Ottawa, Ontario (February 11, 2012) – The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, issued the following statement to provide an update on the status of progress towards Attawapiskat:
"Today, we are proceeding with the immediate delivery of the first two modular homes by winter road. Sites are now being prepared by the First Nation to allow for their installation on a priority basis.
It is imperative with the warm weather and potentially shortened winter road season that all efforts to prepare the remaining 20 sites occur as quickly as possible so that they are ready for the delivery of the other remaining homes.
I have communicated directly with the Chief and Council to express my concern with the state of readiness of the serviced lots to receive and immediately hook up all modular homes that have been purchased with funds provided by our Government and that are ready to be delivered to Attawapiskat. In the best interests of the families living in temporary housing, our Government has also offered additional capacity to the Chief and Council to expedite this work and ensure maximum use of the winter road.
Our Government has allocated the necessary funds for this work and the Third Party Manager has advised that he will ensure all related invoices are paid from these funds.
We will continue to work with the community on an urgent basis to address the immediate needs of impacted families before the window of opportunity with this year's winter road is closed."
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