This is page numbers 909 - 930 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. Allooloo, 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. Don Morin, Hon. Richard Nerysoo, Mr. Ng, Mr. Ningark, Hon. John Pollard, Mr. Pudlat, Mr. Pudluk, Hon. John Todd, Mr. Whitford, Mr. Zoe

---Prayer

Item 1: Prayer
Item 1: Prayer

Page 909

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Good afternoon. Item 2, Ministers' statements. The honourable Member for Keewatin Central, Mr. Todd.

Minister's Statement 57-12(5): Winning Partnerships
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 909

John Todd Keewatin Central

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I am pleased to announce that I will be signing an agreement later today for a winning partnership between the Department of Economic Development and Susan Aglukark.

Too often, this government invents new and costly programs in the name of marketing the Northwest Territories economy. In many cases, simple partnerships or joint ventures between government and businesses of individuals can go a long way in developing awareness of the north, which in turn can assist with the sales of the Northwest Territories products and services.

Ms. Aglukark is fast becoming a star on the national and international music scene. Her growing stature as an international celebrity will provide invaluable support in promoting Northwest Territories arts, crafts, culture and tourism industries. Susan Aglukark is headed for big success, and I believe this government should build on this success.

Minister's Statement 57-12(5): Winning Partnerships
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 909

Some Hon. Members

Hear, hear.

Minister's Statement 57-12(5): Winning Partnerships
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 909

John Todd Keewatin Central

The winning partnership agreement that Ms. Aglukark and I will sign later today, will ensure that Ms. Aglukark will assist in GNWT promotional programs by wearing northern clothes and accessories, using NWT products whenever possible during her stage performances and travels throughout Canada, the United States...

---Applause

...and overseas, and occasionally taking part in special media events to promote the awareness of the NWT, our products and services.

The department will provide Ms. Aglukark with items of northern clothing to wear during stage performances, equip Susan and her band with other northern products such as luggage from the Fort McPherson Tent and Canvass Factory, and assist with other sport materials to project a strong northern image of the NWT in southern audiences.

Madam Speaker, this is a pilot project. If the winning partnership program is successful, as I know it will be, the department will be looking at forming similar partnerships with other prominent NWT artists, personalities and athletes.

Earlier today, Ms. Aglukark and I held a brief press conference to announce this agreement. I invite all Members of the House to attend the official signing ceremony and a brief reception at the Yellowknife Inn after the House adjourns this evening.

Madam Speaker, I believe Ms. Aglukark is in the gallery today and I am sure you, along with all my colleagues, will give her a warm welcome to this Assembly. Thank you.

---Applause

Minister's Statement 57-12(5): Winning Partnerships
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 909

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Welcome. The honourable Member for Mackenzie Delta, Mr. Nerysoo.

Minister's Statement 58-12(5): Arctic College Wins Two National Awards
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 909

Richard Nerysoo Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Madam Speaker. People in the Northwest Territories often raise concerns about Arctic College and its programs. The college and this government, however, have a commitment to developing and delivering quality programs and continues to improve services to its clients. The quality of Arctic College programs and its leadership has been recognized by southern Canadians, and the college has received numerous awards in these areas.

Madam Speaker, as Minister and on behalf of Cabinet, I want to advise the people of the north and this Assembly, of national recognition recently given to Arctic College by the Association of Canadian Community Colleges. The association is made up of about 160 member institutions. Its awards program showcases the achievements of individuals and institutions by recognizing innovation, excellence and leadership in Canada's system of colleges and technical institutes.

Each year the association presents four national awards. This year, Arctic College received two of these awards in the categories of program excellence and leadership. The program excellence award was given to Arctic College for its adult basic education program. The award recognizes the quality and innovation of this program which meets learner needs through a unique territorial-wide style of delivery. This program was developed with extensive involvement of college instructors, adult educators and program development staff. It includes a comprehensive set of multi-level courses in mathematics, science, social studies, English, aboriginal languages and personal life management.

All college campuses and community learning centres use these courses in upgrading programs. Almost 40 per cent of Arctic College's full-time students are enrolled in adult basic education courses. Standard course objectives, placement and marking practices ensure students have a firm foundation for employment or further training.

High enrolments in adult basic education courses indicate the need for this program in the Northwest Territories. The program excellence award demonstrates that the college's program is seen as a model for Canada.

The second award has been presented to an individual. The Association of Canadian Community Colleges has awarded its 1994 leadership award to Arctic College president Mr. Mark Cleveland. This award is given to an individual "who goes beyond assigned responsibilities to create, improve or transform the working environment, someone who creates a vision and persuades others to work with them to make that vision a reality." This definition wholeheartedly describes Mr. Cleveland's attitude and commitment to Arctic College.

Madam Speaker, Arctic College has developed at a tremendous rate over the past decade. It has changed from a small localized training institution to a comprehensive community college system with more than 40 delivery locations. This change has increased participation and success in adult and post-secondary education. More northerners then ever before can now access educational training, which will prepare them for the social and economic challenges ahead.

The awards I am announcing today bestow prestigious national recognition on the Arctic College board's innovations and the quality of its programs and leadership.

In closing, Madam Speaker, I would like to congratulate Mr. Cleveland on his personal leadership award and I would like to congratulate the Arctic College board of governors and staff as well as all those who work in partnership with the college for their contributions towards the 1994 association of Canadian community colleges program excellence award. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

---Applause

Minister's Statement 58-12(5): Arctic College Wins Two National Awards
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 910

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Madam Premier.

Minister's Statement 59-12(5): Evaluation Of The Canada/nwt Cooperation Agreement For French And Aboriginal Languages
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 910

Nellie Cournoyea Nunakput

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, later today, I will be tabling the evaluation of the Canada/Northwest Territories cooperation agreement for French and aboriginal languages. Members will each receive a copy of the four-part report.

The evaluation was conducted over a two year period and provides an assessment of how well the objectives of the agreement were met. The evaluation report also provides information on how knowledgable people are about the agreement funding, what changes could be made to make the agreement more effective and detailed information about languages in 30 communities across the north. The community language data was collected during the summer of 1992 and 1993. Local interviewers were trained to carry out this base line data collection.

Generally, the results of the evaluation are positive about the role and success of the agreement and the performance of the Government of the Northwest Territories. The Canada/Northwest Territories cooperation agreement for French and aboriginal languages in the Northwest Territories was signed in August of 1991 and ends March 31, 1994.

Madam Speaker, the territorial government is negotiating a renewal of that agreement and I will keep the Members advised of the progress of the negotiations. Madam Speaker, may I continue with the second statement?

Minister's Statement 60-12(5): Response To The Special Committee On Health And Social Services
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

March 29th, 1994

Page 910

Nellie Cournoyea Nunakput

Madam Speaker, later today I will be tabling the government's response to the Special Committee on Health and Social Services.

The document provides an outline of current and planned initiatives that respond directly to the recommendations of the special committee and it also sets the direction for the future development of health and social services programs in the Northwest Territories.

The response represents the combined efforts of a number of Ministers and it demonstrates a renewed commitment by government departments to working more closely with one another and with other levels of government and community-based groups.

Madam Speaker, the work and recommendations of the Special Committee on Health and Social Services are significant and identify the changes necessary to develop a system that is more effective and responsive to the needs of residents.

The response being tabled today represents the government's commitment to a cohesive and coordinated strategy for the renewal of health and social services programs in the Northwest Territories. Thank you.

Minister's Statement 60-12(5): Response To The Special Committee On Health And Social Services
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 910

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

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

Welcoming French Exchange Students From Quebec
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 910

Tony Whitford Yellowknife South

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, this afternoon I have the pleasure to welcome 46 students to this Assembly. These are the French language exchange students from St. Marc des Carrieres in the province of Quebec. They are in the Yellowknife area for the next eight days as guests of the staff and students at the St. Pat's school in Yellowknife. They are here to learn about our unique ways. They had a chance to tour the Assembly earlier on in the day

and I had an opportunity to speak to them in the Caucus room about our unique form of government. They are here to see what consensus government is and hopefully they will be able to convey to their fellow students back home the uniqueness of this form of government in a very unique part of the Northwest Territories. With that, I would like to say welcome to the students from Quebec, to their teachers who are accompanying them and the French students from the city of Yellowknife. Welcome.

---Applause

Welcoming French Exchange Students From Quebec
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 911

The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Deh Cho, Mr. Gargan.

Social Services Terminating Hay River Group Home Contract
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 911

Samuel Gargan Deh Cho

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, I rise today to speak about a letter received from Jane Groenewegen addressed to all MLAs in which she makes some serious allegations about the conduct of Social Services staff at the Hay River district office.

Madam Speaker, the Groenewegens manage the Hay River group home for the Department of Social Services. The contract was terminated by the department after one year of a three year contract under a clause which provides for termination after 90 days of notice.

Madam Speaker, in this letter Ms. Groenewegen states that she experienced serious difficulties in obtaining the support from the district office of Social Services that the contract called for the department to provide. If my understanding is correct, the reason the contract was cancelled by the department was that the working relationship between the department and the Groenewegens had deteriorated or did not exist. If the department was not fulfilling their end of the contract, how can they reasonably expect the Groenewegens to do the same? I might suggest, Madam Speaker, that if the allegations the Groenewegens are making about the conduct of the district office Social Services staff are true, then it would appear to any reasonable person that the lack of communication was the fault of the department as opposed to the Groenewegens. Consequently, it should be the department's responsibility to clean up its act instead of terminating the Groenewegen contract.

Madam Speaker, in a package sent to the MLAs, included there were a number of letters of support from the majority of aboriginal organizations in the Hay River area. These letters state that there have never been any problems with the Groenewegens performing and running the group home and that the organization was pleased with the care their members received in this facility. I would suggest, Madam Speaker, that this situation deserves an independent review by an outside source before this government ends up facing another lawsuit.

I will be pursuing this matter in question period. Thank you.

---Applause