 2018  – Detour Gold Corporation (TSX: DGC) (“Detour Gold” or the “Company”) today reports its updated mineral reserves and resources as of December 31, 2017 . All amounts are in U.S. dollars unless otherwise indicated. The complete mineral reserve and resource statement can be found at the end of this news release.

2017 Year-end Mineral Reserves
Mineral reserves at December 31, 2017 were 15.8 million ounces of gold. The decrease from year-end 2016 is attributable to mining depletion at the Detour Lake pit. There was no change to the gold price assumption of $1,000 per ounce at an exchange rate of 1.00US: 1.10CDN for estimating mineral reserves. In 2017, there was no infill drilling targeting mineral reserves within theDetour Lake pit and West Detour project. Based on the expected throughput rates projected in the March 2017 LOM plan, the remaining mineral reserve life of the Detour Lake mine is approximately 22 years as of December 31, 2017 .

Measured and indicated resources of 3.9 million ounces and inferred resources of 1.2 million ounces were essentially unchanged from year-end 2016. There was no change to the gold price assumption of $1,200 per ounce at an exchange rate of 1.00US:1.10CDN for estimating mineral resources.

Qualified Persons
Drew Anwyll , P.Eng., Senior Vice President Technical Services, has approved the scientific and technical information contained in this news release.

The mineral reserve and mineral resource estimates for the Detour Lake operation (except for the North pit mineral resources) were prepared under the supervision of Drew Anwyll , P.Eng., Senior Vice President Technical Services and the mineral resources for the North pit were prepared by Paul Daigle , P.Geo, of P. Daigle Consulting Services, both Qualified Persons as defined by Canadian Securities Administrators National Instrument 43-101 “Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects”.

Conference Call
The Company will host a conference call on Friday, March 9, 2018 at 10:00 AM E.T. where senior management will discuss the 2017 operational and financial results. Access the conference call as follows:

  •  Via webcast, go to www.detourgold.com and click on the “Q4 2017 Results Conference Call and Webcast” link on the home page
  •  By phone toll free in Canada and the United States 1-800-319-4610
  • By phone internationally 416-915-3239

A playback will be available until April 9, 2018 by dialing 604-674-8052 or 1-855-669-9658 within Canada and the United States , using pass code 2102. The webcast and presentation slides will be archived on the Company’s website.

About Detour Gold
Detour Gold is an intermediate gold producer in Canada that holds a 100% interest in the Detour Lake mine, a long life large-scale open pit operation. Detour Gold’s shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbol DGC.

Read More: https://www.detourgold.com/investors/news/press-release-details/2018/Detour-Gold-Reports-2017-Year-end-Mineral-Reserves-and-Resources/default.aspx

NT4

Sphinx and SOQUEM intersect 9.0% zinc over 1 metre within a stratiform, shallow-dipping and near-surface horizon grading 3.1% zinc over 6.4 metres in drilling on the Calumet-Sud project

Montréal, February 22, 2018 – Sphinx Resources Ltd. (“Sphinx” or the “Corporation”) (TSX-V: SFX) and its partner SOQUEM are pleased to announce the initial results of their recently completed diamond drilling program on the Calumet-Sud zinc project (the “Project”) in Quebec. Hole CS-18-06 returned 9.0% zinc over 1 m within a stratiform and shallow-dipping mineralized horizon that graded 3.1% zinc over a 6.4 m length beginning at a depth of 15.6 metres. Based on outcrop measurements of mineralization and drill hole orientation, the true thickness is estimated at 100% of the drilled length.

This hole is located on the Sonny Zone where all eight (8) holes drilled during this program intersected the sub-horizontal zinc-bearing horizon. The horizon is known to date over a surface area 113 m long by 60 m wide (see press release of February 6, 2018 and Figure 1 attached). The Corporation considers that these results are very encouraging. Assays are pending for the remaining ten (10) holes.

The zinc-bearing horizon is defined by the presence of massive sphalerite bands ranging from one centimetre to several centimetres in thickness, as well as disseminated sphalerite, pyrite and pyrrhotite, all hosted in dolomitic marble. All of the drill holes confirm that mineralization is metamorphosed SEDEX-type (SEDimentary EXhalative, more than half of the world’s zinc and lead production is from mines producing from of this type of deposit). Beyond the area of this drilling, the horizons can be traced over a 1.5 km strike length on the basis of strongly anomalous zinc values in soils and limited drilling conducted by Sphinx and SOQUEM in 2017 (see press releases dated July 13, 2017February 22, 2017 and December 20, 2016).

This campaign follows the discovery of new and extensive zinc mineralization on surface during the stripping program on the Sonny and Sonny West zones of the Project
(see press release of November 22, 2017). The program was aimed to identify the continuation of the zinc mineralized horizons at the periphery of the stripped areas and assist in the design of future drill programs.

The discovery area is located 2 km from the historic New Calumet Mines Limited
zinc-lead-silver-gold mine, which produced 3.8 million tonnes of ore at a grade of
5.8% zinc, 1.6% lead, 65 g/t silver et 0.4 g/t gold from 1944 to 1968 (reference: Annual report New Calumet Mines Limited, 1968). The Project is part of the larger “Ziac” zinc district. This emerging zinc play is a 40-km long northwest trending corridor defined by zinc and lead-bearing dolomitic marbles (see press release of August 8, 2017). These rocks are typical of the Balmat-Edwards-Pierrepont zinc district, located in the state of New York, United States.

Analytical protocol

Samples were analyzed by ALS in Val d’Or, Quebec. The analytical process consisted of crushing, splitting and assaying using sodium peroxide digest finish with ICP AES finish. Sphinx applies industry-standard QA/QC procedures to the program.

Qualified Persons

The drilling program was managed by Sphinx under the supervision of Normand Champigny and under the field direction of Michel Gauthier, Ph.D. (géo, and Board member of the Corporation) and, who are Qualified Persons under National Instrument 43-101. This press release was prepared by Normand Champigny, Qualified Person for Sphinx.

About SOQUEM

SOQUEM, a subsidiary of Ressources Québec, is a leading player in mineral exploration in Québec. Its mission is to explore, discover and develop mining properties in Québec. SOQUEM has participated in more than 350 exploration projects and contributed to major discoveries of gold, diamonds, lithium and other minerals.

About Québec and Sphinx

Quebec has established itself as one of the world’s most attractive mining jurisdictions, ranking 6thglobally (Fraser Institute press release, February 28 2017). The Quebec government has created market confidence by following a proactive approach to mining policy. Quebec’s mining sector has also been encouraged by the clarity and certainty of the legal and regulatory framework adopted by its government. Sphinx is engaged in the generation and acquisition of exploration projects in Québec.

For further information, please consult Sphinx’s website or contact:

Normand Champigny
President and Chief Executive Officer
514.979.4746
info@sphinxresources.ca
www.sphinxresources.ca

NT4

Saskatchewan judge to decide whether La Loche shooter will be sentenced as adult or youth – The Star

The young man was just shy of his 18th birthday when he shot and killed four people at a school early 2016.

Feb. 23, 2018

LA LOCHE, SASK.—A provincial court judge is expected to decide today whether a young man who shot and killed four people at a school and a home in northern Saskatchewan should be sentenced as an adult or a youth.

Judge Janet McIvor has been considering all the testimony and evidence that was presented to her during a sentencing hearing for the shooter last year.

The hearing was held in Meadow Lake, Sask., but McIvor is to make her ruling in La Loche where the shootings occurred.

Read More: https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2018/02/23/saskatchewan-judge-to-decide-whether-la-loche-shooter-will-be-sentenced-as-adult-or-youth.html

Native commercial fishing agreement renewed – Kincardine News

February 22, 2018

BRUCE PENINSULA – A new five-year commercial fishing agreement between Saugeen Ojibway Nation and the Ontario government signed this week extends the previous agreement with few changes, Chippewas of Nawash First Nations Chief Greg Nadjiwon said Thursday.

Nadjiwon said it’s a “status quo” agreement with maybe a few changes in the language which were “quite minor”.

The new agreement was announced this week in a brief statement by the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, Nathalie Des Rosiers.

“Due to its success, we have chosen to continue this agreement – to provide certainty about how SON’s sustenance commercial fishing rights will be exercised, while balancing the interest of local anglers and tourism opportunities,” the minister said in a five paragraph statement emailed to The Sun Times.

“Commercial fishing will continue to be managed collaboratively through the conditions of the agreement including mutually agreeable quotas, harvest reporting, fishing seasons, and other types of harvest restrictions. Ongoing measures in the extended agreement will support both public safety and conservation of this important fishery.”

Read More: http://www.kincardinenews.com/2018/02/22/native-commercial-fishing-agreement-renewed

AER: Decision for Applications for the White Spruce Pipeline Project

2018 ABAER 001

TransCanada Pipelines Limited
Applications for the White Spruce Pipeline Project
Fort McKay Area

Applications 1866519 and 1866521, PLA160525, PLA160526, PLA160527, PLA160529, PLA160530, PLA160531, PLA160532, PIL160286, PIL160287, PIL160288, PIL160289, PIL160321, PIL160376, LOC160846, and LOC160995

Decision

[1] The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) approves the two applications TransCanada Pipelines Limited (TransCanada) made under the Pipeline Act (1866519 and 1866521) and the fifteen applications it made under the Public Lands Act (PLA160525, PLA160526, PLA160527, PLA160529, PLA160530, PLA160531, PLA160532, PIL160286, PIL160287, PIL160288, PIL160289, PIL160321, PIL160376, LOC160846, and LOC160995) subject to the conditions in appendix 1.

Background

[2] TransCanada applied to construct two crude oil pipelines (the White Spruce pipeline project). The first pipeline would be 508 millimeters (mm) in diameter and about 50 metres (m) in length. The second pipeline would be 323.9 mm in diameter and 71.5 kilometres (km) in length. The project would deliver synthetic crude oil (SCO) from Canadian Natural Resources Limited’s (CNRL’s) Horizon processing plant to the Grand Rapids Pipeline GP Ltd. MacKay Terminal for delivery to markets.

[3] Fort McKay First Nation (Fort McKay) was the only participant in the hearing. The project would be located within Fort McKay’s traditional territory. Extensive industrial development exists within Fort McKay’s traditional territory. These developments include oil sands mines, in situ oil sands projects, upgraders, roads, pipelines, and transmission lines. The project would come within 7 km of the Hamlet of Fort McKay, Fort McKay’s residential settlement (figure 1).

[4] Fort McKay holds treaty rights under Treaty 8 and aboriginal rights that include rights to hunt, fish, trap, and gather culturally important natural resources for social, cultural, and consumption purposes as well as to use and enjoy their reserve lands. The project would involve multiple water crossings, including at the Dover and Mackay Rivers, which are important to community members for fishing, hunting, harvesting, and general enjoyment. The project’s route would be colocated with other existing linear disturbances but would enlarge the environmental footprint

Read more: http://www.aer.ca/documents/decisions/2018/2018ABAER001.pdf

NT5

Ferry fare reduction confirmed – Coast Reporter

February 22, 2018

Finance Minister Carole James says the NDP government’s books will be balanced, with a projected surplus of $219 million for the coming fiscal year.

James outlined the government’s first full budget Feb. 20, with major initiatives that focus on child care, housing affordability and eliminating MSP premiums faster than originally promised.

The budget also confirmed the NDP’s promise to reduce BC Ferries fares by 15 per cent on minor routes, including Langdale-Horseshoe Bay and Earls Cove-Saltery Bay. Fares on the three major routes between the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island will be frozen.

The government will also restore free passenger trips for seniors from Mondays to Thursdays.

“I think everyone expected this to be in the budget and I’m really glad it was,” said Nicholas Simons, NDP MLA for Powell River-Sunshine Coast. “This is something that people in the communities I represent consider pretty important.”

Read More: http://www.coastreporter.net/news/local-news/ferry-fare-reduction-confirmed-1.23182207

B.C. government moves forward on action to protect coast

February 22, 2018

VICTORIA – The provincial government will be moving forward with consultation around four bitumen spill safeguards while referring to the courts the outstanding issue around B.C.’s right to protect B.C.’s coast, Premier John Horgan announced today.

“We believe it is our right to take appropriate measures to protect our environment, economy and our coast from the drastic consequence of a diluted bitumen spill,” said Premier Horgan. “And we are prepared to confirm that right in the courts.”

Premier Horgan says his government will be retaining expert legal counsel to ready a reference to the courts, adding that it may take several weeks to bring the reference forward. This reference will seek to reinforce B.C.’s constitutional rights to defend against the risks of a bitumen spill.

Premier Horgan says this safeguard has generated disproportionate and unlawful reactions from the Alberta government, specifically their decision to ban the import of wines from British Columbia.

“The actions by the Alberta government threaten an entire industry and the livelihoods of people who depend on it,” said Premier Horgan. “We have taken steps to protect our wine industry from the unwarranted trade action by the Government of Alberta.”

“It’s not about politics. It’s not about trade.  It’s about British Columbians’ right to have their voices heard on this critical issue,” said Premier Horgan. “And it’s about B.C.’s right to defend itself against actions that may threaten our people, our province and our future.”

The Premier adds that consultations will begin soon on the remaining four safeguards announced in January by Environment and Climate Change Minister George Heyman. These safeguards include:

  • Spill response time
  • Geographic response plans
  • Compensation for loss of public and cultural use of land
  • Application of regulations to marine spills

Contact:

Jen Holmwood
Deputy Communications Director
Office of the Premier
250 818-4881

NT4

Nation to Nation: Child welfare, Indigenous law and the border put under the spotlight – APTN News

February 23, 2018

There is inequality in Canada when it comes to child welfare. There is a wide difference between on-reserve and off-reserve funding.

A Canadian human rights tribunal agreed in 2016. But it has taken five legal orders to get the federal government to do something.

Earlier this month, Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott announced an immediate end to the gap. And promised more funding will be on its way in next week’s federal budget.

However, Cindy Blackstock, executive director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, says a lot of work is still needed.

“And although we’re starting to see, thanks to the tribunal’s work and all of the First Nations communities and families and children who have advocated and stood with us during this long court battle, inequality starting to close in child welfare and on Jordan’s Principle, we still have issues with education, early childhood, basics like water and sanitation, that are going to continue to pile up on hopes and dreams of children.”

Read More: http://aptnnews.ca/2018/02/23/nation-to-nation-child-welfare-indigenous-law-and-the-border-put-under-the-spotlight/

New European privacy regulation will impact Canadian businesses

February 22, 2018

The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will come into force May 25, 2018, potentially creating new obligations for Canadian businesses that handle the personal information of individuals in Europe.

Canadian organizations may need to comply with the GDPR if they:

  • Have an establishment in the EU; or
  • Are located outside the EU but either “offer goods or services” to or “monitor the behaviour” of individuals in the EU.

While the GDPR and Canada’s federal private sector privacy law, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), share a number of core tenets, they are different laws.  The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada is not responsible for enforcing compliance with the GDPR.

The European Commission website offers information to help businesses comply with GDPR requirements. The Article 29 Data Protection Working Party has also developed a fact sheet.  While this fact sheet was developed for Asia Pacific Privacy Authorities, it offers information and advice that Canadian businesses may find helpful.

NT4

IRC: Muskrat Trapping Program Seeks Participants and Service Providers

February 22, 2018

Applications are now being accepted for an upcoming 10-day Muskrat Trapping Program hosted by Project Jewel.

This program, designed for those wanting to build their land and trapping skills, will be held from March 9 to 16, 2018 in the Mackenzie Delta.
Download Event Poster

Spaces are available for up to five male and five female participants. You must be between the ages of 16 and 30. All travel and accomodations will be provided for those selected to participate.

If you’re interested in attending, please apply before March 2, 2018.

*NEW* You can now complete your Project Jewel applications online.

Submit an Application 

Project Jewel is also looking for support people and equipment for the Muskrat Trapping Program. They are in need of the following:

  • Site/facilities in the Mackenzie Delta capable of housing 15-18 people
  • 8-10 snowmobiles for rental
  • 1-3 Trapping Guide(s) and Knowledge Holder(s)
  • 1 Cook
  • 1 Cook’s Helper

Download Call For Service Providers Poster

Those interested in providing any of the above services will be required to submit a clear Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check.

If you have any questions about the Muskrat Trapping Program, or require more information concerning the Call for Service Providers, please contact:

Jimmy Ruttan
On-the-Land and Support Services Coordinator – Project Jewel|
Tel: (867) 777-7084

NT5

My emotions got the better of me’: Jocelyne Larocque apologizes for taking off silver medal – CBC

Ste. Anne, Man. D-liner removed medal but held it in in her hand

Feb 22, 2018

A Canadian Olympian has apologized after taking off her silver medal during the medal ceremony following the women’s hockey team’s shootout loss to their U.S. rivals.

​”I want to apologize,” Jocelyne Larocque said in a statement released Friday from the Pyeongchang Games in South Korea. “In the moment, I was disappointed with the outcome of the game, and my emotions got the better of me. I meant no disrespect – it has been an honour to represent my country and win a medal for Canada.”

The Ste. Anne, Man. defenceman said she takes being a role model to young girls and hockey fans seriously, and that she was proud of her team’s efforts.

“My actions did not demonstrate the values our team, myself and my family live and for that I am truly sorry,” she said.

Read More: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/jocelyn-larocque-medal-1.4547807

Southeast District RCMP: Collision claims life of 27-year-old man

February 22, 2018
Elsipogtog First Nation, New Brunswick

A two vehicle collision on Highway 116 near Elsipogtog First Nation has claimed the life of a 27-year-old man from Birch Ridge.

RCMP from Richibucto and Elsipogtog responded to the crash at around 10:45 a.m., on February 22, 2018.

The preliminary investigation indicates that a vehicle crossed the centre line and collided with the vehicle being driven by the 27-year-old man who was the only occupant of the vehicle and died at the scene.

The driver and lone occupant of the other vehicle, a 34-year-old woman, was taken to hospital.

An RCMP collision reconstructionist is assisting with the investigation.

–30–

Contact information

Sgt. Pat Tardif
Richibucto RCMP
Southeast District RCMP
506-523-4611

NT5

Missing, mourned, unresolved: Raymond Cormier acquitted in death of Tina Fontaine – The Globe and Mail

The case that became a catalyst for Canada’s national inquiry on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls ended in an acquittal in Winnipeg on Thursday.

For a second, silence filled the ornate, marble courtroom in Winnipeg’s downtown law courts building after Raymond Cormier was found not guilty of second-degree murder in the death of 15-year-old Tina Fontaine, who was found dead in Winnipeg’s Red River in August, 2014.

Then Thelma Favel, Tina’s great aunt, who raised her from the age of three, began quietly sobbing.

“My baby,” she said. “My baby. My baby. Oh, my little girl.”

Arm in arm, the First Nations leaders in the room, including Kevin Hart, Manitoba regional chief of the Assembly of First Nations, and Arlen Dumas, Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, formed a tight circle around Ms. Favel. Nahanni Fontaine, the provincial NDP’s justice critic and an advocate for missing and murdered Indigenous women, held Ms. Favel. Someone began reciting the Lord’s Prayer.

Read More: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/tina-fontaine-raymond-cormier-verdict/article38062879/

AER: New Alberta Environment and Parks Water Directive

On February 22, 2018, Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) issued Directive for Water Licensing of Hydraulic Fracturing Projects – Area of Use Approach, which provides industry with greater flexibility around water use for multistage hydraulic fracturing projects within a constrained mineral tenure area and clarifies how the AER will evaluate multiyear water licence applications.

Historically, licensees typically obtained temporary water diversion licences valid for up to one year for hydraulic fracturing projects. In order to obtain longer-term water licences, licensees had to specify at the time of application the exact location where water would be used, which is not always known for multistage hydraulic fracturing operations.

Under this new directive, operators can apply for longer-term water licences valid for up to ten years where the hydraulic fracturing project areas are known at the time of application based on mineral tenure but where the exact location of water use cannot be confirmed until development plans are finalized. More details on the information required when submitting a water licence application to the AER can be found in the directive.

For questions about the directive, please contact AEP at AEP.WaterPolicy@gov.ab.ca.

For application-related questions, please contact the AER at IndustryRelations@aer.ca or your Water Authorizations staff contacts.

<original signed by>

Mark Taylor
Executive Vice President
Operations Division

NT4

Traffic slowdown for Human Trafficking Awareness Day (8 photos) – SooToday

Event coincides with launch of Indigenous anti-human trafficking project, says organizer

Songs from an Anishinaabe drum group cut through the air Thursday evening as traffic was slowed to a crawl at the intersection of Highway 17A and Highway 17B to mark Ontario’s first annual Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

Motorists traveling through the intersection were provided with information pamphlets, while Indigenous supporters stood by the intersection holding a number of anti-human trafficking signs.

“There is a presence in Sault Ste. Marie, but it’s not tolerated, especially by the Aboriginal community,” said Patricia Lesage, who now serves as an ‘anti-human trafficking Indigenous-led project lead’ for Sault Ste. Marie. “Our girls are trafficked out of the Sault Ste. Marie area and brought down to Sudbury, mainly the Toronto area.”

Read More: https://www.sootoday.com/local-news/traffic-slowdown-for-human-trafficking-awareness-day-8-photos-846194

Canadian men’s curlers fall to Swiss in bronze-medal match – CBC

1st time Canada’s men’s team kept off Olympic podium

For the first time ever, Canada’s men’s curling team is leaving an Olympic Games without a medal.

Canada fell to Switzerland 7-5 in the bronze-medal match Friday in South Korea, which will also mark the first time both the men’s and women’s teams were kept off the podium.

Canadian skip Kevin Koe made some key shots to keep the match close, but missed even bigger ones which allowed Switzerland to capitalize off Canada’s mistakes.

Canada, needing to score a pair to force extras, were given hope as third Marc Kennedy made a masterful shot rolling a Canadian stone into the house off another, and sticking his shooter in the house to give Canada a chance.

And after Swiss fourth Benoit Schwarz missed a double takeout attempt, Koe had a chance at a double himself. But the Calgary native missed, allowing Schwarz to take out both Canadian stones for the win.

Read More: https://olympics.cbc.ca/news/article/canadian-men-curlers-fall-swiss-bronze-medal-match.html

Ontario Investing in First Nations Economic Development in Georgian Bay

Province Supporting Improved Economic Outcomes for First Nations Communities
February 22, 2018 4:00 P.M.

Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

Ontario is investing in projects that create jobs, support new skills training and improve economic outcomes for First Nations in the Georgian Bay area.

The Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation is receiving funding for their Cape Croker Maple Syrup Business Development Project. The new venture is expanding on the eco-tourism and cultural heritage offerings of Cape Croker Park, which attracts about 35,000 visitors each year, and is part of the community’s plan to generate revenue through band-owned businesses and community resources.

Additionally, Ontario is supporting the Huronia Area Aboriginal Management Board Skills-Ready Aboriginal Peoples Project. The project is training Indigenous people for the jobs needed to support the refurbishment of the Bruce Power nuclear plant.

The Wahta Mohawks First Nation is also receiving funding for a feasibility study to explore potential commercial development.

Supporting economic development in partnership with Indigenous communities and partners is one of the many steps on Ontario’s journey of healing and reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. It reflects the government’s commitment to work with Indigenous partners, creating a better future for everyone in the province.

Quick Facts

  • The Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation is receiving $100,000 for the Cape Croker Maple Syrup Business Development Project through the Indigenous Community Capital Grant Program.
  • The Huronia Area Aboriginal Management Board (HAAMB) is receiving $248,556 for the HAAMB Skills-Ready Aboriginal Peoples Project.
  • Wahta Mohawks First Nation is receiving $93,500 for a feasibility study to explore potential commercial development.

Additional Resources

Quotes

“From maple syrup to energy, today’s investment will help expand job opportunities for First Nations in Ontario. This funding is part of Ontario’s commitment to work closely with Indigenous partners so they can develop talent and commercial opportunities in their communities. This is an important step in Ontario’s journey of reconciliation.”

David Zimmer
Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

“Chippewas of Nawash are very pleased with Ontario’s contribution through the Indigenous Economic Development Fund towards our maple syrup venture in Cape Croker Park. Maple syrup, the product, the processes and the story complement our existing tourism business and will help us to continue developing an all-season tourism industry.”

Nathan Keeshig
Cape Croker Forestry Director

NT5

Budget to outline Indigenous housing plan – TheRecord.com

OTTAWA — Indigenous communities will find themselves with a long-term funding commitment in next week’s federal budget worth hundreds of millions of dollars to address the most acute housing situation in the country, say sources familiar with the measure.

The acute housing shortage in Indigenous communities has meant that homes are often overcrowded and in desperate need of repairs — a combination that also has health consequences.

The Liberals have promised unique housing strategies for Inuit, Metis and First Nations communities to go along with the 10-year, $225-million plan unveiled last year to fund groups that help house Indigenous Peoples off-reserve.

Sources with knowledge of the government’s plans for the budget, speaking on condition of anonymity about details not yet made public, say the government will move first on long-term funding plans for Inuit and Metis housing, where consultations are more advanced and the logistics of providing funding is simpler.

Read More: https://www.therecord.com/news-story/8148414-budget-to-outline-indigenous-housing-plan/

TC PipeLines, LP Announces 2017 Fourth Quarter and Year End Financial Results

HOUSTON, Feb. 23, 2018 — News Release – TC PipeLines, LP (NYSE:TCP) (the Partnership) today reported fourth quarter 2017 net income attributable to controlling interests of $66 million and distributable cash flow of $72 million. For the year ended December 31, 2017, net income attributable to controlling interests was $252 million and distributable cash flow was $310 million.

“The Partnership’s assets delivered another year of solid results in 2017, benefiting from our conservative business approach. Our pipelines generated steady earnings and cash flow despite a challenging year in the broader MLP space,” said Brandon Anderson, president of TC PipeLines GP, Inc.  “We are progressing a number of commercial opportunities within our portfolio of high quality natural gas pipelines.  We extended the average contract life of our GTN, Northern Border and Great Lakes systems and continue to advance organic growth opportunities including the Portland XPress project.”

“During the year we completed the acquisition of an almost 50 percent interest in the Iroquois pipeline and a further 12 percent interest in PNGTS,” added Anderson.  “Those transactions helped to underpin the six percent increase in our common unit distribution in July of 2017 and position us for future dropdown transactions as well as other organic growth opportunities.”

Full Year 2017 Highlights and Fourth Quarter Highlights (All financial figures are unaudited)

  • Full Year Highlights
    • Generated net income attributable to controlling interests of $252 million
    • Paid cash distributions of $284 million on the common units and $22 million on the Class B units
    • Declared cash distributions of $3.94 per common unit
    • Generated distributable cash flow of $310 million
    • Closed the purchase of a 49.34 percent interest in the Iroquois Gas Transmission System (Iroquois) and an additional 11.81 percent interest in Portland Natural Gas Transmission System (PNGTS) from TransCanada Corporation (TransCanada) for $765 million, effective June 1, 2017 (2017 Acquisition)
    • Filed rate settlements with FERC for both Great Lakes and Northern Border
    • Raised net proceeds of approximately $176 million in common equity through the Partnership’s At-the-Market (ATM) equity issuance program and through a General Partner contribution
  • Fourth Quarter Highlights (All financial figures are unaudited)
    • Generated net income attributable to controlling interests of $66 million
    • Paid cash distributions of $74 million
    • Declared cash distributions of $1.00 per common unit
    • Generated distributable cash flow of $72 million
    • Raised net proceeds of approximately $51 million in common equity through the Partnership’s ATM equity issuance program and through a General Partner contribution
    • Received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on Great Lakes rate settlement on February 22, 2018
    • Northern Border reached a rate settlement-in-principle with its customers and filed the settlement agreement with FERC for approval on December 4, 2017.
    • Great Lakes’ new long-term transportation contract with TransCanada’s Mainline commenced on November 1, 2017 allowing for the transport of up to 0.711 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day for a 10-year period
    • PNGTS received FERC approval to increase its capacity by 25 percent up to approximately 210,000 Dth/day effective December 1, 2017
    • Successful open seasons at GTN during late 2017 and early 2018, selling all of its remaining available firm capacity. The majority of the associated contracts have terms of at least 15 years.

The Partnership’s financial highlights for the fourth quarter of 2017 compared to the same period of 2016 were:

Read More: http://www.tcpipelineslp.com/news-releases-article.html?id=2174780&t=

NT4

Martyn Brown: Playing the “R” card on Kinder Morgan – Straight.com

Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words.

So I’ll spare you the extra thousand words I might have added to express how offended I am that Canada’s prime minister is off gallivanting in India, instead of dealing with the most serious problem now facing our nation.

Namely, the escalating dispute over the Kinder Morgan project and the threat it poses to Canada’s national interest in advancing reconciliation.

The international media is now reporting that his Indian trip “is best described as a slow-moving train wreck …”

The same might be said about his disastrous journey at home in his approach to reconciliation with Canada’s Indigenous peoples in respect of the Trans Mountain pipeline fiasco.

Read More: https://www.straight.com/news/1036116/martyn-brown-playing-r-card-kinder-morgan

Premiers of Ontario, Quebec in Washington for Canada U.S. charm offensive – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 23, 2018

OTTAWA _ The premiers of Canada’s two largest provinces are in Washington talking trade today.

Ontario’s Kathleen Wynne and Quebec’s Philippe Couillard are meeting with the governors of several U.S. states.

The governors are in the U.S. capital for their annual winter meetings.

State leaders have proven to be influential allies to people trying save NAFTA _ writing letters, lobbying U.S. President Donald Trump and sharing their concerns with Vice-President Mike Pence.

Some of the staunchest pro-trade states also have political clout: several happen to be key battlegrounds in this year’s midterm elections. One such state is Arizona, where the governor gave a speech this week promoting increased trade with Canada and Mexico.

Couillard and Wynne, whose provinces represent more than half of Canada’s economy, will attend a panel discussion this morning, meet governors and head to a governors’ reception hosted at the Canadian embassy.

INDEX: ECONOMY TRADE NATIONAL BUSINESS POLITICS

Deaths and causes of death, 2015 – Statistics Canada

February 23, 2018

The total number of deaths in Canada was 264,333 in 2015, the highest annual total since the introduction of the vital statistics registration system in 1921. Every province and territory except Prince Edward Island, Manitoba, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut reported a record number of deaths in 2015.

The increase in the total number of deaths can be attributed to two factors. The first is the population of Canada is growing at the fastest pace among G7 countries. A larger population generates more deaths. The second factor is population aging. An increasing share of the population is now older and death rates increase with age. The number of deaths is projected to continue increasing in Canada in tandem with the aging of the large cohorts of baby boomers born between 1946 and 1965.

There were slightly more male deaths (133,441) than female deaths (130,892) in Canada in 2015. These numbers have been converging since the late 1970s because female deaths have been increasing at a faster pace than male deaths.

Over the last 30 years, gains in life expectancy at birth are higher for men than for women

Despite the increase in the number of deaths, life expectancy in Canada has increased over time.

Life expectancy is calculated over a three-year period. All life expectancy data in this release are based on three-year averages.

Based on the age-specific mortality rates, life expectancy at birth in Canada was 79.8 years for men and 83.9 years for women from 2013 to 2015. On average, life expectancy at birth has risen annually by an average of 2.8 months for men and 1.7 months for women over the last 30 years. Consequently, the gap in life expectancy between men and women fell from over seven years in the early 1980s to 4.1 years from 2013 to 2015. Annual gains in life expectancy have slowed over the past two decades, reaching 1.6 months for men and 1.2 months for women between 2011 to 2013 and 2013 to 2015.

Life expectancy at birth is highest in British Columbia and lowest in Nunavut

British Columbia once again reported the country’s highest life expectancy at birth from 2013 to 2015, both for men (80.5 years) and for women (84.6 years). British Columbia has led the country since 1994 to 1996 for women and since 1990 to 1992 for men. From 2013 to 2015, men’s life expectancy at birth was 80 years and older in three provinces: Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia. Women’s life expectancy at birth has been 80 years and older in every province since 1998 to 2000.

Nunavut had the lowest life expectancy at birth in Canada, at 69.2 years for men and 73.9 years for women from 2013 to 2015. This was 10.6 years below the national average for men and 10.0 years below the average for women. Newfoundland and Labrador had the lowest life expectancy at birth among the provinces, at 77.2 years for men and 81.5 years for women.

Cancer and heart disease remain the two leading causes of death in 2015

Cancer (malignant tumours) and heart disease were the two leading causes of death in 2015, accounting for 48.6% of all deaths. However, this was a marked decline compared with 2000 when they accounted for 54.0% of all deaths. The decrease was essentially due to the relative decline in heart disease, which fell from 25.3% in 2000 to 19.5% in 2015, while the percentage of deaths caused by cancer remained stable.

In 2015, the eight other leading causes of death were the same as in 2014: stroke, chronic lower respiratory diseases, accidents (unintentional injuries), diabetes, influenza and pneumonia, Alzheimer’s disease, suicide and liver diseases (chronic liver disease and cirrhosis). Together, the 10 leading causes of death accounted for 195,759 deaths or nearly three-quarters of all deaths in 2015.

Among the 10 leading causes of death, influenza and pneumonia saw the largest annual increase, with 1,033 more individuals dying of this cause in 2015 than in 2014, an increase of 15.7%. Influenza and pneumonia replaced diabetes as the sixth leading cause of death in 2015.

This category can be divided into its two components, influenza and pneumonia. Influenza represents the lesser and more volatile of the two, accounting for 21.2% of the deaths but 66.4% of the increase in deaths. In 2015, the number of influenza deaths increased 73.5% from 2014. Deaths due to influenza and pneumonia are strongly associated with age. In 2015, 74.7% of all deaths attributable to influenza and pneumonia were among people aged 80 years and older.

Several causes of death rose significantly from 2000 to 2015, particularly chronic liver disease and cirrhosis (+44.0%), accidents (unintentional injuries) (+37.8%) and Alzheimer’s disease (+31.6%). Meanwhile, stroke and heart disease decreased slightly over this period.

Cancer and heart disease were the two leading causes of death in every province and territory except Nunavut, where suicide was the second leading cause of death, ahead of heart disease. Stroke was the third leading cause of death in every province except Nova Scotia, Quebec and the territories. In Nova Scotia, Quebec and Yukon, chronic respiratory diseases were the third leading cause. Accidents were the third leading cause of death in the Northwest Territories.

The leading causes of death vary by sex and age

The two leading causes of death are the same for both sexes: cancer and heart disease. The third leading cause of death varies by sex. Men die more frequently from accidents and women die more frequently from strokes.

Among individuals under 35 years of age (excluding those under one year old), the two leading causes of death are accidents and suicide. After age 45, cancer and heart disease become the two leading causes of death. However, there are a few differences between the sexes.

Accidents are the leading cause of death for men younger than 45 years of age. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for men aged 15 to 44 years. These two causes of death peak among men aged 15 to 24 years, and accounted for 64.6% of all deaths in this age group in 2015. Based on the age-specific suicide rate, men aged 45 to 54 years had the highest rate of suicide (27.6 per 100,000 population) in 2015, followed by men 55 to 64 years of age (26.6 per 100,000 population). These were the only two age groups where suicide rates increased since 2010. After the age of 45, cancer and heart disease becomes predominant, accounting for 61.9% of all deaths among men aged 65 to 74 years.

Cancer is the leading cause of death for all women except those aged 15 to 24 years old and those 90 years and older. As with men, accidents and suicide are the two leading causes of death for women aged 15 to 24 years, accounting for 56.4% of deaths in this age group in 2015. The second leading cause of death for women under the age of 45—with the exception of the 15-to-24 age group—was accidents. From age 45 onward, cancer and heart disease become the leading causes of death, peaking between the ages of 55 and 64, and accounting for 65.3% of all deaths for this age group in 2015.

Heart disease remains the leading cause of death for men and women 90 years of age and older, followed by cancer.

Products

The 2013/2015 edition of the publication Life Tables, Canada, Provinces and Territories (Catalogue number84-537-X), includes complete life tables (for Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia) and abridged life tables (for Prince Edward Island, Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut) from 1980 to 1982 to 2013 to 2015. All of these tables are available for men, women and both sexes combined, in two formats: CANSIM tables, and annual or historical Excel files available in publication Catalogue number84-537-X.

The life tables have been updated on the basis of a slightly revised methodology and the most recent population estimates. The methodology used to produce complete and abridged life tables produced by Statistics Canada is available in the document Methods for Constructing Life tables for Canada, Provinces and Territories (Catalogue number84-538-X).

You can also consult the publication Health Indicators (Catalogue number82-221-X), which has been updated.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

NT4

The Daily Friday, February 23, 2018

Consumer Price Index, January 2018

The Consumer Price Index rose 1.7% on a year-over-year basis in January, following a 1.9% increase in December. On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, the Consumer Price Index was up 0.5% in January, after increasing 0.1% in December.

Continue reading 

Machinery and Equipment Price Index, fourth quarter 2017

The Machinery and Equipment Price Index (MEPI) increased 1.6% in the fourth quarter, following a 5.7% decrease in the third quarter. The import component was up 2.0% while the domestic component increased 0.5%.

Continue reading 

Commercial Software Price Index, January 2018

The Commercial Software Price Index (CSPI) decreased 1.0% from December 2017 to January 2018.

Continue reading 

Computer and peripherals price indexes, January 2018

The price of desktop and similar computers, laptop and tablet computers, and servers declined 0.3% in January.

Continue reading 

Payroll employment, earnings and hours, December 2017

Average weekly earnings of non-farm payroll employees were $993 in December, little changed from the previous month. Compared with December 2016, earnings rose 2.3%, with all of the increase occurring in the second half of 2017.

Continue reading 

Deaths and causes of death, 2015

The total number of deaths in Canada was 264,333 in 2015, the highest annual total since the introduction of the vital statistics registration system in 1921. Every province and territory except Prince Edward Island, Manitoba, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut reported a record number of deaths in 2015.

Continue reading 

Natural gas transmission, storage and distribution, December 2017

Natural gas transmission pipelines received 588.9 million gigajoules of natural gas from fields, gathering systems and plants in December. Seven provinces posted receipts, with Alberta (70.0%) and British Columbia (27.9%) holding the vast majority.

Continue reading 

New products

The Consumer Price Index, January 2018, vol. 97, no. 1

Catalogue number Catalogue number62-001-X, (HTML | PDF)

Health Indicators, February 2018, No. 2

Catalogue number Catalogue number82-221-X, (HTML)

Life Tables, Canada, Provinces and Territories, 2013 to 2015, No. 1

Catalogue number Catalogue number84-537-X, (HTML | PDF)

Methods for Constructing Life Tables for Canada, Provinces and Territories

Catalogue number Catalogue number84-538-X, (HTML | PDF)

NT4

Jury finds Raymond Cormier not guilty in death of Tina Fontaine – CBC

‘My baby, my baby, my baby’: Family members cry as verdict is read out

A jury has found Raymond Cormier not guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Tina Fontaine.

Cormier, 56, stared straight ahead as the verdict was read out, after which people in the crowd burst into tears and gasps of disbelief were heard from members of the teen girl’s family and supporters. Her biological mother, Valentina Duck, swore at Cormier before walking out of the Winnipeg courtroom.

“F–k you if you think you can get away with this,” Duck said.

As Cormier was led out, Thelma Favel — a great-aunt who helped raise Tina — sobbed “my baby, my baby, my baby.” Loved ones and supporters helped her walk out of the courtroom, where she broke down in the hallway.

Tina’s 72-pound body was found in Winnipeg’s Red River, wrapped in a duvet cover and weighed down with rocks, on Aug. 17, 2014. She was 15. Cormier was charged on Dec. 8, 2015.

Read More: http://www.cbc.ca/amp/1.4542319

CIBC raises dividend following better than expected first quarter – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 22, 2018

By Armina Ligaya

THE CANADIAN PRESS

TORONTO _ The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce set the tone for banks’ earnings season with a dividend hike and better-than-expected first-quarter net income, helped by a boost in earnings in its U.S. division as it looks to expand south of the border amidst slowing mortgage growth at home.

Canada’s fifth-largest lender said Thursday it continues to see benefits from the purchase of Chicago-based The PrivateBank, which CIBC acquired in June 2017 and rebranded in September as CIBC Bank USA. As part of its strategy to ramp up its U.S. presence, it also purchased Chicago-based wealth management firm Geneva Advisors for roughly US$200 million last year.

“With a second full quarter’s contribution from CIBC Bank USA, we continue to perform well and deliver against our commitment to build client relationships north and south of the border,” CIBC chief executive Victor Dodig told analysts on a conference call.

In the latest quarter, CIBC’s U.S. commercial banking and wealth management division reported net income of $134 million in the latest quarter, up $105 million from the same period in 2017, contributing to a more than 22 per cent increase in adjusted net income year-over-year despite slowing mortgage growth.

It’s a welcome sign for the bank, which has a larger domestic exposure than its peers and mortgages _ demand for which is expected to slow under new tighter rules _ also represent a bigger chunk of its loan book, said Shannon Stemm, an analyst with Edward Jones in St. Louis.

“They’re working to try to diversify themselves away from their domestic banking, and seeing some good early results with growth in the U.S. business that they recently acquired. … It’s going to take some time before the U.S. is going to be a meaningful offset to potential slowdown in Canada,” she said.

CIBC was the first of Canada’s big lenders to report results for the quarter ended Jan. 31, kicking off the season by raising its quarterly payment to common shareholders by three cents to $1.33 per share _ even as it reported a decline in profit attributable to shareholders, which amounted to nearly $1.31 billion, down from $1.39 billion a year ago.

However on an adjusted basis, the bank said it earned a record $1.41 billion or $3.18 per diluted share for the quarter, up from $1.15 billion or $2.89 per share a year earlier. Analysts had expected an adjusted profit of $2.83 per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

Industry watchers were also eyeing CIBC’s results for early signs of the impact of recent changes to the banking landscape, such as stricter rules surrounding uninsured mortgages as of Jan. 1. Canada’s biggest banks have cautioned that the federal financial services regulator’s revised qualifying rules _ requiring would-be homebuyers with a down payment larger than 20 per cent to prove they can continue to service their mortgage if interest rates rise _ could present a headwind to loan originations.

Demand for mortgages in December saw an uptick, with national sales up 4.5 per cent according to the Canadian Real Estate Association, as buyers scrambled to snap up homes before Jan. 1.

CIBC’s mortgage balances for the fiscal first quarter were $203 billion, up 9.1 per cent from $186 billion a year earlier. In comparison, the bank saw a more than 12 per cent jump in mortgage growth from $166 billion in the first quarter of 2016. Originations of Canadian uninsured residential mortgages for the quarter were $9 billion, down from $12 billion a year ago.

Christina Kramer, CIBC’s group head of personal and small business banking for Canada, said it is too early to gauge the extent of the impact of the mortgage underwriting rules, as well as the January interest rate hike.

“We saw some pull forward in November and December, so January itself is not a good indication alone,” she told analysts. “So early days, we’re not seeing any big change to customer behaviour.”

The lender’s Canadian personal and small banking arm reported net income of $656 million for the period, down $149 million or 19 per cent compared with a year ago. However, on an adjusted basis, net income was $658 million, up $97 million or 17 per cent from a year ago.

Net income for the domestic commercial banking and wealth management division was $314 million, up 14 per cent compared with a year earlier. Its capital markets net income was $322 million for the quarter, down $25 million or seven per cent from a year earlier.

Dodig has estimated that CIBC’s U.S. business will account for 17 per cent of its earnings by 2020, up from nine per cent for the four-month period it owned PrivateBancorp in fiscal 2017. The bank’s results included charges totalling 23 cents per share, including an $88-million net tax adjustment due to a cut to the U.S. corporate tax rate from 35 per cent to 21 per cent that took effect this year.

Several of Canada’s biggest lenders have indicated they expect to record a write down to reduce the value of deferred tax assets already held on company balance sheets as a result of tax changes under U.S. President Donald Trump, but expect a lift to earnings in the long term.

CIBC was also the first of the Canadian banks to report its earnings after the introduction of a new accounting standard known as IFRS 9 that puts more emphasis over expected losses over the life of a loan compared to previous guidelines. In turn, provisions for credit losses, or the amount of money set aside for bad loans, may be more volatile _ and will also make it difficult to make year-over-year comparisons in this and coming quarters, analysts say.

John Aiken, an analyst with Barclays in Toronto, said the new standard helped CIBC in the latest quarter, with provisions for credit losses dropping to $153 million from $212 million a year ago.

“(This volatility) was evidenced with the first bank out of the gates, but actually benefited CIBC with recoveries reported in the quarter,” Aiken wrote in a note to clients.

INDEX: FINSERVICES BUSINESS BANKS

B.C. businesses say new health tax will raise prices for consumers – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 22, 2018 

By Linda Givetash

THE CANADIAN PRESS

VANCOUVER _ Eric Pateman says a new health care tax in British Columbia will add about $30,000 to the annual payroll costs for his Vancouver restaurant, and with tight profit margins there is little room to absorb the increase.

Many restaurants struggle to maintain adequate staffing levels, he said, meaning reducing staff at his restaurant Edible Canada isn’t an option. The only area to recoup costs is to increase prices.

“We are continuing to push the upper envelop on menu pricing,” he said in an interview. “As an independent business owner … constantly looking at a shrinking and eroding bottom line, this kind of stuff scares the crap out of you.”

This week’s provincial budget eliminates medical service premiums in 2020, to be replaced by payroll tax of 1.95 per cent for companies with a payroll over $1.5 million. Companies with a payroll under $500,000 will be exempt from the tax, while those in between will pay a reduced rate.

Pateman, the president of Edible Canada, said the restaurant’s payroll is about $1.5 million.

Finance Minister Carole James says businesses that already cover medical premiums for their staff will see a reduction in administration costs after the premiums were halved earlier this year before they are eliminated on Jan. 1, 2020.

Only five per cent of businesses in the province will be hit by the full payroll tax when it comes into effect on Jan. 1, 2019, she told the legislature Thursday.

Ian Tostenson, president of the B.C. Restaurant and Food Association, said about half of the businesses in the industry exceed the $500,000 exemption. Most of them don’t cover existing medical service premiums, he added, meaning the payroll tax will be an additional cost without any other savings.

Bruce Gillespie, managing director of Little Jumbo Restaurant in Victoria, said with a minimum wage hike coming in June, his payroll will cross the $500,000 threshold, requiring him to add an estimated $10,000 to cover the health care tax next year.

Like many restaurants, he doesn’t cover medical premiums but does offer extended health benefits, which costs about $15,000 annually.

“If we could get credit for what we are already doing for employee health care, I’d be OK with this,” Gillespie said. “(If) we know this is going to add significant costs, what’s the offset? Because this is all about big picture health care.”

Concerns about the payroll tax aren’t limited to the hospitality and services sectors.

Richard Truscott of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business said the exemption threshold is too low and will add to a list of increased costs facing small businesses.

“If the politicians are too reckless and irresponsible and they put forward too many aggressive policies, they’re going to do serious damage to the economy, to the economic base, which is small business,” he said.

Cuts to small business taxes and the elimination of provincial sales tax on electricity could help make a difference for some, but Truscott said it’s not enough to offset increased costs, such as rising Canada Pension Plan rates.

“Governments ought to be doing their homework, they ought to be looking at the economic impact of all of these policy changes, not in isolation, but together,” he said.

Al Hasham, owner of Maximum Express Courier in Victoria, said the payroll tax acts as a disincentive to grow in the context of other rising costs including gas prices and carbon taxes.

“It’s getting a little bit frustrated where the businesses, when they’re succeeding, they’re getting penalized to the point where we’re thinking maybe we should try to stay small, maybe we should try to stay within the $500,000 payroll cap,” he said.

But Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade, said more money in the budget for child care, transportation and housing could help balance the effects of the taxes on the economy in the long term.

“It’s meant to really help with human capital investments,” she said.

The board of trade has long called for a reduction in medical services premiums paired with efforts to reduce housing and other costs faced by workers in the Lower Mainland. Huberman said the NDP’s budget addressed many of those concerns.

“We’re really watching with caution how these social infrastructure investments, which are economic investments, will maybe make a break even impact on these additional expenses related to minimum wage increases, employer health tax increases,” she said. “This is the first budget for this government and we think it’s a good start.”

INDEX: ECONOMY POLITICS NATIONAL BUSINESS SOCIAL LABOUR FOOD

Broken Systems Failed Tina Fontaine – Murder Trial Verdict Another Severe Setback for Justice and Reconciliation

February 22, 2018

Broken Systems Failed Tina Fontaine – Murder Trial Verdict Another Severe Setback for Justice and Reconciliation

(Ottawa, ON) – Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde says today’s verdict finding Raymond Cormier not guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Tina Fontaine is a shock and another profound disappointment for First Nations across the country, and a severe setback for justice and reconciliation in Canada.

“With this verdict we see yet another young First Nations woman failed by the child welfare system, failed by the police, and now failed by the courts,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “We stand with Tina Fontaine’s family and friends as they seek justice and healing. First Nations demand immediate changes to a system that allows our young people to die without justice. This verdict is a severe setback for justice and reconciliation in this country. Reconciliation cannot be simply about words – it has to be about action, about valuing the lives of Indigenous people, and keeping Indigenous women and girls safe.”

Raymond Cormier pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder in the August 2014 death of 15-year-old Tina Fontaine from Sagkeeng First Nation. Closing arguments concluded February 20 with directions to the jury by Queen’s Bench Chief Justice Glenn Joyal on February 21. Tina Fontaine’s death drew national attention and highlighted the need for a national inquiry on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.

“My thoughts are with the family of Tina Fontaine and we stand with them today in their continued calls for justice,” said AFN Manitoba Regional Chief Kevin Hart.  “We must learn from this tragedy and we must all demand action now to ensure safety and security for Indigenous women and girls. We stand with the family and we reiterate our calls for the National Inquiry on missing and murdered Indigenous women to focus on families throughout all its work and to not wait for its work to be complete. We need to see immediate action to prevent further violence and to support all families at risk.”

First Nations have called for changes to the systems that continue to fail First Nations and fail the entire country. Immediate action is required to ensure Indigenous representation on juries and to support First Nations approaches to justice, including restorative justice.

The AFN continues to call for a national action plan to provide safety and security for Indigenous women and girls that would include shelters and safe spaces, education and training, transportation, daycare and other supports. Action is also required by federal, provincial and territorial governments to stop discrimination against First Nations children in care and work with First Nations to reform the child welfare system. A resolution from the AFN December 2017 Special Chiefs Assembly calls for the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls to reorient its mandate to investigate police services and to take a “families first” approach.

The AFN is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada.  Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Updates.

―30―

For more information, please contact:

Jamie Monastyrski
Press Secretary – National Chief’s Office
Assembly of First Nations
343-540-6179 (cell)
jamiem@afn.ca

Jenna Young Castro
Communications Officer
Assembly of First Nations
613-241-6789 ext. 201
613-314-8157 (cell)
jyoung@afn.ca

Tina Fontaine’s death and Raymond Cormier’s trial: What the jury heard – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 22, 2018 18:27

WINNIPEG _ Jurors sat through three weeks of evidence in the trial of Raymond Cormier, 56, who on Thursday was found not guilty of second-degree murder in the slaying of 15-year-old Tina Fontaine. Tina’s body, wrapped in a duvet cover and weighed down by rocks, was pulled from the Red River in Winnipeg several days after she disappeared in August 2014. The case reignited calls for a national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women.

Here is what the jury heard:

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN TINA AND CORMIER

Court heard Tina had a happy childhood raised by a great-aunt on the Sagkeeng First Nation, but the girl began to spiral downward when her father was murdered in October 2011. Tina’s mother, who had not been part of her life, re-emerged and Tina started going to Winnipeg to visit her. The girl ended up on the street and was being sexually exploited. Tina’s boyfriend Cody Mason, who was 18 at the time, testified the pair first met Cormier earlier in the summer of 2014 and told him they didn’t have a place to stay. Cormier, who court heard was a methamphetamine and crack user, took them to a house with a basement. Known to some as Sebastian and to others as Frenchy, Cormier supplied Tina with the prescription drug gabapentin, said Mason, who added he and Tina would also drink and take marijuana and cocaine. Tina told a social worker that Cormier was a much older man who was going to get her a bike. Cormier told friends he had had sex with the 15-year-old. One witness, Sarah Holland, testified she once saw Cormier grope Tina while asking her to “just do me.”

THE PHYSICAL EVIDENCE

The cause of Tina’s death was undetermined. Dr. Dennis Rhee testified that he found no definitive injuries on her body or to her internal organs. He said there was no evidence of a sexual assault, no signs of a stabbing or major blunt force trauma. It was estimated her body was in the river for three to seven days. There was no evidence that she drowned, but it couldn’t be ruled out. Christopher Keddy, who works at the RCMP forensics lab, testified that tests showed Tina’s body had a level of alcohol slightly above the legal limit for driving. Keddy also said there was a relatively high level of THC _ the active ingredient in marijuana. There was no indication of gabapentin, but Keddy said the test the RCMP lab ran might not detect low levels of the drug. Under cross-examination, the defence suggested it couldn’t be ruled out that gabapentin was in Tina’s system at a potentially lethal level in combination with other drugs. There was no DNA evidence linking Cormier to Fontaine.

THE DUVET COVER

Three people connected to Cormier told police he owned the same type of duvet cover that was wrapped around Tina’s body. DNA testing found no traces linking Cormier to the cover. Court heard police tried to find the source of the duvet cover. It was sold by Costco Canada and 864 had been shipped to the three Costco stores in Winnipeg. Police tracked down 100 people who had purchased covers with the same design to ask them whether they still had them. Under cross-examination, investigators acknowledged Costco had given away some of the unsold duvet covers, and police could not rule out whether similar ones had been purchased elsewhere and brought to Winnipeg.

THE ARGUMENT ON THE STREET

On Aug. 6, about two weeks before Tina’s body was found and three days before she was reported missing, witnesses saw her arguing with Cormier in the street and heard Cormier mention something about a river. Holland testified that she heard Tina tell Cormier she was going to call the cops. The Crown argued that Cormier was worried that Tina was going to report that he had stolen a truck. Court heard an audio recording of Tina calling 911 to report a stolen truck. Witnesses also testified that Tina was angry that Cormier had sold her bike for drugs. Cormier acknowledged the argument in an interview with police and said he followed her down the street before turning in the other direction. He said that is the last time he saw her. He also suggested the suspect police should really be looking for was a man who looked like singer Robert Plant who was walking in the same direction as Tina that night. “Don’t focus on me,” he told police.

ERNIE DeWOLFE

DeWolfe met Cormier in prison and they stayed at the same halfway house for a time. DeWolfe testified he talked to Cormier on Aug. 15 and Cormier said he had met with Tina the previous day to ensure she was not going to call the police. “He just said that he had talked to her and he straightened it all out and took care of it,” DeWolfe testified. “I just presumed that he talked to her and … sorted it out.” Tina’s body was found in the river on Aug. 17. In cross-examination, the defence suggested DeWolfe made the whole story up because he and Cormier had had an argument over money.

THE UNDERCOVER TAPES

Police launched a six-month undercover operation against Cormier called Project Styx. Cormier was placed in a bugged apartment for free and an undercover officer moved into a suite on the same floor. Cormier was recorded saying he’d bet the girl was killed because he found out she was only 15 years old. “I drew the line and that’s why she got killed,” he said. Cormier also told a woman that when he last talked to Tina, he told her to go jump off a bridge. At another point, he asked a woman if she had ever been “haunted by something” before he started to talk about Tina and boast that he beat two murders. During another recording, Cormier said during an argument with a woman that there was a little girl in a “grave someplace screaming at the top of her lungs for me to finish the job. And guess what? I finished the job.” Court also heard Cormier in a recording warning people in his apartment not to overdose or they would end up wrapped in a carpet and thrown in the river. In conversations with the undercover officer, Cormier said there were “three rules to crime: deny, deny deny.”

THE ARGUMENTS

Crown prosecutors contended that Cormier killed Tina, either by suffocation or drowning, because he found out she was only 15 and that would make him a pedophile. They said Cormier’s own words on the undercover tapes should be enough to convict him. The defence said that with no DNA evidence and no cause of death, there were too many holes in the case. It argued that Cormier felt guilt after learning that Tina was only 15 and he wanted to find the real killer.

INDEX: NATIONAL JUSTICE

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Accused in death of Winnipeg teenage girl not guilty of murder – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Feb 22, 2018 18:22

By Bill Graveland

THE CANADIAN PRESS

WINNIPEG _ A man accused of killing a 15-year-old Indigenous girl and dumping her body in Winnipeg’s Red River has been found not guilty of second-degree murder.

Tina Fontaine’s remains were discovered eight days after she was reported missing in August 2014. Raymond Cormier was charged more than a year later.

The jury deliberated for 11 hours before coming to its decision.

There were gasps from Tina’s family and their supporters as the verdict was read. Her great-aunt, Thelma Favel, who raised the girl wept.

“Do you really think you’re going to get away with it?” yelled one woman who was escorted out of court.

The Crown had argued that Cormier convicted himself with his own admissions on secret police recordings, but the defence said numerous forensic holes in the prosecution’s case had left reasonable doubt.

Tina was being sexually exploited after coming to Winnipeg from her home on the Sagkeeng First Nation. Her death prompted renewed calls for an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women.

There was no DNA evidence linking Cormier to the teen and doctors who were called to testify said they could not definitively say how Tina died.

Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Glenn Joyal had told jurors that if they weren’t satisfied that Tina’s death was caused by an unlawful act, such as being smothered or dumped in the water while unconscious, then they had to find Cormier not guilty.

If they decided her death was unlawful, then jurors were to determine if Cormier was responsible.

Over three weeks of testimony, the jury heard how Tina’s relatively stable upbringing spiralled out of control when her father was murdered. Her mother came back into her life and Tina had gone to visit her in Winnipeg, where the girl descended into life on the streets.

She and her boyfriend met the much-older Cormier in the summer of 2014. The jury heard Cormier gave the couple a place to stay, gave Tina drugs and had sex with her.

Witnesses remember Tina and Cormier fighting in the street over a stolen truck and Tina accusing him of selling her bike for drugs. Tina went so far as to report a stolen truck to police.

She was in the care of social services and was staying at a Winnipeg hotel hotel when she disappeared.

Her body was found wrapped in a Costco duvet cover that several witnesses said was similar to one Cormier owned. Experts testified the river had washed away any DNA on the cover.

Investigators went undercover and offered Cormier an apartment. Audio bugs captured what formed the heart of the Crown’s case.

Cormier was recorded telling a woman that he would make a bet that Tina was killed because he had had sex with her and then “I found out she was 15 years old.”

In another recording, Cormier was heard arguing with a woman and saying that there was a little girl in a “grave someplace screaming at the top of her lungs for me to finish the job. And guess what? I finished the job.”

The defence took issue with the quality of the recordings and argued that without DNA evidence and no cause of death, the Crown couldn’t prove that Tina didn’t die from a drug overdose or naturally in what Cormier’s lawyer called the “underbelly of the city.”

_ Follow ?BillGraveland on Twitter

INDEX: NATIONAL JUSTICE

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