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Prestigious award granted to a partnership involving the Saskatoon Tribal Council PDF Print E-mail
Written by Travis Radke   
Tuesday, 14 November 2017 14:06


Photo courtesy of Saskatoon Tribal Council

The Saskatoon Tribal Council, in partnership with Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools and the University of Saskatchewan's College of Education Indian Teacher Education Program (ITEP), received the Premier's Award for its work with the St. Frances Cree Bilingual School in Saskatoon.

"When we started this journey with our partners years ago, it was a bit of a risk," says the school division's chair of education, Diane Boyko. "We were optimistic about its success, but there were a lot of unknowns about how a Cree language program would be received in the medium to long-term. Ten years later, we have a thriving school community and the school is bursting at the seams."

The award, which recognizes educational innovations and improvements focused on student achievements that have been advanced by boards of education and their partners, was presented Monday night at the Saskatchewan School Boards Association's general assembly.

"One of the TRC calls to action mentions that Aboriginal languages are a fundamental and valued element of Canadian culture and society, and there is an urgency to preserve them," says STC Tribal Chief Mark Arcand. "This award demonstrates what incorporating our identity and language can do for a school in the city of Saskatoon where the Indigenous population is steadily increasing."

SSBA President Dr. Shawn Davidson says that the award winners are usually educational trendsetters.

"(St France's Cree Bilingual Program) has really been a leader as far as developing curriculum and developing a program for the province which then gets shared to other school divisions," says Dr. Davidson. "There are lots of good things that come of these awards because the work gets shared and the programming gets shared."

The award was originally founded in 1999 and is sponsored by Xerox Canada.

In addition to the award, Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools has been awarded $3,000 to help further the development of the Cree Bilingual Program.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 November 2017 14:17
Northern fishers look for higher quotas and higher prices PDF Print E-mail
Written by Manfred Joehnck   
Tuesday, 14 November 2017 10:53

Saskatchewan Co-operative Fisheries Limited meeting. Photo courtesy of Abel Charles.

Saskatchewan’s commercial fishing industry is struggling with low prices and limited quotas, but there is still a lot of optimism and hope for a stronger industry in the future.

Over the weekend, fishers from across the north attended the annual meeting of Saskatchewan Co-operative Fisheries Limited to get an update on the state of the industry. The open market seems to be working, with some sellers sticking with the Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation, which is a federal Crown corporation, while others are opting for private buyers like Arctic Blue.

Thomas Moberly, a fisher from Turner Lake, says no matter who the buyer is, fishers need to be able to harvest more product.

"They have a lot of fish in their lakes, but they can’t seem to get a bigger quota, and that’s the only problem we have is with the province," said Moberly.

Another problem is prices. Ray Funk runs the Wollaston Lake Fishery. About 85 per cent of the product harvested is trout and whitefish, which are going for rock-bottom prices. Funk says he is competing with salmon prices as low as 10 cents a pound on the west coast.

Funk is working on a deal to partner with the Ile-a-la-Crosse fishery to obtain more pike, pickerel and to expand his market share. In the meantime, the plant is not making money.

"We are subsidizing the operation in Wollaston just to be able to gear up our plant, get our people trained, get efficient at what we do, and develop those new markets," said Funk.

Funk is also hoping to land a contract with Federated Co-operative to supply fish to 170 of its stores, but he admits, the plant is losing money, but he hopes to turn that around within a year.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 November 2017 11:03
Metis exclusion from Sixties Scoop settlement subject of human rights complaint PDF Print E-mail
Written by Kelly Provost   
Tuesday, 14 November 2017 09:34

Robert Doucette pictured in 2010. Photo courtesy Metis Nation – Saskatchewan, Facebook.

Former Metis Nation - Saskatchewan President Robert Doucette has filed a human rights complaint against Canada's Indigenous Affairs Minister over the recently-announced Sixties Scoop settlement.

Doucette, a Sixties Scoop survivor himself, is alleging discriminatory actions against Metis, who have been excluded from the $800-million settlement.

In his complaint, Doucette writes -- quote -- "As a Metis person, I'm devastated and in a state of disbelief that Metis have been left out of the Sixties Scoop settlement."

Doucette argues Metis are one of the three Aboriginal peoples recognized in the Canadian constitution. As such, he says Minister Carolyn Bennett has violated the Canadian Charter of Rights, violated the Canadian Human Rights Act and is disregarding the Supreme Court of Canada decision in the Daniels case which puts the Metis under federal jurisdiction.

Doucette says he has also written letters to Bennett and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and had not received a response as of the October 27 filing of his complaint.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 November 2017 09:42
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