This is page numbers 1689 - 1724 of the Hansard for the 19th Assembly, 2nd 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 work.

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Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

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Caroline Cochrane Range Lake

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I'd like to recognize Eleese Scott, who is a guest in our gallery. She's the Chief Governance Officer with WSCC and a resident of Range Lake. I'd also like to take a moment to recognize the media, Madam Speaker, who have been here every day. Your work is critically important, and our work would be a lot harder without you. Thank you for being part of our work. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

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The Deputy Speaker Lesa Semmler

Recognition of visitors in the gallery. Member for Nahendeh.

Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

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Shane Thompson Nahendeh

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would also like to recognize Eleese Scott, Chief Governance Officer, and Debbie Molloy, President and Chief Executive Officer for WSCC. I greatly appreciate the work that these ladies do. They're very responsive, and they do great work and so does WSCC. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

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The Deputy Speaker Lesa Semmler

Welcome. It's been a while since we've had anybody in here. Recognition of visitors in the gallery. Member for Yellowknife North.

Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

Page 1699

Rylund Johnson Yellowknife North

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would also like to recognize Debbie Molloy. She does great work as the President and CEO of WSCC but also great work as a Yellownife North constituent. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery
Recognition Of Visitors In The Gallery

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The Deputy Speaker Lesa Semmler

Recognition of visitors of the gallery. Item 6, acknowledgements. Item 7, oral questions. Member for Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

November 5th, 2020

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Steve Norn Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh

Marsi cho, Madam Speaker. I have some questions for the Minister of Finance after my Member's statement today on affirmative action. My first question for the Minister is: will the Minister provide statistics on the number of direct appointments to the public service that have been made per year over the last five years? Marsi cho, Madam Speaker.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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The Deputy Speaker Lesa Semmler

Thank you, Member. Minister of Finance.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Caroline Wawzonek Yellowknife South

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I can pull those numbers out and give some information for the Member back to 2016 to 2017. Actually, before I do that, Madam Speaker, let me just take note that there are currently 5,922 employees in the public service, not including casuals. As for those that were direct appointment in 2016-2017, we have 122; 2017-2018, 97; 2018-2019, 124; and in 2019 and into 2020 the number changes quite a bit because there were significant changes to the collective agreement. The number is 301, owing to the fact that there were a number of modifications in response to the collective agreement. Thus far, there are 76, but I would note that there were a number of direct appointments arising from what was the response to COVID-19. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Steve Norn Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh

Thank you for those stats. It's really important we have the public understand a little bit more about the direct appointment process. It leads more to my next line of questioning. I would like to find out how many people find their way into the public service permanently by starting out in a casual position and getting direct appointment into an indeterminate position. Will the Minister provide a breakdown of how many of the direct appointments were for people appointed into an indeterminate position from a casual one?

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Caroline Wawzonek Yellowknife South

In the last five years, out of all of the numbers I had just read, 224 of those went into an indeterminate position from a casual one.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Steve Norn Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh

Okay. Thank you for that from the Minister. Will the Minister also provide a breakdown of how many of the direct appointments were Indigenous, P1 status?

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Caroline Wawzonek Yellowknife South

I am trying to do math quickly. I don't have the breakdown for Indigenous Aboriginal Northwest Territories individuals here. In the last five years, I have 335 direct appointments were for Indigenous people, but again, in the way that the public service works, that can mean Indigenous to the Northwest Territories, not necessarily Indigenous Aboriginal. I will see that I get a full breakdown for the Member.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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The Deputy Speaker Lesa Semmler

Thank you, Minister. Supplementary, Member for Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh.

Question 477-19(2): Direct Appointments in Government of the Northwest Territories
Oral Questions

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Steve Norn Tu Nedhe-Wiilideh

My apologies for interrupting, Madam Speaker. Thank you for the response. We could get that particular breakdown in writing, that would be much appreciated. My last question, and again I want to speak a little bit to this a little more. This direct appointment process, it's been criticized in the past, has been had before. There has been some political patronage there. There is no transparency or accountability, either. I think there should be more checks and balances there. There are other ways that this could be handled rather than running it through Cabinet solely.

Again, it would be nice to see an HR representative or even one of my colleagues from the Regular side sitting on these direct appointments, just an idea. Anytime we do this and there is some sort of secrecy here, what's the legal term, act of omission, we have to tighten up those loopholes. That's my comment on that. My last question is: will the Minister commit to developing options for new, more accountable, and transparent direct appointment approach? Marsi cho.