This is page numbers 19 - 39 of the Hansard for the 13th Assembly, 8th 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 nurses.

Topics

Supplementary To Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Item 6: Oral Questions

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David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, regarding the department individuals that go into the communities, I would like to suggest to the Minister they can possibly go in there sooner than later so that we could try to resolve this problem as soon as possible. It is an issue that a lot of people have concerns about. Can the Minister make a commitment to get in there sooner, hopefully within the next couple of weeks so that the community could be prepared and ready for these public meetings? Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 28

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Steen.

Further Return To Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Item 6: Oral Questions

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Vince Steen Nunakput

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the department will respond as soon as possible.

Further Return To Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Question 14-13(8): Property Values In Mackenzie Delta
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Mr. Ootes.

Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

September 8th, 1999

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Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question is for Minister Roland, the Minister of Health and Social Services. Just recently, we heard some comments by Dr. Peter Bares, the former deputy NWT Chief of Health. He spoke about Northerners being very addicted to tobacco, and apparently we are the most addicted people to tobacco in the world. Apparently one out of every four deaths in the NWT is tobacco-related. This is one of the major reasons for hospitalization in the NWT. I just received a copy of the 1999 NWT Socio-economic Scan and it pointed out that 36 percent of the NWT youths between the ages of 12 and 19, here in the North, smoke compared to a national average of 21 percent, so that is 36 percent versus the national average of 21 percent. There is a lot at stake here, Mr. Speaker, in terms of tobacco usage. There is naturally the physical suffering that people go through later in life, but there is also the tremendous financial cost to this government. It is very, very substantial. If we go back to the statistics I have just given, if one out of every four deaths in the North are a result of tobacco and it is the leading cause for people being in the hospital, could the Minister tell me if we have a program in place to deal with tobacco addiction here in the North? Thank you.

Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister of Health and Social Services, Mr. Roland.

Return To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 28

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the information the Member points out is indeed accurate. In the Northwest Territories, unfortunately, we are leading in a lot of the categories that involve tobacco and in tobacco use. The department has been working on a tobacco cessation strategy in dealing with how we can reduce the smoking rates in the Northwest Territories. We have, and I have been informed by the department, worked with Education, Culture and Employment in this area because we see that trying to address the issue of smoking starts at a young age as the stats show that we have a lot of young people who begin smoking at a very early age. Initially, through the first years, we do not see a lot of problems but, as the Member stated, it is in the later years of life that difficulties come up. A lot of people relate the problems of smoking to such things as lung cancer but, in fact, smoking goes a lot farther than that in the effects on the human body. We are hoping to put a strategy out here in the very near future and start going out throughout the territory informing young people and elders alike with the concerns of smoking. Not only the smoke itself but the second-hand effects of smoke on young children. We need to look at how we can change our attitudes in the Northwest Territories as to how we treat our own bodies and those around us with the impacts of smoking. Hopefully, we will be able to start getting that message out in the very near future. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Return To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 28

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I am very pleased to hear the Minister speak on this. Obviously, he has got a grasp on the problem and it is not just a health problem, Mr. Speaker. I hate to relate it to financial, but it is related financially because if we can reduce that area, then certainly we will be far better off here in the Territories to be able to devote our money to other essential areas. Could the Minister tell me if he is looking at

coordinating with the Minister of Education to ensure that those students who are in the nursing training program are also educated very well on the effects of tobacco smoking and that we can look at a treatment program or at least that the nurses know how to deal with tobacco addiction if such is available? Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Roland.

Further Return To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

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Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would have to get the particulars of the Tobacco Cessation Strategy and the impacts that we are working with the Department of Education, Culture and Employment. Our focus initially of working with them are in the areas of reaching the school-aged children as they get into, for example, junior high and senior high when a lot of the young children start meeting with the older groups of youth out there. All we can do is give information out to residents. It is the personal decision that they make on what they take into their bodies, but we hope to be able to provide information to at least give them as much as possible, that they are fully aware of the impacts of the possible conditions that can follow up. With that information or with the concern the Member has raised, I will get back to him regarding our working relationship with the Department of Education, Culture and Employment and trying to implement this and get that information into the nursing program too as well. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 29

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It may be small steps at a time, but it will snowball if we do those initial steps such as educating our nurses, for example. There is another factor here, once we have a program in place and we have people responsible for treatment programs, could the Minister tell me if he will enforce a policy of non-smoking by those people who are in charge of the program? Now it has occurred before where they themselves are part and parcel of smoking. I believe that we need to set the role model system in place. As I say, we need to start in small ways here and there, and I think eventually it will snowball. Could the Minister tell me if he will ensure that a policy is in place that those in charge of such a program will be non-smokers?

Supplementary To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 29

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Roland.

Further Return To Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Question 15-13(8): Tobacco Addiction Among Northerners
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 29

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Just a little more on that issue in response to the question. I believe Dr. Corriveau put it best when he responded to the question put before him when he was in an interview with, I believe, CBC. The fact is, that we will be supportive to those who are looking to quit smoking but we will not be in a position to discriminate against those who have chosen to take up the tobacco habit. We will be as supportive as we can to our staff and the residents of the Northwest Territories but saying to people they can or cannot work on the attitudes or if they are a smoker or a non-smoker, I do not believe that we can implement that kind of a strategy. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.