Appearance before the Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs: 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) and Main Estimates. Indigenous Services Canada. March 12, 2020

The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services

March 12, 2020

Table of contents

Overview

Scenario note

Logistics

Date: Thursday, March 12, 2020

Time: Noon to 1:00 p.m.

Location: TBC

Subject: 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) & 2020-21 Main Estimates

Notes: It is recommended that witnesses arrive at the committee meeting room at least 15 minutes before they are scheduled to appear.

Witnesses

  • The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services Canada
  • Jean-François Tremblay, Deputy Minister
  • Philippe Thompson, Chief Finances, Results & Delivery Officer

Context

The Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs (INAN) is composed of 12 members: six Liberal, four Conservative, one BQ and one NDP. This composition can present challenges for the Government Members, as the opposition parties can work together to vote down Liberals motions.

The first INAN meeting occurred on February 25, 2020 on Departmental Activities and Priorities. DM Tremblay received a variety of questions on child and family services (MP Gary Vidal, CPC), First Nations' control over education (MP Jaime Battiste, Liberal), and accountability during elections in First Nations communities (MP Arnold Viersen, CPC). MP Sylvie Bérubé (BQ) asked several questions about the status of drinking water advisories in First Nations communities in Quebec.

The focus of NDP MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq's questions was on whether the Government had policies and programs that were more geared towards Inuit and Métis. MP Qaqqaq expressed concerns that a variety of programs only seem to be applied to First Nations people.

In terms of other studies, the Committee began a study on food security on February 27, 2020. It also passed motions to study Treaty Commissioners and Economic Development in Indigenous communities.

Meeting proceedings

  1. It should be noted that Minister Bennett, Minister Vandal, and supporting officials from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs, are appearing for the first hour of this meeting from 11 a.m. to noon.
  2. For Minister Miller's appearance, he has up to 10 minutes to deliver his remarks.
  3. Committee members will pose their questions in the following order:
    • First round (6 minutes for each Party)
      • Conservative Party of Canada
      • Liberal Party of Canada
      • Bloc Québécois
      • New Democratic Party of Canada
    • Second round (5 minutes for each Party)
      • Conservative Party of Canada
      • Liberal Party of Canada
      • Conservative Party of Canada
      • Liberal Party of Canada
    • 2.5 minutes for the Bloc Quebecois and the New Democratic Party.

Opening remarks

Speaking notes for The Honourable Marc Miller Minister of Indigenous Services

Hi. I would like to begin by acknowledging that we come together on the unceded traditional territory of the Algonquin people.

Thank you for inviting me today.

It is my pleasure to be here to discuss the 2019-2020 Supplementary Estimates (B) and the 2020-2021 Main Estimates for the department of Indigenous Services Canada.

From Indigenous Services Canada, I'm joined by Sony Perron, Associate Deputy Minister; Philippe Thompson, Chief Finance, Results and Delivery Officer; Valerie Gideon, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister for First Nations and Inuit Health; and Joanne Wilkinson, Assistant Deputy Minister for Child and Family Services Reform.

Since its creation in 2017, our department has focused on closing socio-economic gaps and working with partners to improve access to services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis. The department works in collaboration with its partners to improve well-being in Indigenous communities across Canada and to support Indigenous peoples in assuming control of the delivery of services in their communities at the pace and in the ways they choose.

Over time, it is our goal that Indigenous peoples will have the capacity necessary to deliver programs and services to their peoples, and this department, and my role, will be obsolete. We are working with partners to build this capacity.

Supplementary Estimates (B)

To support this essential work, the department's 2019-2020 Supplementary Estimates (B) detail initiatives totaling approximately one billion dollars. This brings total appropriations for the department to $13.8 billion for this fiscal year.

More than half of this new funding — $588.3 million — is to support the ongoing delivery of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program, bringing the program's overall budget from $1.2 billion to $1.8 billion. When I think of our priorities as a department, the well-being of children and our work with partners to reform First Nations child and family services are among our most important ones.

Members will be aware that this committee served a vital role in addressing the over-representation of Indigenous children in care with its study of C-92, an Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families, which came in to force at the start of this year and empowers Indigenous peoples to assert their inherent jurisdiction over the well-being of their children.

Of the amount requested for this program, $414.9 million supports the implementation of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings from 2016 to September 2019 related to First Nations Child and Family Services by funding agencies based on their actual needs, and focusing on activities and programs aimed at preventing children from being taken into care.

Our Government believes in supporting a prevention-based system, where the needs of First Nations children come first. Funding for the First Nations Child and Family Services Program has more than doubled between 2016 and 2018-2019. Since 2016, we have worked with partners to implement systemic remedies in support of the needs of First Nations children. This means taking steps to keep children with their families to keep them connected with their communities and culture.

The remaining amount in these supplementary estimates of $173.4 million is to support other aspects of the First Nations Child and Family Services program, including anticipated maintenance costs incurred by service providers; operating costs for new agencies; and costs related to provincial agreements.

The other two major items presented in the Supplementary Estimates (B) are funding to support Jordan's Principle and emergency management service providers.

Main Estimates 2020-2021

I'd like to now turn to the main estimates for 2020-2021.

For the upcoming fiscal year, ISC's main estimates are $12.8 billion. This reflects a net increase of approximately $538.7 million, or 4 per cent, compared to last year's main estimates.

Further to these estimates, ISC also anticipates funding from any investments announced in Budget 2020, as well as future Treasury Board decisions. This additional funding is expected to be accessed through the supplementary estimates process.

This year, the department's main estimates reflect a net increase of $483.6 million related to the transfer of Individual Affairs and Lands and Economic Development programs, as well as internal services, from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada.

In addition to this, you will see increased funding related to some of ISC's core priorities.

For example, these estimates reflect an increase of $85.7 million for elementary and secondary education, as well as post-secondary education programs. From 2011-12 to 2018-19, actual expenditures in education have increased by about 41.7 per cent. This is reflective of our Government's commitment to ensuring every First Nations child has the best start in life and for supporting First Nations control of First Nations education.

You will also note that in these estimates, $1.5 billion in funding is set aside in 2020-21 for First Nations that have entered in to the 10 year grant agreement, including 85 First Nation communities that moved to the grant model last fiscal year, with additional First Nation communities that will move to the grant in 2020-21.

The 10-year grant is a key initiative of our Government's ongoing commitment to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nation communities.

I hope that this presentation has provided insight into the department's Supplementary Estimates (B) and Main Estimates documents.

We have made and are continuing to make important changes in the relationship with First Nations, Inuit and Métis. While there is still much work to do, our government's historic investments are making a difference in closing the gaps that exist and improving the quality of life of Indigenous peoples, while advancing self-determination.

Before I end my remarks I would like to briefly update the committee on COVID-19 as it relates to Indigenous peoples in Canada, as I know you share my concerns about that.

Our Government is working with all levels of government including actively supporting Indigenous communities to prepare for COVID-19. This is a matter of the health and wellbeing of all Canadians. This is a time for jurisdictional cooperation, not divisions.

These efforts are supported through a Federal/Provincial/Territorial Special Advisory Committee for COVID-19 that is focused on coordination of federal, provincial and territorial preparedness and response across Canada's health sector, for all Canadians, including First Nations, Inuit and Métis.

The federal government, including Indigenous Services Canada, has multiple systems in place to prepare for, detect and limit the spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19, in Canada.

In Budget 2019 our government invested $211M over five years, including $79.86M, as the first ever investment for health resiliency and health emergency preparedness on-reserve. These investments have enabled First Nations to strengthen their capacity, has allowed us to establish effective inter-jurisdictional networks and is supporting us in standing up our work to monitor and manage the COVID-19.

My officials are working very closely with First Nation communities to support them in implementing their pandemic plans, to provide surge capacity where needed and technical assistance as required.

The importance of clear, concise and timely communication and information sharing cannot be overstated. We all have a role to play in ensuring that our communications are based on the best science and the clearest recommendations. Factual, practical and clear information is essential. We are working with partners to make this information available in Indigenous languages through print, radio and social media. We have learned from past outbreaks – accurate information is critical and we all have a role to play in this, in making sure that people are referring to information from trusted sources like governments and community leadership.

My officials are working with local health directors, health workers and nurses through various means including with regional medical officers of health. These medical officers of health are also working with provincial partners in ensuring that supports to First Nation Nations, whether they live on reserve or not, are fully integrated into provincial plans.

ISC has a network of Regional Emergency Management and Communicable Disease Emergency coordinators, as well as Regional Medical Officers. Together, they advise and support First Nations across provinces and lead public health emergency preparedness and response as required.

While recognizing that in the Territories, primary health care is delivered by the territorial governments, my department is working closely with Indigenous partners and territorial governments to share information to prepare for, and respond to COVID-19, and will be available to provide surge capacity support in a timely manner if needed.

While we have in place solid planning, monitoring and surge capacity, we also need to be very vigilant – factors such as overcrowding and other determinants of health can increase the risks for some populations. This is why we need to be focused on supporting communities on an ongoing basis and ensuring that we are able to reduce risks where possible.

I would now be happy to answer any questions that the Committee may have.

Meegwetch. Thank you. Merci.

2019-20 Supplementary estimates (B) investments

Deck

Supplementary estimates

  • Supplementary Estimates present information to Parliament on Government of Canada spending requirements not sufficiently developed in time for inclusion in the Main Estimates. Supplementary Estimates (B) is the last estimates for 2019-20.
  • Eligible items are:
    • Requirements that are expected to be approved by Treasury Board in or before January 2020;
    • Transfers between Votes within the organization;
    • Transfers between organizations. The organization receiving the transfer needs to have the mandate and policy coverage for the purpose of the funding;
    • Increases to existing grants that are to be funded within the Vote; and
    • Increases to vote-netted revenues.
  • Supplementary Estimates (B) were tabled February 18, 2020. Supply is anticipated in March 2020.

2019-20 Supplementary estimates (B)

Department of Indigenous Services Organization Summary
  These Supplementary Estimates  
Budgetary Voted Authorities to Date Transfers
(dollars)
Adjustments
(dollars)
Total Proposed Authorities To Date
1b Operating expenditures 2,168,896,213 (32,165,677) 22,749,398 (9,416,279) 2,171,732,201
5b Capital expenditures 11,755,056 (639,000)   (639,000) 9,573,427
10b Grants and contributions 10,405,283,408 3,714,529 1,015,453,271 1,019,167,800 11,429,207,114
15 Better Information for Better Services 4,279,699       197,874
20 Continuing Implementation of Jordan's Principle 4,690,991       4,690,991
25 Core Governance Support for First Nations 24,000,000       24,000,000
30 Ensuring Better Disaster Management Preparation and Response 91,404       91,404
35 On Track to Eliminate Boil Water Advisories On-Reserve          
40 Improving Assisted Living and Long Term Care 5,316,600       5,316,600
45 Improving Emergency Response On-Reserve 547,334       547,334
50 Safe and Accessible Spaces for Urban Indigenous Peoples 3,700,000       3,700,000
55 Supporting Indigenous Post-Secondary Education 4,544,060       4,544,060
60 Supporting Inuit Children          
65 Supporting the National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy 5,000,000       5,000,000
Total Voted 12,638,104,765 (29,090,148) 1,038,202,669 1,009,112,521 13,658,601,005
Total Statutory 126,477,473       126,477,474
Total Budgetary Expenditures 12,764,582,238 (29,090,148) 1,038,202,669 1,009,112,521 13,785,078,479
       Data in the Total column has not been published.
Note 1: The "Authorities to date" reflect the deemed appropriations from Crown-Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, primarily for the transfer of Lands and Economic Development sector, Individual Affairs branch and Internal Services, as per Order-in-Council P.C. 2019-1109.
  • These 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) reflect a net increase of $1.0 billion which includes $1.0 billion in new funding less $29.1 million in net transfers (Annex A) with other government organizations.
  • The total authorities for 2019-20 amount to $13.8 billion.

Explanation of Requirements 2019-20 - By Vote and Key Initiatives

The net increase of $1.0 billion is comprised of:

  • $22.7 million in Vote 1 Operating expenditures for Jordan's Principle primarily offset by a transfer of $31.3 million from Vote 1 to Vote 10 for the non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit; and
  • $1,019.2 million in Vote 10 Grants and Contributions primarily $588.3 million for Child and Family Services, $209.3 million for Jordan's Principle and $150.0 million for emergency management service providers.
Explanation of Requirements 2019-20 - By Vote and Key Initiatives
  Budgetary
Key Initiatives (in dollars) Vote 1b
Operating
Vote 5b
Capital
Vote 10b
Grants and Contributions
Total Budgetary Expenditures
New Funding
Funding for Child and Family Services     588,314,520 588,314,520
Funding for health, social and education services and support for First Nations children under Jordan's Principle 22,749,398   209,258,968 232,008,366
Funding to reimburse First Nations and emergency management service providers for on-reserve response and recovery activities     150,000,000 150,000,000
Funding for Income Assistance and Infrastructure     51,600,000 51,600,000
Funding for the Community Opportunity Readiness Program     15,777,783 15,777,783
Funding for the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre     502,000 502,000
Total New Funding 22,749,398   1,015,453,271 1,038,202,669
Total Transfers (See Annex A) (32,165,677) (639,000) 3,714,529 (29,090,148)
Total (9,416,279) (639,000) 1,019,167,800 1,009,112,521

Funding for First Nations Child and Family Services ($588.3 million)

Objective
  • This funding is required to support the ongoing delivery of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program.
Outcome
  • Program Integrity is to support the implementation of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) rulings received prior to September 2019; cover anticipated maintenance costs incurred by service providers; address pressures related to provincial agreements; reimburse other departmental programs for funding reallocations; address operating costs for new agencies; put in place a contingency fund to account for the unpredictable costs associated with claims for reimbursement based on actuals; and cover additional program operation costs resulting from the implementation of the existing Tribunal orders.
Status
  • The funding is needed to:
    • further support the implementation of Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings received prior to September 2019 ($414.9 million);
    • cover anticipated maintenance costs incurred by service providers ($79.4 million);
    • address operating costs for new agencies ($56.7 million);
    • address pressures related to provincial agreements ($6.2 million); and
    • cover for the unpredictable costs associated with claims for reimbursement based on actuals ($31.1 million).
  • The program has an existing base budget of $1.1 billion. ISC seeks approval of $588.3 million in 2019-20 which will bring the program total to $1.7 billion.

Funding for Health, Social and Education services and support for First Nations children under Jordan's Principle ($232.0 million)

Objective
  • Funding to support the continued implementation of Jordan's Principle in 2019-20.
Outcome
  • To address the increased demand in 2019-20 and ensure that First Nations children have access to health, social and education products, services, and supports they need under Jordan's Principle.
Status
  • In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) ordered Canada to cease its discriminatory practices, to reform the federal child and family services program, to cease applying its narrow definition of Jordan's Principle and to take measures to immediately implement the full meaning and scope of the Principle.
  • These Supplementary Estimates include $232 million to address in-year funding pressures under Jordan's Principle.
  • Additional CHRT orders have broadened the scope of and eligibility under Jordan's Principle, which have increased demand and pressure on current funding level. Specifically, demand for Jordan's Principle in the first six months of 2019-20 has exceeded the demand for all of 2018-19. Also, from April 1, 2019 to September 30, 2019, an estimated 256,179 products and services were approved, compared to 140,332 for all of 2018-19.
  • Since 2016, the Government of Canada has committed more than $600 million to meet the needs of First Nation children through an interim approach to Jordan's Principle.
  • The Government will continue to work with First Nation partners to develop a long-term approach to improving services for First Nations children.

Funding for Emergency Management Assistance service providers for on-reserve response and recovery activities ($150.0 million)

Objective
  • To support First Nations communities in their efforts to respond to and recover from emergency events that cannot be addressed by local communities on their own.
Outcome
  • Impacted community recover in a timely, durable and holistic way.
  • First Nations communities have the resources and support necessary to respond to and recover from emergency events.
  • It ensures that First Nations communities continue to receive emergency assistance comparable to that of neighboring off-reserve communities during the response and recovery phases of emergency events. This supports the Government of Canada's commitment to deliver consistent and high-quality services to First Nations.
Status
  • Over the last five years, costs related to these activities have averaged $96 million per year.
  • Major events in Manitoba (Winter Storm), Ontario (Bearskin Lake, Pikangikum Wildland Fires) and Atlantic (Hurricane Dorian) have led to much higher than normal anticipated Response and Recovery costs.
  • To date, approximately $104 million has been spent on Response and Recovery, with up to an additional $85.1 million of anticipated expenses.

Funding for Income Assistance and Infrastructure ($51.6 million)

Objective
  • This new funding will cover immediate gaps in the Income Assistance program to maintain equity on and off reserve. It will also cover immediate gaps in the Infrastructure programs which is essential to healthy and safe communities.
Outcome
  • This funding is to address current and anticipated funding pressures;
    • That are urgent to the Income Assistance program in order to provide eligible individuals and families on reserve or status Indians who live in Yukon, with funds to cover essential living expenses (i.e. food, clothing, rent, and utilities).
    • That are urgent to the Infrastructure programs in order to help for adequate and sustainable housing, clean drinking water, culture and recreational facilities as well as community infrastructure such as schools, roads, and wastewater systems.
Status
  • Relevant ISC regions and programs are reviewing the requirements within these programs which will help reduce the identified gaps.

Funding for stabilizing the Community Opportunity Readiness Program ($15.8 million)

Objective
  • To stabilize the Community Opportunity Readiness Program to support First Nation and Inuit Commercial and Economic Development at the community level.
Outcome
  • Funding will address oversubscription to the Community Opportunity Readiness Program (CORP).
  • CORP enables communities to leverage the private sector resources necessary to realize the full potential of economic development opportunities.
  • CORP generates Indigenous community wealth and jobs, helps close the socio-economic gap, and increases self-sufficiency – and thus independence and self-determination.
Status
  • Budget 2019 provided funding of $78.9 million over five years (2019-20 to 2023-24) and $15.8 million ongoing.
  • Based on historical data, CORP can be expected to remain oversubscribed, with demand equalling 4.5 times the available funding. ISC continues to work to reduce this difference in order to maintain the program as its level for the last 5 years.

Funding for the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre ($0.5 million)

Objective
  • For the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre in partnership with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated.
Outcome
  • The lack of an in-territory wellness centre creates a service gap for Nunavummiut who must rely on services offered in Canadian provinces. The Centre is expected to improve access to culturally safe addiction and trauma treatment in Nunavut and to support healthier Inuit individuals and communities.
  • It is expected that the Wellness Centre will result in Nunavummiut having access to reliable and sustainable infrastructure, developed and delivered by the Government of Nunavut, which responds to their need for enhanced mental wellness services.
Status
  • In August 2019, a Joint Declaration of Intent between the Government of Canada, the Government of Nunavut, and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated was signed by all three parties outlining the commitments of each party. The Joint Declaration is not legally binding and includes wording to confirm that the federal funding amounts are subject to approval and appropriations.
  • ISC's involvement regarding health funding and services in Nunavut is through the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health, of which it is a funder and a member. This Table takes a consensus-based approach to the coordination and integration of funding and priorities amongst partners. Addressing gaps in health services, such as the provision of in-territory treatment for substance use in Nunavut has been a key priority of the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health.

Annex A: Explanation of Requirements 2019-20 – Transfers

Explanation of Requirements 2019-20 - By Vote and Key Initiatives
  Budgetary
Key Initiatives (in dollars) Vote 1b
Operating
Vote 5b
Capital
Vote 10b
Grants and Contributions
Total Budgetary Expenditures
Transfers from Other Organizations
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services for public education on cannabis in Indigenous communities     354,495 354,495
From the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to the Department of Indigenous Services to manage Indigenous litigation 335,625     335,625
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services to develop distinctions-based healthy eating tools for Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami 120,000     120,000
Internal Transfers
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions for non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit (31,303,875)   31,303,875  
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions to remediate federal contaminated sites (1,468,642)   1,468,642  
Internal reallocation of resources from capital expenditures to operating expenditures for systems maintenance and enhancements 639,000 (639,000)    
Transfers to Other Organizations
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for the Métis National Council and each of its governing members to develop capacity in the area of Métis health     (400,000) (400,000)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Health to provide microbiological and physical-chemical testing of drinking water in First Nation communities (487,785)     (487,785)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to train and certify First Nation housing management professionals     (938,500) (938,500)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Employment and Social Development for the Kativik Regional Government to deliver youth employment and education programming     (1,011,580) (1,011,580)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support the First Nations Financial Management Board     (2,991,859) (2,991,859)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for health programs for modern treaty groups and self-governing First Nations     (3,599,298) (3,599,298)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support Indigenous representative organizations     (5,158,996) (5,158,996)
From the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for self-government agreements in British-Columbia     (15,312,250) (15,312,250)
Total Transfers (32,165,677) (639,000) 3,714,529 (29,090,148)

Extract

Department of Indigenous Services Organization Summary
  These Supplementary Estimates  
Budgetary Voted Authorities to Date Transfers
(dollars)
Adjustments
(dollars)
Proposed Authorities To Date
1b Operating expenditures 2,168,896,213 (32,165,677) 22,749,398 2,171,732,201
5b Capital expenditures 10,212,427 (639,000)   9,573,427
10b Grants and contributions 10,410,039,314 3,714,529 1,015,453,271 11,429,207,114
15 Better Information for Better Services 197,874     197,874
20 Continuing Implementation of Jordan's Principle 4,690,991     4,690,991
25 Core Governance Support for First Nations 24,000,000     24,000,000
30 Ensuring Better Disaster Management Preparation and Response 91,404     91,404
35 On Track to Eliminate Boil Water Advisories On-Reserve        
40 Improving Assisted Living and Long Term Care 5,316,600     5,316,600
45 Improving Emergency Response On-Reserve 547,334     547,334
50 Safe and Accessible Spaces for Urban Indigenous Peoples 3,700,000     3,700,000
55 Supporting Indigenous Post-Secondary Education 4,544,060     4,544,060
60 Supporting Inuit Children        
65 Supporting the National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy 5,000,000     5,000,000
Total Voted 12,649,488,484 (29,090,148) 1,038,202,669 13,658,601,005
Total Statutory 126,477,474     126,477,474
Total Budgetary Expenditures 12,775,965,958 (29,090,148) 1,038,202,669 13,785,078,479
Note: Additional details by organization are available on the Treasury Board Secretariat website.
Explanation of Requirements (dollars)
Budgetary Voted Appropriations Vote No. Amount ($)
Funding for Child and Family Services Vote 10b 588,314,520
Funding for health, social and education services and support for First Nations children under Jordan's Principle Vote 1b 22,749,398
Vote 10b 209,258,968
Total 232,008,366
Funding to reimburse First Nations and emergency management service providers for on-reserve response and recovery activities Vote 10b 150,000,000
Funding for Income Assistance and Infrastructure Vote 10b 51,600,000
Funding for the Community Opportunity Readiness Program Vote 10b 15,777,783
Funding for the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre Vote 10b 502,000
Total Voted Appropriations 1,038,202,669
Transfers Vote No. Amount ($)
Transfers from Other Organizations
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services for public education on cannabis in Indigenous communities Vote 10b 354,495
From the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to the Department of Indigenous Services to manage Indigenous litigation Vote 1b 335,625
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services to develop distinctions-based healthy eating tools for Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami Vote 1b 120,000
Internal Transfers
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions for non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit Vote 1b (31,303,875)
Vote 10b 31,303,875
Total 0
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions to remediate federal contaminated sites Vote 1b (1,468,642)
Vote 10b 1,468,642
Total 0
Internal reallocation of resources from capital expenditures to operating expenditures for systems maintenance and enhancements Vote 1b 639,000
Vote 5 (639,000)
Total 0
Transfers to Other Organizations
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for the Métis National Council and each of its Governing Members to develop capacity in the area of Métis health Vote 10b (400,000)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Health to provide microbiological and physical-chemical testing of drinking water in First Nation communities Vote 1b (487,785)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to train and certify First Nation housing management professionals Vote 10b (938,500)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Employment and Social Development for the Kativik Regional Government to deliver youth employment and education programming Vote 10b (1,011,580)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support the First Nations Financial Management Board Vote 10b (2,991,859)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for health programs for modern treaty groups and self-governing First Nations Vote 10b (3,599,298)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support Indigenous representative organizations Vote 10b (5,158,996)
From the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for self-government agreements in British Columbia Vote 10b (15,312,250)
Total Transfers (29,090,148)
 
Total Budgetary 1,009,112,521
Listing of Transfer Payments
Contributions Estimates to Date These Supplementary Estimates (dollars) Revised Estimates
Contributions to provide women, children and families with Protection and Prevention Services 1,167,983,898 588,314,520 1,756,298,418
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Primary Health Care 740,337,346 202,504,215 942,841,561
Contributions for emergency management assistance for activities on reserves 64,977,822 150,000,000 214,977,822
Contributions to support the construction and maintenance of community infrastructure 1,722,778,068 42,827,817 1,765,605,885
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Supplementary Health Benefits 298,074,688 30,796,741 328,871,429
Contributions to support Land Management and Economic Development 4,125,942 15,248,151 19,374,093
Contributions to First Nations for the management of contaminated sites 6,790,020 1,468,642 8,258,662
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Health Infrastructure Support 819,690,369 208,173 819,898,542
Annex – Items for inclusion in the Proposed Schedules to the Appropriation Bill: Supplementary Estimates (B), 2019–20
Vote No. Items Amount ($) Total ($)
Department of Indigenous Services
1b
  • Operating expenditures
  • Expenditures on works, buildings and equipment
  • Authority to make expenditures – recoverable or otherwise – on work performed on property that is not federal property and on services provided in respect of that property
  • Authority to provide, in respect of Indian and Inuit economic development activities, for the capacity development for Indians and Inuit and the furnishing of materials and equipment
  • Authority to sell electric power to private consumers in remote locations when alternative local sources of supply are not available, in accordance with terms and conditions approved by the Governor in Council
  • Authority, as referred to in paragraph 29.1(2)(a) of the Financial Administration Act, to expend in the fiscal year – in order to offset related expenditures that it incurs in that fiscal year – revenues that it receives in that fiscal year from
    • the provision of services or the sale of products related to health protection and medical services; and
    • the provision of internal support services under section 29.2 of that Act
  • The payment to each member of the Queenʼs Privy Council for Canada who is a minister without portfolio, or a minister of State who does not preside over a ministry of State, of a salary – paid annually or pro rata for any period less than a year – that does not exceed the salary paid under the Salaries Act, rounded down to the nearest hundred dollars under section 67 of the Parliament of Canada Act, to ministers of State who preside over ministries of State
22,749,398  
10b
  • The grants listed in any of the Estimates for the fiscal year
  • Contributions, in the form of monetary payments or the provision of goods or services
1,015,453,271  
Total 1,038,202,669

Overview of supplementary estimates (B)

Key messages

  • These 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) reflect a net increase of $1 billion which includes $1,038.2 million in new funding less $29.1 million in net transfers with other government organizations.
  • The net increase of $1,009.1 million is mainly comprised of:
    • $588.3 million to support the ongoing delivery of the First Nations Child and Family Services program. This includes costs such as: operating costs resulting from the implementation of the existing Tribunal orders, for new agencies or maintenance costs incurred by service providers;
    • $232 million to address the increased demand in 2019-20 brought by additional Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) orders that have broadened the scope of and eligibility under Jordan's Principle; and
    • $150 million to support First Nations communities in their efforts to respond to and recover from emergency events that cannot be addressed by local communities on their own. Major events in Manitoba (Winter Storm), Ontario (Bearskin Lake, Pikangikum Wildland Fires) and Atlantic (Hurricane Dorian) have led to much higher than normal anticipated response and recovery costs.

Transfer from the Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to Indigenous Services to manage Indigenous Litigation

  • As the two departments continue to take shape, there is a change in the way both Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC) and Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) manage litigation.
  • For many years, the Litigation Management and Resolution Branch (LMRB) has been responsible for managing, resolving and preventing litigation on behalf of the department(s). It has worked with sectors to effectively respond to policy and program risks in the litigation context.
  • In order to strengthen the relationship between litigation, program, and policies, branch's litigation management function and capacity has moved to the sectors in both departments.
  • Certain employees of the branch have now become sector employees working in the new sectoral litigation management units, while continuing to manage litigation.
  • Reallocating resources to the sectors, directly into policy and program areas, will further strengthen the integration of policy development and litigation management, while increasing efficiency.
  • The transfer in this Supplementary Estimates is to reflect this above change.

Background:

  • The 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) for all departments will be tabled in the House of Commons by the President of Treasury Board on February 18, 2020.
  • It presents only urgent and approved items totaling $1,009.1 million. The total appropriations for the Department will then be at $13.8 billion.
  Budgetary
Key Initiatives (in dollars) Vote 1b
Operating
Vote 5b
Capital
Vote 10b
Grants and Contributions
Total Budgetary Expenditures
New Funding
Funding for Child and Family Services     588,314,520 588,314,520
Funding for health, social and education services and support for First Nations children under Jordan's Principle 22,749,398   209,258,968 232,008,366
Funding to reimburse First Nations and emergency management service providers for on-reserve response and recovery activities     150,000,000 150,000,000
Funding for Income Assistance and Infrastructure     51,600,000 51,600,000
Funding for the Community Opportunity Readiness Program     15,777,783 15,777,783
Funding for the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre     502,000 502,000
Total New Funding 22,749,398   1,015,453,271 1,038,202,669
Transfers from Other Organizations
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services for public education on cannabis in Indigenous communities     354,495 354,495
From the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to the Department of Indigenous Services to manage Indigenous litigation 335,625     335,625
From the Department of Health to the Department of Indigenous Services to develop distinctions-based healthy eating tools for Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami 120,000     120,000
Internal Transfers
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions for non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit (31,303,875)   31,303,875  
Internal reallocation of resources from operating expenditures to contributions to remediate federal contaminated sites (1,468,642)   1,468,642  
Internal reallocation of resources from capital expenditures to operating expenditures for systems maintenance and enhancements 639,000 (639,000)    
Transfers to Other Organizations
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for the Métis National Council and each of its governing members to develop capacity in the area of Métis health     (400,000) (400,000)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Health to provide microbiological and physical-chemical testing of drinking water in First Nation communities (487,785)     (487,785)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to train and certify First Nation housing management professionals     (938,500) (938,500)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Employment and Social Development for the Kativik Regional Government to deliver youth employment and education programming     (1,011,580) (1,011,580)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support the First Nations Financial Management Board     (2,991,859) (2,991,859)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for health programs for modern treaty groups and self-governing First Nations     (3,599,298) (3,599,298)
From the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to support Indigenous representative organizations     (5,158,996) (5,158,996)
From the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Department of Indigenous Services to the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for self-government agreements in British-Columbia     (15,312,250) (15,312,250)
Total Transfers (32,165,677) (639,000) 3,714,529 (29,090,148)
 
Total (9,416,279) (639,000) 1,019,167,800 1,009,112,521

Child and family services

Vote 10 - $588,314,520

  • Since forming government in 2015, our approach on Child and Family Services has been focused on addressing the needs of Indigenous families and communities, with a focus on preventing apprehensions.
  • $588.3 million is provided through these Supplementary Estimates to support the ongoing delivery of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program.
  • More specifically, this funding will:
    • further support the implementation of Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings received prior to September 2019 ($414.9 million);
    • cover anticipated maintenance costs incurred by service providers ($79.4 million);
    • address operating costs for new agencies ($56.7 million);
    • address pressures related to provincial agreements ($6.2 million);
    • and put in place a contingency fund to account for the unpredictable costs associated with claims for reimbursement based on actuals ($31.1 million)

Background:

Details of Funding Requested:

  1. It is estimated that an additional $414.9 million will be required to cover:
    • 2019-20 claims ($136.0 million): As of September 30, 2019, $50 million of 2019-20 claims had been paid out and $49.7 million of claims were pending payment in the third quarter. In 2018-19, there was a 27% decrease of CHRT actual claims received between the third and the fourth quarters for claims related to costs incurred in 2018-19. The FNCFS Program estimates that there will be a similar decrease of claims received between the third quarter and the fourth quarter for claims related to costs incurred in 2019-20. This represents an additional $36.3 million of these claims paid in the fourth quarter.
    • Remaining retroactive reimbursements ($246.1 million): As of September 30, 2019, $82.6 million of retroactive and 2018-19 claims had been paid out and $123.5 million of claims were pending payment in the third quarter. $44.2 million of 2018-19 CHRT actuals claims were received between September 27, 2019 and October 11, 2019 as a result of the September 30, 2019 deadline for this type of claim. This represents an increase of approximately 50% when compared to the total of 2018-19 CHRT claims paid prior to the deadline. It is expected that a similar increase will be observed for the retroactive claims which have a deadline of December 31, 2019. The Program is forecasting to pay these claims, which will represent $40 million, in the fourth quarter.
    • Retroactive reimbursements to support agencies in British Columbia ($32.8 million): All of the agencies funded by the program in British Columbia are deemed "small agencies". The Region forecasts that it will need an additional $32.8 million in 2019-20 to support these agencies, based on a "needs-based" budgeting process undertaken by the agencies that includes detailed plans. These costs are reimbursed based on actual expenditures incurred and are currently not funded. Given the "needs-based" approach, it is anticipated that British Columbian agencies will receive all of the funding they need for the year, which will reduce the likelihood that they will submit a large number of additional claims for actual costs.
  2. $79.4 million is required to address anticipated maintenance pressures: The agencies' expenditures for maintaining children in care have increased over the last several years due to the number of children in care (there were 9,246 children in care as of March 31, 2018) and inflationary pressures (i.e. the cost of maintaining children in care). The Department collected maintenance expenditure data from funding recipients that was used to extrapolate future expenditure requirements. The difference between approved maintenance funding (based on 2017-18 actuals) and 2019-20 projected maintenance requirements based on the trend analysis is $79.4 million.
  3. $56.7 million is required to address increased provincial agreement costs: On reserves where FNCFS agencies do not exist, the Department has agreements with provincial governments to cover the costs of providing child and family services through their provincially run agencies. The Department has a legal obligation to pay the costs set out in these agreements. All of these costs have increased over the past few years because of a higher number of children in care and as a result of an increase in the costs of providing services to First Nations children and families. Based on information submitted by the Regions in the Fall 2019, there have been cost increases for several agreements. In addition, there have been increases in costs related to legislation governing the provision of child and family services in Nova Scotia.
  4. $6.2 million is required for operating costs for new agencies: Additional funding will be required in 2019-20 because of the creation of three new agencies by the Saskatchewan and Ontario governments in 2018-19, as well as for ongoing maintenance, until a new funding system is in place. The Department is required to fund the creation and development of new agencies once the provincial government and the affected First Nations have confirmed that the new First Nation entity will be mandated to deliver child and family services. The Program has estimated the costs for 2019-20 at $6.2 million based on the number of new agencies that were set up in 2018-19.
  5. $31.1 million is required as a contingency fund to address future claims associated with the February 2018 CHRT orders:
    • ISC's February 2019 off-cycle request of $100.5 million included a contingency of 20%. Although this estimate was developed near the end of the fiscal year, it materially underestimated the claims received during the remainder of 2018-19 by $40 million. Based on this recent experience, the original contingency applied to the variable elements of this funding request was 30%, or $86.8 million, to account for the inherent unpredictability of implementing the CHRT orders and to help ensure that sufficient funding is available to pay all claims as directed by the CHRT.
    • However, with an improved methodology to predict CHRT actual claims and stable forecasts throughout the regions, the FNCFS Program is now in a position to reduce its contingency from 30% to 10%, or $31.1 million (i.e. $86.8 million forecasted in the first quarter vs. $31.1 million forecasted in the second quarter). This contingency would most likely be used toward the payment of CHRT actuals claims, which have historically led to important fluctuations at year-end.

Jordan's Principle

Vote 1 Operating: $22.7 million
Vote 10 Grants and Contributions: $209.3 million
Total: $232.0 million in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)

Key Messages:

  • The allocation of $232 million in Supplementary Estimates (B) for Jordan's Principle will ensure First Nations children have access to the health, social and education products, services and supports they need when they need them.
  • The Government continues to work with First Nations to ensure that Jordan's Principle is upheld.
  • Since 2016, more than 530,000 requests for products, services, and supports have been approved (e.g., speech language pathology services, physiotherapy, education assistants, and mobility aids).
  • This allocation is in addition to the Budget 2019 investment of $1.2 billion over three years, beginning in 2019-20, for the continued implementation of Jordan's Principle.

Background:

  • Jordan's Principle is a legal requirement, resulting from the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) decision of January 2016, which ordered Canada to cease applying a narrow definition of Jordan's Principle and to take immediate measures to implement the full meaning of the principle. Since the initial decision in 2016, the CHRT has issued several subsequent remedial orders regarding how Jordan's Principle should be defined and implemented.
  • Since 2016, the Government of Canada has committed more than $600 million to meet the needs of First Nation children through an interim approach to Jordan's Principle. Budget 2019 invested a further $1.2 billion over three years (2019-20 to 2021-22) to support the continued implementation of Jordan's Principle. In addition, Budget 2019 invested $220 million over five years to address the immediate needs of Inuit children as this Government continues to work with Inuit and other government partners to improve local capacity to deliver services.
  • In implementing Jordan's Principle, Service Coordinators were made available in communities across Canada who are funded by the Government of Canada and staffed by local Tribal Councils, Regional Health Authorities, and Indigenous Non-Governmental Organizations, etc. These service coordinators are the primary local contact for First Nations children and families. They work closely with the regional Jordan's Principle Focal Point contacts. In February 2018, a 24/7 Jordan's Principle National Call Centre was launched to help First Nations children access the products, services and supports they need.

Emergency management

Vote #10, Grants and Contributions
$150 million in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)

Key Messages:

  • We recognize that Indigenous communities are disproportionately affected by emergency incidents and evacuations that can have devastating impacts on families and communities.
  • We work with Indigenous partners on fire prevention, protection, education, and mitigation.
  • Indigenous Services Canada provides funding to First Nation communities to strengthen resilience and to prepare for natural hazards, and responds to them using the four pillars of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.
  • Emergency events are increasing in frequency and intensity due to a number of factors, including climate change.
  • In 2019-20, major events including the severe weather event in Manitoba (October 2019), wildland fires in Pikangikum, Ontario, flooding in Bearskin Lake, Ontario, and Hurricane Dorian in the Atlantic region have led to higher than normally anticipated response and recovery costs.
  • Funding of $150 million is being requested through these Supplementary Estimates (B) to support First Nation communities in their efforts to respond to and recover from emergency events.

Background:

There are various funding arrangements or agreements between the Department, the provinces, territories, and third party organizations for the delivery of emergency management services for on-reserve communities. These agreements provide First Nation communities access to emergency assistance services. They also provide an assurance to the provinces and territories that the Department will provide funding to cover costs related to emergency assistance in First Nations so that responses can be implemented rapidly and without unnecessary delay.

The Emergency Management Assistance Program has an annual budget of $64.9M :

  • $19.1M: preparedness and non-structural mitigation projects and service agreements
  • $16.5M: wildfire management services agreements with provinces
  • $29.3M: response and recovery activities

Response and recovery costs have consistently exceeded the existing funding of $29.3M, requiring the Program to return to Treasury Board for additional funding (by an average of $96M annually). This year's unprecedented amount of $150M being requested is primarily driven by the October 2019 Manitoba severe weather event (anticipated costs of $ 43M) and recovery projects from previous fiscal years (approximately $56 million).

Budget 2019 announced $211M over five years of new spending for Emergency Management on-reserve with a focus on:

  • Enhancing the Emergency Management Assistance Program's existing First Nation-led emergency preparedness and non-structural mitigation;
  • First Nation-led engagement on emergency management service agreements;
  • First Nation emergency management capacity building; and,
  • FireSmart projects.

The announcement did not include any new funding to address the annual response and recovery cost shortfalls.

Income assistance

Vote #10, Grants and Contributions
$51.6 million in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)

  • The Income Assistance program provides funding to First Nations to help individuals living on reserve as well as Status Indians in Yukon meet their basic and special needs. It also provides case management supports to help individuals transition to education and employment.
  • The 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B) provided $51.6 million in new funding to address program integrity pressures for the Income Assistance program and Infrastructure.
  • Out of the new funding, $2.9 million will address immediate gaps in order to provide eligible individuals and families on reserve with funds to cover essential living expenses (i.e. food, clothing, rent, and utilities).

Background:

  • The Income Assistance program is a component of Canada's social safety net similar to provincial and Yukon income assistance programs.
  • The Program provides funding to assist eligible individuals and families living on reserve and status Indians in Yukon with: basic needs, special needs, case management and pre-employment measures designed to increase self-reliance, to improve life skills and to promote greater attachment to the work force.
  • In 2017-18, Indigenous Services Canada spent $924 million to deliver Income Assistance in 540 First Nations, which supported approximately 81,000 clients and 69,000 dependents.
  • Income assistance dependency rates on reserve are significantly higher than provincial averages, 27.7% on reserve compared to the 5.5% national average off reserve.

Infrastructure

Vote #10, Grants and Contributions
$51.6 million in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)

Key Messages:

  • Supplementary estimates for 2019-20 include $51.6 million for income assistance and infrastructure to fund projects with more immediate health and safety impacts. Project examples include:
    • The Northern Ontario Grid Connection Project led by Wataynikaneyap Power, which will connect 16 First Nations communities located in remote northern Ontario to the provincial electricity grid, thereby ending their dependence on costly, emission-intensive diesel energy.
    • Winter roads, which are critical to the quality of life of remote, Indigenous communities. We currently financially support the construction, operation and maintenance of approximately 5,600 km of winter roads to 52 First Nations communities throughout Canada. These winter roads are required to ship essential supplies to communities with no year-round access to the nearest service center.

Additional Messages:

  • As of September 30, 2019 and since Budget 2016, we have invested $3.8 billion of targeted funds and $3.12 billion of ongoing funding to support infrastructure in First Nations communities on reserves.
  • The investment has resulted in:
    • 69 schools built or renovated;
    • 265 water and wastewater infrastructure projects completed, 88 Long-term Drinking Water Advisories and 150 Short-term Drinking Water Advisories have been lifted; and
    • 18,067 homes being built and renovated jointly with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.
  • Between April and September 2019 alone, $372.9 million of targeted funds has been invested to support infrastructure projects in First Nation communities across the country.

Background:

  • The current infrastructure funding is sunsetting (2020/21 for water and housing, and 2021/22 for schools). Despite the significant investments and progress made in the past few years, need for community infrastructure continues to be greater than available resources.
  • Securing infrastructure funding after the sunsetting period will allow the Government of Canada to continue to address infrastructure gaps.
  • Without continued funding, the existing community infrastructure on reserves will deteriorate further and limit First Nations' capacity to protect health and safety of First Nations residents living on reserves.
  • A portion of the $51.6 million under the Supplementary Estimates will be invested in water, school facilities and other community infrastructure such as roads. This fund will help to meet some of the immediate needs in community infrastructure on reserve.
Other Community Infrastructure
  • The Government of Canada is working in partnership with First Nations communities to provide access to other community infrastructure on reserves, which includes:
    • fundamental infrastructure (including energy and connectivity infrastructure, roads and bridges, structural mitigation against natural disasters, fire protection and planning and skills development);
    • infrastructure support for community buildout;
    • solid waste management on reserves; and
    • culture and recreation facilities.
  • As of September 30, 2019, $780.0 million of targeted funds have been invested to support 1,516 other community infrastructure projects, 1,104 of which have been completed, benefiting 588 First Nations communities and serving approximately 455,000 people.
Housing
  • The Government of Canada is co-developing and implementing distinctions based Indigenous housing strategies with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation partners.
  • Budget 2017-2018 invested:
    • $600 million over three years for First Nations housing;
    • $500 million over 10 years for Métis Nation housing; and
    • $400 million over 10 years for Inuit-led housing in addition to the $240 million over 10 years announced to support housing in Nunavut.
  • For First Nations housing on reserve, and in partnership with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Government of Canada has committed more than $1 billion with 18,067 homes being built and renovated since Budget 2016.
  • As of September 2019, 1,144 projects and 5,075 housing units and lots have been completed, and 807 capacity development / innovation projects have been supported with 507 completed.
Water
  • The Government of Canada is working to lift all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserves by March 2021 and is on track to achieve this goal.
  • Overall, $1.33 billion has been invested to support 574 projects. Budget 2019 dedicated an additional $739 million over five years, to support ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories.
  • Much work remains, but the results are encouraging with 88 long term drinking water advisories lifted to date. Action Plans are in place to address all remaining 61 advisories.
  • To date, 151 short term advisories have been prevented from becoming long term through these investments.
Schools
  • One key priority of the Government of Canada is to provide safe learning environments for First Nations students on reserves.
  • The Government of Canada has committed to investing $1.47 billion until 2021-2022 in First Nations schools facilities.
  • As of September 30, 2019, more than $675.3 million of targeted funds have been invested to support 189 school-related projects, resulting 69 schools built, renovated or upgraded, with another 66 in progress.

Community opportunity readiness program

Vote 10, Grants and Contributions
$15.8 million in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)

Key Messages:

  • This investment of $15.8 million through these Supplementary Estimates (B) will support First Nation and Inuit communities and community-owned organizations to pursue economic development opportunities, through the Community Opportunity Readiness Program (CORP).
  • The program supports the mandate of the Minister of Indigenous Services to promote economic development and create jobs for Indigenous peoples.
  • For example, many communities use wealth generated through community-owned businesses supported by the program to build schools, pay for tuition, create jobs, provide training, build houses or water treatment plants, support health care, and reduce dependency on social assistance.
  • The program also supports international commitments on economic, political, social and cultural rights of Indigenous peoples, including the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, by driving economic development and improving the living conditions of Indigenous communities.

Background:

CORP provides non-repayable financial support to First Nations communities across the country, and to Inuit communities in Labrador and Quebec to initiate, sustain, and expand viable economic development projects. CORP enables communities to leverage the private sector resources necessary to realize the full potential of economic development opportunities.

This Program generates Indigenous community wealth and jobs, helps close the socio-economic gap, and increases self-sufficiency, thus supporting independence and self-determination.

The program managers work closely with other departments and agencies, such as Employment and Social Development Canada, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, and regional development agencies to ensure alignment and complementarity of investments. In general, First Nations and Inuit communities are encouraged to apply to these mainstream programs first, and then to seek CORP funding to leverage other federal departments or private sector lender support and fill funding gaps.

Construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre

Vote 10, Grants and Contributions
$502,000 in the 2019-20 Supplementary Estimates (B)
(New Funding – First of the Five-Year $47.5 million)

Key Messages:

  • Supplementary Estimates (B) will provide $502,000 for the construction of the Nunavut Wellness Centre to be built in partnership with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated.
  • This investment will support the development of a made-in-Nunavut approach. It will improve access to trauma and addictions services that are based on Inuit cultural values. The Wellness Centre will greatly facilitate the healing and well-being of Inuit across Nunavut.

Background:

  • Nunavut has been without a wellness/treatment centre for over 20 years. The need for culturally safe substance use and trauma treatment services in Nunavut is acute.
  • The lack of an in-territory wellness centre adversely impacts vulnerable populations, including pregnant women and youth. The status quo, which involves travel to the southern provinces, falls short in providing adequate care due to language and cultural barriers and lack of proximity to family, home, and community.
  • The absence of a wellness centre in Nunavut was identified as a need in both Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami's National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Call to Action #21.
  • Indigenous Services Canada's involvement regarding health funding and services in Nunavut is through the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health, of which it is a funder and a member. This Table takes a consensus-based approach to the coordination and integration of funding and priorities amongst partners. Addressing gaps in health services, such as the provision of in-territory treatment for substance use in Nunavut has been a key priority of the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health.
  • In August 2019, a Joint Declaration of Intent between the Government of Canada, the Government of Nunavut, and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated was signed by all three parties outlining the commitments of each party to the Wellness Centre.
  • The total cost for the construction and operation of the Nunavut Wellness Centre will be shared between the Government of Canada, the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated. Working with Inuit partners to transfer the design, delivery, and management of trauma and addictions services advances the departmental vision to support and empower Indigenous peoples to independently deliver services and address the socio-economic conditions in their communities.
  • $502,000 in 2019-20 will contribute to the planning and design phase of the construction of the Nunavut Wellness Centre.
  • Budget 2019 provided $47.5M over five years (2019-20 to 2023-24) and $9.7M on an ongoing annual basis for the construction and ongoing operation of the facility.

Departmental transfers from CIRNAC to ISC

Key Messages:

  • In 2017, profound measures were initiated to affect a shift in the way the Government delivers services to Indigenous Peoples and advances self-determination and self-government of Indigenous Peoples.
  • The dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) and the creation of two new departments, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC) and Indigenous Services Canada (ISC), was announced.
  • In 2019, further changes to the structures of CIRNAC and ISC were announced as part of the continuation of the transformation.
  • The Individual Affairs Branch and the Lands and Economic Development Sector under CIRNAC are being transferred to ISC. Additionally, ISC and CIRNAC have chosen to establish a robust internal service structure with a large number of shared services functions located in one or the other department.
  • As a result, a net amount of $366.8 million is being transferred from CIRNAC to ISC. The $366.8 million consists of $129.4 million in Vote 1 Operating expenditures, $2.9 million in Vote 5 Capital expenditures and $234.5 million in Vote 10 Grants and Contributions.
  • These changes support the goal of bringing Indigenous service delivery and programming together while working in full partnership with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples.

Transformation History FTE vs Population

CIRNAC / ISC Employee Population Fact Sheet: Pre / Post Transformation (November 2017 – 2020)
  FTE - Full Time Equivalent Employee population
Definition

A measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person-year charge against a departmental budget.

Definition

The count of the number of employees within an organization on a specific date, e.g. year-end March 31.

Typically includes active employees of all employee types, such as indeterminate, specified term, casuals, and students but does not include contractors as they are not managed in the HR systems or compensated through the pay system.

Calculation

Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work and is mainly calculated for one Fiscal Year.

Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.

Employee counts do NOT take into consideration the assigned hours of work of employees. A part time employee is counted the same as a full time employee.

Example

An employee working full time for 3 months = 0.25 FTE

4 co-op students, each working 3 months = 1 FTE

An employee working full time = 1 employee count

4 co-op students = 4 employee count

Source of information

Financial systems such as SAP, SFT

HR systems such as PeopleSoft or Pay System

Reporting

Departmental Plans

Departmental Performance Reports

HR analytics and planning

Available

GC InfoBase Finance

GC InfoBase People

Employment equity

Employment equity by FTE is not available.

Employee population for the purpose of reporting Employment Equity includes indeterminate employees, employees with terms of three months or more, and seasonal employees (excluding those on leave without pay). Excluded are students and casual workers

Demographic Snapshot of the Federal Public Service: Glossary of Key Terms

CIRNAC / ISC Employee Population Fact Sheet: Pre / Post Transformation (November 2017 – 2020)
  Employee Population1 # of Aboriginal Peoples2 % of Aboriginal Peoples2 FTEs3
NCR Regions Total
Pre-OIC (November 2017) INAC 2605 2523 5128 1202 26.5% 4816
INAC - Internal Services           1529
Post OIC - Current Day CIRNAC 1326 615 1941 289 16.3% 1784
CIRNAC - Internal Services           687
ISC4 2251 4255 6506 1600 27.5% 5797
ISC - Internal Services           1280

Note:

1 Employee population consists of employees working for the organization at a given point in time. Includes all employee tenures (indeterminate, terms, casuals, seasonal employees, students and specials) as well as indeterminate employees on secondment-in or interchange-in. A population count does not include employees who have been suspended or are on leave without pay.

2 Employee population for the purpose of reporting Employment Equity includes indeterminate employees, employees with terms of three months or more, and seasonal employees (excluding those on leave without pay). Excluded are students and casual workers.

3 The FTE data aligns to the Program Inventory, which allows the most accurate segregation of Internal Services from program information. Note that the Internal Services numbers include the Internal Services functions that are managed by programs.

4 The ISC counts post OIC include the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch.

2020-21 Main estimates

Deck

2020-21 Main Estimates – Key Messages

  • For 2020-21, ISC's Main Estimates is $12.8 billion.
  • A net increase of about $538.7 million, or 4%, compared to last year's Main Estimates.
  • In addition to the Main Estimates, ISC is also anticipating funding from the investments announced in Budget 2020 as well as TB decisions with impact on 2020-21 approved post January 21, 2020.
  • This additional funding is expected to be accessed through future Estimates process (i.e. Supplementary Estimates).
  • Interim supply totaling $7.8 billion is expected by April 1, 2020.
  • Full supply of the 2020-21 Main Estimates is expected in late June 2020.

Year-Over-Year Major Changes

The net increase in budgetary spending is approximately $538.7 million or 4% over the 2019-20 Main Estimates. The major changes include:

  • net increase of $483.6 million related to the transfer from the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs primarily for Individuals Affairs and Lands and Economic Development programs as well as internal services as per Order in Council P.C. 2019-1109;
  • net increase of $85.7 million in the approved funding profile for elementary and secondary education as well as post-secondary education programs;
  • net increase of $61.7 million to support activities related to the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework;
  • net decrease of $172.1 million related to non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit; and
  • net increases of $79.8 million for a large number of items with increases and decreases.

Expenditures by Category

Expenditures by Category
Text alternative for the graph Expenditures by Category

Text description for chart

This pie chart shows the breakdown of expenditures by category for 2020–21 Main Estimates totaling $12,812 million. The breakdown is shown as follows: $10,773 million (84%) transfer payments; $7 million (0%) capital, $1,448 million (11%) health programs / federal teachers / statutory costs; $414 million (3%) program management and delivery; $170 million (1%) administrative overhead.

Based on this, about 95% (84% plus 11%) of resources are used to support or deliver services to Indigenous peoples.

Text description for table

The table shows the following:

The operating total of $2,032 million is comprised of $1,949 million Vote 1 operating expenditures, $81 million employee benefit plans (statutory) and $2 million loan guarantees (statutory).

The transfer payment total of $10,773 million is comprised of $10,742 million Vote 10 grants and contributions, $2 million Indian annuities treaty payments (statutory) and $30 million First Nations infrastructure(statutory).

The capital total is $7 million.

These amounts are reconciled to the 2020-21 Main Estimates page II-83 (Note: the total statutory of $115 million is comprised of about $83 million in operating and $32 million in transfer payments).

2020–21 Main Estimates – $12,812 million

  • About 95% of resources are used to support or deliver services to Indigenous peoples.
    • 84% through transfer payments to fund services delivered by First Nations community governments, Tribal Councils, health authority, etc.
      • Most funds are for basic provincial/municipal type services to individuals on reserve.
      • The federal government is committed to providing services on reserves comparable to those typically provided by the provinces.
      • Provincial standards guide program delivery leading to variability across regions.
      • Various funding mechanisms are used to allow for greater flexibility for the recipients, including the New Fiscal Relationship grant which commits funding over ten-year period.
    • 11% through operating to fund health-related goods and services not insured by provinces and territories or other private insurance plans. The department also employs nurses, health professionals and teachers to directly provide various health and education services.
  • About 5% of resources are used for program management and internal services.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditures by Departmental Results Framework: 2020–21 Main Estimates – $12,812 million

(in millions of dollars)

Services and Benefits to Individuals - 1,836
Supplementary Health Benefits 1,534
Clinical and Client Care 243
Community Oral Health Services 25
Individual Affairs 34
Health and Social Services - 5,426
Child First Initiative - Jordan's Principle 436
Mental Wellness 403
Healthy Living 93
Healthy Child Development 145
Home and Community Care 113
Health Human Resources 3
Environmental Public Health 60
Communicable Diseases Control and Management 102
Education 2,013
First Nations Child and Family Services 1,165
Income Assistance 763
Assisted Living 64
Family Violence Prevention 41
Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples 53
Governance and Community Development Services - 3,011
Health Facilities 135
e-Health Infostructure 27
Health Planning, Quality Management and Systems Integration 166
Water and Wastewater 742
Education Facilities 311
Housing 335
Other Community Infrastructure and Activities 527
Emergency Management Assistance 97
Indigenous Governance and Capacity 243
Economic Development Capacity and Readiness 102
Indigenous Entrepreneurship and Business Development 53
Land, Natural Resources and Environmental Management 267
Statutory, Legislative and Policy Support to First Nations Governance 4
Indigenous Self-Determined Services - 2,369
New Fiscal Relationship 1,536
Self-Determined Services 285
British Columbia Tripartite Health Governance 548

Internal Services - 171

Text description for table

This table shows the breakdown of expenditures by Departmental Results Framework. The breakdown by Core Responsibility is shown as follows: $1,836 million for Services and Benefits to Individuals; $5,426 million for Health and Social Services; $3,011 million for Governance and Community Development Services; $2,369 million for Indigenous Self-Determined Services; $171 million for Internal Services.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Grant to support the new fiscal relationship (NFR) for First Nations under the Indian Act

  • Starting in 2019-20, a new grant entitled "Grant to support the new fiscal relationship for First Nations under the Indian Act" was implemented.
  • The NFR grant is a funding mechanism intended to provide increased predictability and facilitate greater flexibility of First Nations to address local needs.
  • The variance between 2019-20 Main Estimates and 2019-20 Forecast Spending is due to lower than anticipated recipients number. The unused grant funding is returned to the programs to be made available to First Nations via other funding mechanisms.
  • In 2019-20, 85 First Nations are receiving funding from the NFR grant.
  • In 2020-21, the Department is anticipating the recipients number to increase.
Programs included in the new Grant (in million) 2019-20 Main Estimates 2019-20 Forecast Spending 2020-21 Main Estimates
Education 553.9 293.5 559.7
Social Development 352.3 142.0 356.2
Infrastructure 265.5 73.8 268.2
First Nations and Inuit Health 191.1 57.5 193.4
Indigenous Governance and Capacity 128.7 49.1 129.8
Land and Economic Development Services 25.2 * 25.2 * 25.4
Registration Administration 3.0 * 3.0 * 3.0
Total 1,519.7 644.0 1,535.8
* Transferred from CIRNAC.

Text description for table

This table shows the breakdown of programs included in the new grant entitled "Grant to support the new fiscal relationship for First Nations under the Indian Act" which was implemented starting in 2019-20. The total amounts of this grant for the 2019-20 Main Estimates, 2019-20 Forecast Spending and 2020-21 Main Estimates are $1,519.7 million, $644.0 million and $1,535.8 million, respectively.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Education

Expenditure Trend – Education
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Education

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for education from 2011-12 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant                 293 560
Self-Determined Services (Elementary and Secondary)                 136 285
Elementary and Secondary 1,353 1,403 1,435 1,447 1,465 1,787 1,897 1,964 2,003 1,689
Post-Secondary 322 332 341 342 340 359 402 410 387 323
Total 1,675 1,735 1,776 1,789 1,805 2,147 2,299 2,373 2,819 2,857
  • Note: Expenditure trends for INAC are included in this chart for the period 2011-12 to 2017-18 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • Overall, actual expenditures for education have increased by about 41.7% over the period 2011-12 to 2018-19.
  • The major increase observed from 2015-16 to 2018-19 is primarily due to investments in First Nations elementary and secondary education provided by Budget 2016.
  • $560 million of funding is transferred from program contributions to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $419 million from Elementary and Secondary Education, and
    • $141 million from Post-Secondary Education.

Source: 2011-12 to 2018-19 as per Departmental Performance Reports/Departmental Results Report.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Social Development

Expenditure Trend – Social Development
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Social Development

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for social development from 2010-11 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant                   142 356
Family Violence Prevention 32 32 34 33 32 37 38 42 43 42 41
Assisted Living 93 100 98 100 101 106 112 116 125 116 64
Income Assistance 824 843 865 874 910 904 924 973 1,030 964 763
Other * 77 48 50 51 38 39 39        
Total 1,026 1,023 1,048 1,056 1,081 1,086 1,113 1,132 1,198 1,264 1,225
* Starting in 2017-18, the National Child Benefit sub-program has been removed and replaced by the new Canada Child Benefit, which is managed through Canada Revenue Agency.
  • Note: Expenditure trends for INAC are included in this chart for the period 2010-11 to 2017-18 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • Overall, actual expenditures for social development have increased by about 17.1% over the period 2011-12 to 2018-19 (or by about 2.3% annually).
  • The investments in social development has increased steadily from 2010-11 to 2018-19.
  • $356 million of funding is transferred from program contributions to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $320 million from Income Assistance, and
    • $36 million from Assisted Living.

Source: 2011-12 to 2018-19 totals as per Departmental Performance Reports / Departmental Results Report; 2018-19 expenditures. For the period from 2011-12 to 2013-14, Family Capacity Initiatives are included in the Child and Family Services and beginning in 2014-15, Family Capacity Initiatives are included in Income Assistance, pursuant to the revised Program Alignment Architecture.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Child and Family Services

Expenditure Trend – Child and Family Services
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Child and Family Services

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for child and family services from 2011-12 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
Child and Family Services 655 662 667 652 681 768 844 1,254 1,732 1,165
  • Note: Expenditure trends for INAC are included in this chart for the period 2011-12 to 2017-18 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • Overall, actual expenditures for child and family services have increased by about 91.5% over the period 2011-12 to 2018-19.
  • The increase observed from 2015-16 to 2018-19 reflects the funding to support urgent investments in the First Nations Child and Family Services Program.
  • The decrease observed between 2019-20 and 2020-21 is mainly due to the timing approval of additional funding to support increasing program needs. This funding that was approved in 2019-20 is not yet reflected in 2020-21 Main Estimates. Funding for 2020-21 is expected in the future Estimates.

Source: 2011-12 to 2018-19 totals as per Departmental Performance Reports / Departmental Results Report. For the period from 2011-12 to 2013-14, Family Capacity Initiatives are included in the Child and Family Services and beginning in 2014-15, Family Capacity Initiatives are included in Income Assistance, pursuant to the revised Program Alignment Architecture.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure (excluding Health Infrastructure)

Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure (excluding Health Infrastructure)
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure (excluding Health Infrastructure)

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for Infrastructure (excluding Health Infrastructure) from 2011-12 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant                 74 268
Water and Wastewater 311 302 295 329 367 462 664 673 626 742
Other Community Infrastructure and Activities 448 421 383 435 423 615 663 517 517 527
Other Community Infrastructure and Activities 201 226 214 263 249 286 385 456 468 311
Housing 132 120 143 129 136 410 335 359 368 335
Total 1,093 1,069 1,035 1,155 1,176 1,773 2,048 2,006 2,053 2,184
  • Note: Expenditure trends for INAC are included in this chart for the period 2011-12 to 2017-18 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • The increase observed from 2015-16 to 2018-19 primarily reflects significant investments provided by Budget 2016, Budget 2017 and Budget 2018 across all Infrastructure asset categories.
  • $268 million of funding is transferred from program contribution to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $41 million from Housing,
    • $48 million from Education Facilities,
    • $123 million from Other Community Infrastructure and Activities, and
    • $56 million from Water and Wastewater.

Source: 2011-12 to 2018-19 totals as per Departmental Performance Reports /Departmental Results Report. Note – To be consistent with figures displayed for 2014-15 to 2018-19, figures originally reflected in DPRs for 2011-12 to 2013-14 have been restated to reflect the inclusion of Emergency Management Assistance funding previously reflected under the Federal Administration of Reserve Land/Responsible Federal Stewardship programs (pursuant to revisions to the Indigenous and Northern Affairs' Program Alignment Architecture).

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – First Nations and Inuit Health

Expenditure Trend – First Nations and Inuit Health
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – First Nations and Inuit Health

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for First Nations and Inuit Health from 2011-12 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant                 57 193
Health Infrastructure Support 352 306 525 640 672 782 841 877 884 880
Supplementary Health Benefits 1,112 1,156 1,071 1,076 1,139 1,252 1,359 1,442 1,690 1,534
Primary Health Care 949 981 927 871 888 941 1,147 1,561 1,896 1,592
Total 2,412 2,443 2,523 2,587 2,699 2,974 3,346 3,880 4,527 4,199
  • Note: Expenditure trends for Health Canada are included in this chart for the period 2011-12 to 2017-18 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • Expenditures increase observed from 2015-16 to 2018-19 primarily reflects significant investments provided by Budget 2016, Budget 2017 and Budget 2018 on Social Infrastructure, Non-Insured Health Benefits as well as increased spending on Nursing, Mental wellness.
  • The decrease observed between 2019-20 and 2020-21 is mainly due to:
    • the timing approval of additional funding to support increasing program needs in Jordan's Principle. This funding that was approved in 2019-20 is not yet reflected in 2020-21 Main Estimates. Funding for 2020-21 is expected in the future Estimates, and
    • decrease in approved funding for Non-Insured Health Benefits.
  • $193 million of funding is transferred from program contribution to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $146 million from Primary Health Care, and
    • $47 million from Health Infrastructure Support.

Source: 2011-12 to 2018-19 totals as per Departmental Performance Reports / Departmental Results Report.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Other Programs

Expenditure Trend – Other Programs
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Other Programs

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for other programs from 2011-12 to 2020-21.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant                 77 158
Land and Economic Development Related Programs 281 291 278 296 375 379 490 482 447 426
Indigenous Governance and Capacity 462 448 443 407 406 416 458 512 426 243
Emergency Management Assistance 165 59 80 108 115 118 140 165 240 97
Individual Affairs 43 37 34 32 34 38 40 51 38 34
Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples 15 52 52 50 50 49 53 53 53 53
Total 966 887 887 893 979 1,000 1,181 1,263 1,281 1,011
  • Note: Expenditure trends for INAC and CIRNAC are included in this chart for the period 2011-12 to 2018-19 in order to provide comparative figures for ISC.
  • The decrease observed between 2019-20 and 2020-21 is mainly due to:
    • the timing approval of additional funding to support increasing program needs in Emergency Management. This funding that was approved in 2019-20 is not yet reflected in 2020-21 Main Estimates. Funding for 2020-21 is expected in the future Estimates, and
    • decrease in approved funding to advance new fiscal relationship.
  • $158 million of funding is transferred from program contribution to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $130 million from Indigenous Governance and Capacity,
    • $25 million from Lands and Economic Development Programs, and
    • $3 million from Individual Affairs.

Source: 2010-11 to 2018-19 figures are based on restatement of expenditures reported in Departmental Performance Reports /Departmental Results Report.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure including Health Infrastructure

Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure including Health Infrastructure
Text alternative for the chart Expenditure Trend – Infrastructure including Health Infrastructure

This chart shows the breakdown of expenditures trend for Infrastructure including Health Infrastructure from 2011-12 to 2020-21. This chart provides an illustration of all Infrastructure that ISC delivers.

Numerical values presented on the image:

  Actual Expenditures (millions of dollars)
(INAC, ISC and INAC for 2017-18, ISC for 2018-19)
Forecast Spending (ISC) Main Estimates (ISC)
2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
"New Fiscal Relationship" Grant             77 282
e-Health Infrostructure 32 22 31 27 28 26 29 27
Health Facilities 104 80 90 168 198 173 167 135
Water and Wastewater 295 329 367 462 664 673 626 742
Other Community Infrastructure and Activities 383 435 423 615 663 517 517 527
Education Facilities 214 263 249 286 385 456 468 311
Housing 143 129 136 410 335 359 368 335
Total 1,171 1,257 1,296 1,968 2,274 2,205 2,252 2,361
  • These expenditures are already shown in the previous charts for Infrastructure and First Nations and Inuit Health.
  • This chart provides an illustration of all Infrastructure that ISC delivers.
  • The increase observed from 2015-16 to 2018-19 primarily reflects significant investments provided by Budget 2016, Budget 2017 and Budget 2018 across all Infrastructure asset categories.
  • In 2020-21, $282 million of funding is transferred from program contribution to the New Fiscal Relationship grant:
    • $41 million from Housing,
    • $48 million from Education Facilities,
    • $123 million from Other Community Infrastructure and Activities,
    • $56 million from Water and Wastewater, and
    • $14 million from Health Facilities.

Source: 2013-14 to 2018-19 totals as per Departmental Performance Reports /Departmental Results Report.

Figures may not add due to rounding.

Extract

Raison d'être

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) works collaboratively with partners to improve access to high quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Our vision is to support and empower Indigenous peoples to independently deliver services and address the socio-economic conditions in their communities.

The Minister of Indigenous Services is responsible for this organization. Additional information can be found in the Organization's Departmental Plan.

Organizational Estimates
  2019–20  
Budgetary Voted 2018–19 Expenditures Main Estimates (dollars) Estimates To Date(dollars) 2020–21 Main Estimates
1 Operating expenditures 1,740,473,629 1,954,110,539 1,958,756,500 1,949,217,820
5 Capital expenditures 6,554,077 5,617,593 4,978,593 6,832,498
10 Grants and contributions 9,758,542,662 9,496,193,599 10,533,893,299 10,741,544,381
- Better Information for Better Services   694,868,688 694,868,688  
Total Voted 11,505,570,368 12,150,790,419 13,192,497,080 12,697,594,699
Total Statutory 81,447,091 122,694,788 122,880,618 114,606,336
Total Budgetary 11,587,017,459 12,273,485,207 13,315,377,698 12,812,201,035
2020–21 Main Estimates by Purpose (dollars)
Budgetary Operating Capital Transfer Payments Revenues and other reductions Total
Health and Social Services 253,469,778 633,775 5,172,305,805 (317,165) 5,426,092,193
Governance and Community Development Services 208,522,946 3,241,437 2,799,036,489   3,010,800,872
Indigenous Self-Determined Services     2,369,018,506   2,369,018,506
Services and Benefits to Individuals 1,580,886,150 1,966,260 432,967,694 (180,169,788) 1,835,650,316
Internal Services 214,520,122 991,026   (44,872,000) 170,639,148
Total 2,257,398,996 6,832,498 10,773,328,494 (225,358,953) 12,812,201,035
Listing of the 2020–21 Transfer Payments (dollars)
  2018–19 Expenditures 2019–20 Main Estimates 2020–21 Main Estimates
Grants
Grant to support the new fiscal relationship for First Nations under the Indian Act   1,519,722,019 1,535,805,252
Grant for Band Support Funding 191,343,544 170,044,101 168,473,388
Grant to implement the Framework Agreement on First Nation Land Management     40,231,441
Grants for the Operation Return Home claims settlements     20,414,743
Grant to the Miawpukek Indian Band to support designated programs 11,284,147 11,509,830 11,740,027
Grants to provide income support to on-reserve residents and Status Indians in the Yukon Territory 7,673,063 10,000,000 10,000,000
Grants to support the First Nations Post-Secondary Education Strategy 539,812 1,500,000 1,500,000
Grants to support Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples   1,000,000 1,000,000
Grants to British Columbia Indian bands in lieu of a per capita annuity     300,000
Grants to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement   150,000 150,000
Grants to increase First Nations and Inuit Youth Participation in Education and Labour Market Opportunities 45,000 45,000 45,000
Total Statutory     2,100,000
Contributions
Contributions to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement 1,884,256,998 1,707,068,082 1,905,989,964
Contributions to support the construction and maintenance of community infrastructure 1,928,431,337 1,715,162,130 1,806,555,147
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Primary Health Care 1,218,327,111 740,337,346 1,224,069,824
Contributions to provide women, children and families with Protection and Prevention Services 1,292,312,473 1,167,983,898 1,189,584,908
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Health Infrastructure Support 846,444,634 819,690,369 845,310,580
Contributions to provide income support to on-reserve residents and Status Indians in the Yukon Territory 1,138,536,624 814,112,270 810,071,252
Contributions for First Nations and Inuit Supplementary Health Benefits 280,210,974 298,074,688 332,601,158
Contributions to support the First Nations Post-Secondary Education Strategy 388,441,974 216,808,441 285,464,257
Contributions to support Land Management and Economic Development     158,227,468
Contributions to First Nations for the management of contaminated sites     136,121,512
Contributions for emergency management assistance for activities on reserves 161,181,198 64,977,822 93,113,582
Contributions to support Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples 51,561,272 50,178,051 50,178,051
Contributions to increase First Nations and Inuit Youth Participation in Education and Labour Market Opportunities 74,747,057 69,086,668 35,559,000
Contributions to support the Métis Nation Post-Secondary Education Strategy     26,822,405
Contributions to supply public services in Indian Government Support and to build strong governance, administrative and accountability systems 271,656,294 115,173,284 20,691,620
Contributions to support the Aboriginal Economic Development Strategic Partnerships Initiative     14,450,000
Contributions to support the Inuit Post-Secondary Education Strategy     7,322,515
Contributions to Indian bands for registration administration     5,188,798
Contributions for the purpose of consultation and policy development 1,549,150 3,569,600 4,562,489
Total Statutory 29,403,625 59,088,073 29,684,113
Listing of Statutory Authorities (dollars)
  2018–19 Expenditures 2019–20 Main Estimates To Date 2020–21 Main Estimates
Budgetary
Contributions to employee benefit plans 51,806,530 61,704,845 80,732,923
Contributions in connection with First Nations infrastructure (Keeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing Act) 29,403,625 59,088,073 29,684,113
Indian Annuities Treaty payments (Indian Act)     2,100,000
Liabilities in respect of loan guarantees made to Indians for Housing and Economic Development (Indian Act) 74,614 2,000,000 2,000,000
Minister of Indigenous Services – Salary and motor car allowance (Salaries Act and Parliament of Canada Act) 1,855 87,700 89,300

Unless specifically identified under the Changes in 2020–21 Main Estimates section, all vote wordings have been provided in earlier appropriation acts.

Annex – Items for inclusion in the Proposed Schedules to the Appropriation Bill
Vote No. Items Amount ($) Total ($)
Department of Indigenous Services
1
  • Operating expenditures
  • Expenditures on works, buildings and equipment
  • Authority to make expenditures – recoverable or otherwise – on work performed on property that is not federal property and on services provided in respect of that property
  • Authority to provide, in respect of Indian and Inuit economic development activities, for the capacity development for Indians and Inuit and the furnishing of materials and equipment
  • Authority to sell electric power to private consumers in remote locations when alternative local sources of supply are not available, in accordance with terms and conditions approved by the Governor in Council
  • Authority, as referred to in paragraph 29.1(2)(a) of the Financial Administration Act, to expend in the fiscal year – in order to offset related expenditures that it incurs in that fiscal year – revenues that it receives in that fiscal year from
    • the provision of services or the sale of products related to health protection and medical services; and
    • the provision of internal support services under section 29.2 of that Act
  • The payment to each member of the Queenʼs Privy Council for Canada who is a minister without portfolio, or a minister of State who does not preside over a ministry of State, of a salary – paid annually or pro rata for any period less than a year – that does not exceed the salary paid under the Salaries Act, rounded down to the nearest hundred dollars under section 67 of the Parliament of Canada Act, to ministers of State who preside over ministries of State
1,949,217,820  
5
  • Capital expenditures
  • Expenditures on buildings, works, land and equipment the operation, control and ownership of which
    • may be transferred to provincial governments on terms and conditions approved by the Governor in Council; or
    • may be transferred to Indian bands, groups of Indians or individual Indians at the discretion of the Minister of Indigenous Services
  • Expenditures on buildings, works, land and equipment that are on other than federal property
  • Authority to make recoverable expenditures on roads and related works in amounts not exceeding the shares of provincial governments of expenditures
6,832,498  
10
  • The grants listed in any of the Estimates for the fiscal year
  • Contributions, in the form of monetary payments or the provision of goods or services
10,741,544,381  
Total 12,697,594,699

2019-20 main estimates compared to 2020-21

Key Messages:

  • For 2020-21, Indigenous Services' Main Estimates is $12.8 billion.
  • A net increase of about $538.7 million, or 4%, compared to last year's Main Estimates. The major changes include:
    • net increase of $483.6 million related to the transfer from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs primarily for Individuals Affairs and Lands and Economic Development programs as well as internal services as per the Order in Council 2019-1109;
    • net increase of $85.7 million in the approved funding profile for elementary and secondary education as well as post-secondary education programs. The Department will continue to work with Indigenous partners so that Indigenous students have access to a high quality education;
    • net increase of $61.7 million to support activities related to the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Framework to improve access to high-quality, inclusive, early learning and child care programs for Indigenous children across Canada;
    • net decrease of $172 million related to non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit is a result of funding allocation timing;
    • net increases of $79.8 million for a large number of items with increases and decreases.

Background:

Items with Decreased Funding
Item Change from 2019-20 to 2020-21 Rationale
Other Statutory Items listed in the Public Accounts of Canada No amount in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 Main Estimates

2018-19 Expenditures: $160,467 is for "Spending of proceeds from the disposal of surplus Crown assets"

Pursuant to sections 13(2) and 14 of the Surplus Crown Assets Act, departments as defined in section 2 of the Financial Administration Act are authorized to establish a spending authority equal to the proceeds received from the disposal of surplus Crown assets. The proceeds received in any fiscal year that have not been spent in that fiscal year are carried forward to the next fiscal year for use in that fiscal year only. The amount carried forward is however subject to a maximum limit.

As such, this item is only displayed in the Public Accounts when actual expenditures are captured.

Funds not allocated in the 2020-21 Departmental Results Framework Decrease of $694,868,688 in Budget Implementation votes

The 2019-20 Main Estimates included Budget Implementation votes to capture Budget 2019 measures. Each voted budgetary measure included in table A2.11 in the 2019 Federal Budget had a separate vote in the department identified. This approach provided parliamentary committees with greater opportunity to examine individual Budget 2019 measures, as well as greater control over the funding related to Budget announcements.

As the Budget Implementation Vote will not be included in the 2020-21 Main Estimates, there is a decrease of $695 million when comparing with last year's Main Estimates.

Indian Government Support to Build Strong Governance, Administrative and Accountability Systems

Contributions:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $115,173,284
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $20,691,620
  • Decrease: ($94,481,664)

The decrease of $94.5M is primarily due to:

  • sunset of funding to advance the new fiscal relationship with First Nations (-$66.3M), and
  • internal transfer to contribution titled "Contributions to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement" for the Education Reform (-$27.2M). This is only a change of reporting relationship, not funding level.
First Nations and Inuit Youth Participation in Education and Labour Market Opportunities

Grants:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $45,000
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $45,000
  • Change: $0

Contributions:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $69,086,668
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $35,559,000
  • Decrease: ($33,527,668)

The decrease of $33.5M is primarily due to:

  • sunset of funding for the First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy (Budget 2017) (-$27.7M), and
  • transfer to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for the Indspire program (-$5.8M).
Items with Increased Funding
Item Change from 2019-20 to 2020-21 Rationale
Grant to implement the Framework Agreement on First Nation Land Management Increase of $40,231,441
  • These increases are related to the transfer from the Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for Individuals Affairs and Lands and Economic Development programs as per Order in Council P.C. 2019-1109, effective July 22, 2019.
  • Since this transfer was done during fiscal year 2019-20, the 2019-20 Main Estimates is zero.
Grants to British Columbia Indian bands in lieu of a per capita annuity Increase of $300,000
Contributions to support Land Management and Economic Development Increase of $158,227,468
Contributions to First Nations for the management of contaminated sites Increase of $136,121,512
Contributions to support the Aboriginal Economic Development Strategic Partnerships Initiative Increase of $14,450,000
Contributions to Indian bands for registration administration Increase of $5,188,798

Decreases reported in main estimates

Key Messages:

  • For 2020-21, Indigenous Services' Main Estimates is $12.8 billion, representing a net increase of about $538.7 million, or 4%, compared to last year's Main Estimates.
  • Most of the decreases between the 2018-19 expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates are due to a re-allocation of funding from annual contribution agreements with First Nation communities to the 10-year grant model.
  • $1.5 billion in funding is set aside in 2020-21 for First Nations with these grant agreements, including 85 First Nation communities that moved to the grant model last fiscal year, and additional First Nation communities that will move to the grant in 2020-21.
  • The 10-year grant is a key initiative of Indigenous Services Canada's ongoing commitment to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nation communities.
  • We are committed to continuing to work to ensure the continuity of programming and the delivery of services.

On Decreases to Child and Family Services:

  • Due to the timing of these estimates and funding cycles, increased funding for Child and Family Services is expected in future estimates.
  • Since 2015, the Government's approach of Child and Family Services has been focused on addressing the needs of Indigenous families and communities, while preventing apprehension and keeping children with their families and communities.
  • This has been supported by significant investments that have almost doubled funding to child and family services agencies, based on actual needs and with an emphasis on prevention.
  • Funding has increased from $681 million in 2015-2016 to $1.7 billion in 2019-2020.
If pressed further:
  • In 2019-2020, our Government is investing $1.7 billion of funding for First Nations child and family services.
  • In 2020-2021, the Government is investing $1.2 billion of funding for First Nations child and family services.
  • The Supplementary Estimates (B) alone allocates $588.3 million for the First Nations Child and Family Services program.
  • The adoption of C-92 marked an historic turning point for Indigenous children and families.
  • We will continue to engage with partners to assess and address long-term funding needs.

On decreases to Emergency Management Assistance:

  • We recognize that Indigenous communities are disproportionately affected by emergency incidents and evacuations that can have devastating impacts on families and communities.
  • We work with Indigenous partners on fire prevention, protection, education, and mitigation.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding for Emergency Management Assistance has increased from $115 million in 2015-2016 to $240 million in 2019-2020.
  • For example, last year alone, we:
    • Supported 99 First Nations to update and exercise their emergency management plans and conduct mitigation projects; and
    • made improvements to emergency response including providing cultural supports to evacuees.
  • The decrease observed between 2019-20 and 2020-21 is mainly due to the timing of approval of additional funding to support increasing program needs in emergency management. It is also due to a reallocation of funding to the New Fiscal Relationship grant.

On decreases to First Nations and Inuit Youth Participation in Education and Labour Market Opportunities:

  • The decrease of $33.5M in contributions is due to:
    • sunset of funding for the First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy (Budget 2017) (-$27.7M); and
    • This also reflects a transfer of $5.8M to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for the Indspire program.
    • These programs address the significantly lower rate of educational attainment within the Indigenous population, and First Nation and Inuit under-representation in the Canadian workforce.
    • These incentives serve to integrate culturally appropriate content within K-12 education, facilitate student transitions from secondary to post-secondary education and/or from school to the workplace, and, ultimately, increase the number of skilled Indigenous youth in the workforce.

On decreases to contributions to supply public services in Indian Government Support and to build strong governance, administrative and accountability systems:

  • ISC provides governance and administration support to First Nation governments and Aboriginal organizations and institutions through four distinct but related grants and contributions programs, collectively known as the Indian Government Support programs:
    • Band Support Funding
    • Employee Benefits
    • Professional and Institutional Development
    • Tribal Council Funding
  • Investing in core governance costs and governance capacity projects supports the objective of renewing Nation to Nation relationships with First Nations by providing opportunities for communities to:
    • take greater control over the decisions that affect their lives; carry out effective relationships with other governments;
    • take advantage of economic development opportunities;
    • improve programs and services; and,
    • enhance their social and economic well-being.
  • The decrease of $94.5M is primarily due to:
    • sunset of funding to advance the new fiscal relationship with First Nations (-$66.3M), and
    • internal transfer to contribution titled "Contributions to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement" for the Education Reform (-$27.2M). This is only a change of reporting relationship, not funding level.
  • Budget 2018 invested in the following:
    • $127.4 million over two years to directly support First Nation communities in building internal fiscal and administrative capacity. This includes $87.7 million over two years to ensure that communities under default management are able to move forward on projects that form part of their management action plans, and to support pilot projects in order to strengthen governance and community planning capacity in First Nations;
    • $2.5 million over three years to support the First Nations Information Governance Centre's design of a national data governance strategy and coordination of efforts to establish regional data governance centres; and
    • $8.7 million over two years to continue and broaden work with First Nations leadership, technical experts, researchers and community representatives on the new fiscal relationship.

On decreases to Non-Insured Health Benefits for Inuit and First Nations:

  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for First Nations and Inuit Health is over $4 billion, and the program has provided coverage of health benefits to over 873,000 First Nations and Inuit in 2018-19.
  • Due to the timing of the funding cycle, funding for NIHB is expected in future estimates.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding for NIHB has increased from $1.1 billion in 2015-2016 to $1.7 billion in 2019-2020.
  • We are committed to ensuring First Nations and Inuit continue to have access to medically necessary health benefits and services they need through this program.
  • In addition, we are working with partners to initiate distinctions-based healthcare legislation to ensure Indigenous people have access to health services, and we close the unacceptable gaps in health outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

Other decreases related to transfer to 10-year grants:

Primary Health Care
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding from program contribution to the 10-year grant, with $146 million from Primary Healthcare being re-allocated to the grant.
  • The decrease also reflected the sunset of funding for Jordan's Principle, which was then renewed through Budget 2019.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding has increased from $888 million in 2015-2016 to $1.9 billion in 2019-2020.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Health Infrastructure Support
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding from program contribution to the 10-year grant, with $47 million from health infrastructure support being re-allocated to the grant.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding has increased from $672 million in 2015-2016 to $884 million in 2019-2020.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Income Assistance
  • Since 2015, our Government has seen steady increases in investments to social development expenditures.
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates for income assistance is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.
  • Eligible recipients under the Income Assistance Program are provided financial assistance to support their basic needs at standards reasonably comparable to the relevant province of residence.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Assisted Living
  • Since 2015, the Government has seen steady increases in investments to social development expenditures.
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates for assisted living is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.
  • The Assisted Living program supports the special needs of chronically ill and disabled persons for non-medical personal care services, for non-medical institutional care and for public education and awareness.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
K-12 Education
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, for K-12 education is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding for K-12 education has increased from $1.46 billion in 2015-2016 to $2 billion in 2019-2020.
  • Our new co-developed funding approach on K-12 education ensures First Nations children on-reserve are funded at the same levels as provincial schools, with additional funding for language and cultural programming.
Post-Secondary Education
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, for Post-Secondary Education is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.
  • We are also working with First Nations on a review of Post-Secondary Education programs to better meet the needs of students.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Infrastructure: Education Facilities, Housing, Community Infrastructure, and Water and Wastewater
  • The decrease reflected in the Main Estimates, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, is due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.
  • In 2020-21, $48 million from Education Facilities, $41 million from Housing, $123 million from Community Infrastructure and Activities, and $56 million from Water and Wastewater are being re-allocated to the 10-year grant.
  • Due to investments in recent budgets, funding for infrastructure has increased from $979 million in 2015-2016 to $1.3 billion in 2019-2020.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Lands and Economic Development
  • About $25 million from Lands and Economic Development related programs are being re-allocated to the 10-year grant in 2020-21.
  • Budget 2019 invested $78.9 million over five years, starting in 2019–20, with $15.8 million per year ongoing, to support Indigenous entrepreneurs and economic development. This investment, through the Community Opportunity Readiness Program, will help First Nations and Inuit communities build business plans, and provide funding to expand existing Indigenous-led businesses, and launch new Indigenous-led start-ups.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
Indigenous Governance and Capacity
  • The decrease reflected here, when comparing the 2018-19 Expenditures to the 2019-20 Main Estimates, is mainly due to a re-allocation of funding from program contribution to the 10-year grant. $130 million from Indigenous Governance and Capacity is being re-allocated to the grant in 2020-21.
  • The decrease between 2019-20 Main Estimates and 2020-21 Main Estimates is mainly due to the sunset of funding to advance the new fiscal relationship with First Nations, and internal transfer to contribution titled "Contributions to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement" for the Education Reform, which is only a change of reporting relationship, not funding level.
  • Budget 2019 invested $48 million over two years, starting in 2019–20, to directly support communities in greatest need obtain the expertise, advice and tools required to govern their communities and deliver critical programs and services.
  • We are committed to ensuring the continuity of programming and services and continuing to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards flexible, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.

First Nations & Inuit youth participation in education & labour market opportunities

Key Messages:

  • The First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy is a component of the broader Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, led by Employment and Social Development Canada, which supports employment and skills development opportunities for First Nations and Inuit youth between the ages of 15 and 30.
  • The proposal-based strategy funds First Nation and Inuit communities, governments and organizations, not-for-profit associations and private sector employers to better support First Nations and Inuit youth, particularly those facing barriers, to participate in the labour market. There are two streams:
    • Skills Link supports First Nations and Inuit youth to acquire essential job-related skills, learn about career options, and prepare for employment; and
    • Summer Work Experience supports First Nations and Inuit youth to acquire skills, prepare for full-time employment and earn income.

Decrease in Contributions to increase First Nations and Inuit Youth Participation in Education and Labour Market Opportunities

The decrease of $33.5M in contributions is due to:

  • sunset of funding for the First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy (Budget 2017) (-$27.7M), and
  • transfer to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for the Indspire program (-$5.8M).

Grants:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $45,000
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $45,000
  • Change: $0

Contributions:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $69,086,668
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $35,559,000
  • Decrease: ($33,527,668)

Supplying public services in indian government support & building strong governance, administrative and accountability systems

Key Messages:

  • Strong governance capacity is foundational to achieving ISC's mandate of reducing socio-economic gaps and supporting greater self-determination.
  • Indigenous Services Canada provides $352 million annually for core governance and administration support to First Nation communities.
  • ISC provides governance and administration support to First Nation governments and Aboriginal organizations and institutions through four distinct but related grants and contributions programs, collectively known as the Indian Government Support programs:
    • Band Support Funding
    • Employee Benefits
    • Professional and Institutional Development
    • Tribal Council Funding
  • Investing in core governance costs and governance capacity projects supports the objective of renewing Nation to Nation relationships with First Nations by providing opportunities for communities to:
    • take greater control over the decisions that affect their lives; carry out effective relationships with other governments;
    • take advantage of economic development opportunities;
    • improve programs and services; and,
    • enhance their social and economic well-being.

Decrease in Contributions to supply public services in Indian Government Support and to build strong governance, administrative and accountability systems

The decrease of $33.5M in contributions is due to:

  • The decrease of $94.5M is primarily due to:
    • sunset of funding to advance the new fiscal relationship with First Nations (-$66.3M), and
    • internal transfer to contribution titled "Contributions to support First Nations Elementary and Secondary Educational Advancement" for the Education Reform (-$27.2M). This is only a change of reporting relationship, not funding level.

Contributions:

  • 2019-20 Main Estimates: $115,173,284
  • 2020-21 Main Estimates: $20,691,620
  • Decrease: ($94,481,664)

Background:

First Nations are increasingly assuming primary responsibility for delivering programs and services to their members. The Indian Government Support programs contribute to the ongoing costs of First Nation governments and institutions while also providing tools and support to help First Nation governments and institutions build on their capacity to govern. As a result, First Nations are able to assume greater administrative responsibility for not only the vast majority of ISC programs but also a wide range of other federal and provincial programs in addition to many municipal-type services.

ISC's Professional and Institutional Development (P&ID) Program plays a key role in strengthening community capacity. The current objective of the proposals-based P&ID program is to help develop the capacity of First Nations and Inuit communities to perform the ten core functions of government, by funding governance-related projects at the community and institutional levels in the areas of: Leadership, Membership, Law-Making, Community Involvement, External Relations, Planning and Risk Management, Financial Management, Human Resources Management, Information Management / Information Technology, Basic Administration.

Modernization of the Indian Government Support program is currently being co-developed with the Assembly of First Nations through the Governance Capacity Table Working Group. By addressing the core governance funding gap, First Nations will have the ability to allocate funds according to their individual needs and priorities and be responsive in an environment of growing complexity, enabling good fiscal health as they move forward on the path of self-determination.

Grant to support the new fiscal relationship for First Nations under the Indian Act

Vote 10 ($1.5 billion)

Key Messages:

  • The 10-Year Grant is a key initiative of Indigenous Services Canada's ongoing commitment to establish a new fiscal relationship that moves towards sufficient, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations.
  • The 10-Year Grant makes funding available to First Nations in a way that enhances predictability of funding, reduces reporting, and provides greater freedom to design and deliver services and to allocate funding based on community priorities.
  • Up to $1.5 billion in Vote 10 funding is set aside in 2020-21 for First Nations with 10-Year Grant agreements, including 85 First Nations who moved to the grant last fiscal year as well as First Nations who will move to the grant in 2020-21.
  • Unused 10-Year Grant funding is returned to Indigenous Services Canada's programs to be made available to First Nations via other funding mechanisms.
  • Approximately $644 million went to the 85 First Nations who entered the grant in 2019-20.
  • It should be noted that while funding for some programs showed decreases in the Main Estimates, this is due to a re-allocation of funding to the 10-year grant.

Background:

The Grant to Support the New Fiscal Relationship for First Nations Under the Indian Act, known as the 10-Year Grant or the 10-Year Transfer, was made available by Indigenous Services Canada starting in April 2019, based on eligibility criteria co-developed with the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Financial Management Board. The grant was established with a notional ceiling of $1.5 billion in 2020-21, a figure based on projections of how many First Nations may become eligible in the near term.

Funding for the 10-Year Grant is drawn from programs whose funding was included in the grant as of April 2019, including: K-12 and post-secondary education, income assistance, assisted living, primary health care, minor capital, infrastructure operations and maintenance, band support funding, lands management, and economic development.

First Nations qualify for the 10-Year Grant by meeting certain financial performance ratios and by enacting and implementing a financial administration law. These criteria are based on the standards of the Financial Management Board. In 2019-20, 85 First Nations moved to the 10-Year Grant. For 2020-21, an additional 30-40 First Nations are expected to qualify.

Elementary, secondary and post-secondary education

Key Messages for Elementary and Secondary Education:

  • The Department provides funding to support elementary and secondary education for First Nations students ordinarily resident on reserve.
  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for the Elementary and Secondary Education are $2 billion.
  • On April 1, 2019, the Department implemented a new co-developed approach for elementary and secondary education, which provides provincially comparable formula-based funding for on-reserve students, full-day kindergarten for children ages 4 and 5 in First Nations schools, and additional funding for language and culture.
  • Additionally, to support First Nations control of First Nations education, program funding can be included in eligible communities' 10-year New Fiscal Relationship Grants.
If pressed on the variance between 2020-21 Main Estimates and 2019-20 forecast spending for elementary and secondary education:
  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for the Elementary and Secondary Education Program are $2.0 billion in comparison to the forecasted $2.1 billion in 2019-20. This adjustment is primarily due to the transfer of program contributions to the New Fiscal Relationship Grant, which is expected to see additional communities in 2020-21.
  • The Department continues to work with partners to provide First Nations students with a high quality and culturally appropriate education that responds to their needs.

Key Messages for Post-Secondary Education:

  • The Department provides distinctions-based strategies to support First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation post-secondary students. These strategies include direct financial assistance for students, support services, and funding for Indigenous institutions.
  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for the Post-Secondary Education Program is $323 million.
  • Additionally, First Nations post-secondary funding can also be included in the 10-year New Fiscal Relationship Grants
If pressed on the variance between 2020-21 Main Estimates and 2019-20 forecast spending on post-secondary education:
  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for the Post-Secondary Education Program is $323 million in comparison to $387 million forecasted in 2019-20. This adjustment is primarily due to the transfer of program contributions to the New Fiscal Relationship Grant, which is expected to see additional communities in 2020-21.
  • The Department continues to work with partners to provide Indigenous students with a high quality and culturally appropriate education that responds to their needs.

Background on Elementary and Secondary Education:

  • In 2016, the Assembly of First Nations and the Government of Canada signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a new fiscal relationship towards sufficient, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations communities.
  • In support of this effort, in 2018, Indigenous Services Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relationships and Northern Affairs Canada introduced a new grant funding approach, supported by funding arrangements of up to ten years. This change provides First Nations with: greater predictability of funding to support innovation in service delivery and longer-term partnerships; and, enhanced flexibility in the design and delivery of services.
  • Annual funding allocations for ten-year grant recipients are calculated based on the current methodologies for each program included in the grant. For elementary and secondary education, funding allocations use the new formula-based funding approach, which are calculated using the Nominal Roll, provincial rates, and enhancements to meet First Nations' specific needs.
  • In 2019-20, 85 First Nations received funding through the New Fiscal Relationship Grant. This number is expected to continue to grow in 2020-21.

Background on Post-Secondary Education:

  • Historically, Indigenous Services Canada provided post-secondary funding to First Nations through core allocations and proposal-based programming, including the Post-Secondary Student Support Program, the University and College Entrance Preparation Program, and the Post-Secondary Partnerships Program.
  • Budget 2019 is investing $824.0 million over 10 years and $61.8 million ongoing for distinctions-based Indigenous post-secondary strategies. This funding is allowing the Department to renew and expand the Post-Secondary Student Support Program, establish new Inuit and Métis Nation post-secondary education strategies, and engage with First Nations to develop regional post-secondary strategies.

New Fiscal Relationship

  • In 2016, the Assembly of First Nations and the Government of Canada signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a new fiscal relationship towards sufficient, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations communities.
  • In support of this effort, in 2018, Indigenous Services Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada introduced a new grant funding approach, supported by funding arrangements of up to ten years. This change provides First Nations with: greater predictability of funding to support innovation in service delivery and longer-term partnerships; and, enhanced flexibility in the design and delivery of services.
  • Annual funding allocations for ten-year grant recipients are calculated based on the current methodologies for each program included in the grant. For post-secondary education, funding allocations are based on the regional population over the age of 18.
  • In 2019-20, 85 First Nations received funding through the New Fiscal Relationship Grant. This number is expected to continue to grow in 2020-21.

Income assistance

Key Messages:

  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates is allocating $763 million for income assistance to help First Nations people meet their basic and special needs on reserve. The funding also provides case management supports to help individuals transition to education and employment.
  • Additionally, to support First Nations control of social programming, eligible communities can access Income Assistance funding through a 10-year New Fiscal Relationship Grant.
If pressed on the variance between 2020-21 Main Estimates and 2019-20 forecast spending:
  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for Income Assistance is $763 million in comparison to $964 million forecasted in 2019-20. This $201M reduction is mainly due to the transfer of program contributions to the New Fiscal Relationship Grant.
  • The level of funding allocated for Income Assistance remains consistent with previous years.

Background:

  • In consultation with our partners, the Government of Canada established a new fiscal relationship that moves towards sufficient, predictable and sustained funding for First Nations communities.
  • A grant funding approach, supported by funding arrangements of up to ten years, provides First Nations under the Indian Act with: greater predictability of funding to support innovation in service delivery and longer-term partnerships; and, enhanced flexibility in the design and delivery of services.
  • In 2019-20, 85 First Nations received funding from the New Fiscal Relationship Grant and we expect this number to grow in 2020-21.

Child and family services

Key Messages:

  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates includes $1.2 billion for First Nations child and family services.
  • Every First Nation child deserves the best start in life. The Department provides funding to First Nations child and family services agencies, which are established, managed and controlled by First Nations and delegated by provincial authorities to provide prevention and protection services.
  • In areas where these agencies do not exist, the Department funds services provided by the provinces and Yukon but does not deliver child and family services. These services are provided in accordance with the legislation and standards of the province or territory of residence.
  • The Department uses a prevention-based funding model to support early intervention and alternatives to traditional institutional care and foster care, such as the placement of children with family members in a community setting.
If pressed:
  • The Department is currently paying actuals as ordered by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) to cover agency costs, including for prevention, building repairs, intake and investigation, legal fees, child service purchase, small agency costs, and band representatives in Ontario.
  • Through the Supplementary Estimates the Program's budget will be $1.7 billion to ensure Canada continues to be compliant with the CHRT orders.

Background:

The program provides 4 streams of funding:

  • Operations: core and operational funding for protection services (such as salaries and overhead)
  • Prevention: resources for enhanced prevention services
  • Maintenance: direct costs of placing First Nations children into temporary or permanent care out of the parental home (such as foster care rates and group home rates)
  • Community well-being and jurisdiction initiative: this new funding stream from Budget 2018 supports First Nations communities to lead the development and delivery of prevention services and to assert greater control over the well-being of their children and families.

Canadian Human Rights Tribunal Orders

  • On January 26, 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (the CHRT) found that the federal government had discriminated against First Nations children and their families living on reserve and in the Yukon by underfunding First Nations child and family welfare services under its FNCFS Program. The CHRT ordered the Department to cease its discriminatory practices and to reform the FNCFS Program to address the findings in their decision.
  • The following compliance orders have been released by the CHRT between 2016 and 2018:
    • April 2016 - Calling for immediate relief funding for agencies;
    • September 2016 - Focusing on how the plan for new investments was developed and whether it meets the needs of First Nations children;
    • March 2017 - Orders related to proceeding with a remoteness study with Nishnawbe Aski Nation; and
    • February 2018 – Orders related to pay on actual agency costs in key areas. September 6, 2019 - Compensation order to pay 40,000 ($20,000 for pain and suffering and $20,000 for wilful and reckless conduct) per child and parent or grandparent. This is the maximum amount that can be awarded by the CHRT.
  • On February 1, 2018, the CHRT issued orders which have had the most significant operational impact on the FNCFS Program thus far. These orders included:
    • funding (for prevention, building repairs, intake and investigation, legal fees, child service purchase, and small agency costs) based on actual costs retroactive to January 26, 2016 to April 2, 2018 and, afterwards, continuing to fund based on actuals until a new program framework and funding approach is in place;
    • with respect to the Ontario 1965 Welfare Agreement, funding band representatives in Ontario, retroactive to January 2016, and ongoing until a new system is in place and agreed to by all parties;
    • performing a cost analysis of FNCFS agency needs, including small agency needs; and developing an alternative funding system; and
    • ceasing the unnecessary reallocation of funding from other social programs, especially housing, and ensuring any reallocation does not adversely impact First Nation children and families.
  • In response to the February 2018 orders, Canada immediately began to reimburse the actual costs of prevention, intake and assessment, legal fees, building repairs, child service purchase and small agency costs (in all areas), as well as the actual costs of band representatives in Ontario, retroactively to January 26, 2016.
  • As part of Budget 2018 investments, ISC now has a new funding stream to fund Community Well-Being and Jurisdiction Initiatives (CWJI) across the country. This funding supports First Nation communities in developing and delivering prevention services and working to improve the well-being of children and families and explore jurisdictional models. Eligible recipients include First Nations communities, Tribal and Band Councils, health or social service organizations such as health centres or other community services.
Examples of Promising Practices of Community Well-Being and Jurisdiction Initiatives

Child Advocate Office in Manitoba

  • The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs officially opened the Manitoba First Nations Family Advocate Office (FNFAO) on June 1st, 2015. The need for an advocacy office was determined through community consultation in which hundreds of First Nations community members shared challenges for individuals, their families and communities. The information gathered from the community engagement sessions prompted a report entitled "Bringing Our Children Home" that offered recommendations that would immediately address many of the issues and concerns identified in the community engagement sessions.
  • The FNFAO is an added mechanism to implement the recommendations of the report and ensure that support is offered to children and families. The Office assists families by challenging existing jurisdictions, policies, laws and organization using Indigenous knowledge, customary laws, traditions and belief systems to create positive change for children, families and communities. By advocating action through prevention, education, culture and collaboration, the Office works to empower First Nations individuals, families and communities while ensuring improved health, support, care and safety for children.
  • ISC provided $800K in funding to the Advocate's Office in 2017-2018 to support a proposal to expand its advocacy services. An additional $2.1 million was provided in 2018-2019 to continue the work of the office. The funding will be used to expand the advocacy role of the Child Advocate Office and to support families who have brought, or who are bringing, their children home after a period of time in child and family services care. Through support for this initiative, the Government of Canada is also reaffirming its commitment to the Assembly of Manitoba Chief's Grandmothers Council and the important role the Grandmothers will have in revitalizing traditional parenting ways, providing traditional knowledge as community customary care models are planned, and taking the lead role in preventing newborn apprehensions.

Ma Mawa We Chi Itata Centre : Family Group Conferencing

  • Established in 1984 in Winnipeg, Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata, offers community based programs and services and has over 30 years of experience working with Indigenous families. It uses Family Group conferencing, a Maori wise practice which has been successful in New Zealand with outcomes that includes reducing the number of children in care by provision of adequate resources.
  • In November 2017, the Family Group Conference Program expanded with an investment of $2.5 million dollars over 3 years from the Winnipeg Foundation, Province of Manitoba and Government of Canada. The expansion will allow for: 445 Family Group Conferences, impacting approximately 1,215 children both in care and preventing children from coming into care.
  • Family Group Conferencing is an Indigenous model of care that utilizes ceremony to support traditional Indigenous ways to support and empower the voice of families to become the decision makers in the safety and protection of their children while mandated and non-mandated services engage by supporting the family plan. Success is based on children being reunited with their parents and/or family members with the ultimate goal of the child(ren) no longer being in care of the child and family services system.
  • ISC confirmed a contribution of $150,000 in 2017-2018 and continued funding in 2018-2019 of $175,000 to support a family centered, culturally appropriate community based model using Family Group Conferencing for Indigenous families residing on reserve or migrating to urban centres. The focus will be to work with key family members, Child and Family Services and other supports/resources to develop a supportive plan for the child and family.
  • Successful outcomes with one of their programs – CLOUT (Community Lead Organizations United Together - a foster care program for Indigenous families focused on family reunification) over a five-year period (2010-2015) enrolled 182 children of which 154 were reunited with family within 3-6 months (84%). Out of the 154 only 14 children returned to child protection for safely concerns (9%).
  • Key findings from Year 1 funding between April 1, 2017 to March 1, 2018:
    • 102 families currently registered in the Family Group Conference Program
    • 274 total number of children involved in the Family Group Conference Program
    • 194 Children with a Child in Care Status
    • 32 children placed in Kinship Homes In Care Status
    • 40 children prevented from coming into Child and Family Services Care
    • 40 Children fully reunited with parent(s) no longer in care
    • 169 Children in different stages of Family Group Conference with the goal of reunification within the next 3-6 months
    • All completed Family Group Conferences to date has resulted in a plan of reunification to Parent(s) and or Family member
    • 4 family file closures due to one year in the Monitor and Review Stage with no further CFS Involvement.
    • Daily cost savings to the child welfare system for 80-children reunited/prevented: $4960.00/day $1,810,400/year for each year they remain out of care (based on average rate $65/day).
    • Cost Savings of Foster Home Rate to Kinship Rate based on 32 children who are in Kinships Care: Foster Care Rate: $2080.00/Day to Kinship Rate $768/Day. Foster Home Rate for every year they remain in their care for up to one year: $759,200 compared to Kinship Rate after one year: $280,320. Cost Savings: $478, 880 (based on a $65/day rate for Foster Home to Kinship Basic Rate of $24/day

The Stikine Wholistic Working Group

  • Three First Nations in British Columbia (Tahltan, Kaska, Tlingit) through the Stikine Wholistic Working Group (SWWG) are trailblazing a new best practice in social policy and innovation.
  • The SWWG has been recognized as a provincial and international best practice for its work that builds healthy communities by using local expertise to restore traditional practices and networks of support. The Stikine region of BC is seen as likely the only jurisdiction in Canada to have reduced their children in care by 50%. Relations with Ministry social workers also improved significantly.
  • A new partnership between Canada and the 3-Nations will significantly further and transform a holistic community based approach for children and families–not just for the Kaska, Tahltan and Tlingit, but has the potential to impact programming for all First Nations families.
  • The Stikine Wholistic Working Group's approach to building healthy communities, by empowering local expertise to restore traditional practices and networks of support is commendable, and provides an example to other First Nations communities and government policy. The successful experience of the Stikine Wholistic Working Group in developing social policy on sustainable community based service delivery complements and fully aligns with ISC's six points of action that were committed to at the Emergency Meeting.

Infrastructure investments

Key Messages:

  • The Main Estimates for 2020-2021 total $2 billion of ongoing and targeted funding to be invested in school facilities, water and wastewater infrastructure, housing and other community infrastructure.
    • More than $8 billion of committed and proposed targeted funding through Indigenous Services Canada is supporting Indigenous community infrastructure until 2026–2027.
    • In addition to the targeted funding, close to $1 billion of annual permanent funding (included in the Main Estimates) is allocated to First Nation communities to support additional infrastructure projects, capacity and readiness development, operations and maintenance, and training.
    • These investments help to grow the economies of First Nations by supporting job creation, skills training and business development, while also laying the foundation for a long-term investment strategy in First Nation community infrastructure to build healthy, safe and prosperous communities.
  • Rationale/Justification for Investment:
    • Funding helps meet the infrastructure needs of First Nation communities while protecting the health and safety of residents and the environment, as well as creating jobs and inclusive growth;
    • Our goal is to support First Nation communities to have adequate and sustainable housing, clean drinking water, better schools, as well as other community infrastructure such as roads, and culture and recreational facilities;
    • While co-development of improved infrastructure service delivery is ongoing, we continue to collaborate with First Nations partners to support the full transfer of departmental responsibilities related to infrastructure to First Nation organisations;
    • To enhance sufficiency, predictability, flexibility and autonomy of funding for First Nation communities, $268 million of infrastructure funding is transferred from infrastructure program contribution to the New Fiscal Relationship grant.
    • The Department has a clear mandate to co-develop and invest in distinctions-based infrastructure plans to address critical infrastructure needs in First Nation, Inuit and Métis communities by 2030.
  • Actual investment figure:
    • As of September 30, 2019 and since Budget 2016, the Department has invested $3.8 billion of targeted funds and $3.12 billion of permanent funding to support infrastructure in First Nations communities on reserves.
    • The investment has resulted in:
      • 69 schools built or renovated;
      • 265 water and wastewater infrastructure projects completed, 88 long-term drinking water advisories and 150 short-term drinking water advisories have been lifted; and
      • 18,067 homes being built and renovated jointly with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.
    • Between April and September 2019 alone, $372.9 million of targeted funds has been invested to support infrastructure projects in First Nation communities across the country.

Background:

  • The current infrastructure funding is sunsetting (2020/21 for water and housing, and 2021/22 for schools). Despite the significant investments and progress made in the past few years, need for community infrastructure continues to be greater than available resources.
  • Securing infrastructure funding after the sunsetting period will allow the Government of Canada to continue to address infrastructure gaps.
  • Without continued funding, the existing community infrastructure on reserves will deteriorate further and limit First Nations' capacity to protect health and safety of First Nations residents living on reserves.

Other Community Infrastructure

  • The Government of Canada is working in partnership with First Nation communities to provide access to other community infrastructure on reserves, which includes:
    • fundamental infrastructure (including energy and connectivity infrastructure, roads and bridges, structural mitigation against natural disasters, fire protection and planning and skills development);
    • infrastructure support for community buildout;
    • solid waste management on reserves; and
    • culture and recreation facilities.
  • To support other community infrastructure on reserves, the Government of Canada is investing $1.37 billion until 2026–2027.
    • Of this amount, $48 million was committed through Budget 2019 over four years, starting in 2020–2021, to renew funding for on-reserve infrastructure projects that will protect communities from climate-related hazards.
  • As of September 30, 2019, $780 million of targeted funds have been invested to support 1,516 other community infrastructure projects, 1,104 of which have been completed, benefiting 588 First Nations communities and serving approximately 455,000 people.

Housing

  • The Government of Canada is co-developing and implementing distinctions based Indigenous housing strategies with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation partners.
  • Budget 2017-2018 invested:
    • $600 million over three years for First Nations housing;
    • $500 million over 10 years for Métis Nation housing; and
    • $400 million over 10 years for Inuit-led housing in addition to the $240 million over 10 years announced to support housing in Nunavut.
  • For First Nations housing on reserve, and in partnership with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Government of Canada has committed more than $1 billion with 18,067 homes being built and renovated since Budget 2016.
  • As of September 2019, 1,144 projects and 5,075 housing units and lots have been completed, and 807 capacity development / innovation projects have been supported with 507 completed.

Water

  • The Government of Canada is working to lift all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserves by March 2021 and is on track to achieve this goal.
  • Overall, $1.33 billion has been invested to support 574 projects. Budget 2019 dedicated an additional $739 million over five years, to support ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories.
  • Much work remains, but the results are encouraging with 88 long term drinking water advisories lifted to date. Action Plans are in place to address all remaining 60 advisories.
  • To date, 150 short term advisories have been prevented from becoming long term through these investments.

Schools

  • The Government of Canada knows that every First Nation child deserve the best start in life and the support that enables them to reach their full potential. This is why the Government of Canada:
    • co-developed a new policy framework with partners to transform the way education on reserve is funded;
    • supports full-day kindergarten programs in First Nations schools for children aged four and five; and
    • invests in language and cultural programming.
  • One key priority is to provide safe learning environments for First Nations students on reserves.
  • As a result of the Government of Canada's investments 69 schools have been built, renovated or upgraded, with another 66 in progress.
  • The Government of Canada has committed to investing $1.47 billion until 2021-2022 in First Nations schools facilities.
  • As of September 30, 2019, more than $675.3 million of targeted funds have been invested to support 189 school-related projects (Budget 2014 and Budget 2016)
  • These projects will result in the construction or renovation of 135 schools, benefitting close to 33,000 students.

First Nations and Inuit health

Key Messages:

  • The 2020-21 Main Estimates for First Nations and Inuit Health is over $4 billion.
  • The Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) program is key to ensuring First Nations and Inuit have access to supplementary coverage for a range of health benefits, including prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications, dental and vision care, medical supplies and equipment, mental health counselling, and transportation to access health services not available locally.
  • This program has provided coverage of health benefits to over 873,000 First Nations and Inuit in 2018-19.
  • Due to the timing of the funding cycle, increased funding for NIHB is expected in future estimates.
  • We are absolutely committed to ensuring First Nations and Inuit continue to have access to medically necessary health benefits and services through this program.

Other Investments:

  • Our Government has made significant new investments of $6.7 billion in First Nations and Inuit health over the past four budgets. The goal is to close the gap in accessing quality healthcare between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada. For example, this funding has:
    • supported 63 community-led mental wellness teams serving 344 communities, up from 11 teams in 2015; and
    • approved more than 508,000 Jordan's Principle requests for products and services since 2016.
  • We are also working with Indigenous partners towards developing arrangements that support self determination and control over Indigenous health.

Background:

  • Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) works collaboratively with partners to improve access to high quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Our vision is to support and empower Indigenous peoples to independently deliver services and address the socio-economic conditions in their communities.
  • The First Nations and Inuit Health Branch within ISC supports First Nations and Inuit in their aim to influence, manage, and control health programs and services that affect them.
  • The most advanced model of First Nations health transfer is in British Columbia where a tripartite Framework Agreement was signed in 2011 and led to the full devolution of the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch's regional operations in 2013 to a newly established First Nations Health Authority.

Operation Return Home

$20.4 million

Key Messages:

  • The 2020-2021 Main Estimates include $20.4 million for the for the Operation Return Home claims settlements.
  • The safety and security of all Canadians is our Government's top priority.
  • Operation Return Home has fully repatriated residents from three of the four communities affected by flooding in 2011.
  • Infrastructure projects for all four communities are ongoing and will be finalized in fiscal year 2020-2021. The finality of Operation Return Home will be the completion of Comprehensive Settlement Agreements for all four communities.

Background:

Operation Return Home is a multi-year project to rebuild and repair four First Nation communities – Pinaymootang First Nation, Dauphin River First Nation, Lake St, Martin First Nation, and Little Saskatchewan First Nation - severely impacted by a 2011 flood. The overall objective is to return evacuees to their communities and to negotiate, resolve, and finalize all litigation among Canada, Manitoba, and the four affected First Nations.

Operation Return Home is not complete, as there are still evacuees who have not returned home. The current drafted Comprehensive Settlement Agreements are based on the Agreements in Principle signed by the affected parties in 2017.

One of the four Operation Return Home Communities, Pinaymootang First Nation, successfully ratified their Comprehensive Settlement Agreement on September 30, 2019. Pinaymootang First Nation is seeking to have their Comprehensive Settlement Agreement executed and payment made in fiscal year 2020 - 2021. Dauphin River First Nation has begun the process of finalizing their Comprehensive Settlement Agreement. Once completed, a ratification vote will be required.

Three communities have fully repatriated to their respective communities. The remaining evacuees from Lake St. Martin First Nation are expected to return home by the end of March 2020, when housing construction is complete.

All four Operation Return Home Communities have some remaining infrastructure projects that will not be complete this fiscal year. The delay of completion is the result of extreme weather (October 2019) and contractual delays. These factors were outside the control of the region.

In the event that Comprehensive Settlement Agreements cannot be reached for those First Nations that have not yet ratified, it is likely that they will move forward with litigation claims. It is expected that Canada will be held accountable for some damages. Advice from the Department of Justice has consistently been that funds spent on rebuilding infrastructure for the First Nations are likely to reduce any eventual damage awards.

Minister's office budget

Vote 1 and Statutory Authority

Key Messages:

Minister's Office Budget included in the Voted Authority (i.e. Vote 1)

  • The budgets for Ministers' Offices are funded from existing departmental reference levels and are intended to cover the costs of their portfolio and other official government business. These budgets are in addition to and separate from funding that a Minister has as a Member of Parliament.
  • Components of Ministers' Office budgets include:
    • Ministers' exempt staff personnel costs budgets ("exempt staff budget");
    • Ministers' other operating costs (i.e. non-personnel) budgets ("other operating budgets"); and
    • Ministers' departmental staff personnel costs budget ("departmental staff budget").
  • A Minister who wishes to have his or her budget increased or modified, or an exception granted, must first obtain the written agreement of the Prime Minister's Office and the President of the Treasury Board. The Treasury Board must approve the proposal. Budgetary increases and exceptions are to be funded from the existing departmental reference levels.

Minister's salary and motor vehicle allowance included in Statutory Authority

  • A Minister's salary and motor vehicle allowance are authorized by separate enabling legislation that does not require annual approval by Parliament. The salary of each Cabinet Minister as well as of both Government House Leaders is provided for in section 4 of the Salaries Act and the minister's motor vehicle allowance is provided for in paragraph 63(2) of the Parliament of Canada Act.

Hot issues

Departmental transformation

Key Messages:

  • The creation of Indigenous Services Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, was announced by the Prime Minister in August of 2017.
  • The dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada follows the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples and the two new departments are already better serving the distinct needs of First Nations, Inuit and Métis.
  • These two new departments will allow us to break from the colonial past and to better serve the distinct needs of First Nations, Inuit and Métis while accelerating a move towards self-determination.
  • We are improving the delivery of services while accelerating a move to self-determination of Indigenous peoples.
  • Between the departments, a shared service model is in place where some corporate level activities are shared between them, including Human Resources and Communications functions.

If pressed on cost

  • There has been a minimal increase in the administrative costs of either department as a result of the creation of the departments.
  • In 2016-2017, the former INAC and the First Nation and Inuit Health Branch's internal services represented 2.8% of the total program budget. In 2019-2020, internal services will represent 1.9% of the total program budget.

Mandate of Indigenous Services Canada (ISC)

  • ISC's mandate is to improve the delivery of services and programs to Indigenous communities, and to build their capacity to enable them to close socio-economic gaps, and move towards self-determination.
  • The goal is to support and empower Indigenous people to independently deliver services and programs to improve outcomes.

Mandate of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC)

  • CIRNAC's goal is to accelerate the work already begun to renew the nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown, and government-to-government relationship between Canada and Indigenous peoples, as well as promote the self-reliance, prosperity and well-being of the residents and communities of the North.
  • This involves modernizing institutional structures and governance so that First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples can build capacity that supports implementation of their vision of self-determination.

Transition Costs

  • There has been a minimal increase in the administrative costs of either department as a result of the creation of the departments.
  • The departments were provided with additional funding of $117.1 million for transition costs over a period of three years with an ongoing component of $19.1 million.
  • From the additional funding, $59.7 million was attributed to create separate departments and the integration of the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) from Health Canada into ISC.
  • The remaining $57.4 million was intended to fund ongoing administrative costs for both departments' internal services (such as management and oversight (Minister and Deputy Ministers' offices), finance, procurement and material management, accommodations, security, human resources, information management, information technology, audit and evaluation and real property services).
  • Factoring this additional funding, the internal services costs for CIRNAC and ISC will still be smaller as a percentage of overall funding than what the percentage of internal service costs was for CIRNAC and ISC at the time of the Government's announcement.
  • However, there may be a need for additional funding going forward to ensure that both departments can deliver on their respective mandates and keep pace with the needs of our partners.

Departmental Budget

  • In 2016-17, the former INAC and Health Canada's FNIHB had a total combined budgetary authority of $12.6B.
  • The total for 2019-20 is $21.6B broken down as:
    • $13.7B for Indigenous Services Canada;
    • $7.0B for Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada; and
    • $0.8B which was incurred by Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development prior to the creation of the new department, Department of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs.
  • Significant increases observed since 2016-17 is a result of successive budget investments as well as funding related to the Sixties Scoop and Childhood Claims settlements.
Authorities 2016–17 Year End Authorities (in millions of dollars)
INAC 9.5
HC - FNIHB 3.1
Total Combined 12.6
Authorities 2017-18 Year End Authorities (in billion of dollars)
INAC 8.4
HC - FNIHB 2.3
ISC 4.5
Total Combined 15.2
Authorities 2018-19 Year End Authorities (in billion of dollars)
CIRNAC:
DIAND (Old Legal Entity)
5.1
CIRNAC:
CIRNA (New Legal Entity)
N/A
Total 5.1
ISC 11.9
Total Combined 17.0
Authorities 2019-20 Proposed Authorities including Supplementary Estimates (A) & (B) (in billion of dollars)
CIRNAC:
DIAND (Old Legal Entity)
0.9
CIRNAC:
CIRNA (New Legal Entity)
7.0
Total 7.9
ISC 13.7
Total Combined 21.6

Internal Services Costs

  • In 2016-2017, the former INAC and the First Nation and Inuit Health Branch's internal services represented 2.8% of the total departmental budget. In 2019-2020, internal services will represent 1.9% of the total budget.
  • In 2017-18, former INAC and Health Canada's FNIHB and ISC internal services was approximately $382 million. This represents 2.6% of program dollars.
  • In 2018-19, CIRNAC and ISC internal services was approximately $462 million. This represents 2.8% of program dollars.
  • In 2019-20, based on Supplementary Estimates B proposed authorities to date, CIRNAC and ISC internal services is $394 million. This represents 1.9 % of program dollars.
2016–17 Year End Authorities (in billion of dollars)
  Authorities Total Combined
INAC HC - FNIHB *
Programs
Other Votes (Operating, Capital) 844.0 1,357.4 2,201.4
Transfer Payments 8,359.8 1,701.5 10,061.3
Sub-total 9,203.8 3,058.9 12,262.7
Internal Services
Sub-total 310.9 27.4 338.3
Total 9,514.7 3,086.3 12,601.0
% of IS vs Transfer Payment 3.7% 1.6% 3.4%
% of IS vs Program 3.4% 0.9% 2.8%
% of IS vs Total 3.3% 0.9% 2.7%

Source: Public Accounts and Departmental Results Report 2016-17 to 2018-19

* The $27.4 for Heatlh Canada FNIHB Internal Services is based on the amount agreed upon by Health Canada and ISC. This figure has been included to ensure a comparable baseline but is not publicly available information.

2017-18 Year End Authorities (in billion of dollars)
  Authorities Total Combined
INAC HC - FNIHB * ISC
Programs
Other Votes (Operating, Capital) 895.1 1,357.4 806.7 2,478.1
Transfer Payments 7,345.1 1,411.8 3,619.7 12,376.7
Sub-total 8,121.5 2,306.9 4,426.5 14,854.8
Internal Services
Sub-total 316.3 27.4 37.8 381.5
Total 8,437.7 2,334.3 4,464.2 15,236.3
% of IS vs Transfer Payment 4.3% 1.9% 1.0% 3.1%
% of IS vs Program 3.9% 1.2% 0.9% 2.6%
% of IS vs Total 3.7% 1.2% 0.8% 2.5%

Source: Public Accounts and Departmental Results Report 2016-17 to 2018-19

* The $27.4 for Heatlh Canada FNIHB Internal Services is based on the amount agreed upon by Health Canada and ISC. This figure has been included to ensure a comparable baseline but is not publicly available information.

2018-19 Year End Authorities (in billion of dollars)
  Authorities Total Combined
CIRNAC:
DIAND and CIRNA**
ISC
Programs
Other Votes (Operating, Capital) 833.0 1,805.8 2,638.8
Transfer Payments 4,015.8 9,889.9 13,905.7
Sub-total 4,848.8 11,695.7 16,544.5
Internal Services
Sub-total 279.7 182.7 462.4
Total 5,128.5 11,878.3 17,006.9
% of IS vs Transfer Payment 7.0% 1.8% 3.3%
% of IS vs Program 5.8% 1.6% 2.8%
% of IS vs Total 5.5% 1.5% 2.7%

Source: Public Accounts and Departmental Results Report 2016-17 to 2018-19

** This include former legal entities DIAND and CIRNA

2019-20 Proposed Authorities including Supplementary Estimates (A) & (B)
  Authorities Total Combined
CIRNAC:
DIAND and CIRNA**
ISC
Programs
Other Votes (Operating, Capital) 4,114.2 2,038.9 6,153.2
Transfer Payments 3,579.2 11,488.3 15,067.5
Sub-total 7,693.4 13,527.2 21,220.6
Internal Services
Sub-total 183.9 209.8 393.6
Total 7,877.3 13,737.0 21,614.3
% of IS vs Transfer Payment 5.1% 1.8% 2.6%
% of IS vs Program 2.4% 1.6% 1.9%
% of IS vs Total 2.3% 1.5% 1.8%

Source: Public Accounts and Departmental Results Report 2016-17 to 2018-19

** This include former legal entities DIAND and CIRNA

Full-time Equivalents (FTEs)

  • In 2016-17, former INAC and Health Canada's FNIHB internal services had a total of 1,793 FTEs. This represented 34.5% of program FTEs.
  • In 2017-18, former INAC and Health Canada's FNIHB and ISC internal services has 1,870 FTEs. This represented 34.4% of program FTEs.
  • In 2018-19, CIRNAC and ISC internal services had a total of 1,957 full-time equivalents. This represented 35.3% of program FTEs.

Benchmarking

  • The table reflects the various cost factors utilized by the Office of the Comptroller General that compare ISC and CIRNAC separately and combined to the former INAC.
  • The combined ISC / CIRNAC benchmark results have reduced significantly from the former INAC levels, with a 33% effective reduction for internal services FTEs over program FTEs from 46% to 31%, as internal services FTE growth has not kept pace with that of program FTEs.
Departmental Benchmarking
Cost Factors Comparable Ranges INAC 2019-20
Upper Median Lower 6 years exp. ISC CIRNAC Combined
1. Internal Services FTEs / Program FTEs 44% 34% 25% 46% 32% 29% 31%
2. Adjusted Internal Services Gross Voted Operating Expenditures / Adjusted Program Gross Voted Operating Expenditures 51% 38% 25% 31% 26% 25% 26%
3. Internal Services Gross Voted Operating Expenditures / Departmental FTEs (000's) 46 36 25 60 29 37 32
4. Internal Services FTEs / Departmental FTEs 31% 25% 20% 32% 24% 23% 24%

* Gross Voted Operating Expenditures exclude Grants and Contributions

** The Lands and Economic Development Sector and the Individual Affairs Branch are reflected in CIRNAC

Accomplishments

Key Messages:

  • We are delivering on a renewed relationship with Indigenous peoples, where we are working together to improve quality of life and advance self-determination.
  • We know that unacceptable socio-economic gaps exist and we are working to close these. This is why we have made significant new investments of $21 billion through four budgets, which have resulted in:
    • 69 schools built or renovated;
    • 208 water and wastewater infrastructure projects completed;
    • More than 508,000 requests for products, services, and supports approved under Jordan's Principle.
  • We know we have a long way to go and we will continue to work in partnership with Indigenous peoples towards closing the unacceptable socio-economic gaps that exist today.

If pressed:

  • We know that unacceptable socio-economic gaps exist and we are working to close these. Immense progress has been made in areas such as:
    • The lifting of long-term drinking water advisories;
    • The co-development of distinctions-based housing strategies;
    • The advancement of Indigenous-led healthcare delivery;
    • The recognition of jurisdiction in child and family services; and
    • A new fiscal relationship with communities.
  • We know there is more to do, and we will continue this work in true partnership with Indigenous peoples.

Youth:

  • Every Indigenous child deserves the best start in life.
  • We know that unacceptable socio-economic gaps exist and we are working to close these. This is why we are advancing
  • A new funding formula for K-12 education, which has resulted in regional funding increases of almost 40%;
  • The number of First Nation schools offering elementary full-day kindergarten programs has increased from 30% to 59%; and,
  • Almost doubling funding for First Nations child and family services to approximately $1.2 billion in 2018-19 with a focus on prevention.
  • We will not leave another generation of Indigenous children behind.

Canadian Human Rights Tribunal

Key Messages - Compensation:

  • We fully agree – we must compensate First Nations children harmed in care by discriminatory government policies.
  • We're seeking a solution that is comprehensive, fair, and equitable for First Nations children related to child and family services.
  • The CHRT ordered Canada to engage in discussions regarding a process for compensating victims of Canada's discrimination against First Nations children and that is what we have done.
  • We have worked in collaboration with the Assembly of First Nations and First Nations Child and Family Caring Society to achieve broad agreements on important issues related to compensation.
  • We will continue to work with the parties on a comprehensive resolution to compensation that is fair and equitable for all victims, while seeking guidance from the Tribunal on matters we weren't able to reach agreements at this stage.
  • Nothing about our commitment to implement other orders from the CHRT or reforming child and family services changes. This work will continue.

If pressed on Compensation:

  • The over-representation of Indigenous children in care is a sad and dark part of our shared history that we must address.
  • We have been clear – we must compensate First Nations children harmed by discriminatory child and family service policies.
  • Our goal remains comprehensive, fair and equitable compensation that will further healing.
  • We have worked closely with the Parties and found consensus on a number of key areas of a compensation process, as part of the joint Framework for the Payment of Compensation filed on Friday February 21, 2020.

If Pressed on Compliance:

  • We continue to work on addressing compliance challenges related to CHRT rulings.
  • Resources including additional staffing and process review as part of Continuous Quality improvements to address CHRT orders are ongoing.
  • We continue to monitor progress in addressing non-compliance of CHRT orders through improved supports to regional focal points, providing ongoing education, review of Standard Operating procedures at regular intervals, as well as efficient review of over 530,000 service requests since 2015. This allows products and services to be accessed by those requesting them as soon as possible.

If Pressed on continuing with Judicial Review:

  • Our government is committed to seeking an equitable, fair and comprehensive settlement on compensation that will ensure long-term benefits for individuals and families and enable community healing.
  • Through the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, our government, the First Nations Caring Society, and the Assembly of First Nations have achieved progress.
  • We maintain there are substantive issues with the Tribunal order as written and the Judicial Review should provide clarity on that so we can focus on what's really important here – compensating those who have been wronged.

If Pressed on the Moushoom class action:

  • Our government has been clear that we will compensate First Nations children harmed by discriminatory government policies related to First Nations child and family services.
  • We had been working with counsel for Moushoom to reach mutually agreed upon terms to certify the class action lawsuit.
  • We are asking for additional time to reach these terms, given the significance of this matter.
  • We continue to work with all parties to move this important matter forward.

If pressed on Indigenous Child and Family Services Program – Reform Efforts to Date

  • In keeping with our six-point plan on reform, we continue to work on fully implementing the Tribunal's orders, including doubling funding to child and family services agencies, based on their actual needs and with an emphasis on prevention, from $681 million in 2015-2016 to $1.7 billion in 2019-2020.
  • More specifically, this funding:
    • further supports the implementation of Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings received prior to September 2019;
    • covers anticipated maintenance costs incurred by service providers;
    • addresses operating costs for new agencies; and
    • addresses pressures related to provincial agreements.
  • We have also revised our policy on reallocation in consultation with partners, in a manner that responds to our partners' concerns and Canada's financial management responsibilities.
  • As part of Budget 2018 investments, we have implemented a new funding stream to fund Community Well-Being and Jurisdiction Initiatives across the country, to support First Nation communities in developing and delivering prevention services and working to improve the well-being of children and families and explore jurisdictional models. Eligible recipients include First Nations communities, Tribal and Band Councils, health or social service organizations such as health centres or other community services.
  • In 2019-2020, the Community Well-Being and Jurisdiction Initiatives largely supported prevention activities and initiatives such as cultural programs, youth programs, and reunification programs. Funding of $117 million was provided to approximately 390 First Nations communities and organizations.
  • A major milestone was also achieved this past January 1, when the Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families came into force. The Act enables Indigenous communities to exercise jurisdiction over child and family services, and establishes minimum standards to ensure the best interests of Indigenous children; cultural continuity; and substantive equality.
  • This legislation lays out flexible pathways for Indigenous peoples to move forward with their own models and laws, and choose their own solutions for their children and families.
  • It also ensures that there is an appropriate framework for Indigenous children to be cared for in the right way, with connections to their communities, cultures, and languages, no matter what service provider is engaged in their lives.
  • We remain committed to addressing the needs of First Nations children and will continue to work with partners on these matters.

Jordan's Principle – Specific Case (M.J.)

  • We are working with partners to advance the well-being of Indigenous children.
  • While we cannot comment on a specific case, we are committed to ensuring that no First Nations child faces barriers in receiving the support or service he or she needs due to discrimination.
  • Over 533, 299 requests for supports and services have been approved for children since 2015.
  • We will be continuing conversations with the parties to the Tribunal to address any outstanding concerns.

Jordan's Principle – First Nations Identity

  • Our Government is working with partners to continue full compliance of Tribunal orders on Jordan's Principle.
  • For Jordan's Principle, we have expanded eligibility to non-status First Nations children living on reserve, non-status First Nations children who could be eligible for status, and non-Status Indigenous children ordinarily resident on reserve.
  • We will continue working with First Nations leadership with the aim of reaching consensus on this important issue outside of the Tribunal process.

If pressed on the Department's costs related to CFS legal challenges

  • Our commitment to compensate First Nations children harmed by discriminatory child and family services policies is firm.
  • Our goal remains comprehensive, fair and equitable resolution to compensate Indigenous children harmed by discriminatory government policies.
  • We continue to work with all parties to move this important matter forward.
  • Since 2016, we've almost doubled funding to child and family services agencies, based on actual needs and with an emphasis on prevention - increasing to nearly $1.7B in 2018-19.

AFN Class Action on Compensation:

  • Our Government fully agrees – we must compensate First Nations children harmed by discriminatory child and family services policies.
  • We remain focused on delivering fair and equitable compensation.
  • We hope all parties can work together so that we can continue advancing toward our shared goal of compensating children.
  • We made a commitment and nothing about our commitment changes. We will continue to work with all relevant parties to ensure we make this right.

NAN Participation in Compensation Process:

  • The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ordered us to enter into discussions with the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Caring Society to establish an independent process for compensation.
  • We engaged NAN, the Chiefs of Ontario, and the Canadian Human Rights Commission as part of our discussions with the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Caring Society to work toward a proposal with the broadest possible consensus.
  • We appreciate the feedback NAN provided but we all agreed to engage in confidential conversation and will honour that.

First Nations Children in care

  • 9,246 First Nations children in care funded by FNCFS Program as of March 31, 2018.
  • Since 2009-10, number of First Nations children in care averages 9,000 per year (fluctuates annually).
  • Reduction of apprehension rates anticipated as program funding for agencies and apprehension of children re-directed to communities.
  • ISC is working with Indigenous partners, P/Ts to develop a national data and reporting strategy to help provide a more complete picture of the situation and challenges faced by First Nations, Inuit and Métis children and families.

Background

Child and Family Services

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC)'s First Nations Child and Family Services (FNCFS) Program provides funding to support the safety and well-being of First Nation children on reserve. Funding is provided to FNCFS agencies, provinces and the Yukon Territory to support the delivery of prevention and protection services on-reserve. ISC does not deliver the services. These services are provided in accordance with the legislation and standards of the province or territory of residence and in a manner that is reasonably comparable to those available to other provincial residents in similar circumstances, within ISC's Program authorities. Funding under the FNCFS Program is provided according to a prevention-based funding model.

In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal found Canada's FNCFS Program to be discriminatory and ordered Canada to immediately remedy the discrimination. On February 1, 2018, the Tribunal added items to its previous order, including paying the actual costs of FNCFS agencies in prevention and other areas. The Department is working closely with the parties to the complaint – the Assembly of First Nations, the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, the Chiefs of Ontario, Nishnawbe Aski-Nation, the Canadian Human Rights Commission and Amnesty International – to fully implement the various orders of the Tribunal.

In January 2018, the Government of Canada hosted an Emergency Meeting on Indigenous Child and Family Services, with national and regional Indigenous leadership, as well as federal, provincial and territorial governments, to discuss the causes that lead to the high rate of Indigenous children in care and how to work together toward systemic reform. At that meeting, the Government announced its commitment to six points of action that included continuing to fully implement previous CHRT orders (from 2016 and prior to September 2019); reform First Nations child and family services including moving to a flexible funding model; and work with partners to shift the focus of programming to culturally-appropriate prevention, early intervention, and family reunification.

On September 6, 2019, the CHRT released an order on compensation. The Tribunal ordered Canada to pay the maximum amount of $40,000 ($20,000 for pain and suffering and $20,000 for wilful and reckless conduct) per child and parent or grandparent. Canada is required to report back to the Tribunal by December 10, 2019, on a compensation process agreed to by the complainants. On October 4, 2019 the Attorney General of Canada filed a Notice of Application for Judicial Review and a Motion to stay with the Federal Court. The compensation ruling remains in effect unless it is stayed by the Federal Court. A decision on the application for judicial review is not expected until March 2020 at the earliest.

There are four orders to come from the CHRT on the following issues: 1) major capital; 2) band representative services actual costs; 3) small agencies; and 4) the definition of a First Nations child for the purposes of Jordan's Principle.

Grassy Narrows

Key Messages:

  • The Government recognizes that the community of Grassy Narrows has been dramatically affected by mercury discovered in the English-Wabigoon river system and suffers health issues to this day.
  • The Government shares the community's goal of finding a solution that meets their needs.
  • Work is underway to expand the existing health facility and construction is expected to begin in Summer 2020.
  • The Government is continuing to discuss the new mercury treatment centre and are committed to reaching an agreement with the community.

If pressed:

  • Building a mercury treatment centre in the community is an absolute priority for this government and that is why the previous Minister visited Grassy Narrows in May 2019.
  • Since then, progress has been made and discussions have continued, including an in-person meeting with the Minister and the Chief on December 4, 2019.
  • This is a relationship that is based in the recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership.
  • The Government can and will find consensus on a facility that meets the community's health needs, now and in the long-term.

If Pressed on funding:

  • The Government shares the community's goal of finding a solution that meets their needs.
  • The Government wants to assure you that we will support the construction of the mercury treatment centre.
  • The Government remains in discussion with Grassy Narrows and provincial partners to advance the project.

Background

High levels of mercury contamination in the English-Wabigoon River system, discovered in 1970, caused very high levels of mercury exposure among people residing in the First Nations communities of Grassy Narrows and Wabaseemoong. Levels of exposure in the late 1960s and 1970s were sufficient to cause mercury poisoning among several highly exposed community members. The First Nations and Inuit Health Branch completed extensive annual monitoring for mercury in Grassy Narrows and Wabaseemoong First Nations, as well as other nearby communities, between 1971 and 2000.

Indigenous Services Canada's Environmental Health Officer conducts regular health visits in Grassy Narrows and Wabaseemoong, including ongoing surveillance of the community's drinking water system. Kenora Chief's Advisory annually monitors the communities' drinking water systems for chemical parameters under a devolution agreement. Mercury has never been detected in any of the Grassy Narrows drinking water samples.

In response to the community's request for immediate suicide prevention crisis support, the Department is providing $618,226 under Jordan's Principle to Kitapinoonjiiminaanik Family Services, to address the immediate mental health needs of children and youth in Grassy Narrows. The Department also provided a permanent increase in Medical Transportation to ensure community members can access treatment where provided.

$9 million was identified in Budget 2017 for the construction of a mercury treatment centre and funding was provided to Grassy Narrows First Nation to undertake a feasibility study. The final report outlined that a long-term care facility and specialized medical services were required to improve health outcomes in the community. Additional funding will be required to support the construction and operations of the mercury treatment centre.

Suicide prevention

Key Messages:

  • The loss of life from suicide is a tragedy beyond measure.
  • We must work with Indigenous communities, partners and experts to advance Indigenous-led approaches to mental wellness.
  • At the AFN Special Chiefs Assembly, I committed our government will work with groups like FSIN, AFN and NAN to support the strategies they bring forward.
  • In December, I committed $2.5 million for community-driven mental wellness services and prevention programming in Saskatchewan.
  • We will continue to work in partnership across the country to advance Indigenous-led approaches to mental wellness and address the social determinants of health.

If pressed on actions taken:

  • We have seen success in supporting Indigenous-led approaches to mental wellness:
    • 52 new community-led mental wellness teams have been service First Nations communities since 2015;
    • Nishnawbe Aski Nation's Choose Life Initiative which is benefitting 22,000 high-risk youth and children ;
    • the 24/7 Hope for Wellness Helpline which now has an online chat function and is available in multiple languages; and
    • Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami's National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy.
  • However, we know that the roots of suicide in Indigenous communities also derive from a range of social inequities, and we continue to work to improve education, housing, access to health services, and other areas that contribute to individual and overall community wellbeing.

AFN National Youth Suicide Strategy:

  • We are deeply concerned about the tragic loss of life from suicide in many Indigenous communities, especially among youth.
  • As I said at the AFN's Special Chief's Assembly, I share their goal of addressing mental wellness as an urgent priority.
  • We will work in partnership with Indigenous peoples to advance Indigenous-led approaches to mental wellness, as we did with NAN when they developed the successful Choose Life Initiative.
  • We will be a willing partner for all those who are looking to develop solutions to this pressing issue.

Nunavut:

  • We are working in close partnership with the government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated to respond to the mental wellness needs of Inuit in the territory.
  • Through this partnership, we are contributing $220 million over 10 years through the Nunavut Wellness Agreement for community wellness initiatives.
  • This fiscal year, $11.6 million in funding has been provided to the Government of Nunavut and community organizations for mental wellness teams and other mental wellness services.
  • We will continue to work in partnership to address the needs of Inuit in the territory.

Nishnawbe-aski Nation:

  • Our government takes the situation in the Nishnawbe-aski Nation (NAN) territory very seriously.
  • Since the spring of 2017, more than $174.8M has been invested in NAN territory through Choose Life to address the unmet needs of children at risk of suicide.
  • Choose Life funds enhanced mental health and crisis counselling support, peer support programs, art and recreational therapy, school-based support programs, mental health promotion and prevention training and education.
  • We will continue to work in partnership to address the needs of First Nations in NAN territory.

Background

Indigenous people in Canada are at a greater risk of experiencing complex mental health and substance use issues due to a variety of factors, including the intergenerational effects of residential schools and other consequences of colonization. Suicide is a significant concern in some communities, particularly in the North and in remote areas. States of emergency have been declared in several communities due to mental health and social crises.

Addressing the root causes of high rates of Indigenous youth suicide requires a holistic, whole of government approach that supports individual, family and community healing; addresses the legacy of residential schools, the sixties' scoop and other devastating impacts of colonization; and supports access to the social determinants of health such as self determination, employment, and housing.

The responsibility for delivering mental health services is shared by the federal and provincial/territorial and Indigenous governments. The federal government supports First Nations and Inuit community mental wellness through a number of programs and services. Specifically, through the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch, ISC supports and funds mental wellness programs and services in five key areas: community based mental wellness services; the Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program; the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program Mental Health Counselling Benefit; the First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Helpline; and Jordan's Principle – A Child First Initiative.

This fiscal, $425 million has been allocated to address the mental wellness needs of First Nations and Inuit. Since April 1, 2018, over $205 million dollars of requests for Mental Health services for First Nations children have been approved through Jordan's Principle. Since the beginning of the Hope for Wellness line (October 2016) until the end of November 2019 there have been 19,286 calls. Since April 2018 to the end of November 2019 there have been 2,903 Chats.

Substance abuse

Key Messages:

  • The Government recognizes that substance use can have devastating effects on individuals, families and communities and their general health and well-being.
  • The Government is currently investing $425 million annually for community-based services to address the mental wellness needs of First Nations and Inuit.
  • This includes a recent investment of $200 million over five years to support substance use and prevention and treatment services for First Nations and Inuit.
  • The Government remains focused on supporting long-term investments that improve the health and well-being of Indigenous peoples.

Tracking of Opioid Use:

  • The Government recognizes that the opioid crisis continues to have devastating impacts on Indigenous communities nationally, and that quality data is an important part of a comprehensive approach to drug control.
  • There are significant data limitations on how First Nations and Inuit are affected by this crisis, especially off-reserve, and we are working with partners to overcome these limitations.
  • The Government will continue to work with First Nations and Inuit, provincial and territorial partners to explore ways to collectively address opioid-related issues.

Blood Tribe:

  • The Government remains concerned by the opioid overdoses in Blood Tribe.
  • In Blood Tribe, our Government has provided funding for the provision of naloxone and mental health supports, contributed to the on-reserve Overdose Prevention Site from March to May 2018, and provided funding for additional youth beds in the Safe Withdrawal Management Site which has been in operation since January 2019.
  • We will continue to monitor the impact of the opioid crisis, and support community driven approaches such as on-reserve harm reduction efforts while working closely with the Nation and partners.

If Pressed on Saskatchewan:

  • The Government remains concerned by instances of substance misuse in the community/communities and recognizes the devastating impacts this can have on community members.
  • Last December, my department – in partnership with the FSIN – participated in a forum to increase awareness and hear first-hand from communities about their challenges and solutions in how to address crystal methamphetamine and opioid usage in their communities.
  • The Government is working closely with First Nations to support Nation-led, culturally grounded, comprehensive community-driven efforts across the mental wellness continuum that includes prevention, harm reduction, treatment and healing.

Background

Indigenous communities across Canada are disproportionately impacted by the opioid public health crisis and in particular, First Nations in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario. The Assembly of First Nations has reported that some First Nations communities are experiencing an epidemic, with as many as 43% to 85% of the communities' population addicted to opiates (Assembly of First Nations Resolution no. 82/2016 and no. 68/2017). In spring 2017, the Department of Indigenous Services Canada started to track suspected opioid overdoses in 153 participating First Nations communities. The Department continues to work with partners from across the country to improve data collection and reporting, and to better understand how this crisis is affecting different populations.

The Government of Canada has announced significant financial investments to help address the crisis. Budget 2018 is providing $200 million over five years (2018/19 to 2022-23) and $40 million per year ongoing to support new investments in substance use prevention and treatment services for First Nations and Inuit including funding to address the ongoing opioid crisis. The investment will support up to: an additional 25 opioid agonist therapy sites offering wraparound services; an additional 75 on the land activities; enhanced services across a network of 45 federally funded treatment centres; and, major renovations at over 20 of these centres. Indigenous Services Canada allocated this fiscal year over $425 million towards culturally relevant and community-based mental wellness supports for First Nations and Inuit that aim to: provide treatment, reduce risk factors, promote protective factors and improve health outcomes associated with mental wellness.

Indigenous Services Canada provides several services along the drug misuse continuum.

  1. Through the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) Program, coverage is provided to registered First Nations and recognized Inuit for:
    • Methadone, buprenorphine/naloxone (i.e. Suboxone and generics), slow release morphine and injectable opioid agonist treatment (iOAT) for the treatment of opioid use disorder. To promote client safety, clients receiving these treatments are enrolled in the Client Safety Program formerly known as the Prescription Monitoring Program. Prior to providing coverage for buprenorphine/naloxone, the NIHB Program confirms that the community has infrastructure for the safe storage and handling of the medication.
    • Naloxone, used to treat overdoses, both Injection and nasal spray (Narcan);
    • Medical transportation benefits for clients to access supervised treatment for opioid use disorder (e.g. methadone, Suboxone). The client's ongoing need for travel is reviewed every six months; and
    • Up to 22 hours of professional mental health counseling every 12 months, with additional hours as required.
  2. In addition to coverage provided under the NIHB Program, in facilities where ISC provides primary care services in First Nations communities, naloxone injection is available for administration by health care professionals to reverse the effects of the overdose. There is also a limited supply of naloxone nasal spray (Narcan) in Nursing Stations that is available to community members at no charge. Injectable naloxone is listed in the Branch's Nursing Station Formulary as a "must stock" medication.

New fiscal relationship

Key Messages:

  • The Government continues to work in partnership to build a new fiscal relationship with First Nations, which will provide long term, sustainable and predictable funding.
  • One of the key priorities was the establishment of 10 year grants which allow predictable, sustainable and flexible funding for First Nations. Last year, 85 communities entered the 10 year grants and we are working with First Nations to advance this for the coming fiscal year.
  • Through the AFN-ISC Joint Advisory Committee on Fiscal Relations, which was established in fall 2018, we have been working to address key priorities including more stable and predictable funding mechanisms, sufficiency of funding, appropriate capacity and institutional supports for First Nations and appropriate means of measuring socio-economic gaps and outcomes.
  • Building on previous commitments, Budget 2019 commits a $4.5 billion over five years to close socioeconomic gaps and advance economic prosperity in Indigenous communities.
  • This brings the total planned investments in Indigenous programs to more than $17 billion in 2021 22, an increase of 50 percent compared to 2015.

If pressed on escalator for 10-year grant:

  • We are committed to co-developing a new fiscal relationship with First Nations that addresses sufficiency, predictability and sustainability of funding and that supports self-determination and closing of socio economic gaps.
  • An escalator for the 10-year grant will support First Nations governments by providing enhanced predictability of funding by factoring in population increases and cost of inflation.
  • Providing an escalator in the 10-year grant starting in 2020 complements necessary investments in essential services, and will strengthen the ability of First Nations to deliver services based on First Nation priorities.

If pressed on default management policy:

  • The Government is committed to a fiscal relationship with First Nations that supports self-determination and closing of socio-economic gaps.
  • We are taking steps to replace the punitive Default Management Prevention (Third Party Management) Policy with a new, proactive approach that respects communities and supports capacity development.
  • Since 2015, the number of First Nations in Default Management has decreased from 152 to 107, and we continue to work with First Nations to move away from this approach towards one that builds capacity and improves governance.
  • This approach will be based on successful pilot projects of the First Nations Financial Management Board.

If pressed on fiscal relationship co-development:

  • To support the new fiscal relationship, we are committed to continued co-development of fiscal relationship reforms with First Nations.
  • The Assembly of First Nations – Indigenous Services Canada Joint Advisory Committee on Fiscal Relations has provided interim recommendations, and intends to engage with First Nations on those recommendations in the coming months.
  • We will continue to work to build a fiscal relationship that is nation-to-nation.

Background

In July 2016, the then-Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs and the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly research and develop proposals for the design of a new fiscal relationship between Canada and First Nations under the Indian Act. The result of this work is summarized in a report, A New Approach: Co-development of a New Fiscal Relationship, released in December 2017. The report contains the following recommendations:

  1. Establish a permanent advisory committee that could be appointed by Order in Council that would reflect regional circumstances and interests.
  2. Take immediate action to create ten-year grants for qualified First Nations to leverage full flexibility under the Policy on Transfer Payments, to be implemented on or before April 1, 2019.
  3. Co-develop an approach to repeal the First Nations Financial Transparency Act in 2018 and replace it with a co-developed mutual accountability framework supported by First Nations Institutions-led audit and statistical functions.
  4. Replace the Default Prevention and Management Policy (DPMP) with a new approach that includes continued work under the First Nations Financial Management Board pilot project.

Building on previous commitments, Budget 2019 invested a further $4.5 billion over five years, beginning in 2019–20, to continue efforts to close the gap between the living conditions of Indigenous Peoples and the non-Indigenous population, bringing total planned federal government investments in Indigenous programs to more than $17 billion in 2021–22, an increase of 50 per cent compared to 2015.

In Fall of 2018 the Assembly of First Nations – Indigenous Services Canada Joint Advisory Committee on Fiscal Relations was established to inform further co-development of the new fiscal relationship. The Committee presented its interim recommendations to the Minister of Indigenous Services and the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations in June 2019.

First Nations Financial Transparency Act

Key Messages:

  • Our Government agrees with First Nations who have told us that the First Nations Financial Transparency Act needs to be replaced with a respectful approach that strengthens accountability.
  • Everyone – including First Nation governments – supports transparency and accountability.
  • This was a recommendation of the New Fiscal Relationship Report developed with the Assembly of First Nations.
  • Instead of penalizing First Nations communities and imposing top-down solutions, our Government is working to build community capacity and governance, while investing to close the unacceptable socioeconomic gaps that exist.

Accountability issues with specific First Nations:

  • The majority of First Nations have effective governance.
  • When challenges arise, instead of forcing solutions on communities, we want to work in partnership with First Nations to ensure that the accountability relationship between First Nations leaders and community members is strengthened by building financial management capacity.
  • We are taking steps to replace the Default Prevention and Management Policy with a new, proactive approach that supports capacity development.
  • We have already seen success with this with the number of communities in third party management status decreasing from 13 to 1 since 2015 by investing in capacity building and supporting community-led solutions to the challenges that arise.

Accountability for 10-Year Grants:

  • To support the new fiscal relationship with First Nations, we have moved forward with the establishment of ten-year grants for qualified First Nations.
  • Eligibility criteria and accountability provisions for the ten-year grants are based on proven practices co-developed with the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Financial Management Board.
  • These measures will strengthen governance capacity, enhance accountability of First Nations to their citizens, and support a fiscal relationship that is truly nation-to-nation.

Reporting Requirements for First Nations:

  • Our Government is working with First Nations to ensure that the accountability relationship between First Nations leaders and community members is strengthened by focusing on outcomes, and not solely funds spent.
  • A new fiscal relationship, grounded in the recognition of rights and respect, will support First Nations on the path to self-determination and promote mutual accountability.

Background

On December 18, 2015, the Minister released a statement directing the Department to cease all discretionary measures related to the First Nations Financial Transparency Act. Following this commitment, the Department moved forward with an engagement approach designed to reach out primarily to First Nation leaders, communities and organizations, and gauge the general public's views towards First Nation transparency and accountability. First Nations financial management institutions have recommended that the Act be repealed entirely and replaced with a community sanctioned accountability policy where reporting is accountable to members and citizens.

First Nations report extensively to Canada on spending, not only under the Act but through reports required by specific programs. The Act does not cover actions by First Nations-owned enterprises.

Under the New Fiscal Relationship, Indigenous Services Canada is working with First Nations to introduce measures to strengthen accountability of First Nations governments to their citizens, and to enhance predictability and flexibility of funding. Under this initiative, First Nations that have demonstrated sound governance could qualify for 10-Year Grants, and First Nations are being encouraged to enact and implement their own Financial Administration Laws based on the standards of the First Nations Financial Management Board. Such Financial Administration Laws include provisions for managing conflicts of interest and misuse of funds.

Water

Key Messages:

  • We are committed to ensuring First Nations have access to safe, clean, and reliable drinking water.
  • We are working in partnership to lift all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve by March 2021.
  • As of September 30 2019, more than $1.33 billion of targeted funding has been invested to support 574 water and wastewater projects, including 265 that are now completed. These projects will serve 461,000 people.
  • Much work remains, but the results are encouraging with 88 long term drinking water advisories lifted to date and 150 short-term advisories prevented from becoming long-term.

If pressed on water issues other than LTDWA's:

  • We remain steadfast and on track to end all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve by March 2021.
  • However, we know there is more to do.
  • We are providing sustainable investments to prevent short-term advisories, expand delivery systems, build capacity of and retain local water operators, and support regular monitoring and testing.
  • To date, 150 short term advisories have been prevented from becoming long term through these investments.
  • We know our plan is working and we will continue working with partners to improve access to clean water on reserve.

If pressed on single use plastic commitment (including plastic water bottles):

  • The government is taking bold action to ban harmful single use plastics.
  • This ban comes into effect in 2021 – the same time at which we have committed to lifting all long term drinking water advisories on reserve so that communities have access to safe, clean, and reliable drinking water.
  • We are well on our way to doing so, with 88 long term drinking water advisories lifted since 2015, and 150 short term advisories prevented from becoming long term.

If pressed on Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act:

  • We are steadfast and on track towards the goal of ensuring that all First Nations communities have access to safe, clean and reliable drinking water.
  • The Government is working with First Nation leaders, communities and organizations to co-develop long term solutions to ensure clean drinking water for all communities.
  • We will continue to work with the Assembly of First Nations, who is leading engagements to find solutions to the concerns First Nations raised with the current Act.

If pressed on training and certification of water operators:

  • We know that regular and proper maintenance is essential to ensuring access to well-functioning water systems.
  • Budgets 2016 and 2018 dedicated funds to First Nation communities to train operators of water and wastewater systems, with the goal of skill retention in their communities.
  • Annually, we spend approximately $15 million on First Nations water and wastewater operator training.
  • We are working closely with First Nation communities to ensure they have the resources they need to operate water systems to ensure everyone has access to safe drinking water on reserve.

If pressed on Water Operator Salary Gap:

  • Water operators are key to ensuring communities have access to clean drinking water and reliable infrastructure.
  • Budget 2019 dedicated an additional $739 million over five years, to support ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories.
  • We are working closely with First Nations to ensure they have the resources they need to operate and maintain their water systems, including by reforming how we fund operations and maintenance of infrastructure, as well as operator salaries.
  • We are also supporting efforts to recruit, train and retain water operators across the country.

If pressed on short-term drinking water advisories:

  • By working in partnership with communities, we are on track to lifting all long-term drinking water advisories on public systems on reserve by March 2021.
  • We know that water needs are dynamic, and short term advisories can arise for a number of reasons such as water line breaks, equipment failure, and maintenance or weather issues.
  • Budget 2019 dedicated an additional $739 million over five years, to support ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories.
  • While most of these situations are resolved quickly by the community operators, we continue to work closely with those communities that require support.

If pressed on Trihalomethanes (THMs) in Drinking Water:

  • The Department tests community water supplies quarterly for trihalomethanes (THMs), as per national guidelines. The results are provided to First Nations.
  • If an exceedance is identified, we work in collaboration with communities to reduce the level of THMs and other disinfection by products (DBPs) in community drinking water supplies.
  • Since 2017, there has been an overall decrease in the total number of First Nation community drinking water supplies with an exceedance above the maximum acceptable concentration (MAC).

If pressed on what action the government has taken to date on trihalomethanes:

  • Disinfection by-products called trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs) are formed naturally in any water system when chlorine in water combines with organic matter like leaves or other vegetation.
  • The benefits of disinfecting drinking water with chlorine are much greater than the potential health risks of being exposed to higher levels of disinfection by-products.
  • Systems with exceedances are identified and tracked by ISC. This allows us to work with the First Nation to plan for how we will address these systems.

If pressed on Safe Drinking Water Litigations:

  • All Canadians should have access to safe, clean, and reliable drinking water.
  • We respect the right of Indigenous groups to seek the Court's direction.
  • We will continue working with the First Nations to develop and implement plans for addressing their water system needs.
  • Much work remains, but the results are encouraging with 88 long term drinking water advisories lifted to date and 150 short-term advisories prevented from becoming long-term.

If pressed on Lead in Drinking Water:

  • Since 2003, we have been supporting the monitoring of drinking water for lead in First Nation community water systems south of 60 degrees parallel.
  • In March 2019, Health Canada published a revised guideline for lead in drinking water. All regions have started to implement this enhanced monitoring.
  • This enhancement includes testing every drinking water fountain or cold-water tap where water is used for drinking or food preparation in children's facilities.

If pressed on Lead in Drinking Water in First Nations Schools:

  • All Canadians deserve access to safe, clean, and reliable drinking water.
  • Since 2003, Indigenous Services Canada has supported the monitoring of drinking water for lead in First Nation community water systems.
  • In March 2019, Health Canada published a revised guideline for lead in drinking water. All regions have started to implement this enhanced monitoring.
  • This enhancement includes testing every drinking water fountain or cold-water tap where water is used for drinking or food preparation in children's facilities, including schools.

If pressed on measures taken by the government to address lead in drinking water in First Nations schools:

  • All Canadians deserve access to safe, clean, and reliable drinking water.
  • No system-wide drinking water advisories regarding lead are in place and we continue to monitor children's facilities, including schools.
  • If lead exceedances are found in drinking water, we work together with First Nation community leaders to implement remedial actions such as flushing or the replacement of affected taps.

If pressed about the situation in Kitigan Zibi:

  • Since 2016, more than $6 million has been invested in drinking water for network densification and rehabilitation. 34 new residential lots have been developed and connected to the centralized network.
  • A massive sampling campaign was carried out between 2018 and 2019 on more than 307 individual wells. More than 80% of the sampled wells gave results allowing the lifting of the notice of non-consumption.
  • The Department continues to work in collaboration with the community to expand the centralized network in densely populated areas of the community.
  • The implementation of a network over the entire territory would present a risk due to the fact that it is a very large, non-densified territory that is conducive to the formation of trihalomethane.
  • Although individual wells are not funded by the Department, the Department continues to work with the community to monitor the quality of drinking water, both for the public system and individual wells, and provides public health advice as required, in addition to ensuring that everyone has access to safe, clean drinking water.
  • In Quebec, 100% of drinking water operators have a recognized college-level certification that is comparable or superior to neighbouring municipalities.

Background

ISC is working in full partnership with First Nation communities, including with First Nations technical advisors and leaders, to support sustainable First Nations-led approaches to ensure that on-reserve water systems are safe. This includes Technical Services Advisory Group in Alberta (TSAG), the Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC), the Atlantic Policy Congress, and technical service delivery Hubs pilot projects in Ontario. ISC also works directly with First Nations to assist communities in monitoring drinking water quality in all water systems, which includes providing advice and guidance about drinking water safety and wastewater disposal, and reviewing infrastructure project proposals from a public health perspective.

As part of Budget 2016, the Government of Canada committed to end by March 2021 all long-term drinking water advisories affecting public systems on reserve. Phase 1 of the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan supports this goal by providing an unprecedented $1.8 billion over five years for First Nation communities to significantly improve on-reserve water and wastewater infrastructure, ensure proper facility operation and maintenance, and strengthen capacity by enhancing the training of water system operators. Budget 2016 also included $141.7 million over five years in new funding to the Department to improve drinking water monitoring and testing on reserve. In addition, Budget 2017 provided $49 million over 3 years to address advisories as part of the expanded scope which added 24 long-term drinking water advisories to the Government's commitment. Budget 2018 committed an additional $172.6 million over three years to support initiatives to accelerate, where possible, the pace of construction and renovation of affected water systems, support repairs to high-risk water systems and assist efforts to recruit, train and retain water operators. These funds will also support efforts to establish innovative First Nations-led service delivery models. Lastly, Budget 2019 commits an additional $739 million over five years, beginning in 2019-20, with $184.9 million per year ongoing. This investment will support ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories by funding urgent repairs to vulnerable water systems and the operation and maintenance of water systems so that First Nations communities can effectively operate and maintain their public drinking water systems. As of September 30, 2019, more than $1.33 billion of targeted funding has been invested to support 574 water and wastewater projects, including 265 that are now completed. These projects will serve approximately 461,000 people in 606 First Nation communities.

It should be noted that Drinking water advisories (DWAs) are issued to protect the public from drinking water that is potentially unsafe, or confirmed to be unsafe, based on water quality testing. DWAs are issued by First Nations in their communities and off-reserve by provincial, territorial or municipal governments.

Communities may also choose to issue a DWA as a precautionary measure, such as when there are emergency repairs in the water distribution system or if a community does not have a trained Water System Operator or Community-Based Drinking Water Quality Monitor in place. Some DWAs are short-term to advise residents of a temporary water quality issue on a specific water system (e.g: equipment failure).

The government is working closely with First Nations by providing sustainable investments, expanding delivery systems, building capacity of and retaining local water operators, as well as supporting regular monitoring and testing on all drinking water systems to prevent short-term and re-occurring advisories.

In 2014, the Tsuu T'ina Nation, the Sucker Creek First Nation, the Ermineskin Cree Nation and the Blood Tribe, with reserves located in Treaties 6, 7 and 8, sued Canada alleging Canada created and sustained unsafe drinking water conditions on their reserves and throughout Canada. The First Nations claim declarations and damages for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of the Honour of the Crown, and breaches of sections 7 and 15(1) of the Charter. The Assembly of First Nations has passed resolutions supporting this litigation. This action has been stayed by the Federal Court on consent of the parties for one-year periods since the fall of 2015. During this timeframe, the parties entered into "without prejudice" meetings and discussions to resolve their concerns about safe drinking water in these First Nations' reserves, and to resolve the proceedings by agreement or by narrowing the issues out of court. The stay expired on September 19, 2019 and the file is in Case Management, in the Federal Court.

The Okanagan Indian Band is also seeking declarations that Canada has breached its fiduciary duty, breached the Honour of the Crown, violated the Charter and breached its obligations under the Constitution by failing to create and sustain safe water conditions on First Nations' reserves. The Band seeks a declaration that Canada is obliged to remedy the unsafe drinking water conditions on reserve, with supervision of the Court, an order for damages and that Canada disgorge any savings made from failing to provide adequate water supplies to the Band.

The Curve Lake First Nation and Chief Emily Whetung, on her own behalf and on behalf of all members of the First Nation, claim that Canada has failed to address the inadequacies of their access to potable water and the resulting human consequences. The Plaintiffs seek declarations that Canada has breached its fiduciary duty, breached the Honour of the Crown, violated the Charter and, breached its obligations under the Constitution by failing to address the inadequacies of their access to potable water. The Plaintiffs further seek the immediate construction of appropriate water systems; $100 million for breaches of Charter rights; $100 million for breaches of fiduciary duty, negligence and nuisance; and, $20 million in punitive damages. Discussions continue with the Chief and Project Team on the next steps. The Chief has invited the Regional team to visit the community in 2020.

The Tataskweyak First Nation has filed a national class proceeding involving any First Nation band that has had a drinking water advisory lasting a year or more since 1995. The Band claims Canada breached its fiduciary duties, breached the honour of the Crown, breached the Charter, section 36(1)(c) of the Constitution Act, and is liable for individual causes of action like nuisance and negligence.

Michael Daryl Isnardy (Toosey First Nation in BC), filed a proposed class action proceeding as an individual plaintiff in the Federal Court, representing aboriginal and First Nation persons unable to consume or use water from their community water systems on First Nation reserves. He claims the Crown created, sustained and allowed unsafe drinking water conditions, and is seeking declarations that Canada breached its fiduciary duty and duty of care to the community, violated sections 7 (life, liberty and security of the person) and 15(1) (equality right) of the Charter and, breached its obligations under paragraph 35(1) of the Constitution Act.

Health overview

Key Messages:

  • We are working to close the gap in access to quality healthcare between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada.
    • We support 63 community-led mental wellness teams serving 344 communities, up from 11 teams in 2015;
    • More than 533, 299 requests for products and services have been approved under Jordan's Principle since 2015; and
    • We provide coverage of health benefits to over 873,000 First Nations and Inuit in 2018-19.
  • We are also working to ensure that Indigenous peoples are in the driver's seat when it comes to designing and delivering their healthcare programs and services.

If pressed on health services:

  • We remain focused on supporting long-term investments that will improve the health and well-being of Indigenous communities.
  • By listening to Indigenous communities, we have advanced shared priorities such as:
    • Ensuring that 92% of mothers travelling for childbirth between June 2017 and March 2019 were accompanied by a preauthorized individual of their choice; and
    • Completing 193 of the 207 health-related infrastructure projects underway since 2016.
  • We will continue working with partners towards improved health services and programs for Indigenous peoples.

Remote First Nation Communities – Access to Health Services

  • We know that the best success comes from Indigenous-led and delivered health systems.
  • It is why our Government is working with provincial and First Nations partners to achieve system-wide health transformation in northern First Nation communities.
  • We are advancing work with partners in Manitoba, Quebec, Ontario and Saskatchewan on health system transformation, with $71 million dedicated over three years to support this work.

Platform-Distinction-based Indigenous Health Legislation

  • In a country as prosperous as Canada, no one should go without the care they need, when they need it.
  • Indigenous Peoples have the right to high-quality health care and services that are adapted to their needs.
  • We are committed to co-developing Indigenous Health legislation with First Nations, Inuit and Métis that responds to the realities of Indigenous communities and increases their control over the development and delivery of services.

Health services in the North

  • We are working with territorial and Indigenous partners to advance the health and safety of First Nations and Inuit in the North.
  • While territorial governments are responsible for the delivery of health care in the territories, we continue to work in partnership to ensure First Nations and Inuit have access to the culturally safe supports and services they need.
  • For example, this year alone, we have allocated more than $31 million to support mental health programming and services in all 72 First Nations and Inuit communities in the three territories.

Background

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) works collaboratively with partners to improve access to high quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Our vision is to support and empower Indigenous peoples to independently deliver services and address the socio-economic conditions in their communities.

The First Nations and Inuit Health Branch within ISC supports First Nations and Inuit in their aim to influence, manage, and control health programs and services that affect them.

The most advanced model of First Nations health transfer is in British Columbia where a tripartite Framework Agreement was signed in 2011 and led to the full devolution of the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch's regional operations in 2013 to a newly established First Nations Health Authority.

Housing

Key Messages:

  • Our Government is co-developing and implementing distinctions based Indigenous housing strategies with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation partners.
  • Budget 2018 invested:
    • $600 million over three years for First Nations housing;
    • $500 million over 10 years for Métis Nation housing; and
    • $400 million over 10 years for Inuit-led housing in addition to the $240 million over 10 years announced to support housing in Nunavut.
  • This funding and approach, premised on Indigenous-led housing delivery, is a significant step towards addressing the housing needs in Indigenous communities.
  • We will continue working to close the unacceptable housing gap for Indigenous peoples.

If pressed:

  • Our Government is working with Indigenous partners each and every day to address the unacceptable housing gaps that exist across the country.
  • For First Nations housing on reserve, and in partnership with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, we have committed more than $1 billion with 18,067 homes being built and renovated since Budget 2016.
  • We do know, however, that there is much more still to do and we continue to work in partnership with First Nations to implement community-led solutions.

Distinction-based First Nations Housing Strategy:

  • First Nations have led the development of a First Nations National Housing Strategy to ensure housing reform is reflective of their needs, endorsed by the Special Chiefs Assembly on December 5, 2018.
  • The Assembly of First Nations, Indigenous Services Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation meet regularly to co-develop the national strategy and plan for its implementation.
  • This collaboration ensures that housing and infrastructure reforms target a long-term approach to support the transition to First Nations care, control and management of housing.

Distinction-based Inuit Housing Strategy:

  • Improving Inuit housing outcomes is a priority for our Government.
  • As stated by the Prime Minister, the Inuit Nunangat Housing Strategy, which was released in April 2019, was designed by Inuit and will be delivered by Inuit.
  • The Strategy provides long-term vision and direction for Inuit housing premised on self-determination.
  • Work is already well underway, including directly by Inuit, to deliver Budget 2018 Inuit housing investments, as well as joint work to implement the strategy to further address Inuit housing needs.

Distinction-based Métis Housing Strategy:

  • Improving Indigenous housing outcomes is a priority for our Government.
  • On July 19, 2018, the leaders from the Métis Nation and Government of Canada signed the Canada-Métis Nation Housing Sub-Accord, which will improve Métis access to – and control of – affordable and social housing.
  • The Canada-Métis Nation Housing Sub-Accord reflects a shared commitment to narrow the core housing need gap and further Indigenous self-determination in this important area of social policy.
  • We will continue working to close the unacceptable housing gap for Indigenous peoples.

Indigenous Homes Innovation Initiative:

  • Our Government knows that supporting Indigenous led solutions is the only way to address the unacceptable socioeconomic gap.
  • Many Indigenous communities come up with innovative solutions to housing problems but these solutions haven't always qualified for government support.
  • This $36 million innovation fund is designed to support Indigenous-led, community-driven projects that could serve as blueprints for new approaches.
  • We are pleased that our Indigenous Steering Committee has selected 24 Innovators, who will refine their ideas over the next eighteen months.
  • The Indigenous Taskforce of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada will be participating as mentors, to support the Innovators throughout the design process.

If pressed about the situation in Quebec:

  • In the Quebec region, the 2018 budget has allowed investments in the order of 18 million dollars in 2019-20 ($18,000,000):
    • $5.3 million in construction;
    • $5.4 million in renovations;
    • $3.7 million in lot servicing;
    • $3.6 million in capacity development and innovation.
    • The same level of investment is planned for 2020-2021.
  • The Regional Tripartite Committee on Housing has been working for 2 years on a regional housing strategy and has joined forces with key partners such as the Conseil scolaire en éducation des adultes des Premières Nations and the Commission de développement économique des Premières Nations et du Labrador.
  • The efforts and investments made in housing in Québec have significantly reduced health and safety issues. Radon, vermiculite and mould have been virtually eliminated.

Background

ISC has been working in collaboration with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the Assembly of First Nations and its Chiefs Committee on Housing and Infrastructure to co-develop a National First Nations Housing and Related Infrastructure Strategy, supported by $600 million over three years announced in Budget 2018. The Strategy was endorsed at the December 5, 2018 Special Chiefs Assembly, outlining the path forward to transition the care, control and management of housing to First Nations.

CIRNAC has worked in partnership with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, Inuit land claim governments and organizations, CMHC and Employment and Social Development Canada to develop the Inuit Nunangat Housing Strategy, which was made public on April 4, 2019. The Strategy is premised on self-determination with Inuit recipients holding the responsibility, decision making powers and capacity to meet housing needs at the regional level. Budget 2018 allocated $400 million over 10 years to support Inuit-led housing in the Inuit regions of Nunavik, Nunatsiavut and Inuvialuit, with an additional $240 million over 10 years for Nunavut from Budget 2017 through CMHC to the Government of Nunavut.

Canada and the Métis Nation signed the Canada-Métis Nation Accord in April 2017, with a number of year one priorities that parties agreed to collaborate on, including a Métis Nation Housing Strategy. On July 19, 2018, the Métis Housing Sub-Accord was finalized, outlining the design, delivery and administration of housing services undertaken by the Governing Members of the Métis Nation to address the purchase of new houses, the repair of existing houses and the provision of rent-supplements to families most in need. The Housing Sub-Accord, funded at $500 million over 10 years announced in Budget 2018, reflects a shared commitment to narrow the core housing needs gap and further Indigenous self-determination in this important area of social policy. The Indigenous Homes Innovation Initiative was launched on April 11, 2019, by the Minister of Indigenous Services and co-chairs of the Indigenous Steering Committee. 342 applications were received and 24 were selected by the Steering Committee as part of the Accelerator process. The Accelerator, launched January 20, 2020 provides Indigenous Innovators with funding and supports to further develop their idea into implementable proposals. The Initiative is being done in partnership with Infrastructure Canada's Smart Cities Challenge and addresses the Government of Canada's commitment to a process specific to Indigenous communities that reflects their unique realities and needs.

Departmental plan

Key Messages:

  • Indigenous Services Canada was created to improve access to high-quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, to support and empower Indigenous peoples in the control and the delivery of those services, and to improve the quality of life and safety in their communities.
  • In 2020–21, the Department will continue to advance work to close socio-economic gaps and improve the quality of services for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples, in partnership with them, and in a way that promotes self-determination.
  • The end goal is not only that the design, delivery and control of services is led by and for Indigenous peoples, but also that the Department will disappear over time. The Department will reach this end goal by improving accountability to Indigenous peoples, taking a distinctions-based approach in the delivery of services and developing partnership models and making investments in priorities shared by Indigenous people.

If pressed on Transition:

  • The Plan outlines the Department's achievements and sets the way forward for the coming fiscal year.
  • Moving forward, we need to listen and learn from First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples on how programs and services should be delivered and work in full partnership with Indigenous peoples to transfer the delivery of services to Indigenous-led institutions and organizations.

If pressed on Increased planned spending in 2020-21 compared to the 2018-19 expenditures:

  • During the 2019-20 fiscal year, the Individual Affairs program, the Land and Economic Development programs, as well as the Internal Services, were transferred from Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs to Indigenous Services.
  • As a result of these changes to the Department, planned spending for 2020–21 is expected to increase compared to the 2018-19 expenditures.
  • There is also expected to be an increase in approved funding profile for: infrastructure projects in Indigenous communities, elementary, secondary and post-secondary education programs, as well as for non-insured health benefits for First Nations and Inuit.

Coerced sterilization

Key Messages:

  • Forced and coerced sterilization is a deeply troubling violation of human rights.
  • Individuals impacted by this issue requiring mental health or crisis support can contact the 24/7 Hope for Wellness Line.
  • My Department's new Advisory Committee on Indigenous Women's Wellbeing is guiding our response. The Committee is comprised of National Indigenous Organizations, including women's organizations.
  • Earlier this year, the Department funded the National Collaborating Centre on Indigenous Health, a two-day forum on culturally-informed choice and consent in sexual and reproductive health care. The forum was attended by health practitioners, social workers, regulatory bodies, Indigenous governments and organizations, colleges, and federal and provincial governments.
  • Collaboration is required between all orders of government, and health and social system professionals, to ensure culturally safe health services for all Indigenous women.

If pressed:

  • All Indigenous women must receive culturally safe health services with fully informed consent.
  • To improve cultural safety and quality of service, we are:
    • ensuring an expecting First Nation or Inuit mother knows she is entitled to a travel companion of her choice through the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program;
    • investing in services to support healthy pregnancies and births;
    • investing for the first time in midwifery in First Nation and Inuit communities; and
  • receiving guidance from the new Indigenous Services Canada Advisory Committee on Indigenous Women's Health and Wellbeing.

Background:

Forced and coerced sterilization is a symptom of a broader systemic issue: the absence of cultural safety in health and social systems. Promoting cultural safety in health and social systems cannot be done in isolation. Health Canada has a lead role to play, in partnership with provinces and territories, regional health authorities and regulatory bodies.

The scale and scope of this issue is currently unknown. Health systems (with the exception of Saskatchewan) do not track patient ethnicity. However, since October 2017 a number of legal actions that name Canada as a defendant have been initiated by impacted women. Lawyers indicate they have been contacted by over 100 Indigenous women (including a case that occurred as recently as December 2018).International bodies and parliamentary committees have studied and drawn attention to the issue:

  • The U.N. Committee against Torture called on Canada to criminalize, investigate, prevent and provide redress;
  • The Third Universal Periodic Review by the U.N. Human Rights Council recommended that Canada investigate complaints, punish those responsible and assist impacted women;
  • The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights requested specific information on how Canada is responding;
  • The Standing Committee on Health focused on understanding the scope; making reparations to victims; prevention; and engaging with Indigenous women's organizations; and,
  • The final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls raised the issue. Calls to Justice include increasing the number of Indigenous health care professionals and providing cultural competency training to all health care professionals (Calls to Justice 7.6, 7.7, and 7.8).

Nunavut medical transport

Key Messages:

  • The Government knows that medical transportation is necessary to ensure individuals have access to the health services they need in Nunavut.
  • The territorial government receives funding to run its health system through various transfer payments, and for a portion of the medical transportation costs for Inuit residents.
  • The Government will continue to support the Government of Nunavut to ensure that the Nunavummiut have access to the health services they need, now and in the long-term.

If pressed on responsibility for medical travel costs in Nunavut:

  • The Government of Nunavut is responsible for the provision of health services to all of its residents.
  • Medical transportation is a necessary, but costly, element of Nunavut's health care system.
  • We are working with the Government of Nunavut on ensuring continuity of services while a longer-term approach to accessing health services is developed.
  • Through the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health, we will continue to collaborate with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated to improve access to health services.

If pressed on the alleged cancellation of counselling services in Nunavut:

  • Counselling services have not been cancelled; they continue to be available at health centres in every community in Nunavut.
  • Since April 2019, $11.6 million in funding was provided directly to the Government of Nunavut and community organizations for the coordination of mental wellness teams and other mental wellness services.
  • Further, the Government has allocated $5.4 million in targeted mental health counseling funding through the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program.
  • The Government has also contributed $220 million over 10 years since 2017 through the Nunavut Wellness Agreement for community wellness initiatives.
  • The Government will continue to work with partners to ensure Nunavummiut have access to the services they need.

Background:

Health services in the North

The responsibility for delivering health services is shared by the federal and provincial/territorial and Indigenous governments, including the provision of mental health services. The federal government supports First Nations and Inuit community mental wellness through a number of programs and services. Specifically, through the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch, ISC supports and funds mental wellness programs and services in five key areas: community based mental wellness services; the Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program; the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program Mental Health Counselling Benefit; the First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Helpline; and Jordan's Principle – A Child First Initiative.

Since 2017, the Government of Canada has contributed $220 million over 10 years in Nunavut in the community-led Nunavut Wellness Agreement. Furthermore, Budget 2019 announced an additional investment of $50 million over 10 years to renew and expand the reach of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami's National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy.

Cancellation of Services in Nunavut

The Government of Nunavut is responsible for the delivery of health care for its citizens, including the provision of mental health services. Services are available at health centres that are located in every community.

There have been media reports of counselling service cancellations in the Baffin Region of Nunavut. Services have not been cancelled, though there was a delay in scheduling sessions for a small number of clients. ISC is coordinating with a counselling service provider to schedule clinics in the Baffin Region in the near future. Other existing supports remain available for all residents of Nunavut and through the Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program, ISC also arranges and pays for travel for clients to access counselling services as needed, to the nearest point of service within their region.

In addition, telephone counselling services are available through the Hope for Wellness Help Line, which provides immediate, telephone crisis intervention counselling support for all Indigenous Peoples, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can be reached at 1-855-242-3310 or online counselling service at hopeforwellness.ca.

Medical transportation in Nunavut

Nunavut is a vast territory made up of 25 small and isolated communities, none of which are connected by roads. Approximately 85% of the population is Inuit. Each community has a health centre, staffed by nurses and with locum doctor visits. There is one hospital in the Territory, located in Iqaluit, which provides services to residents of the Qikiqtani (Baffin) Region. Because of these realities, the Government of Nunavut relies heavily on medical transportation to support residents in accessing services outside of the Territory.

The Non-Insured Health Benefits Program provides a suite of medically necessary goods and services to eligible First Nations and Inuit clients. In Nunavut, these benefits are administered directly by Indigenous Services Canada, as well as via a contribution agreement with the Government of Nunavut. The agreement includes funding for medical transportation, such as accommodations, meals, and air travel. In 2018-19, the value of this agreement was $51.4 million.

Since its creation in 1999, the Government of Nunavut has charged a co-payment of $125 per direction for all air travel for residents requiring medically necessary services not available in their home communities. This co-payment, which the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program reimburses for Inuit residents, applies to air transportation that can include, for example, $2,000 scheduled flights or $30,000 medevacs. In January 2019, the Government of Nunavut informed ISC of its intention to eliminate the co-payment with the goal of having ISC pay the full cost of medical travel for Inuit.

The Government of Nunavut is also receiving $9.2 million per year in funding to off-set costs of medical transportation under Health Canada's the Territorial Health Investment Fund (scheduled to sunset in 2020/21).

Transfer of control over services to Indigenous people

Key Messages:

  • While the transfer of service delivery to Indigenous partners will be a lengthy and multifaceted process, work is underway towards achieving this important commitment.
  • It is vital that the transfer of service delivery is Indigenous-led and that the transfer takes place at a pace established by Indigenous communities, institutions and organizations.
  • We have seen Indigenous-led successes at the community level to support this approach and confirm that this is not only the right thing to do, but is also a key lever for success.
  • While there continue to be challenges and barriers as we move towards substantive equality, we need to continue to make room for Nations and Indigenous communities to reconstitute their communities in a way that is culturally-specific to them and meets their individual needs.
  • Advancing a new fiscal relationship and health transformation are priorities that will support this commitment over the next two years, among others.

Background:

The Department of Indigenous Services Act (the Act) commits Canada to the gradual transfer of services.

This commitments is an important dimension of the departmental narrative and is a key lever towards self-determination and advancing reconciliation.

Transferring control to Indigenous partners is the best way to improve services. Indigenous partners have expressed that they want ISC to recognize and support their inherent right to self-determination with flexibility approaches that are inclusive and responsive to the diversity of First Nations, Inuit and Metis people.

A number of recent examples highlight how transferring service delivery to Indigenous control contributes to reconciliation and self-determination, while improving outcomes.

The Whitecap-Dakota, Musqueam, and Tsawwassen First Nations are managing successful economies that are benefiting the broader regional economies.

The First Nations Financial Management Board (FMB), which provides tools and guidance to instill confidence in First Nations' financial management and reporting systems to support economic and community development, has demonstrable results including:

Nations that have been certified through the FMB's Financial Management System show a higher Community Well-Being Index ranking and percentage of own-source revenue than other Nations in Canada; and,

Over the past 5 years, FMB Financial Management System certified Nations have increased their own-source revenue by an average of 64%.

The education agreements with the Mi'kmaq and Anishinabek Nation are a successful example of self-determination. Canada and the Anishinabek Nation have been engaged in negotiations since 1995 to rebuild governance in core areas that strengthen the Anishinabek Nation. Writ large, negotiations with the Anishinabek Nation have largely centered on the means for establishing and empowering the Anishinabek Nation as a Government of the Anishinabek First Nations, all the while preserving the distinct institutions and structures of the individual First Nation Governments.

Negotiations witnessed significant success with the recently concluded Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement, recognizing 23 Anishinabek First Nations' jurisdiction over Kindergarten to Grade 12 education. The Education Agreement marked the first self-government agreement in Ontario, and, due to the number of participating First Nations, the largest self-¬government agreement in Canada. The enabling legislation, the Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement Act (Bill C¬61), received Royal Assent on December 14th, 2017, and came into force on April 1st, 2018.

For the Anishinabek Nation, the next step along the continuum towards their vision of self-determination is concluding a core Governance Agreement. The Anishinabek Nation envisions a governance structure that is responsive to their communities' needs and their unique composition as an aggregation of 38 First Nations. The Governance Agreement would provide for the establishment of an Anishinabek Nation Government at a regional level and for First Nation and Anishinabek Nation law¬making authority in areas of core governance, including: leadership selection; citizenship; language and culture; and, the management and operations of government.

Some communities have successfully leveraged the financing power of the First Nations Finance Authority (FNFA) to address needs such as:

Salt River First Nation in Northwest Territories opened its new Community Centre in April 2019, a $17.5 million project financed by the FNFA.

$24 million state-of-the-art high school in Fisher River First Nation that opened in northern Manitoba in September 2018.

A first of its kind tripartite partnership led to a BC Tripartite Framework Agreement in First Nation Health Governance in 2011 which created a new province-wide First Nations Health Authority which is governed by First Nations and works with the province to coordinate health services.

Clean renewable energy

Key Messages:

  • Indigenous Services Canada continues to support First Nations in the provision of safe and reliable electricity in their communities. In the past, this support has largely focused on diesel generation, as at the time, it was the most technically sound and reliable method of generating electricity for communities not connected to provincial grids.
  • However, diesel electricity leads to high operating costs, increased risk of fuel spills from the transport and use of diesel, as well as contributing to increased greenhouse gas emissions and local pollution from the generators themselves. Furthermore, winter road communities face an additional challenge of transporting sufficient fuel for the year over a brief and variable winter road season.
  • The increasing prevalence and falling costs of renewable energy technologies now provide First Nations with options for reducing, and possibly eliminating, diesel consumption for electricity altogether; however, current limited energy storage technology remains an important barrier to eliminate diesel use.
  • Since 2016, a number of First Nations have implemented projects that have substantially reduced diesel consumption for electricity in their communities, as funds have become available. Project examples include:
    • The Northern Ontario Grid Connection Project led by Wataynikaneyap Power, which will connect 16 First Nations communities located in remote northern Ontario to the provincial electricity grid, thereby ending their dependence on costly, emission-intensive diesel energy.
    • In May 2018, the Wuikinuxv Nation community in British Columbia, in collaboration with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, completed the construction of the 350 kW Nicknaqueet River Hydropower Project, which is anticipated to displace approximately 92% of the diesel used for power generation.
    • We will continue to engage with communities and work with partners to support the transition of Indigenous communities from reliance on diesel-fueled power to clean, renewable and reliable energy by 2030.
    • Federal partners, including Indigenous Services Canada, Natural Resources Canada, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, are working together in coordinating efforts to support First Nations in reducing diesel consumption in remote communities.
    • More specifically, Indigenous Services Canada will continue to explore First Nations-led diesel reduction and elimination projects and provide funding for development and construction of shovel-ready projects, such as energy efficiency projects.

Background:

  • There are currently 56 diesel dependent First Nations communities within the provinces. In 38 of these communities, ISC provides funds to ensure sufficient and reliable electricity. The remaining communities are served by provincial utilities. These diesel-dependent communities range in size from less than 40 residents to over 2,500.
  • Fuel transport to these communities is expensive (sea, ice roads or air) and is expected to become more challenging as climate change impacts current and future winter roads seasons.
  • ISC spends approximately $40M each year on supporting First Nations with minor capital & operating expenditures; as generators age, costly replacements will be required over and above this amount.
  • There is no simple solution to address all remote First Nations needs as availability of renewable energy resources are location- dependent. Renewables such solar and wind assist in diesel reduction by 25-40%. Hydroelectricity and grid connection can result in reductions of over 90%.

Tuberculosis

Key Messages:

  • We are committed to addressing tuberculosis among Indigenous populations.
  • This is why we are working with Indigenous partners and provincial and territorial governments to support innovative approaches and specific actions.
  • We are also working to address specific social determinants of health, which are essential to the reduction of the incidence of tuberculosis, including housing, nutrition, and access to culturally safe health care.
  • We will continue to work with Indigenous partners to address rates of tuberculosis in a distinctions-based, and culturally safe way.

Inuit Nunangat

  • Our Government is working with partners to eliminate tuberculosis across Inuit Nunangat by 2030, and reduce active tuberculosis by at least 50% by 2025.
  • Budget 2018 announced $27.5 million over five years to support Inuit-specific approaches to tuberculosis elimination; in addition to $640 million over 10 years announced in Budgets 2017 and 2018 addressing Inuit Nunangat housing needs.
  • We will continue to work with partners to support innovative and community led approaches to address the factors that contribute to tuberculosis.

PM's apology

  • On March 8, 2019, the Prime Minister apologized to Inuit for the Government's actions during the tuberculosis epidemic from the 1940s to the 1960s, when thousands of Inuit were sent away to southern Canada for treatment.
  • The pain and trauma this injustice caused for families and communities across Inuit Nunangat, and the intergenerational impacts continue to be felt today.
  • He also announced the launch of the Nanilavut Initiative, developed in partnership with Inuit, to support Inuit families and communities heal.

Addressing social determinants of health:

  • Indigenous Services Canada continues to support Indigenous communities, provinces and territories, municipalities, and experts to decrease the stigma and fear often associated with tuberculosis.
  • This includes educating and raising awareness on the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis.
  • Indigenous Services Canada is working with Inuit partners, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and Employment and Social Development Canada to develop an Inuit Nunangat Housing Strategy that meets the housing needs in Inuit Nunangat and that considers Inuit lifestyles, traditions and culture.

Nunavut Screening:

  • In 2018-2019, our Government supported the Nunavut government's deployment of mobile tuberculosis screening clinics in three communities.
  • All three clinics had community participation rates of more than 80%.
  • Our Government will continue to work closely with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated through the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health regarding the support needed to conduct additional clinics and other efforts to reduce the incidence of tuberculosis.

Tuberculosis in First Nation Populations:

  • Our Government is deeply concerned by the incidences of tuberculosis among First Nations.
  • We are promoting access to equitable, culturally appropriate and timely diagnosis, treatment, and care for First Nations communities.
  • We are also working to address specific social determinants of health, which are essential to the reduction of the incidence of tuberculosis, including housing, nutrition, and access to culturally safe health care.
  • We will continue to work with Indigenous partners to address rates of tuberculosis.

Tuberculosis diagnosis, treatment, and care for First Nations communities:

  • Indigenous Services Canada works closely with Indigenous partners and provincial counterparts to address the high rates of tuberculosis in First Nations communities.
  • We are implementing targeted screening initiatives to:
    • Increase access to technologies for tuberculosis elimination efforts in northern communities such as the use of portable digital x-rays and GeneXpert;
    • Fund community-based tuberculosis champions in Saskatchewan and Manitoba Regions; and,
    • Make rifapentine available for use in high tuberculosis incidence First Nations communities.

Background:

The Public Health Agency of Canada reports that in 2017, the active tuberculosis rate among Inuit in Canada was the highest across all origin groups at 205.8 per 100,000 population; a 2.6% increase since 2016, and a rate that is over 400 times higher than the rate in the Canadian born non-Indigenous population and is over 40 times higher than for the general Canadian population. Indigenous Services Canada has taken multiple actions towards addressing high tuberculosis rates among Inuit. For example, the former Minister of Indigenous Services led Canada's delegation, which included Inuit partners, to the United Nations General Assembly first-ever high-level meeting on tuberculosis, on September 26, 2018, where she supported Inuit partners in highlighting the results of their important work towards a tuberculosis elimination framework.

In the North, primary health care, including tuberculosis control, is the responsibility of the territorial governments. Indigenous Services Canada supplements and supports territorial health programs for First Nations and Inuit, as it does in the provinces, in order to ensure access to health services, and to achieve a standard of health for First Nations and Inuit, which is comparable to that of other Canadians.

Finally, the Government of Canada recognizes that significant investments in programs that address specific social determinants of health are essential to further reduce the incidence and burden of diseases that are influenced by social and economic factors, including housing, nutrition, tobacco use, education, and access to culturally safe health care.

Budget 2019 announced $27.5 million over five years to support the Inuit-specific approach to tuberculosis elimination. This is in addition to the $640 million over 10 years announced in Budget 2017 and 2018 to address Inuit Nunangat housing needs.

Through the Nunavut Partnership Table on Health, Indigenous Services Canada continues to work closely with the Government of Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated to discuss the support required to conduct additional clinics and to support ongoing efforts towards the elimination of tuberculosis. These discussions will continue at the next Nunavut Partnership Table on Health meeting to be held February 11, 2020.

Biographies

Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs (INAN), 43rd Parliament, 1st Session

Gary Anandasangaree

Gary Anandasangaree

Jaime Battiste

Jaime Battiste

Bob Bratina

Bob Bratina

Marcus Powlowski

Marcus Powlowski

Adam van Koeverden

Adam van Koeverden

Lenore Zann

Lenore Zann

Bob Zimmer

Bob Zimmer

Gary Vidal

Gary Vidal

Arnold Viersen

Arnold Viersen

Jamie Schmale

Jamie Schmale

Sylvie Bérubé

Sylvie Bérubé

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq

Gary Anandasangaree, Scarborough—Rouge Park, ON

Gary Anandasangaree

Biographical Information

Mr. Anandasangaree was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015.

Prior to his election to the House of Commons, Mr. Anandasangaree advocated for education and justice as an internationally recognized human rights lawyer and community activist. He has served as Chair of the Canadian Tamil Youth Development Centre, President of the Canadian Tamils' Chamber of Commerce, and counsel to the Canadian Tamil Congress. He was also legal counsel to the Independent Mortgage Brokers and Agents, a board member of the Youth Challenge Fund, member of the Toronto Police Chief's Advisory Board, and a member of the United Way Newcomers Grant Program.

Mr. Anandasangaree attended Osgoode Hall Law School. He was called to the bar in 2006 and later managed his own firm in Scarborough. He has been an advocate for human rights issues, regularly representing Lawyers' Rights Watch Canada at the United Nations. He has also served as an advocate for local youth, intervening in cases of wrongful student expulsion and suspension.

In honour of his devotion to community service and local advocacy, Mr. Anandasangaree has received both the Queen's Golden and Diamond Jubilee medals. He also received the Osgoode Hall Law School "One to Watch" Gold Key Award and the South Asian Bar Association's Young Practitioner Award.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "Our government is seized with this matter. The Prime Minister has a cabinet that is working on the situation around the clock. We all want peace and we want to get rail traffic going across the country. The Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and the Minister of Indigenous Services have stated that they are ready and willing to meet with the hereditary leadership at the earliest opportunity. With the B.C. RCMP's outreach to the chiefs yesterday, we hope this creates the ability to advance a peaceful resolution." Hansard, Feb 21, 2020
  • Indigenous Languages: "We can never recover from it, and I do not think that many people who have faced this type of struggle and violation could ever recover from it, but it is important that we start the process. That is why, overall, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's calls to action are important, and that is why language revival is so essential." Hansard, May 2, 2019
  • Residential Schools: "Healing the damage of residential schools will require the sustained action of not only involved governments, but other institutions and all Canadians. The need to achieve reconciliation is a fundamental truth and is beyond partisan politics." Hansard, Sep 24, 2018

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement: Achieved a good deal that benefits everyone; provisions that protect women's, minority and indigenous rights and environmental protections; protection for labour and minimum standards across our three countries. Hansard, Feb 3, 2020
  • Environment: Government is committed to attaining net-zero emissions by 2050; ban single-use plastics by 2021; protect 25% of our shores and 25% of our land mass by 2025, 30% by 2030; attaining net-zero emissions will require enormous commitment from everyone to reach this target by 2050. Hansard, Dec 11, 2019
  • Bill C-18 (An Act to amend the Rouge National Urban Park Act, the Parks Canada Agency Act and the Canada National Parks Act): Canada at the forefront of efforts to conserve elements of its heritage, flora, fauna, and landscapes; first priority on ecological integrity in the management of the Rouge National Urban Park to further international leadership in conservation. Hansard, Feb 17, 2017

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Sri Lanka Protests: "Standing in Solidarity with the families of the disappeared as we mark the 1000 days of protest. In the sweltering heat, downpours, and the dust, these women and men have stood for justice, peace, and with their families. Truth must prevail." Twitter, Nov 16, 2019

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • M-24 (Tamil Heritage Month) (Motion Agreed To, Oct 5, 2016) - That, in the opinion of the House, the government should recognize the contributions that Tamil-Canadians have made to Canadian society, the richness of the Tamil language and culture, and the importance of educating and reflecting upon Tamil heritage for future generations by declaring January, every year, Tamil Heritage Month.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Jaime Battiste, Sydney-Victoria, NS

Jaime Battiste

Biographical Information

Born in Potlotek First Nation, NS, Mr. Battiste was first elected to the House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to his election, Jaime was a published writer on Mi'kmaw laws, history, and knowledge. After graduating from Dalhousie Law in 2004, Mr. Battiste worked as a professor, senior advisor, citizenship coordinator and Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief.

Mr. Battiste has done extensive volunteer work in athletics, youth advocacy, community events, and advocacy for the Mi'kmaq Nation. He is a member of the Aboriginal Sport Circle, a part owner of the Eskasoni Junior B Eagles. He served as the Nova Scotia Youth council representative to the Assembly of First Nation National Youth Council from 2001-2006. In 2005, the National Aboriginal Healing Organization named him as one of the National Aboriginal Role Models in Canada. In 2006, as Chair of the Assembly of First Nations Youth Council, he became one of the founding members of the Mi'kmaw Maliseet Atlantic Youth Council (MMAYC), an organization that represents and advocates for Mi'kmaw and Maliseet youth within the Atlantic. In 2018, Mr. Battiste was recognized with the Sovereign's Medal for Volunteers.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "I ask today for leaders in Canada, leaders of both indigenous and non-indigenous people, to commit to making our relationship work. Political action, not police action, has the ability to decrease tensions. It is the only way. Political discussion and negotiation is what is needed, not inflammatory rhetoric. We need to inspire hope. If nothing else during this speech, I want to make sure to say that there is still hope. The politician in me believes that and the protester in me believes that too." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • First Nations Education: "In Nova Scotia, the Mi'kmaq took control over their education system 20 years ago with Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey, which we call MK, for those who are not linguistically gifted, and we saw a 30% graduation rate increase to where we are today at about 90%. The evidence seems to clear that first nations-led and first nations-governed education systems achieve better results for first nations students. I also understand that there are 23 Anishinabek nations who have signed a historic self-government agreement on education." INAN, Feb 25, 2020
  • Indigenous Languages: "Our govt. is implementing the Indigenous Languages Act by contributing $337m over the next 5 yrs for Indigenous Languages, and $1500/yr for kindergarten to grade 12 First Nations students as part of the new co-develop education funding policy." Twitter, Jan 27, 2020
  • Acknowledgement of Indigenous Role: "Being the first-ever Mi'kmaq Member of Parliament who is also a member of the Eskasoni First Nation, I want to acknowledge the significant role indigenous people have played in Canada's history. Our government is committed to working together to advocate for indigenous languages and for the well-being of indigenous peoples across Canada." Hansard, Jan 27, 2020

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Environment: The Indigenous Leadership Initiative hosted the Land Needs Guardians conference in Ottawa to address the challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss; indigenous nations are at the forefront of a growing movement to create indigenous protection in conserved areas. Hansard, Feb 5, 2020

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Health Care in Cape Breton: "One of the no. 1 things I heard at the doors was the need to improve access to health care in Cape Breton. I met with Hon. @PattyHajdu, Minister of Health, to discuss what matters most to Cape Bretoners when it comes to quality access to health care services. This will be one of my many priorities. I look forward to working with the Minister and improve access to the services we rely on every day." Twitter, Dec 19, 2019

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • None

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Bob Bratina, Hamilton East — Stoney Creek, ON

Bob Bratina

Biographical Information

Born in Hamilton, ON, Mr. Bratina was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015, and again in 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. Bratina worked in radio and broadcasting for local morning shows and sporting events. In 1998, he was inducted into the Football Reporters of Canada Hall of Fame. He was also a nominee for Hamilton Citizen of the Year, and won Hamilton Mountain Citizen of the Year. He also served on numerous Boards of Directors including; GO Transit, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Theatre Aquarius, and HECFI.

In 2004, he was election as MPP for Hamilton Centre, and again in 2006. His concerns over high lead readings in city drinking water resulted in a lead water service replacement loan program and a lead blood screening program for young children. He was elected as Mayor of Hamilton in 2010, seeing the completion of a new stadium, development in the downtown core, and a move to solve the impasse in the local Randle Reed project.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests and the RCMP: "All communities should benefit from policing that is professional and dedicated, and indigenous communities are no exception. That is why we will co-develop a legislative framework for first nations policing and expand the number of communities served by the first nations policing program. We will ensure police officers and services have the necessary tools and resources to protect the vulnerable and increase community safety" Hansard, Feb 20, 2020
  • Water Quality: "We can no longer take a reactive approach to combatting lead pipes and drinking water quality. The time has come for the federal government to work together with its provincial, territorial, municipal, and indigenous partners to create a unified cross-country solution to eradicate these issues, which affect the very young more than the old, and low-income families more than the affluent. Children in older, poorer neighbourhoods should not be exposed to a serious health hazard because of where they live or their family's economic status." Hansard, Feb 7, 2017

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Steel and Bill C-101 (An Act to Amend the Customs Tariff and the International Trade Tribunal Act): Government must have tools and resources it needs to protect Canadians while continuing to encourage foreign investment, trade and economic growth. C-101 would provide this protection. Amendments to C-101 would help government respond quickly and appropriately to a substantiated surge of imports harming Canadian producers and workers. Hansard, Jun 6, 2019
  • Veterans: Must keep investing in veterans' benefits and services. After 10 years of cuts to funding and staff, we are rebuilding the trust of veterans. Hansard, Sep 25, 2018

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Steel: "I've always supported steel all my life […] I had steelworkers at the door thanking me for what I did. (Stelco) is working; pensioners are getting their pensions; we put millions of dollars to increase the production facility." Hamiltonnews.com, Oct 22, 2019

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • M-69 (Water Quality) (Motion Agreed To, Feb 7, 2017) - That, in the opinion of the House: (a) the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities should undertake a study on (i) the presence of lead in Canadian tap water, (ii) provincial, territorial and municipal efforts to date to replace lead water distribution lines, (iii) current federal efforts to support other levels of government in the provision of safe drinking water; (b) the Committee should report to the House no later than December 1, 2017; and (c) following the tabling of the said report, the federal government should engage with key stakeholders, such as provincial and territorial governments, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, as well as Indigenous partners, to discuss options for addressing lead drinking water service lines, including any potential role for the federal government.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Marcus Powlowski, Thunder Bay—Rainy River, ON

Marcus Powlowski

Biographical Information

Born in Fort William, ON, Mr. Powlowski was first elected to the House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. Powlowski served as a physician in the Emergency Room at Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre. In addition to being a medical doctor, he has two law degrees - LL.B, LL.M from the universities of Toronto and Georgetown, respectively. He also attended Harvard University and obtained a Masters of Public Health in Health Law and Policy.

Mr. Powlowski worked as a doctor for two years in northern First Nations communities, and for seven years practicing medicine in several developing countries in Africa and Oceania. For several years, he worked as a consultant in health legislation for the World Health Organization. He also volunteered on a medical project in Ethiopia.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "It is imperative to exhaust all peaceful means of resolving the rail blockades." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • Indigenous living conditions: "I fully support efforts to improve the living conditions of the indigenous population - we can do better than we are doing now." Netnewsledger.com, July 21, 2019

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Housing: Government has made a real investment in Canadian communities; cost of rent is going up everywhere; need for federal government to play a leadership role in the housing sector. Hansard, Jan 27, 2020

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Firearms: "Given that there is currently no legal definition for a 'military assault rifle in Canada, some community members I have spoken with are skeptical that a ban based on this term would make sense as a coherent firearm policy. Such a term, as they see it, is more political than policy oriented, and seeks to target certain firearms without a rational basis." Ipolitics.ca, Jan 21, 2020

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • None

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Adam van Koeverden, Milton, ON

Adam van Koeverden

Biographical Information

Born in Toronto, ON, Mr. van Koeverden was first elected to the House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. van Koeverden was a professional sprint kayaker. He has won numerous Olympic medals, including the gold medal in Men's canoeing at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, and has also won numerous medals at World Championship events, including the gold medal in 2007, and again in 2011.

Mr. van Koeverden has also worked as a managing consultant with Deloitte, and as a broadcaster, writer and producer with CBC Sports. He graduated as valedictorian from McMaster University in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology.

He grew up in cooperative housing in a single mother household, and has volunteered extensively for organizations like Right To Play, WaterAID, Special Olympics, Parkinson's Canada, and the David Suzuki Foundation. He has also served as Chair of the Canadian Olympic Athletes' Commission, and was a member of the federal government's working group for Gender Inclusion and Gender Based Violence in Sport.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "We can certainly all agree, I hope, that a peaceful process and a resolution that results in no violence is in everyone's best interests. However, the language that we have heard from the Leader of the Opposition is anything but peaceful, as he suggested that indigenous people 'check their privilege'. The Leader of the Opposition doubled down on that statement today when he urged haste and force." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • Indigenous Inclusion: "I am grateful to Inuit people for providing a boat that I used for many years. As a white guy from Oakville, I always express gratitude to indigenous people for the artifacts that we often use. Many are not aware that lacrosse, for example, is an indigenous sport, and kayaking as well. I think acknowledging that is a very important aspect of truth and reconciliation, […] our government's track record speaks for itself on truth and reconciliation, although there is far more work that needs to be done by all parties in this House." Hansard, Dec 12, 2019

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Equality in Sport & Society: Find solutions so all Canadians can access sport, recreation and physical activity; examine barriers that women in leadership roles face inside and outside the sport industry; work on expanding Canada's anti-racism strategy; ensure easier access to sports and community activities for newcomers to Canada. Hansard, Jan 27, 2020
  • Environment: Carbon pricing a very effective solution; government has stepped in to make sure that everybody follows a carbon pricing scheme; investments in green energy and green infrastructure to bring us closer to zero net carbon emissions by 2050. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Mental Health: Workplaces across Canada should have mental health standards; people should not have to wait months for mental health services; government will work to introduce relevant workplace mental health standards. Hansard, Jan 27, 2020
  • Cooperative Housing: Mom has been building co-ops and managing co-ops for over 30 years; one of the ways to relieve poverty is to ensure that there is less profit and that when people pay the rent, they do not need to ensure that somebody else is making a buck; always going to be a vocal advocate for co-op housing. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Canada Child Benefit: "Canada is an example of what real action on poverty reduction looks like. With programs like the Canada Child Benefit - families in Milton, and across our country have more money each month. That's more money for healthy food, sports & recreation and quality time together." Twitter, Feb 6, 2019

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • None

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Lenore Zann, Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Lenore Zann

Biographical Information

Born in Sydney, Australia, Ms. Zann was first elected to House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to her election, Ms. Zann worked as a screen, television, stage, and voice actress, and appeared in numerous television shows, films, radio, and animated series.

Ms. Zann was elected to the Nova Scotia House of Assembly in 2009, and again in 2013 for the Nova Scotia NDP. As a first-time opposition member, she was named NDP spokesperson for Education, Environment, Status of Women, Human Rights Commission, Aboriginal Affairs & Truth & Reconciliation, Agriculture, Advanced Education, African NS Affairs, and Gaelic Affairs. She served as the Ministerial Assistant for the Department of Tourism, Culture, and Heritage.

Each summer, Ms. Zann produces and directs a community theatre production for the Truro Theatre Society, which boasts a cast of all ages - including students from local schools.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "As we heard from the Mohawk leaders, and from AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde last week, we need to resolve this impasse through dialogue and mutual respect. Therefore, we only ask that the Wet'suwet'en be willing to work with our federal government as a partner to find solutions." Hansard, Feb 20, 2020
  • Indigenous Role in the Environment: "The First Nations people, the Mi'kmaq of Nova Scotia, have been very active in combatting all kinds of environmental degradation in our province. I am very proud to have stood with them on the front lines, fighting for government recognition and fighting to get these issues noticed, especially when big corporations are polluting the lands right beside the First Nations communities." Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Environmental Racism: "One of the bills I introduced in the legislature in Nova Scotia was called "An Act to Address Environmental Racism". It acknowledged the disproportionate amount of toxic waste sites, landfills, dumps and huge corporate pollution on the lands of first nations and black communities. I would like environmental racism to be talked about more often, especially in the House, as we move forward." Hansard, Dec 12, 2019

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Gang Violence: Root causes of violence are poverty, desperation, lack of education, lack of a sense of hope, mental illness and addiction. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Health and Addiction: More money into addictions research; in Nova Scotia, the wait time for addictions counsellor is sometimes 125 days, sometimes 365 days. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement: New agreement maintains preferential access to markets; modernizes outdated elements of NAFTA, including labour obligations on employment discrimination based on gender. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Environmental Habitat in Newfoundland: "An environmental assessment off the coast of Newfoundland could fast-track oil and gas exploration in an area that is home to sensitive corals and sponges, and includes important habitat for endangered whales. We have until Feb. 21 to take action ecologyaction.ca/ocean" Twitter, Feb 8. 2020

Written Questions

  • None

Private Members' Business

  • None

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Bob Zimmer, Prince George—Peace River, BC

Bob Zimmer

Biographical Information

Born in Dawson Creek, BC, and raised in Fort St. John, BC, Mr. Zimmer was first elected to the House of Commons in 2011, and again in 2015 and 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. Zimmer began his career working for his father's family carpentry business, obtained his Red Seal Journeyman Carpentry Certification, and went on to own his own construction business.

He received an undergraduate degree from Trinity Western University in human kinetics and history/political science as well as a bachelor's of education degree from the University of British Columbia.

Mr. Zimmer is currently the critic for Northern Affairs and the Deputy Critic for the Northern Economic Development Agency. He serves as Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Outdoor Caucus.

In the 42nd Parliament, he served as Chair of the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics (2017-2019), Vice-Chair of the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities(2016-2017), Critic for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, Chair of the BC/Yukon Conservative Caucus, and Chair of the National Prayer Breakfast. In the 41st Parliament, Mr. Zimmer has sat on several committees including the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food (2013-2014), the Standing Committee on Natural Resources (2013-2014), the Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs (2012-2013), and the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs (2012-2013).

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "The fact remains that consultations were conducted and the majority of the Wet'suwet'en people support the project and believe the project will benefit their First Nations. Coastal GasLink has signed agreements will all 20 elected First Nations governments along the pipeline's path, including five of the six band councils in the Wet'suwet'en Nation." EnergeticCity.ca, Feb 12, 2020
  • (Cont.) "It is shameful that elected officials, representing millions, were prevented from fulfilling their duties in Victoria. The work that is done in buildings like the BC legislature is a vital part of our democracy and to deny these officials the ability to do the work they were elected to do is alarming to say the least." Hansard, Feb 20, 2020
  • Bill C-69 (An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts) and the Moratorium on Northern Development: "We have Indigenous peoples across the North who want to develop their resources and a good economy for their people and for their benefit. What we saw from the government was a complete stifling of that opportunity." Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Residential Schools: "I understand that some of the decisions Sir John A. Macdonald made are controversial, especially as it relates to residential schools…we have all made mistakes." Energeticcity.ca, Aug 22, 2018

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Softwood Lumber in BC and USMCA: Tariff affecting the sale of lumber and timber to U.S.; new NAFTA should include an agreement on softwood lumber. Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Firearms Registry: Enough regulations and laws; no need for gun registry. Hansard, Jun 19, 2019
  • Trans-Mountain pipeline expansion: With growing federal debt and deficits the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion would provide an opportunity to make money as a country through natural resource development. Hansard, Jun 5, 2019
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Canada Energy Mega Project in Kitimat, BC: Largest private investment in Canada's history; $22 billion in provincial revenue; reducing the reliance on emitters that use higher amounts of emissions. Hansard, Oct 2, 2018

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Firearms: "The fact is the vast majority of firearms owners respect Canada's gun laws. It's criminals who do not. While it may be much harder to go after gangs and illegal gun traffickers, that is precisely what this government should be doing to make Canadians safer." Alaska Highway News, Jan 20, 2020
  • Natural Resources: "Interesting response from Parliamentary Secretary to Natural Resources in the @OurCommons today when asked about developing our CDN Oil/Gas resources...@LefebvrePaul actually said they "support investment". Please tell me Paul how C-48 (An Act respecting the regulation of vessels that transport crude oil or persistent oil to or from ports or marine installations located along British Columbia's north coast) and C-69 (An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Act) "support investment". I'll wait." Twitter, Dec 13, 2019

Written Questions

  • Q-195, Grants and contributions under $25,000 provided by the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, since January 1, 2018 – Jan 27, 2020
  • Q-55, Office of the Prime Minister and minister's offices – Dec 5, 2019
  • Q-54, Cambridge Analytica and AggregateIQ scandal – Dec 5, 2019

Private Members' Business

  • Bill C-346, An Act to amend the Firearms Act (licenses) (Defeated, House Second Reading, Nov, 2017 – 42nd Parliament)
  • M-589 (Firearms regulations) (Motion debated for 1 hour, May 26, 2015 – 41st Parliament) - That, in the opinion of the House: (a) Canada already exceeds all the standards listed in United Nations resolution 55/255 concerning firearms (the resolution); (b) the regulations envisioned in the resolution would do nothing to enhance public safety, and would serve only to burden the law-abiding firearms community; and therefore, the government has already surpassed its obligations with respect to the resolution and is not required to take any further steps.
  • M-588 (United Nations Firearms Protocol) (Motion Withdrawn, Mar 26, 2015 – 42nd Parliament) - That, in the opinion of the House, the United Nations firearms markings regime does nothing to enhance public safety and only serves to burden the law-abiding firearms community and therefore, the government should not be obliged to implement the regime.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Gary Vidal, Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

Gary Vidal

Biographical Information

Born in Meadow Lake, SK, Mr. Vidal was elected to the House of Commons for the first time in 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. Vidal served as Mayor of Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan from 2011 to 2019. He graduated from Carpenter High School in 1983 and went on to study at the University of Saskatchewan and Briercrest Bible College. He is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CGA) and is a partner in the accounting firm Pliska Vidal & Co. where he has been serving clients since 1988. He was also Vice Chair of Saskatchewan City Mayors' Caucus from 2016 to 2018. He was a member of the SaskWater Board of Directors from 2008 to 2017. In this position, he also served as Chair of the Governance and Corporate Responsibility Committee, Chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, and Chair of the Board from 2015 to 2017.

Mr. Vidal is currently the critic for Indigenous Services.

Mr. Vidal has volunteered in a variety of leadership capacities in his local church as well as on the board of Bethel Gospel Camp, an interdenominational children's bible camp. Other volunteer activities include coaching and managing minor hockey, baseball, and soccer teams. In 2012, he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "We simply cannot allow a minority of protestors to stand in the way of the will of the Wet'suwet'en nation. These protestors have taken extraordinary measures to hold Canada hostage, compromising the safety of our rail infrastructure, blocking and intimidating people attempting to go to work and in some cases physically assaulting elected members of a provincial legislature." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • Softwood Lumber and United-States – Mexico – Canada Agreement (UCSMA): "NorSask Forest Products is a 100% First Nations-owned company whose profits are directed to the nine bands that make up the Meadow Lake Tribal Council. These funds are used for services like housing, education and health care, including suicide prevention programs. Since 2017, NorSask has paid over $10 million in softwood lumber tariffs. That is $10 million not being used for services in these communities." Hansard, Dec 10, 2019
  • Indigenous participation in Industry: "With the Indigenous Services file, one of the things we are looking for is partnerships between Indigenous communities and industry, allowing Indigenous people to be part of the private sector, to be part of the market so they create economic activity that will help them take care of the very demanding needs in their First Nations communities." Hansard, Jan 30, 2020
  • Indigenous Youth Suicides: "If young people in northern Saskatchewan could look to the people they look up to, their parents, big brothers and sisters, and if they could look to the people they respect and see them succeed by being part of the industry in northern Saskatchewan, they would have hope. With that hope, they would not have to consider suicide as an outcome." Hansard, Jan 30, 2020

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Softwood Lumber and USMCA: lack of transparency from government, cannot adequately scrutinize the deal; no softwood lumber agreement, workers enduring hardships, fears of closure of lumber mills. Hansard, Dec 10, 2019

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Firearms: "Here in Northern Saskatchewan, hunting and sport shooting are a way of life for a lot of people… A Conservative government will protect the rights of law abiding gun owners." Twitter, Sep 15, 2019

Written Questions

  • Q-186, Foreign takeovers and acquisitions of Canadian companies by foreign state-owned enterprises covered by the Investment Canada Regulations and the Investment Canada Act – Jan 27,2020
  • Q-187, Canadian Armed Forces members serving abroad – Jan 27, 2020

Private Members' Business

  • None

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Arnold Viersen, Peace River—Westlock, AB

Arnold Viersen

Biographical Information

Born in Barrhead, AB, Mr. Viersen was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015, and again in 2019.

Prior to his election, Mr. Viersen apprenticed as an auto service technician and attained his journeyman ticket from the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT). He has also earned a business degree from the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) while continuing his automotive career.

In the 42nd Parliament, Mr. Viersen was the Deputy Critic of Rural Affairs. He advocated for the rights and concerns of rural families, farms and industries in Alberta and across Canada. Since 2015, he has been a member of the Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs.

Mr. Viersen is also involved in a number of parliamentary caucuses; including the Indigenous Affairs Caucus, Outdoor Caucus, and the Pro-Life Caucus. He is also a member of the Canada-Netherlands Parliamentary Friendship Group, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament and the Parliamentary Friends of the Kurds.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Indigenous Languages: "It is not just indigenous languages that are struggling in Canada. Without the economic underpinning, people's culture, way of life and community are under threat, if people are unable to finance them and to survive under the economic situation in their particular area." Hansard, May 2, 2019
  • Indigenous Victims of Trafficking: "We know indigenous women and girls are the most represented victim group in sex trafficking and prostitution in Canada. They make up only 4% of Canada's population, yet make up more than 50% of the victims in Canada." Hansard, Feb 4, 2020
  • Pipelines and Indigenous Communities: "One of the things that has really helped indigenous communities in northern Alberta is their participation in the oil and gas industry, and the wealth it has brought there. When the communities have the wealth, they become communities again; their culture begins to thrive and their languages are able to be maintained." Hansard, May 2, 2019

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Human Trafficking and Sex Work: Legalized prostitution causes violence against sex workers; Sex trafficking increase, especially among youth; happened in Germany, New Zealand and the Netherlands; legitimization of prostitution normalizes attitudes of violence, misogyny and the objectification of women and girls. Hansard, Feb 4, 2020
  • Oil and Gas: To get the economy right in northern Alberta, we need pipelines; we need pipelines to get oil off the railway, and replace it with grain and lumber going to market. Hansard, Dec 12, 2018
  • Trans Mountain: Trans Mountain would allow petroleum products to reach people living in energy poverty and without luxury. Hansard, Feb 12, 2018

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Human Trafficking: "Modern day slavery & human trafficking exist in every country of the world including Canada. With over 25 million people around the world trapped in modern day slavery, we have a responsibility to tackle the slavery in our communities and in our supply chains" Twitter, Feb 6, 2020

Written Questions

  • Q-113, New "For Glowing Hearts" logo unveiled by Destination Canada – Jan 27, 2020
  • Q-112, Government's participation in the UN Climate Change Conference COP 25 in Madrid, Spain, in December 2019 – Jan 27, 2020
  • Q-111, Government purchases of tickets or passes for Canada 2020 events during 2019
  • Q-110, Total amount of late-payment charges for telephone services since June 1, 2018 – Jan 27, 2020

Private Members' Business

  • M-212 (National Human Trafficking Awareness Day) (Motion Placed on Notice, Feb 20, 2019) - That, in the opinion of the House, the government should encourage Canadians to raise awareness of the magnitude of modern day slavery in Canada and abroad and to take steps to combat human trafficking, and should do so by designating the 22nd day of February each year as National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, to coincide with the anniversary of the unanimous declaration of the House on February 22, 2007, to condemn all forms of human trafficking and slavery.
  • M-47 (Instruction to the Standing Committee on Health (Violent and Sexual Online Material)) (Motion Agreed To, Dec 6, 2016) - That the Standing Committee on Health be instructed to examine the public health effects of the ease of access and viewing of online violent and degrading sexually explicit material on children, women and men, recognizing and respecting the provincial and territorial jurisdictions in this regard, and that the said Committee report its findings to the House no later than July 2017.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Jamie Schmale, Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, ON

Jamie Schmale

Biographical Information

Born in Brampton, ON, Mr. Schmale was elected to the House of Commons for the first time in 2015, and again in 2019.

Prior to his election to, Mr. Schmale he served as the executive assistant and campaign manager for former Conservative MP Barry Devolin (Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock, Ontario). He graduated from the Radio Broadcasting program at Loyalist College in Ontario, and started his career as a news anchor. He later became news director for CHUM media.

Mr. Schmale is currently the critic for Crown-Indigenous Relations.

In the 42nd Parliament, Mr. Schmale served as the opposition critic for Northern Economic Development, and Deputy Critic for Natural Resources. He was a member of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs (2015-2017) and the Standing Committee on Natural Resources (2017-2019).

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protests: "What Conservatives have pointed out many times, and which I did in my speech, is that there are activists who have an agenda that is totally separate from that of those first nations communities. These people want the end of oil and gas development in Canada. They want to shut down that vibrant economy of our country and are trying to glom on to this very important issue that five hereditary chiefs have with what is going on with this pipeline." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • Water Quality in Indigenous Communities: "The minister's department [CIRNAC] and the Parliamentary Budget Officer are at odds over the true cost to get water and wastewater in Indigenous communities up to the same standards as the rest of Canada." Hansard, Dec 9, 2019
  • Bill C-88, An Act to amend the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and the Canada Petroleum Resources Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts: "When the Prime Minister vetoed the northern gateway pipeline, he killed benefit agreements between the project and 31 First Nations, worth about $2 billion.... All this is destroying energy jobs and investment from coast to coast to coast. Now, with Bill C-88, we add another coast, the northern coast… we […] are deeply disappointed that the Prime Minister, who campaigned on a promise of reconciliation with Indigenous communities, blatantly would allow and choose to deny our 31 First Nations and Métis communities their constitutionally-protected right to economic development." Hansard, Apr 9, 2019
  • Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts: "…is putting a chill on investment in Canada's natural resources sector. The President of the Indian Resource Council said, 'Bill C-69 will harm Indigenous economic development, create barriers to decision-making, and make Canada unattractive for resource investment.' This legislation must be stopped." Hansard, Oct 26, 2018

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Natural Resources: Supports economic development and getting energy to markets; the Conservatives view the North as a key driver of economic activity for Canada. Hansard, Apr 9, 2019
  • Oil and Gas: Supports the oil and gas sector; anti-energy bills are regulating to death the west-to-east pipeline. Hansard, Jun 13, 2019

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Firearms: "After all, if you want to stop increasing gun crime, the answer lies in tackling criminals and gangs, not punishing law abiding gun owners." Twitter, Jan 31, 2020

Written Questions

  • Q-193, Classified or protected documents since January 1, 2019 – Jan 27, 2020
  • Q-188, Veterans Affairs Canada service standard of 16 weeks for decisions in relation to disability benefits applications – Jan 27, 2020
  • Q-172, Purchase of carbon offset credits by the government – Jan 27, 2020

Private Members' Business

  • None.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Sylvie Bérubé, Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik—Eeyou, QC

Sylvie Bérubé

Biographical Information

Ms. Bérubé was first elected to the House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to her election, Ms. Bérubé she spent 30 years with the in human resources and information. She also acted as the Director of the social committee at l'Hôpital de Val-d'Or, administrator for Taxibus, was a member of the information security association of Québec, and was President of the Parti Québécois d'Abitibi-Est.

Ms. Bérubé is currently the critic for Indigenous Affairs.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Food Security in the North: None.
  • Wet'suwet'en Protest: "Since the beginning of this crisis, it seems that only the Bloc Québécois has been trying to find concrete solutions to address the situation. We did not stand idly by, unlike the Prime Minister and his ministers, who did nothing for far too long, hoping that everything would fix itself. The federal government needs to step up and take action […] With every day that this crisis goes on, our economy suffers even more. This crisis is affecting workers and ordinary folks. Just look at the number of CN employees who have been temporarily laid off because of the rail blockade. If nothing is done right now, many more employees will join their ranks." Hansard, Feb 20, 2020
  • Treaties: "More than ever, we need to make sure that we are respecting treaties and their interpretation, if we are to break free from the colonialism that this country's First Nations suffered and still suffer to this day. This should be one of the priorities in the throne speech." Hansard, Dec 12, 2019
  • Key Indigenous Issues in Northern Quebec: "As far as Indigenous affairs are concerned, the key issues are social housing, homelessness and infrastructure in northern Quebec. The melting snow is also important […] because it changes their culture. When it comes to the environment, we have to work with First Nations." Hansard, Jan 28, 2020

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • Québec Infrastructure: Need to invest in transportation, telecommunications, airport infrastructure investments; transport of dangerous goods by rail ignored by Ottawa. Hansard, Jan 28, 2020
  • Housing: Large mining sector in riding causing housing shortage, need investments in water and sewer systems. Hansard, Jan 28, 2020

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • Québec-Federal Relations: "Ce n'est jamais facile avec le fédéral. On envoie de l'argent à Ottawa qu'on pourrait garder chez nous et le fédéral met des bâtons dans les roues du Québec." Lecitoyenvaldoramos.com, Jul 1, 2019
  • Québec Issues: "On ne sera jamais aussi bien servis que par nous-mêmes. Plusieurs dossiers du fédéral m'agacent, dont la couverture internet, le financement de logement social, l'inaction concernant la Loi sur les Indiens et la taxe sur le bois d'œuvre qui affecte notre région." Lecitoyenvaldoramos.com, Jul 1, 2019

Written Questions

  • None.

Private Members' Business

  • None.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq, Nunavut, NU

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq

Biographical Information

Born in Baker Lake, NU, Ms. Qaqqaq was first elected to the House of Commons in 2019.

Prior to her election, Ms. Qaqqaq was a facilitator, public speaker, and volunteer. She was best known for her speech in the House of Commons on International Women's Day in 2017, through the Daughters of the Vote, a program designed for young women to speak about their visions for their country in the House of Commons. She worked as an employment officer with Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, and as a wellness program specialist with the Health Department of the Government of Nunavut. She has held positions with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, working with Susan Aglukark in the Arctic Rose Foundation, and with Northern Youth Abroad. She graduated from the Jonah Amitnaaq Secondary School.

Ms. Qaqqaq is currently the critic for the Northern Economic Development agency, Northern Affairs, and the Deputy Critic for Natural Resources.

Statements on Indigenous Issues

  • Nutrition North: "Since [it] started, food security has actually gotten worse in Nunavut. People in need struggle to get quality food and necessities. Nunavut is the only fly-in, fly-out territory, so in my riding it is even worse." Hansard, Jan 29, 2020
  • Wetsu'wet'en Protests: "What we are seeing across this country is not just about one resource project. This is about generations of underfunding, broken promises and broken treaties. The federal government has backed indigenous peoples into a corner. Food, water, safe housing and infrastructure are fundamental human rights that the federal government has promised us and continues to deny us." Hansard, Feb 18, 2020
  • Climate Change and Northern Peoples: "It threatens the lives and abilities of our hunters to provide for families and communities. We need to treat it just as it is, a crisis." Hansard, Dec 6, 2019
  • Northern Infrastructure: "In Nunavut we continue to fight for basic human rights: to have a safe place to live, to afford to feed ourselves and to have clean drinking water." Hansard, Dec 6, 2019
  • Indigenous and Northern Youth Suicides: "This is a conversation that has been going on for decades. I hope that by the end of this term we can talk about post-secondary opportunities and child care spaces." Hansard, Dec 6, 2019
  • Indigenous and Northern Languages: "I am not fluent in Inuktitut. Unfortunately, this is a reality of too many Inuit. The NDP is committed to protecting and revitalizing Indigenous language through new legislation and stable funding." Twitter, Oct 2, 2019

General Issues Raised in Question Period and Committee

  • None.

General Issues Raised in the Media

  • None.

Written Questions

  • None.

Private Members' Business

  • None.

First Nations and Indigenous Organizations in Riding

  • TBD
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