This is page numbers 561 - 584 of the Hansard for the 12th Assembly, 5th Session. The original version can be accessed on the Legislative Assembly's website or by contacting the Legislative Assembly Library. The word of the day was chairman.

Topics

Members Present

Mr. Antoine, Hon. Silas Arngna'naaq, Mr. Arvaluk, Mr. Ballantyne, Hon. Nellie Cournoyea, Mr. Dent, Mr. Gargan, Hon. Stephen Kakfwi, Mr. Koe, Mr. Lewis, Hon. Jeannie Marie-Jewell, Hon. Rebecca Mike, Hon. Richard Nerysoo, Mr. Ng, Mr. Ningark, Mr. Patterson, Hon. John Pollard, Mr. Pudlat, Mr. Pudluk, Mr. Whitford, Mr. Zoe

---Prayer

Item 1: Prayer
Item 1: Prayer

Page 561

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Good afternoon. Item 2, Ministers' statements. The honourable Member for Baffin Central, Ms. Mike.

Minister's Statement 42-12(5): Child Welfare Reform
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 561

Rebecca Mike Baffin Central

Thank you, Madam Speaker. As my colleague, the Minister of Justice, has stated, our departments have developed a plan of action to implement the changes recommended in the family law review. The Department of Social Services will work closely with the Department of Justice in revising the Child Welfare Act. However, in addition to these legislative changes, there will be a requirement for major changes to existing policy and procedures.

Minister's Statement 42-12(5): Child Welfare Reform
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Excuse me, Ms. Mike. I believe one of our Members is not receiving translation. Sorry. Member for Baffin Central.

Minister's Statement 42-12(5): Child Welfare Reform
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 561

Rebecca Mike Baffin Central

Thank you, Madam Speaker, I will try again. Madam Speaker, as my colleague, the Minister of Justice, has stated, our departments have developed a plan of action to implement the changes recommended in the family law review. The Department of Social Services will work closely with the Department of Justice in revising the Child Welfare Act. However, in addition to these legislative changes, there will be a requirement for major changes to existing policy and procedures. This will, of course, require retraining of existing staff.

Here is a brief outline of what will have to be done to make the legislative and policy changes a reality:

- Assist in drafting the revised Child Welfare Act;

- Develop and train local child welfare committees wherever communities want to take on this responsibility;

- Negotiate agreements delegating ministerial authority to communities for child welfare;

- Revise child protection policies to recognize the role of child welfare committees and to give them the scope they need for innovative solutions;

- Revise child apprehension and placement procedures;

- Restructure budgets to provide funding to communities and local child welfare committees;

- Develop and train local bodies to take on this responsibility;

- Revise custom adoption procedures;

- Revise adoption policies to institutionalize the open adoption concept and recognize community roles in the process;

- Revise placement criteria and procedures in line with the recommendations of the family law review;

- Develop and fund local counselling resources to provide pre-adoption counselling;

- Clear custom adoption backlog of 1,500 cases and deal with annual volume of 400 applications.

Madam Speaker, these changes will start the process of family law reform. However, the task will not be complete at that point. The real work is the ongoing implementation by communities as they adapt to their new roles and responsibilities and determine solutions that respect local traditions and values. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

---Applause

Minister's Statement 42-12(5): Child Welfare Reform
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 561

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 2, Ministers' statements. The honourable Member for Kivallivik, Mr. Arngna'naaq.

Minister's Statement 43-12(5): Arctic Winter Games Results
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 561

Silas Arngna'naaq Kivallivik

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all our athletes, coaches, officials and cultural performers who participated in the Arctic Winter Games in Slave Lake last week.

---Applause

It was great to see how the Northwest Territories athletes were making friends and providing encouragement to athletes from other contingents when language was a significant barrier. I'm sure there were many friendships made last week that will last a lifetime.

I am pleased to inform you that the Northwest Territories athletes brought home 151 medals, the most of any contingent.

---Applause

This is the first time in ten years and we are all very proud. Very shortly, I will be distributing to Members a comprehensive summary of Arctic Winter Games results.

The residents of Slave Lake also deserve a medal for the excellent job they did in hosting this international event. I'm told that over 2,000 volunteers were involved from a community of only 6,000 people. The Northwest Territories uniforms stood out in both the opening and closing ceremonies and were in great demand as trading items throughout the week. I would ask that all Members join me in showing our appreciation for the athletes, coaches and officials as well as the host community of Slave Lake, Alberta. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Minister's Statement 43-12(5): Arctic Winter Games Results
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 2, Ministers' statements. Madam Premier.

Minister's Statement 44-12(5): Minister Absent From The House
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 562

Nellie Cournoyea Nunakput

Madam Speaker, I would like to inform the House that the Honourable John Todd will be absent from the House today. This is because of a flight cancellation in Rankin Inlet. Mr. Todd will be back in the House tomorrow. Thank you.

Minister's Statement 44-12(5): Minister Absent From The House
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 2, Ministers' statements. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Baffin South, Mr. Pudlat.

Congratulating Arctic Winter Games Participants From Lake Harbour
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 562

Kenoayoak Pudlat Baffin South

(Translation) Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would like to take this time today to congratulate the people of Lake Harbour who recently participated in the Arctic Winter Games in Slave Lake, Alberta. I'm very proud to inform the House that three young athletes from my community all emerged from the games with medals, proving their excellence in the area of Arctic sports. Madam Speaker, Olitua Judea won a silver and gold ulu in Arctic sports, Julie Oolayou won a silver medal in Arctic sports and Julie Mingeriak also won a silver medal in Arctic sports. Once again, congratulations on behalf of the Legislative Assembly for representing your community and the Northwest Territories so well in the 1994 Arctic Winter Games. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

---Applause

Congratulating Arctic Winter Games Participants From Lake Harbour
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 562

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Kitikmeot, Mr. Ng.

Prospectors And Developers Of Canada, Mining And Trade Show
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 562

Kelvin Ng Kitikmeot

Thank you, Madam Speaker. On March 7 and 8, I, along with my honourable colleagues, Mr. Ballantyne, Mr. Dent, Mr. Zoe and the Honourable John Todd, had the opportunity to attend the Prospectors and Developers of Canada mining and trade show in Toronto. Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated and the City of Yellowknife/Chamber of Commerce had booths at the trade show which certainly received their fair share of attention, as the awareness of the NWT and the ongoing diamond exploration developments were a major topic of discussion.

In addition to the numerous amount of business people participating in the conference trade show, Mr. Charlie Lyall, president of the Kitikmeot Corporation and Mr. James Eetoolook, acting president of Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, also attended the conference as delegates.

Madam Speaker, during our stay in Toronto, we had the opportunity to meet privately with Dr. Klaus Zeitler, president of Metall Mining Corporation and his staff respecting their plans with the Izok Lake project. We also met with Mr. John Stephensen, president of Kennecott Canada Incorporated respecting their plans in the Northwest Territories.

Madam Speaker, our Minister suggested and received support to form a steering committee of senior officials with DIAND, GNWT and of mining companies to explore the area of options for identifying, financing and establishing transportation infrastructure requirements for the mining industry for the Slave geological corridor.

Prospectors And Developers Of Canada, Mining And Trade Show
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

The honourable Member is seeking unanimous consent. Are there any nays? There are no nays. Please proceed, Mr. Ng.