Eabametoong First Nation - State of Emergency (September 2010) - Chronology of Events
September 24, 2010 – The Matawa Tribal Council informs Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) of a suspected case of arson at the John C. Yesno Education Centre on Eabametoong First Nation, the Kindergarten-Grade 9 Elementary School on reserve.
September 27, 2010 – Based on an assessment of damages, INAC officials confirm to Matawa Tribal Council the department will reimburse costs up to $60,720, for the clean-up, repairs, and re-commissioning of the school’s fire suppression system.
October 4, 2010 – The Matawa Tribal Council advises INAC the clean-up costs have increased to $120,540. INAC officials encourage the Matawa Tribal Council to advise the First Nation to submit a written request to INAC for costs above the initial commitment of $60,720.
On October 15, 2010 - The First Nation advises INAC that it is no longer able to address issues in the community. INAC officials participate in their first Eabametoong crisis multi-party teleconference call, including representatives from Nodin Child and Family Intervention Services, Health Canada, Nishnawbe Aski Nation, Matawa Tribal Council, and Nishnawbe Aski Police Services. Health Canada commits to review funding requirements for the recently drafted assessment report on prescription drug abuse.
October 19, 2010 – INAC officials participate in a Conference call with Eabametoong First Nation, Matawa Tribal Council, INAC officials, and Emergency Measures Ontario. Emergency Measures Ontario provides advice on emergency management for the First Nation.
October 20, 2010 – INAC officials confirm the maximum contribution of $200,000 to Eabametoong First Nation for John C. Yesno school repairs and clean-up, and $75,000 for community security efforts.
October 21, 2010 – Eabametoong First Nation Chief Lewis Nate informs INAC officials of the First Nation’s intention to declare a state of emergency. INAC commits to visiting the community on October 26, 2010. The First Nation notifies the Department that the school has re-opened and students are in classes on a full-time basis.
October 22, 2010 – Eabametoong First Nation declares a state of emergency due to a crisis of drug abuse, violence, and arson that it reports has been plaguing the health and safety of the community.
October 25, 2010 - The department receives a Band Council Resolution (BCR) from Eabametoong declaring a state of emergency, as well as the First Nation’s Seven-Point Action Plan. INAC officials confirm a contribution of $75,000 for the purchase of computers and equipment, library and texts/learning resources, and capacity development for teachers dealing with the crisis at the John C. Yesno school.
October 26, 2010 – INAC and Health Canada officials cancel a visit to the community due to weather conditions.
Early November 2010 – The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) agrees to provide its support to the NAPS police services until the end of March 2011, in order to ensure 24-hour police coverage in the community.
November 5, 2010 – Officials from INAC, Health Canada, Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), and the Sioux Lookout First Nations’ Health Authority visit Eabametoong. INAC officials commit funding of $50,000 for an Emergency Response Coordinator.
Health Canada confirms a contribution of $30,000 for an Emergency Response Coordinator, and availability of $140,000 from Sioux Lookout’s Reinvestment fund to support ‘Back to the Land’ programming, which is designed to resolve community and social problems by focussing on traditional values and a traditional way of life.
November 13, 2010 – Eabametoong First Nation advertises for the Emergency Response Coordinator position in The Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal.
December 10, 2010 – INAC Officials continue to work with its partners and the First Nation to help resolve the community's issues.
January 19, 2011 – A multi-party teleconference call is held. The First Nation advises it will request $68,000 from INAC to support additional security in the community up to March 31, 2011. The Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs agrees to fund $20,000 to support the staffing of the Emergency Response Coordinator position.
January 25, 2011 – Chief Lewis Nate resigns. As the First Nation’s Council still maintains quorum, members advise INAC that Council business will carry on until the general election scheduled for June 23, 2011.
February 8, 2011 – Several teleconference calls with the First Nation’s Council, INAC, Health Canada, and Nishnawbe Aski Nation are held to discuss ongoing issues in the community.
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