Nishnawbe Aski Nation

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June 28, 2018

NAN HONOURS SECOND ANNIVERSARY OF SEVEN YOUTH INQUEST

THUNDER BAY, ON (June 28, 2018): Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler acknowledges the efforts of community partners and other agencies working on the implementation of inquest recommendations today on the second anniversary of the joint inquest into the deaths of seven NAN youth in Thunder Bay.

“We acknowledge the hard work and commitment by our community partners to implement these wide-ranging recommendations and are pleased that progress is being made,” said Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler. “The memory of our lost youth guides our work, and our thoughts and prayers are with their families and communities. There is still much work do to, and we will be increasing our role coordinating these efforts to ensure that the city is a safe and welcoming place for our students and all members of the Thunder Bay community.”

NAN is working with Northern Nishnawbe Education Council (NNEC) and the Government of Canada to expedite the development of a new school facility and student living centre for Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School, as well as upgrades and renovations for Pelican Falls First Nations High School and student residence, as per Recommendation 59. NAN is working with the federal government on a feasibility study, and is also working with NNEC and architects to begin a conceptual design.

The Seven Youth Inquest examined the deaths of Jethro Anderson (2000), Curran Strang (2005), Paul Panacheese (2006), Robyn Harper (2007), Reggie Bushie (2007), Kyle Morrisseau (2009) and Jordan Wabasse (2011). All seven died while attending high school in Thunder Bay, far away from their homes.

After hearing from 146 witnesses with 185 exhibits during eight months of proceedings, the inquest jury delivered 145 recommendations in 2016 directed at improving accountability, safety and education outcomes for all NAN students. NAN called for a process for their immediate implementation, and continues to participate through a Political Table and an Education Table.

Submitted annually to Ontario’s Chief Coroner, the report provides a detailed response to the 25 Inquest recommendations directed to NAN.

It will be available to the public on Friday at: www.nan.on.ca

For more information please contact: Michael Heintzman, Director of Communications – (807) 625-4965 or cell (807) 621-2790 or by email mheintzman@nan.on.ca

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