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In the Legislative Assembly


Crucial Fact

Historical Information Michael Nadli is no longer a member of the Legislative Assembly.

Last in the Legislative Assembly September 2019, as MLA for Deh Cho

Lost his last election, in 2019, with 47% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Committee Motion 213-18(3): Bill 34: Mineral Resources Act - Amend Clause 1 to replace definition of "settlement Lands", Carried August 20th, 2019

Just for the record, if maybe the law clerk could clarify for me that point, I think that it is a legal question. In my own mind, I want to understand the certainty of the language. Mahsi.

Committee Motion 213-18(3): Bill 34: Mineral Resources Act - Amend Clause 1 to replace definition of "settlement Lands", Carried August 20th, 2019

Thank you, Mr. Chair. This is supplementary. Why is it, then, we put a lot of effort in terms of formalizing recognition of settlement areas, but we don't also, in the same effort, recognize unsettled areas, say, like the Dehcho region or the Akaitcho region and their communities? Thank you.

Committee Motion 213-18(3): Bill 34: Mineral Resources Act - Amend Clause 1 to replace definition of "settlement Lands", Carried August 20th, 2019

Thank you, Mr. Chair. I would like to seek clarity from the law clerk as well. Just an observation, fundamentally, I think it goes to the heart of this proposed legislation that there is distinction between settlement areas and areas that don't have a land claim that could be perhaps referred to as regions or treaty areas. My question is: would settlement areas also mean treaty areas? Thank you.

Committee Report 34-18(3): Standing Committee on Social Development Report on the Review of Bill 45: Corrections Act August 20th, 2019

Mahsi, Mr. Speaker.

Purpose and Principles

On reviewing Bill 45, it was not clear to committee what the bill was trying to achieve. In collaboration with the Minister, committee developed Motion 3 in Appendix A to articulate clear aspirations for the NWT correctional system and to establish principles for guiding the Correctional Service.

Community Advisory Boards

Sections 4 and 5 of Bill 45 authorized the Director of Corrections to establish community advisory boards and appoint members (CAB). Among other things, CABs are meant to provide observations and advice on the day-to-day operations of correctional centres and liaise between facilities and the public to facilitate responsiveness to inmates' needs.

It appeared to committee that appointments to CABs by the Director of Corrections, a member of the public service, may have the unintentional effect of compromising their independence. For that reason, committee felt it would be more appropriate for the Minister to establish CABs and appoint their members, as reflected in Motions 5 and 6 in Appendix A. Committee suggests that membership of CABs be determined using an existing model, such as that used for Regional Wellness Councils.

Correctional Centres

Corrections Staff

Section 10 authorizes the Director of Corrections to adopt a code of professional conduct for all staff members. Committee and the Minister agreed that the adoption of a code of professional conduct should be an obligation rather than a discretionary power, as reflected in Motion 7 in Appendix A. We also agreed that the guiding principles created under Motion 3 should highlight the importance of staff training and the importance of a positive work environment.

Committee heard concerns from the public about the suitability of personnel working in the corrections system. Non-Indigenous persons working in front-line service positions may lack an understanding of the experience of Indigenous people, including the legacy of the residential school system, and a resident made the point that inmates should be working with people they can trust.

Committee believes that the personnel working in our corrections institutions should have the background and skills necessary to be able to address the challenges and needs underlying the unique circumstances of their inmates. We encourage the department to offer the relevant training anticipated under Bill 45 to its corrections staff on an ongoing basis. We also urge the department to increase its efforts towards filling corrections positions with candidates who reflect the demographics of the inmates they oversee.


Section 17 of Bill 45 allowed the Director of Corrections to appoint volunteers to provide or assist in the provision of correctional services for offenders, inadvertently excluding other inmates such as those remanded in custody from working with volunteers. Motion 11 in Appendix A remedies this error.

Probation Officers

Section 16 sets out the duties and responsibilities of probation officers, mostly in relation to their role with respect to the courts and in correctional centres. The Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories Branch - Criminal Justice Section (CBA-NT) recommended Bill 45 detail the specific responsibilities of probation officers vis-a-vis their clients. Motion 10 in Appendix A elaborates on the role of probation officers in assisting offenders post-release.

Programs and Services

The public expressed their support for programming and services that reflect local culture, languages, and experiences to support the reintegration of inmates into their families and communities. Residents told committee that inmates should be able to interact with people they can trust, and on-the-land programs should be a priority.

Committee felt Bill 45 should go further to account for these concerns. Among other improvements, Motion 14 clarifies that programs and services may be offered in a facility, a community, or on the land. This motion, developed in collaboration with the Minister, also provides for the services of an Indigenous elder or spiritual advisor to support the healing, rehabilitation, and reintegration of inmates. In addition, Motion 19 amends section 30 of the bill to allow for the eventual possibility that communications between an inmate and Indigenous elder or spiritual advisor under Motion 14 could be made privileged.

Mr. Speaker, I now pass on the reading of the following section to my honourable colleague from Yellowknife Centre.

Anniversaries of Deh Cho Constituents August 20th, 2019

Mahsi, Mr. Speaker. Three couples of the Deh Cho riding celebrated long-term anniversaries with family get-togethers, dinners, and dances. The loving couples were treated like royalty by their families and created lots of love and happiness in their community.

The union of two people in love and major is a special moment in life. Living and building a life together commonly brings the joy of children and family. Of course, there are the low points and the challenges, but working through those moments together only make you stronger. I am happy to recognize the following married couples who celebrated their anniversaries.

Fred and Veronique Sabourin of Fort Providence were married July 27, 1954. Veronique's maiden name is Sambele. They met Leshamie, a village down from Fort Providence. They have 11 children, 32 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Fred and Veronique can often be found at their cabin about three quarters of the way downriver to Horn River.

Daniel and Emily Squirrel of Fort Providence were married January 6, 1959. Emily's maiden name is Bonnetrouge. Daniel asked Emily's grandfather for Emily's hand in marriage. They have five children, five grandchildren, and one great-grandson. Daniel and Emily actively attend local events and often are at their cabin at the winter crossing.

Sarah and Gabe Chicot of Kakisa were married July 6, 1959. Sarah's maiden name is St. Pierre. They met at the old community. They have five children, four grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. Both Sarah and Gabe continue to be active in their community, often helping their son fish and making dryfish.

I would like to once again express my congratulations to these married couples. Congratulations, and may you have many more years of love and happiness. Mahsi, Mr. Speaker.

Committee Motion 194-18(3): Bill 42: An Act to Amend the Petroleum Products Tax Act - Substitution of Clause 22, Defeated August 19th, 2019

Thank you, Mr. Chair. The motion before us, I support the idea because I think, as Northerners, sometimes we are given what we receive and sometimes we do not have a choice. What we are facing is an imposition of a tax, and, seeing people struggling in small communities, you know, a further tax on their household income is crazy, I mean, if I could just put it bluntly, especially at this point, as we kind of move towards the idea of an election. People will gauge your performance on whether you support a tax or not, and that is what we are facing at this point. Besides that, I serve on the committee that was tasked with doing the consultations, and I have to disagree with the Minister saying that we are to blame because of the lack of consultations. I take exception to that because I think the Minister and Cabinet had all of the authority and power and influence with the federal government in terms of trying to rationalize the imposition of this tax and how it could work for Northerners. Have we exhausted every effort? Have we done our best for the interests of all Northerners? In the meantime, as a committee, we were expected to take that on the road and tell people, well, this was the best thing that we could come up with? I'm sorry. I don't buy into that. For those reasons, we are left with the debate at this point.

We have to stand up in terms of where we are as Northerners, especially in small communities. This imposition of this tax to further burden people who are struggling in small communities is unbecoming. That's where I stand. At the same time, in terms of this motion, we have to try and at least see if there is a way that we can buy some time, perhaps for the next Assembly, to make some modest improvements on the tax. Mahsi.

Question 830-18(3): Fort Providence Trail System August 19th, 2019

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The Minister has touched on some key points in terms of, perhaps, long-term views of the Small Community Employment Support Program. Will the program continue, and what are the future plans for this program? Mahsi.

Question 830-18(3): Fort Providence Trail System August 19th, 2019

I was trying to highlight the Small Community Employment Support Program that has been in existence for some time. It is available for small communities to try to create employment projects in their communities. I am supposing that the Minister is quite familiar with that. I wanted to ask her: what are some of the successful projects that have been carried out so far with this program?

Question 830-18(3): Fort Providence Trail System August 19th, 2019

I don't know where this trail is leading to, but I will try my best. Would the Minister have her staff in the Small Community Employment Support Program reach out to the community on how they can access funding for this project?.

Question 830-18(3): Fort Providence Trail System August 19th, 2019

Mahsi, Mr. Speaker. In Fort Providence, there is an interest in terms of establishing a trail from perhaps the base of the Deh Cho bridge all the way to Fort Providence, and the community wants to create a project to draw in more tourists at the same time as trying to create a decent option up there for people who drive long ways up north, to give them an opportunity to walk the historical trail along the Deh Cho. My question is to the Minister of Education, Culture and Employment: is there a program or funding available to create historical or interpretative signs for trails? Mahsi.