Public Inquiry Commission on relations between Indigenous Peoples and certain public services: listening, reconciliation and progress … one year of action

QUÉBEC CITY, Sept. 30, 2020  – The Gouvernement du Québec today observed the first anniversary of the tabling of the report by Commissioner Jacques Viens, which constituted the end result of more than two years of consultations on relations between Indigenous Peoples and certain public services in Québec. While regretting that certain delays have occurred on account of the social and health context related to COVID-19, the Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs, Sylvie D’Amours, emphasized the quality of the discussions that have taken place in recent months between government officials and Indigenous representatives, aiming to work in collaboration to establish the priorities for implementation of initiatives that reflect the will of the community.

The government is pleased to announce that out of 142 calls for action, 51 of direct concern to it are already under discussion, completed or on the way to completion, for example:

  • Call for action 1: Make a public apology;
  • Call for action 2: Adopt a motion to recognize and implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  • Call for action 56: Train all Québec probation officers to prepare Indigenous pre-sentencing reports and teach them the reassuring cultural approach for collecting information;
  • Call for action 130: Ensure that families and significant people who are not represented by an association and who foster Indigenous children receive financial compensation equivalent to family-type resources.

The Gouvernement du Québec acted quickly to follow up within a few days on the first two calls for action set out in the Viens report, and since then has been working tirelessly in collaboration with its Indigenous partners to act along these lines. The implementation of such a complete and voluminous report is an organic process that takes place gradually. In order enable itself to take action, to implement the calls for action and calls for justice of the two commissions of inquiry (the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and the Public Inquiry Commission on relations between Indigenous Peoples and certain public services [the Viens Commission]), the government allocated $200 million in new funding over five years, in the 2020 budget.

Quotation: “Of course, we would have liked to act more rapidly on the other calls for action, and we were off to a good start, with the meetings in October 2019 and January 2020, but the pandemic has disrupted our plans as well. The important thing is that we continue to make progress while consistently fulfilling our commitment to move forward hand in hand with the First Nations and the Inuit. The implementation of the calls for action and for justice remain my priority, and I look forward to being able to announce good news to you in this regard in the near future.”

Sylvie D’Amours, Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs

The Viens Commission
The Viens Commission was set up to shed light on public services delivered to Indigenous peoples over the past fifteen years. Hearings were held in Val-d’Or, Québec City and at other locations across the province. This independent inquiry, which had been launched in 2016 by the Gouvernement du Québec, aimed to prevent or eliminate all forms of violence, discriminatory practices and differential treatment in the delivery of public services to Indigenous people. The inquiry examined social, policing, correctional, justice and health services as well as youth protection.

For further information: Lauréanne Fontaine, Press officer, Office of the the Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs, Telephone: 418 558-7701


2 Manitoba First Nations women win awards for academic trailblazing – CBC

Tammy Wolfe, of Norway House Cree Nation and Sarah DeLaronde from The Pas Man., pursuing master’s education

Two Indigenous women have been selected to receive scholarships to help them continue their education in fields that strive to preserve Indigenous culture, traditions, and language.

Tammy Wolfe, of Norway House Cree Nation and Sarah DeLaronde from Treaty Five territory in The Pas, Man., will each receive $2000 from the First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba (FNHSSM).

“I’m just very grateful to have that acknowledgement and to have somebody believe in my pursuit of my education,” said Wolfe, who was awarded the William Easter- Okimawisip First Nations, Culture & Language Scholarship.

DeLaronde, 27, was selected for the Henry Skywater Cultural Memorial Scholarship.

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Madahbee Leach featured in online panel on Indigenous economic strategies – Anishinabek News

AUNDECK OMNI KANING FIRST NATION – It seems only fitting that Dawn Madahbee Leach was asked to speak on a panel about teamwork.

Madahbee Leach, a member of Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation, was one of the speakers on a panel titled National Indigenous Business Organizations Working Together at the Business Recovery Forum, held online and organized by the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB).

The panel was held to provide forum delegates with information on how organizations have been working together in an effort to not only have the Indigenous economy in the country survive the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic but also how it can possibly thrive through the recovery process.

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Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment & Training Services (KKETS) and Discovery House to Launch Wah-Ka-Ih-Kun Mamo Anokiwin (Working together to Build A House) Initiative

Thunder Bay, ON – Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment & Training Services (KKETS) will launch the Wah-Ka-Ih-Kun Mamo Anokiwin Initiative in partnership with Discovery House.

Eabametoong First Nation Chief Harvey Yesno, Patrick Casey, Executive Director of Discover House along with representatives from the KKETS Board of Directors, Matawa First Nations Management will officially kick-off the Construction Craft Worker Training Program aimed at training 64 Matawa First Nation youth during a 3-year period. 64 new, ‘net zero’, eco-friendly Housing Units will be built in Eabametoong First Nation as well as 32 Housing Units for each of the remote access communities of Marten Falls First Nation, Neskantaga First Nation, Nibinamik First Nation and Webequie First Nation.

The Construction Craft Worker Training Program will be completed remotely in the participating Matawa Communities using newly installed smart classrooms and highspeed satellite internet.

Members of the media are cordially invited to attend the launch (click here for draft agenda).

  • Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2020
  • Location: Madrid Room, Ramada Airlane Hotel and Conference Centre, 689 Arthur St W, Thunder Bay, Ontario
  • Time: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

*Live streaming of the event will be posted on our Facebook page:

— 30 —

For more information, please contact Wayland Moonias, Project Officer at (807) 356-4301 or by email at [email protected] or Roxann Shapwaykeesic, KKETS media contact at (807) 633-9928 or by email at [email protected]


Record Six Women Are Included In Blaine Higgs’ Cabinet – Huddle Today

FREDERICTON – Six women are included in the Progressive Conservative government’s 16-member cabinet.

Saint John Lancaster MLA Dorothy Shephard is the new minister of health after serving during the last term as Social Development Minister.

Premier Blaine Higgs showed confidence in first-time MLA Arlene Dunn, naming her the Aboriginal Affairs minister. Dunn represents Saint John Harbour.

Another rookie politician, Tammy Scott-Wallace, will be responsible for Tourism, Heritage and Culture and Women’s Equality.

Newly-elected Moncton East MLA Daniel Allain is the new Minister for Local Government and Local Governance Reform.

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Omineca Announces $3 Million Private Placement Financing to Accelerate and Expand its Gold Exploration Drill Program on the Wingdam Project

SASKATOON, SK  – Omineca Mining and Metals Ltd. (TSXV: OMM) (“Omineca” or the “Company”), announces that it has entered into an agreement with Mackie Research Capital Corporation, as sole agent and sole bookrunner (the “Agent”), in connection with a best efforts private placement for aggregate gross proceeds of up to $3,000,000 (the “Offering”), in a combination of: (i) units of the Company (the “Units”) at a price of $0.40 per Unit, and (ii) “flow-through” common shares of the Company (within the meaning of the Income Tax Act (Canada) (the “FT Common Shares”) with respect to “Canadian exploration expenses”, at a price of $0.45 per FT Common Share.

Each Unit will be comprised of one common share of the Company (a “Common Share”) and one-half of one Common Share purchase warrant (each whole warrant, a “Warrant”). Each Warrant shall be exercisable to acquire one Common Share (a “Warrant Share”) at a price of $0.48 per Warrant Share for a period of 24 months from the closing of the Offering.

The Company intends to use the net proceeds from the Offering for its ongoing exploration drilling program, working capital requirements and other general corporate purposes. The primary focus of Omineca’s lode gold exploration program at the Wingdam gold project is locating the presumed multiple bedrock sources of placer gold recovered by Omineca in the 2012 underground bulk sampling program. The systematic exploration work program also includes rock sampling, soil grid sampling, channel/saw cut sampling, mapping and geophysics.

The net proceeds received by the Company from the sale of the FT Common Shares will be used to incur eligible “Canadian exploration expenses” (“CEE”) that are “flow-through mining expenditures” (as such term is defined in the Income Tax Act (Canada)) related to the Wingdam gold project. The Company will renounce such CEE to the purchasers of the FT Common Shares with an effective date of no later than December 31, 2020.

The Agent will have an option (the “Agent’s Option”) to offer for sale up to an additional 15% of the number of Units and FT Common Shares sold in the Offering, which Agent’s Option is exercisable, in whole or in part, at any time up to 48 hours prior to the closing of the Offering.

The Units and FT Common Shares to be issued under the Offering will be offered by way of private placement in each of the provinces of Canada, other than Quebec, and such other jurisdictions as may be determined by the Company, in each case, pursuant to applicable exemptions from the prospectus requirements under applicable securities laws.

The Offering is scheduled to close on or about the week of October 26, 2020, or such date as agreed upon between the Company and the Agent (the “Closing”) and is subject to certain conditions including, but not limited to, the receipt of all necessary approvals including the approval of the Exchange. The Units, FT Common Shares, and the underlying securities comprising of the Units, to be issued under the Offering will have a hold period of four months and one day from Closing.

At Closing, the Company will pay to the Agent a cash commission based on the aggregate gross proceeds arising from the Offering (including in respect of any exercise of the Agent’s Option). The Company will also grant the Agent, on the date of Closing, non-transferable compensation options (the “Compensation Options”) equal to 7.0% of the total number of Units sold pursuant to the Offering (including in respect of any exercise of the Agent’s Option). Each Compensation Option will entitle the holder thereof to purchase one Unit (a “Compensation Option Unit”) at an exercise price per Compensation Option Unit equal to $0.40 for a period of 24 months following the Closing.

Omineca advises that the insiders of the company may participate in the financing, which will be completed pursuant to available related party exemptions under Multilateral Instrument 61-101. The offering is subject to TSX Venture Exchange approval and all securities are subject to a four-month hold period.

About Omineca Mining and Metals Ltd.

Omineca Mining and Metals Ltd. controls its flagship Wingdam Project and the Fraser Canyon Project through its wholly owned subsidiary CVG Mining Ltd. The Wingdam Project is located 45 km east of Quesnel B.C. on the Barkerville highway. The property includes both placer and hard-rock tenures along the Lightning Creek valley, where topographic conditions created a thick overburden which preserved a large portion of the channel from conventional surface placer mining activity.

For further information, please contact:

Tom MacNeill
President and CEO
1 (306) 653-2692

Dean Nawata

Vice President, Business Development
1 (604) 561-2821
[email protected]


Actua Releases Findings from National Survey on Teachers’ Readiness to Teach STEM and Digital Skills

(Ottawa, Ontario, September 29) — Today, Actua released a new report featuring the results of its national survey Canadian Teachers’ Readiness for STEM Education.

The report, commissioned by Actua and conducted by Abacus Data, surveyed 507 grade 1-9 teachers from all provinces found that:

  • 9 in 10 teachers believe that STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills and knowledge are important to students’ future education, careers and being an informed citizen.
  • 94 percent of teachers agree that there is room to improve their own STEM and digital skills.
  • Less than half of teachers say that they have the confidence to teach digital and technology skills and knowledge.
  • Women teachers (39 percent) are more likely to say they lack confidence in their ability to teach digital and technology skills than men teachers (19 percent).
  • Teachers with no STEM component or focus in their pre-service education are more likely to say they lack confidence to teach digital and technology skills (41 percent) than teachers who do have a STEM education background (31 percent).

When asked what barriers they face to STEM and digital skills professional development, half of teachers said that there are too few opportunities available. The next most-frequent barriers are time and cost.

“What we see here is that there is a very strong case for developing and widely distributing high-quality and accessible online STEM and digital skills development opportunities for teachers across Canada,” said Jennifer Flanagan, President and CEO of Actua. “Now more than ever our world is relying on STEM professionals to solve our greatest challenges. In order to have a next generation of innovators ready to do the same, our teachers need to be empowered with the proper training and support to make it possible.”

Actua launched a national teacher training program in 2017 to provide K-12 pre-service and classroom teachers with professional development opportunities in STEM. These include conferences, PD days, after-school and weekend training sessions, in-classroom mentorship, and supporting resources now engaging over 10,000 teachers annually. The program is designed to enhance learning outcomes in their current curriculum, providing teachers with more advanced and relevant resources to help better equip youth with today and tomorrow’s in-demand STEM skills. These include, but are not limited to: edtech, coding and digital skills, robotics, artificial intelligence, cyber security and digital citizenship, engineering design/design thinking, makerspace education, and competencies including computational thinking, creativity, and critical thinking.

About Actua: Actua is Canada’s largest science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) youth outreach network representing 41 university and college based members. Each year, Actua’s growing network of member organizations reach over 300,000 young Canadians in 500 communities nationwide. Actua focuses on the engagement of underrepresented youth through specialized programs for Indigenous youth, girls and young women, at-risk youth and youth living in Northern and remote communities. Its national InSTEM program reaches over 35,000 Indigenous youth per year in over 200 Indigenous communities. Actua’s major funding partners include: Government of Canada,, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), RBC Foundation, Suncor Energy Foundation, TD Bank Group, Toyota Canada Foundation, Finning Canada, Microsoft Canada, Imperial, Lockheed Martin Canada. For more information about Actua, visit


Contact Information:

Kaitlynn Carroll, Senior Manager, Partner Relations, Actua
111 Murray Street, Ottawa ON K1N 5M5
Tel: (613) 234 4137 Fax: 613 234 4779
E-mail: [email protected]


Important step: Speech from the Throne recognizes both Indigenous rights and conservation as objectives for the fishery

SHEDIAC, NB, Sept. 30, 2020  – The Government of Canada, in the recent Speech from the Throne has explicitly recognized the twin objectives of both reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples and conservation of the fishery.

According to the Speech from the Throne, “the Government will look at continuing to grow Canada’s ocean economy to create opportunities for fishers and coastal communities, while advancing reconciliation and conservation objectives. Investing in the Blue Economy will help Canada prosper.”

The Coalition of Atlantic and Québec Fishing Organizations, recognized the statement as an important first step. “We support advancing both reconciliation and conservation of the fishery together,” said Joel Comeau,MFU local 9 President. “However, we still need action from the Government of Canada and action is needed now”.  This starts with bringing together the Government, Indigenous Leaders and fishing organizations to directly develop solutions to manage the fishery.  Discussions about the management of the fisheries that ignore commercial fishermen will be unsuccessful in bringing long-term peace and reconciliation in coastal indigenous and non-indigenous communities.”

It is paramount to recognize conservation as a cornerstone for any government decisions which may impact the health of the fishery. Currently, conservation of the fisheries is at risk because of a lack of enforcement and individuals fishing outside of the government set fishing season.  For example, commercial landings for lobster have dropped 65% in St. Mary’s Bay, NS, over the past three years according to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans data.

“We need any fishing outside of the established fishing season to stop immediately and for DFO to enforce one set of the rules for everyone,” said Bernie Berry, President of Coldwater Fishermen’s Association.  “Both Indigenous and non-Indigenous fishermen have a common interest to conserve and protect the fishery.  That starts with dialogue and cooperation and we are calling on the Government of Canada to listen to fishermen and to bring Indigenous leaders and fishing organizations to work together directly.”


Bay of Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association (BoFIFA)
Brazil Rock 33/34 Lobster Association
Cape Breton Fish Harvesters Association (CBFHA)
Coldwater Lobster Association (CLA)
Eastern Shore Fishermen’s Protective Association (ESPFA)
Fundy North Fishermen’s Association (FNFA)
Gulf Nova Scotia Bonafide Fishermen’s Association (GNSBFA)
Gulf Nova Scotia Fleet Planning Board (GNSFPB)
Guysborough County Inshore Fishermen’s Association (GCIFA)
Maritime Fishermen’s Union (MFU)
PEI Fishermen’s Association (PEIFA)
Regroupement des pêcheurs professionnels du sud de la Gaspésie
Richmond County Inshore Fishermen’s Association (RCIFA)
Scotia Fundy Inshore Fishermen’s Association (SFIFA)

For further information: MEDIA Coordination: Annie Chiasson, [email protected], +1 (506) 727-8160


Lack of capital for major project investments cited by Indigenous business panel – Cochrane Today

CALGARY — Limited and slow access to capital is a major barrier to First Nations’ ability to take ownership roles in the resource megaprojects being built across their lands, a panel of Indigenous business leaders said Tuesday.

The three panellists said they view ownership of oil and gas, pipeline and transmission line projects as essential to provide prosperity for their people, while also protecting their environment and culture, during a webcast discussion sponsored by the Macdonald-Laurier Institute,.

“These developments are going to happen, they’re going to happen on our territories, we want a say in how they’re going to happen and we want to be able to benefit from the projects,” said Mark Podlasly, director of economic policy and initiatives for the 65-member First Nations Major Projects Coalition.

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Today’s coronavirus news: COVID-19 cases rising in Indigenous communities; Quebec’s second wave driven by community transmission; UNC reports coronavirus-related student death – The Star

Sept. 30, 2020

The latest coronavirus news from Canada and around the world Wednesday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories if available.

8:56 a.m. The U.S. economy plunged at a record rate in the spring but is poised to swing to a record increase in the quarter that just ended.

The Commerce Department reported Wednesday that the gross domestic product, the economy’s total output of goods and services, fell at a rate of 31.4 per cent in the April-June quarter, only slightly changed from the 31.7 per cent drop estimated one month ago.

The new report, the government’s last look at the second quarter, showed a decline that was almost four times larger than the previous record-holder, a fall of 10 per cent in the first quarter of 1958 when Dwight Eisenhower was president.

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