FSIN Executive Communique March 23, 2012Provincial Budget
First Nations comprise 16 percent of the Saskatchewan population but represent the largest gap in employment rates between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal adults in all of Canada. The FSIN Chiefs, Tribal Councils and First Nations have been lobbying the Saskatchewan Government specifically for training dollars so that the gap can be reduced significantly and thus increase educational opportunities so young First Nations people can compete for the numerous jobs available in Saskatchewan. The FSIN is disappointed that the provincial budget did little to address critical issues facing First Nations in the province. The FSIN will perform a complete analysis of the provincial budget during the next few days and will have more comments after the analysis is completed.
Education Funding Formula
"The provincial budget offers nothing new for First Nations education", says Vice Chief Bird. However, with the release of the new education funding formula, it will be possible to calculate exactly what it costs to educate a child in the provincial school system. For First Nations students attending schools on reserve, it follows that similar costs would be incurred. The provincial funding base, plus additional funding to support First Nations languages and culture education would create a new funding formula that would well-serve First Nations schools.
FSIN Youth, Sports, Culture and Recreation will be hosting the annual FSIN Youth Assembly on March 25th, 26th and 27th at the Saskatoon Inn. The youth Assembly will bring together First Nations youth from First Nations in Saskatchewan. The forum will give the youth a forum to explore issues that affect First Nations youth. This assembly will have survivors of the residential schools sharing their experiences with the youth delegates. The effects of the truth and Reconciliation Commission events will impact the lives of our young people; it is our responsibility to prepare and protect them. First Nation youth from across Saskatchewan will get an opportunity to learn about the impacts of the Indian Residential School system, traditional parenting skills, elder teachings, Treaty concepts and other important youth issues.
The youth will also hold elections for a female and male Saskatchewan representative for the National Assembly of First Nations Youth Council. The candidates will represent Saskatchewan First Nations Youth at the next National Assembly
The FSIN/Provincial Joint Task Force on Education
The provincial ministries of: Education, Advanced Education, Employment and Immigration; and First Nations and Métis Relations and the FSIN will announce the Task Force members and Secretariat on Monday March 26, 2012 at the FSIN youth Assembly in Saskatoon. The work of the Task Force will focus on the following cross-cutting themes:
• PreK-12 education;
• Post-secondary education and skills training;
• Labour market attachment;
• Governance and capacity development, (e.g. governance education, participation in governance of education institutions);
• Data protocols (development, collection, sharing and reporting);
• Culture and language; and,
• Equity of supports and services (e.g. on- and off-reserve).
The Task Force will engage First Nations and Métis stakeholders across the province during the next year, provide an interim report in the fall of 2012, and deliver a final report by the end of March 2013. The Joint Task Force will make recommendations that identify evidence-based public policy, Program and practical approaches that have the greatest potential for positive impact on education and employment outcomes on and off reserve.
Action Plan on Education in the Context of Treaty (APECT)
The APECT project is gathering information on what communities and leaders think a First Nations Education Service Delivery Model could look like. Vice Chief Bird and the FSIN Education and Training staff are collecting feedback at regional meetings that bring together Chiefs, Education Portfolio Holders, Directors of Education and principals. Meetings were held on March 19 in Prince Albert and March 21 in Fort Qu'Appelle. The next meeting is scheduled for April 4th in North Battleford.
More information and meeting the agenda has been sent to First Nations and to the Directors of Education. The APECT Service Delivery Model: First Nations Education intends to satisfy the collective requirements of the 74 First Nations and independent First Nations and be flexible enough for each First Nation and community to meet their unique cultural and language needs.
Sport, Culture Youth and Recreation
1. National Aboriginal Hockey Championships 2012
• The National Aboriginal Hockey Championships will be hosted in Saskatoon, May 6-12, 2012 by the Saskatoon Tribal Council.
• Team Saskatchewan selections will be posted on our website towards the end of March 2012.
• Male invite camp will be held in Beardy's on March 10th. Female invite camp will be held in Beardy's on March 11th. List of invites for both teams is posted on the FSIN website.
2. Saskatchewan First Nation Games
• The 2012 Saskatchewan First Nation Winter Games will be hosted by the Battlefords Agency Tribal Chiefs in April 9-14, 2012 in Saskatoon.
• The 2013 Saskatchewan First Nation Summer Games were awarded to the Muskoday First Nation and will be hosted in Muskoday and surrounding communities.
3. FSIN Youth and Adult Championships
• FSIN SCYR will be hosting the Youth Hockey Championships April 27, 28 & 29, 2012 in Saskatoon at the Jemini Arenas.
• Meadow Lake Tribal Council will be hosting the Adult Hockey Championships April 20, 21 & 22, 2012 in Saskatoon at the Jemini Arenas.
Nuclear Waste Management Organization
The FSIN Lands and Resources Secretariat continues to fulfill its commitment to provide information sessions to First Nations on nuclear waste management by way of its agreement with the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) which was signed on November 5, 2010. In March 2012, the FSIN and the NWMO hosted the three (3) remaining information sessions at the following locations: March 14 – Black Lake Denesuline Nation; March 19 – Yorkton Tribal Council (STC), and Touchwood Agency Tribal Council (TATC); and March 20 – Saskatoon Tribal Council (STC), and Beardy's & Okemasis First Nation.
During the course of these sessions the FSIN received both written and verbal concerns raised by First Nations leadership regarding the Crown's duty to consult. As follow up to these concerns, in a letter addressed to the FSIN on June 8, 2011, the NWMO responded as follows:
"The Crown bears responsibility for the discharge of any Crown duty to consult that may arise in relation to the Project. To the extent that the Crown duty to consult may arise, the Crown may delegate procedural aspects of any such Crown duty to consult to NWMO, as allowed by the courts. However, final responsibility remains with the Crown as the honour of the Crown cannot be delegated. To date, no procedural aspects of this project have, as yet, been delegated to the NWMO and we do not expect that any delegation will occur any time soon."
The FSIN advocates for free, prior and informed consent regarding consultations on projects that impact First Nation Inherent and Treaty Rights. The FSIN will not be consulting with NWMO or the Government of Canada on behalf of First Nations at any time. The exclusive right to consult lies with the individual First Nations.
Aboriginal Inland Habitat Program
As a wrap up for the Aboriginal Inland Habitat Program, a workshop was hosted on Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Fish Habitat, Species at Risk and the State of Mother Earth (the Environment). I am sure all the participants benefitted from the workshop and it would have been even better if all 74 First Nations communities sent a representative but, we understand this is the time of year that everyone has many other commitments. The state of Mother Earth and the Environment is a critical topic, especially for First Nations. It is anticipated that Lands and Resources will continue to hosting similar workshops and conferences in these subject areas. Lands and Resources would like to thank all the presenters and participants for making this workshop a success.
First Nations Reject Provincial Jurisdiction
The FSIN Chiefs-in-Assembly passed Resolution #1723, entitled "Non-recognition of Ministry of Environment's Enforcement Protocol – Entry by Conservation Officer's on First Nations Lands" which recommends that First Nations in Saskatchewan adopt Band Council Resolutions rejecting provincial jurisdiction and renounce the Ministry of Environment's (MoE) Enforcement Protocol on First Nations Lands and waterways, and support a province-wide ban of MoE Conservation Officers' entry on respective First Nations' lands and waterways.
Specific claims received a number of research and legal reports during the last couple of weeks. These have been sent out to the First Nations. Staff were involved with TLE negotiations on Mistawasis. As well, staff will be meeting with Big River and Pelican Lake to discuss advancing their claims. In addition, staff attended the FHQTC Water Summit on March 19 and 20, 2012, to provide technical and policy analysis support.
Environmental Youth Council presents "Kee-way-tân Youth Culture Camp"
(Kee-way-tân – meaning 'together we return back to our land, our roots, our culture')
The Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN), Lands and Resources Secretariat and the Environmental Youth Council would like to announce a Kee-way-tân Youth Culture Camp. This camp will take place in July 2012, at the Prince Albert National Park - Paspewin Heritage Cultural Site (located just 30 minutes south of Waskesiu, SK. This event will be open to First Nations youth ages 15-21 that are interested in learning more about lands, resources, and educational/career opportunities within the environmental areas. Seats are limited to a maximum of 40 youth. For more information please contact the FSIN Lands and Resources Secretariat at 665-1215.
Chiefs Forum on Treaty Rights and Inherent Rights to Health and Health Care
The following recommendations were made at the forum.
New First Nations and Federal Laws are required for giving legal effect to the implementation of the Inherent Rights and Treaty Rights to a traditional and contemporary health and health care system.
New Health and Social institutions and structures of community based and intertribal traditional and contemporary health and health care systems are required in order to implement
Drafting instructions of laws for the form of First Nation Laws for the First Nations traditional and contemporary health care act is required.
Similar drafting of laws for the form of Federal Laws are required.
The Canada Health Act will require amendments.
Provincial complementary laws are required.
First Nations Community Based and Intertribal Traditional and Contemporary implementation agreements are required.
First Nation/Federal Bilateral Agreements are required.
First Nation/Provincial Bilateral Agreements are required.
Negotiation with the Crown over new fiscal arrangements that considers executive management funds, population growth, inflation, expanded service delivery, and health status
Participation at all high level discussion tables involving Health care such as on the upcoming Health Accord 2014.
First Nations Child Welfare Framework
Over the past six months, FSIN has been hard at work drafting a First Nations Child Welfare Framework (FNCWF). During this time, a Chief's Political Task Force on Child Welfare, along with a supporting Child Welfare Technical Committee, were formulated and operationalized; each of these entities has provided valuable input into the development of a draft Framework document. The FNCWF document continues to be a work in progress and has recently been discussed with at Technical Working Committee and Political Taskforce at meetings held on March 15, 2012 and March 21-22, 2012 respectively. It is also scheduled for discussion at the upcoming Health and Social Development Commission meeting on March 28, 2012.
As part of the FNCWF process, a First Nations Child and Youth Agenda has been drafted and is nearing completion. The draft FSIN First Nations Child and Youth Agenda provides a broad strategic direction to guide First Nation children and youth initiatives through a First Nation inherent and Treaty Rights lens.
Please direct inquiries on the First Nations Child Welfare Framework to the First Nations Child Welfare Framework Director at (306) 956-1011.
Update for Treaty Table on Health Working Group (TTHWG)
Timeline of TTHWG:
July 20, 2011- Conference Call
• Discussion on the next meeting's agenda: look to parties perspectives on TR to Health, look to how each party defines the TR to Health based on the context paper, common understanding of the scope of the TR to Health, not necessarily the position but what are the current services offered under the TR, more discussion of the MOU...
August 4, 2011- Face to Face Meeting STC Board Room
• Discussions begin on work plan to find actionable items in next few months
• Terms of Reference are agreed upon with some minor changes made- the proper naming of all three parties involved is revised
• Discussion on the Saskatchewan First Nation Health and Wellness Plan (10 yr plan), MOU, Treaty Context Paper, and perspectives on the TR to Health
• It was important that the work plan was first nation driven
• Need for the province to be involved
September 9, 2011- Conference Call
• Overview of the work plan. Some changes made to the wording. Mainly the term "negotiation". There are some suggestions that can be used.
November 23, 2011
• The lead, Senator Sol Sanderson, of Medicine Chest Task Force presented to the Working Group.
• Terms of Reference and Work Plan were tabled by STAG- further analysis required.
• The Working Group identified the importance of the work being done by the Medicine Chest Task Force and that the Work Plan may need to be altered to incorporate the work.
Health and Social Development Secretariat Updates:
• In October 2010, the FSIN Legislative Assembly mandated that a Chiefs Task Force on the Treaty Right to Health be established and assigned to work with the Treaty Governance Office on discussions to advance the Treaty Right to Health. However, lack of funding has stalled any real movement.
• Capacity building has been progressing through the MOU.
• The Health and Social Development Secretariat have also begun with exploratory activities around governance of health services models.
Upcoming Steps for TTHWG:
- Identify funding for the Chiefs Task Force on Treaty Right to Health and any other related TTHWG work
- Support further exploration of health governance models
- Update of the Context Paper by all parties
- Agreement on work plan
- Review foundational documents and other TR to Health projects.
- Role of the Province
- Provide a clearly defined statement on Treaty Governance with the TR to Health
Saskatchewan First Nation Veterans Association (SFNVA) Update
The SFNVA are holding their Annual General Assembly at the White Buffalo Youth Lodge in Saskatoon on Friday March 30 at 10:00am. This Assembly will involve elections for the SFNVA Executive. All Full members are encouraged to vote. Please contact the Veterans Office at 956 1021 for further information.
Bold Eagle 23 Update
The 23rd year of Bold Eagle operation is in full swing. Currently, the coordinator is attending FN community Career Fairs, schools and urban centre Job Fairs to recruit and assist potential applicants. The deadline to apply is April 30, 2012. Applicants must be at least 16 years of age with a completed grade 10.
Indian Residential Schools Secretariat (IRS) Update
Onion Lake Cree Nation hosted a Mini Indian Residential School youth conference inviting surrounding First Nations and Non First Nation schools. Survivors shared their stories to the youth from Thunderchild First Nation, Onion Lake Cree Nation, Frog Lake and Hill Mont High School. The youth also took interest in the IRS Apology, Deculturalization and Genocide topics and enjoyed the hypnosis comedy show and the dance. Onion Lake Cree Nation was well organized for hosting approximately 350 youth.
FSIN Information Governance Panorama Forums
The FSIN coordinated two forums about Information Governance and its use within Panorama (the future Public Health surveillance software system scheduled to start implementation within Saskatchewan in 2013). The forums were held March 13th in Saskatoon and March 19th in Regina. First Nations leadership, health directors, nurses, and technology staff were invited to attend the forums. The agenda included: a background presentation on some of the current models and challenges of information governance locally, nationally, and internationally; an environmental scan of current immunizations models; a demonstration of Panorama; and an open discussion on all the topics presented.
Cultural Responsiveness Framework
The purpose of the Cultural Responsiveness Framework is to address the issues facing First Nations patients/Clients and having their cultural needs and differences being understood and accommodated by health care providers in all aspects of health services. One of the goals of the Cultural Responsiveness Framework is to assist in building relationships among First Nations and health care institutions which should facilitate improvements in the quality of care that is provided to First Nations within the health care facilities in the Province of Saskatchewan. This project will be designed and developed by First Nations for First Nations. It is anticipated this Framework will have National and International interest upon completion.
March 25 – 27, 2012: "Journey to the Truth" FSIN Youth Legislative Assembly, Saskatoon Inn
March 28, 2012: Health and Social Development Secretariat; Commission Chiefs Meeting, Little Pine First Nation
March 28-29, 2012: TLE Workshop, Saskatoon
March 29 and 30, 2012: Chief's Forum on Treaty Implementation, Dakota Dunes Casino, Whitecap Dakota Sioux First Nation
March 29 and 30, 2012: Culturally Responsive Project Advisory Team, Fort Qu'Appelle
March 29 and 30, 2012: Cultural Framework Group and Roundance, Fort Qu'Appelle
March 30, 2012: Saskatchewan First Veterans Assembly and Election, 9:00 a.m. White Buffalo Youth Centre, Saskatoon
June 21 – 24, 2012: Health and Social Development Secretariat; TRC Saskatchewan National Event, Saskatoon
July 16-19, 2012: Key-way-tân Youth Culture Camp, Paspewin Heritage Cultural Site, PA National Park