This is page numbers 607 - 658 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 housing.

Topics

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. SFA does provide additional funding for students who have children. If you're a single individual with no dependents, you will get less than if you were a single parent, say, with one, two, or three, et cetera, children, so there is that. In terms of Aurora College in particular, I've been in talks with the department regarding the childcare situation there. I think everyone is aware of that, everyone in this House anyway. I know that in Fort Smith there is a deficit in terms of childcare, as there is in many places. That's something that needs to be addressed if we really want to have this world-class polytechnic university.

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

Caitlin Cleveland Kam Lake

I'm very happy to hear that the Department of Education is looking into more options. In regard to a Member's statement that was actually shared last week by my colleague from Yellowknife North in regard to increasing uptake of women in trades, we also know that women quite often end up being the primary caregiver in some situations. Would the Minister of education be willing to entertain the idea of a pilot childcare program for the Fort Smith Aurora College in order to help increase women in trades?

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. We're looking into a lot of different options. Right now, ECE offers many, many different pots of funding that can help with creating childcare spaces: there is money for start-up; there is funding that can be used to top off wages of employees; there is funding for all sorts of different things. In terms of just the college, yes, the college is looking into figuring out how we can better support parents. ECE is always open to having those conversations about how we can create more childcare spaces, and, in fact, that's exactly what we're mandated to do.

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

Caitlin Cleveland Kam Lake

Would the Minister be willing to sit down with Members from this side of the house and find out ways that we can support potentially growing that space in Fort Smith and put together a universal childcare with the Member for Thebacha so that more people can uptake trades in the Fort Smith area? Thank you.

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

R.J. Simpson Hay River North

I'm always happy to sit down with Members and have these discussions. In terms of universal childcare in Fort Smith, it's a difficult conversation to have, to create a pilot program. When we know full well that we can't afford to expand that pilot program to the rest of the territory, we're creating a real inequity. However, there are options and there is plenty of money available to assist Fort Smith, whether it's the college, whether it's the community, or an organization, to develop the childcare space. We have someone in Fort Smith who is there to help do those kinds of things, someone who is in contact with the Fort Smith Daycare Society, someone who is well aware of what is happening and very much willing to help. She's willing to have those conversations in Fort Smith, and I am willing to have those conversations with the Member. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 182-19(2): Support for Aurora College Students with Children
Oral Questions

Page 614

The Speaker (Hon. Frederick Blake Jr) Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Minister. Oral questions. Member for Hay River South.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

March 11th, 2020

Page 614

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I think it's kind of nice to have only four on that side because we seem to be getting lots, and there's a lot of happiness on this side. I've got a question for the Minister responsible for Homelessness. I'm not sure if she's responsible for the homeless situation or if she's responsible for looking after it. I get questions in Hay River with respect to what that responsibility entails. Can the Minister explain to me and the people of the NWT what is it that she actually does with that responsibility? What is her responsibility? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

The Speaker (Hon. Frederick Blake Jr) Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Member for Hay River South. Minister responsible for Homelessness.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Paulie Chinna Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. With the portfolio that I have been given, it's quite complex because we are, as a Housing Corporation, responsible for the structures. Homelessness does not come with any additional funding. It is a responsibility that the Housing Corporation has just taken, and we have provided the infrastructure for the program. It started to become a wraparound service. We are working with this issue within the Northwest Territories, and we are trying our best with what resources we have. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

That responsibility, my understanding is now, is that it comes with no money. Does it come with any staff?

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Paulie Chinna Sahtu

I'm not aware if we actually have staff who specifically deal with the homelessness issue throughout the Northwest Territories. We do have staff who deal with the programming for homelessness that entails the infrastructure and wraparound services. I just wanted to maybe elaborate a little bit quickly on the path program that we do establish and the community initiatives program. Right now, we just opened up a facility in Aklavik that is structured for homelessness. It comes with four units, and we do have a homelessness worker in Aklavik who the Housing Corporation does fund internally. It is open to the rest of the Northwest Territories.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

Now I understand there is no money, but there could be staff. My question is: how would an organization address homelessness in a community with support from you as the Minister responsible for Homelessness when a plan of action is needed to be developed in that community to address homelessness?

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Paulie Chinna Sahtu

We do have a program that is called a community housing support initiative that we have adapted to this issue, and we have been working with homelessness throughout the Northwest Territories. Also, going forward, if there was any Indigenous partnership, and I am really heavy on partnerships throughout the territory, we are able to work with them in conjunction to work with on this issue within the territories.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

The Speaker (Hon. Frederick Blake Jr) Frederick Blake Jr.

Thank you, Minister. Member for Hay River South.

Question 183-19(2): Role and Duties of Minister Responsible for Homelessness
Oral Questions

Page 614

Rocky Simpson Hay River South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. One thing I have noticed here in the territories is that some of the communities have access for accommodation for people during the winter who have nowhere to go, but not all communities have that. I am just wondering if the Minister has a plan to address this situation for next winter because, in Hay River, we are going to have to deal with it. We have dealt with it internally within the community with assistance from the people of Hay River, from local businesses from Hay River, and non-profits from Hay River, with no cost to the government. I am just wondering if the Minister has any idea what her department is going to do for next winter, for looking after that situation, homelessness in the NWT. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.