This is page numbers 5191 - 5226 of the Hansard for the 16th 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 child.

Topics

The House met at 1:41 p.m.

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Prayer
Prayer

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Good afternoon, colleagues. Welcome back to the Chamber. I welcome our guests in the gallery today. I take a moment to recognize a very special guest in the gallery, my lovely wife, Davida, is here visiting us today.

Orders of the day. Item 2, Ministers’ statements. The honourable Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment, Mr. Bob McLeod.

Minister’s Statement 59-16(5): Local Food Production
Ministers’ Statements

Bob McLeod Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In the past, northern residents have relied on community gardens to provide nutritious locally grown produce. Thanks to dedicated community gardeners, this practice is being revived. During our short but intense growing season this summer, Northwest Territories community gardeners harvested a bumper crop of produce ranging from potatoes and carrots to spinach and lettuce.

Mr. Speaker, reducing the cost of living is one of the five strategic initiatives of the 16th Legislative

Assembly. One way to accomplish this is to increase the amount of food that is produced and available at the local level.

Gardens have been established in many Northwest Territories communities through the support of the Small Scale Foods Program under the Canada-Northwest Territories Growing Forward Agreement and the hard work of residents throughout the Territory. This is a key step in providing affordable, healthy food for Northwest Territories residents.

While it’s called the Small Scale Foods Program, there’s nothing small about the benefits this program is producing in our Territory. It is reducing the cost of living. It is also diversifying local economies and putting healthy, locally grown food on the table.

Mr. Speaker, there are many more opportunities for the Northwest Territories to increase local food production. The Government of the Northwest

Territories is working with communities to develop our capacity to harvest our own local resources.

We are aiming higher and we are looking to maximize the benefits of local food production for Northwest Territories residents.

In fact, with strategic investments of $700,000 being made this fiscal year, we can expand not only the production of food to include meat and fish, but also develop the ability to process food for markets throughout the Northwest Territories.

This work will have its challenges, but they are not insurmountable and our work can be successful.

By making these investments, we can have bigger impact at the local level, reducing the cost of living, creating jobs and developing more self-sufficient, vibrant communities. There is no reason why we can’t have food produced in the Northwest Territories sold in every grocery store, hotel and restaurant in the Northwest Territories.

Through initiatives like the Small Scale Foods Program, the Government of the Northwest Territories remains committed to a diversified economy, reducing the cost of living and supporting local residents in making healthy local choices.

Minister’s Statement 59-16(5): Local Food Production
Ministers’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. McLeod. The honourable Minister responsible for Justice, Mr. Lafferty.

Minister’s Statement 60-16(5): Community Justice Review
Ministers’ Statements

Monfwi

Jackson Lafferty Minister of Justice

Mahsi, Mr. Speaker. I’m pleased to inform Members that results of the Community Justice Review will be available later this fall.

Our Community Justice Program has been in place for the last 15 years and it’s been one of the most successful in the country. For the past several years, almost all of our communities have entered into partnerships with our department to deliver local justice programs. They are committed to find ways to address their local justice issues with responses and solutions that they develop on their own. It’s a healthy and sustainable volunteer system of alternative justice.

Not all the committees are at the same level. Some are very successful. They keep kids and adults out of court, operate crime prevention programs, and

get the whole community involved. Others are just starting to explore options on the best way to address local justice issues. We did this review because we wanted to find out what does and does not work. We want to do a better job of supporting all of our people and strengthening their role in prevention.

This review started in 2009. We did eight site visits and asked people from all over the Northwest Territories for their ideas. What’s working? What’s not working? What could be strengthened with our extra help? What do they see in other places that might work at home?

We heard that communities want consistent training and financial support to address their staffing issues. Some of our committees have constant turnover of their coordinators. That can make it tough to get and maintain a restorative justice program. They want standardized procedures and practices so that everyone is doing the same thing. They want enhanced communications so that they can learn from each other. They want more partnerships with the RCMP, local government and agencies. We think we can help with these things.

This is just the beginning. We are developing an action plan and will come to the Standing Committee on Social Programs with a proposal. We agree that we can do more through increasing connections with the RCMP and victim services. Community justice is a range of services, not just one thing. It supports local needs and reflects local priorities. I look forward to discussing this with the committee.

Minister’s Statement 60-16(5): Community Justice Review
Ministers’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. Lafferty. The honourable Minister responsible for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr. Miltenberger.

Minister’s Statement 61-16(5): Waste Reduction Week
Ministers’ Statements

Michael Miltenberger Thebacha

Mr. Speaker, October 18th to 24th is Waste Reduction Week in

Canada. This week is an opportunity to provide residents with information about the environmental ramifications of wasteful practices and to encourage all of us to reduce, reuse and recycle.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has organized a number of activities to celebrate Waste Reduction Week. Random acts of greenness include a clothing swap, a cell phone and rechargeable battery recycling opportunity, a litterless lunch workshop and potluck, daily waste reduction tips, and ideas on how to reduce, reuse and recycle.

The GNWT is committed to conserving our natural resources and protecting our environment. Waste reduction and recovery are a key component of this commitment.

In the hierarchy of waste management, the gold medal goes to reducing the amount of waste that we produce. Reduction is the most important action in waste management. The silver medal is for reusing and the bronze medal is awarded for recycling.

The department is finalizing plans to implement phase II of the Single-Use Retail Bag Program on February 1, 2011. Phase II will extend the 25 cent environmental fee on single-use retail bags to all retail stores in the Northwest Territories. Each household will receive two highly compact reusable bags through the mail this weekend as part of this program implementation. Revenue generated from the Single-Use Retail Bag Program will go into the Environment Fund and will be used to fund the expansion of waste reduction and recovery activities in the NWT.

As Members are aware, this program is intended to reduce litter on the land. By limiting and ultimately eliminating our consumption of single-use retail bags, we are achieving the gold standard of waste reduction and management.

The Northwest Territories Liquor Commission is also introducing its own reusable bag program next month. Liquor stores will be offering reusable bags made of recyclable materials at an affordable price. The bags will feature northern scenes that will change as supplies are reordered. The existing paper bags will continue to be offered for a few months to allow customers time to transition to the new reusable bags.

Over the past five years, ENR has implemented a number of waste reduction and recovery programs. These include the Beverage Container Program, which was recently expanded to include milk containers, the Waste Paper Products Initiative and phase I of the Single-Use Retail Bag Program. The department will also be researching electronic waste programs this winter.

Mr. Speaker, Waste Reduction Week is an opportunity for all of us to remember the importance of reducing our consumption and protecting the environment for future generations. I invite all NWT residents to reduce, reuse and recycle this week and every week. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Minister’s Statement 61-16(5): Waste Reduction Week
Ministers’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. Miltenberger. The honourable Premier, Mr. Roland.

Minister’s Statement 62-16(5): Minister Absent From The House
Ministers’ Statements

Floyd Roland Inuvik Boot Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I wish to advise Members that the Honourable Robert C. McLeod will be absent from the House today to attend to a personal family matter.

Minister’s Statement 62-16(5): Minister Absent From The House
Ministers’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. Roland. Item 3, Members’ statements. The honourable Member for Kam Lake, Mr. Ramsay.

International Stuttering Awareness Day
Members’ Statements

David Ramsay Kam Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Today I’d like to recognize International Stuttering Awareness Day, which takes place tomorrow. In supporting this awareness, I’d also like to recognize a former constituent, Ms. Karen Hollett, who is with us in the gallery today, who recently published a book about a young girl who stutters. A heart-warming story, Hooray for Aiden, was written by Ms. Hollett, who knows firsthand how challenging life can be for a young person who stutters. It is an excellent book that shows how a young grade 2 student named Aiden overcomes her fear of speaking in class and about how people who stutter can be anything they want to be.

Mr. Speaker, stuttering affects 5 percent of young children during the years they’re learning to speak. Often this disability has negative consequences on a person’s self-confidence and self-acceptance. But there are effective treatments for both children and adults. Typically, the earlier a child gets help, the better the outcome. There are many resources out there, Mr. Speaker, for parents, educators and school counsellors who work with children or adults who stutter. The Canadian Stuttering Association has an excellent website at stutter.ca, and Ms. Hollett has a great website at hooraypublishing.com.

Stuttering, Mr. Speaker, is a disability that doesn’t get talked about very much, but it can have a devastating effect on school children who are teased by their peers. Hooray for Aiden is a book that belongs in all school libraries across our Territory. As a teaching tool it will inspire a child who stutters or perhaps has another disability, and will educate children who don’t.

Mr. Speaker, I highly recommend the book and encourage all Members to read it and to share it with young people in their communities, and that the Minister of Education, Culture and Employment look at putting a copy of Hooray for Aiden in each and every school across our Territory. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

International Stuttering Awareness Day
Members’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. Ramsay. The honourable Member for Mackenzie Delta, Mr. Krutko.

Condolences To The Family Of Reverend Ellen Bruce
Members’ Statements

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to send my condolences to the Bruce family of Old Crow on the passing of their mother, their grandmother and,

more importantly, a very important figure in the Gwich’in region.

Mr. Speaker, the Gwich’in people from across the Northwest Territories will be gathering today in Old Crow for the passing of Reverend Ellen Bruce. Ellen was the first northern aboriginal woman to be ordained in the Anglican Church and also was a member of the Order of Canada.

Mr. Speaker, Reverend Bruce is well known for her work with the church, but more importantly, working with the Gwich’in people and retaining the Gwich’in culture and language. She also was very easy and approachable to share her wisdom and her knowledge with everyone who knew her.

Mr. Speaker, I had an opportunity this summer to spend time in Aklavik with Ellen, her daughter Bella, and Freddy Greenland in Aklavik, where she’d spent a lot of time over the last couple of years visiting family, relatives, and mostly her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren.

Mr. Speaker, Ms. Bruce will pass as one of those unique people that we meet in our lifetimes, who basically made you feel welcome every time you meet her, but more importantly, knowing that her beliefs in God, and more importantly, the importance of working together and retaining our culture and taking care of our fellowmen.

Mr. Speaker, with that, I would like to pass my condolences up to the people in Aklavik, for Old Crow and, more importantly, the Bruce family and for all the people who take their time to remember Ellen Bruce in her passing. Thank you.

Condolences To The Family Of Reverend Ellen Bruce
Members’ Statements

The Speaker Paul Delorey

Thank you, Mr. Krutko. The honourable Member for Sahtu, Mr. Yakeleya.