Saskatchewan hockey camp breaking barriers in sport –

May 23, 2019

A new hockey development camp in Saskatchewan is breaking major barriers in sport by providing opportunities for people in remote communities.

Tyadg McGauley is the founder of OM Hockey Systems, an obstacle-based skills and training program for aspiring hockey players across the province.

“The cultural fabric of the country is hockey,” McGauley said. “The conclusion I came to is that there are huge holes in the ways that we develop hockey players especially at the highest levels.”

Many players participating in the program live in remote Indigenous communities located hours away with few, if any, options to play hockey.

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AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde Says Exoneration of Chief Poundmaker is a Step Towards Reconciliation: “A Peacemaker Who Wanted a Better Future for His People”

AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde Says Exoneration of Chief Poundmaker is a Step Towards Reconciliation: “A Peacemaker Who Wanted a Better Future for His People”

May 23, 2019

(Ottawa, ON) – Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde is participating today in the exoneration ceremony for Chief Poundmaker and apology by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the National Historic Site at the Poundmaker Cree Nation in Saskatchewan.

“Reconciliation requires an honest understanding of our shared history, so we can move forward together,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “All Canadians must know that Chief Poundmaker was a leader and a peacemaker who wanted a better future for his people. He fought for peace, not for war. He used his pipe, not a gun. Today’s exoneration of Chief Poundmaker and the Prime Minister’s apology are an opportunity to address a past injustice and correct the historical record. I honour the legacy of Chief Poundmaker and lift up the people of the Poundmaker Cree Nation for their long efforts to make today a reality. Without truth, there is no reconciliation.”

National Chief Bellegarde was invited by the leadership of the Poundmaker Cree Nation to witness the exoneration and to speak as part of the ceremony.

Chief Poundmaker, whose Cree name is Pîhtokahanapiwiyin, was a Plains Cree Chief from Treaty 6 territory.  He was known as a peacekeeper and defender of his people.  After the Battle of Cut Knife Hill, against government forces in 1885, he was charged with treason and sentenced to three years in prison.  He was released in 1886 because of poor health and died later that same year.  

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nation citizens in Canada. Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Updates.


For more information, please contact:

Monica Poirier
Bilingual Communications Officer
Assembly of First Nations
613-241-6789 ext. 382
613-292-0857 (mobile)

Jenna Young Castro
Senior Communications Advisor
Assembly of First Nations
613-241-6789 ext 201
613-314-8157 (cell)


Star – Orion South Diamond Project Update on Recent Activities Toward the 2019 Trench Cutter Bulk Sampling Program

George H. Read, P. Geo., Senior Vice President Exploration and Development of Star Diamond Corporation (“Star Diamond” or the “Corporation”) is pleased to announce that Rio Tinto Exploration Canada Inc (”RTEC”) have completed the ten Cutter Soil Mixing (“CSM”) panels at the proposed trench cutter bulk sample positions on the Star Kimberlite. As a result, the CSM rig and associated concrete plant have been demobilized from site. In preparation for the trench cutter bulk sampling program, the Kimberlite Separation Unit (“KSU”) has been delivered to site and is currently being assembled and commissioned. The KSU is designed to recover all kimberlite fragments between 80 and 0.85 millimetres, from the slurry excavated by the trench cutter rig. This washed kimberlite material will be collected in cubic metre bulk bags for delivery to Bulk Sample Plant (“BSP”). Impact Mechanical Services Ltd. of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan has been awarded the contract to assemble the BSP, which was fabricated by Consulmet in South Africa in modular, containerized units. Unpacking and assembly of the BSP is currently underway. All of these activities are taking place in the Fort à la Corne diamond district of central Saskatchewan, Canada, on mineral dispositions held 100 percent by Star Diamond, in preparation for RTEC’s bulk sample drilling program on the Star – Orion South Diamond Project. RTEC refers to Star Diamond’s mineral dispositions in the Fort à la Corne diamond district as Project FalCon.

Senior Vice President Exploration and Development, George Read, states: “RTEC is in the process of assembling all the components required for the proposed trench cutter bulk sampling program on the Star Kimberlite. Once assembly and commissioning of the equipment has been completed, trench cutter drilling and bulk sample collection can commence. The trench cutter rig, KSU and BSP have all been designed to minimize diamond breakage, due to the known coarse diamond size frequency distributions of the Star and Orion South kimberlites. Star Diamond Corporation is encouraged by the level of activity on site and the pace at which tasks are being completed in preparation for the bulk sample drilling program on the Corporation’s Star Kimberlite.”

Star Diamond Corporation is a Canadian based corporation engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of mineral properties. Shares of the Corporation trade on the TSX Exchange under the trading symbol “DIAM”. The Corporation’s Fort à la Corne kimberlites (including the Star – Orion South Diamond Project, or “Project”) are located in central Saskatchewan in close proximity to established infrastructure, including paved highways and the electrical power grid, which provide significant advantages for future mine development.

All technical information in this press release has been prepared under the supervision of George Read, Senior Vice-President of Exploration and Development, a registered Professional Geoscientist in the Provinces of Saskatchewan and British Columbia and Mark Shimell, Project Manager, a registered Professional Geoscientist in the Province of Saskatchewan, who are the Corporation’s “Qualified Persons” under the definition of NI 43-101.

For further information: or (306) 664-2202


Trudeau in Saskatchewan to exonerate Chief Poundmaker of treason – National Observer

May 23rd 2019

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is to visit a Saskatchewan First Nation today to exonerate a chief unjustly convicted of treason more than 130 years ago.

Trudeau is to vindicate Chief Poundmaker during a ceremony at the reserve that bears his name — Poundmaker Cree Nation — about 200 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon.

Members of the First Nation describe Poundmaker as an important political leader who spoke out against Treaty 6 and stood up for his people at the time of the 1885 Northwest Rebellion.

They say Poundmaker was inappropriately labelled a traitor even though he stopped First Nations fighters from going after retreating federal forces that had attacked them.

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First Nations pharmacist says Sask. should extend consultation program to include Indigenous people – CBC

SMAP is a provincially-funded program that allows patients one-on-one consultations with a pharmacist

May 23, 2019

Canada’s first self-identified First Nations doctor of pharmacy says a program funded by Saskatchewan is discriminatory toward Indigenous people.

“When the system treats people differently based on their racialized identity or ethnicity that would be systemic racism. So the system is being racist,” said Swidrovich, an assistant professor in the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan and a Saulteaux member of Yellowquill First Nation.

The Saskatchewan Medication Assessment Program (SMAP), a provincially funded program that began in 2013, allows those with a valid Saskatchewan health card to access a one-hour consultation with a pharmacist to review a person’s medical history and medication. The assessment helps the patient understand their medical history and allows for pharmacists answer questions about side effects, medication interaction and what the medications do.

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Indigenous community innovation bringing clean-energy to Saskatchewan

From: Infrastructure Canada

Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan, May 22, 2019—Investing in infrastructure that promotes clean energy solutions is key to creating a strong low-carbon economy and sustainable future for Canadians.

Today, the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, on behalf of the Honourable Francois-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and the Honourable Jeremy Harrison, Saskatchewan Minister of Trade and Export Development and MLA for Meadow Lake, announced funding for a major green energy project in Meadow Lake.

The First Nations-owned Meadow Lake Tribal Council Bioenergy Centre will generate carbon-neutral green power using sawmill biomass residuals. It will be the first plant of its kind in Saskatchewan and is expected to produce 6.6 megawatts of baseload electricity to power approximately 5,000 homes with greener energy.

The project is expected to decrease greenhouse gas emissions by more than 1 million tonnes over 25 years, and reduce smoke and other harmful matter to significantly improve air quality for residents.

Revenues from the plant will also support essential programs and services including child and family services, education, and health and youth development for the nine member-First Nations comprising the Meadow Lake Tribal Council.

The Government of Canada is contributing $52.5 million to this project through the Green Infrastructure Stream of the Canada-Saskatchewan Integrated Bilateral Agreement under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.


“Canada’s transition to cleaner power will protect the environment, create more sustainable communities and build a clean future for generations to come. Our government is proud to support Meadow Lake Tribal Council and the entire community in realizing their Bioenergy Plant – the first of its kind in Saskatchewan. This project will create good middle-class jobs, boost regional economic growth and serve as a model for communities across the country who want to transition to renewable energy and promote a greener way of life.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, on behalf of the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

“The Meadow Lake Bioenergy Project is a first of its kind biomass green energy project for Saskatchewan, and today’s announcement is an exciting step in making this new bioenergy power plant a reality. Congratulations to Meadow Lake Tribal Council and MLTC Resource Development on being one step closer to green energy production that will support improved economic outcomes for their member nations, the community of Meadow Lake and our region.”

The Honourable Jeremy Harrison, Minister of Trade and Export Development and MLA for Meadow Lake

“Through this kind of affirmative action, Canada and Saskatchewan demonstrate their commitment to ensuring ongoing and sustained participation of Indigenous communities in green energy infrastructure development, climate change mitigation, improving environmental outcomes and supporting our local forestry-based economy in the Meadow Lake area. Investment such as this makes good sense as it enables MLTC and the Meadow Lake First Nations to create ongoing economic opportunity and hope for our people.”

Chief Richard Ben, Tribal Chief, Meadow Lake Tribal Council

“The City of Meadow Lake applauds this federal funding announcement today for the MLTC Bioenergy Centre. The Meadow Lake Tribal Council has a significant role in the local economy of Meadow Lake. This project will serve to strengthen MLTC’s continuing growth and its ongoing support of economic development in the area.”

Merlin Seymour, Acting Mayor of Meadow Lake

Quick facts

  • Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.
  • $26.9 billion of this funding is supporting green infrastructure projects, including $5 billion available for investment through the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
  • The Government of Canada is contributing up to $52.5 million to this project through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Plan. A further $250,000 is being provided by the Indigenous Services Canada and Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs’ Community Opportunities Readiness Program.
  • The nine member-First Nations comprising the Meadow Lake Tribal Council (MLTC) are Birch Narrows Dene Nation, Buffalo River Dene Nation, Canoe Lake Cree Nation, Clearwater River Dene Nation, English River First Nation, Flying Dust First Nation, Makwa Sahgaiehcan First Nation, Ministikwan Lake Cree Nation, and Waterhen Lake First Nation.

Associated links


Ann-Clara Vaillancourt
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

Jeffrey MacDonald
Director, Capital Planning & Infrastructure
Government of Saskatchewan

Tribal Chief Richard Ben
Meadow Lake Tribal Council

Media Relations
Infrastructure Canada
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154


Media advisory: Minister Seamus O’Regan to provide remarks at Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations Gathering in Saskatchewan

From: Indigenous Services Canada

Flying Dust First Nation, Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan – Please be advised that the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Indigenous Services, will attend the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations Gathering where he will deliver remarks.

Date: Thursday, May 23, 2019
Time: 10 am (CT)

Flying Dust Hockey Arena
Flying Dust Reserve
Meadow Lake, SK S9X 1T8
For more information:

Kevin Deagle
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Seamus O’Regan
Minister of Indigenous Services

ISC Media Relations


A real smear job’: Authors who dispelled myths about Chief Poundmaker applaud exoneration – CBC

May 22, 2019

Co-authors Blair Stonechild and Bill Waiser revealed Chief Poundmaker was a peacemaker, not a rebel or traitor

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s exoneration of Chief Poundmaker, planned for Thursday at the Saskatchewan First Nation that bears his name, will help right a historical wrong and correct a 134-year-old myth in Canadian history, according to two authors who wrote the book on First Nations involvement in the Northwest Rebellion.

Poundmaker, whose Cree name was Pîhtokahanapiwiyin, was convicted of “treason-felony” and locked up after Ottawa accused him and other First Nations leaders of instigating violence in the Northwest Rebellion of 1885.

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The death of Colten Boushie and the ongoing fight for justice for Indigenous peoples –

May 22, 2019

On August 9, 2016 Colten Boushie, a 22-year old Indigenous man, was shot in the back of the head by Gerald Stanley in Biggar, Saskatchewan. While Stanley was charged with second-degree murder, the trial and his eventual acquittal demonstrated a tragic amount of carelessness with Colten’s case. With his body being left in the car for a full day, the mismanagement of evidence, and the selection of an all-white jury, the trial sparked a national discussion about race relations in Canada.

Under these tragic circumstances, Colten’s family, led by his mother Debbie Baptiste, has been working to address the failures of the Canadian justice system and keep the memory of the Colten they knew alive. Colten was training to be a firefighter, loved by his community, and even considered getting married at the time of his death. This is the story that Indigenous filmmaker Tasha Hubbard wants to tell with her latest film Nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up, giving the audience profound insight into the family’s activism and ensuring that we continue to discuss these urgent issues.

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Government of Canada announces judicial appointments in the province of Saskatchewan

From: Department of Justice Canada

May 21, 2019 – Ottawa, Ontario – Department of Justice Canada

The Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced the following appointments under the new judicial application process introduced on October 20, 2016. The new process emphasizes transparency, merit, and diversity, and will continue to ensure the appointment of jurists who meet the highest standards of excellence and integrity.

The Honourable Jeffery Kalmakoff, a Judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan, is appointed a Judge of Appeal of the Court of Appeal for Saskatchewan, and a Judge ex officio of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan. Mr. Justice Kalmakoff would replace Mr. Justice P.A. Whitmore, who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective April 8, 2019.

The Honourable Natasha Crooks, a Judge of the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan, is appointed a Judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan. Madam Justice Crooks would replace Madam Justice C.L. Dawson (Regina), who elected to become a supernumerary judge effective November 1, 2018. Madam Justice Crooks is located in Saskatoon as the Chief Justice has transferred Mr. Justice D. Tochor (Saskatoon) into Justice Dawson’s vacancy.

Neil Robertson, a sole practitioner in Regina, is appointed a Judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan. Mr. Justice Robertson would replace Mr. Justice B.A. Barrington-Foote (Regina), who was elevated to the Court of Appeal on November 1, 2018.

Beverly L. Klatt, Senior Crown Prosecutor at the Saskatchewan Department of Justice, is appointed a Judge of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan. Madam Justice Klatt would replace Mr. Justice Jeffery Kalmakoff (Regina), who was elevated to the Court of Appeal effective May 17, 2019.


Justice Kalmakoff was born in Saskatoon and grew up on a farm near Blaine Lake, Saskatchewan. He obtained an LL.B. from the University of Saskatchewan College of Law in 1993.

Justice Kalmakoff articled with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice, then worked for a brief period in private practice with Hnatyshyn Singer in Saskatoon. In September of 1994, he was hired as a Crown Prosecutor by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice, and held that position until October of 2009, when he was appointed as a Judge of the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan.

During his time as a Crown Prosecutor, Justice Kalmakoff did primarily trial work. He also served as President of the Saskatchewan Crown Attorneys’ Association from 2003 to 2005, and was a regular lecturer at RCMP Depot, speaking to recruits about the Young Offenders Act and Youth Criminal Justice Act. From 1995 until 2009, he gave regular presentations on sexual assault law to volunteers at the Regina Women’s Centre Sexual Assault Line.

As a Provincial Court Judge, Justice Kalmakoff served in Estevan from 2009 to 2011, and in Regina from 2011 until May of 2015, when he was appointed to the Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench. He has served as a General Division Judge, based in Regina, since that time.

Justice Kalmakoff has been active in continuing judicial education, serving as chair of the education committees for both the Saskatchewan Provincial Court and the Court of Queen’s Bench during his tenure.

Justice Kalmakoff and his wife, Melanie, have been married for nearly 25 years. They have three children: Samuel (21), Sarah (19), and Natasha (16).

Justice Crooks was appointed to the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan in March 2018. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Regina in 1999 and a Juris Doctor (with distinction) from the University of Saskatchewan in 2004. She articled at the Department of Justice Canada and began her law career there with a general civil litigation practice.

Justice Crooks was appointed to the Parole Board of Canada in 2013 and served as a Board Member until her appointment as a Provincial Court Judge. During that time, she was a member of the Parole Board of Canada’s Executive Committee and Chairperson of the Indigenous Circle, a national committee of the Parole Board of Canada that provides advice on issues that impact Indigenous offenders, victims and communities.

Justice Crooks is Métis and was born and raised in southern Saskatchewan.

A graduate of the University of Regina and Osgoode Hall Law School, Justice Robertson articled with Leslie Shaw and was admitted to the Law Society of Saskatchewan in 1984.

At the time of his appointment, Justice Robertson had a private practice in municipal law and as an arbitrator. He also served as an Inquest Coroner and Chair of the Saskatchewan Police Commission. He previously practiced with Robb & Dowling and as counsel to the Regina Police Service and City of Regina, appearing before all levels of courts. He received the Queen’s Counsel designation in 2003 and the Fellows designation from the International Municipal Law Association in 2005.

Justice Robertson has been active throughout his career with professional associations, including as a past president of the Saskatchewan Branch of the Canadian Bar Association, and with community groups. His community service was recognized by the award of the Saskatchewan Volunteer Medal in 2016.

Justice Robertson has been married for 32 years to Madeleine Robertson, Q.C. with whom he has a son and daughter.

Justice Klatt was born and raised in Saskatchewan. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree, majoring in Sociology and Political Science, and, in 1986, obtained a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Saskatchewan.

Justice Klatt articled and spent the first few years in private practice. In 1991, she was offered a position with the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General as a front-line trial prosecutor in both rural areas and in Regina. In 2003, she accepted a position with Public Prosecutions (Head Office) as an appellate counsel and, in 2010, became Senior Appellate Counsel, arguing cases in the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal and Supreme Court of Canada.

Justice Klatt was Saskatchewan’s representative from Prosecutions in the Federal/Provincial/Territorial forum of criminal law policy, working on criminal law reforms that included self-defence, disclosure, bail and criminal procedure.

Justice Klatt was an executive member with the Canadian Bar Association (Saskatchewan Branch) for many years, lectured and presented at various continuing legal education seminars and conferences and was actively involved in junior mentorship conferences within Public Prosecutions. For the past three years, she was a presenter at the CPLED seminar on Criminal Law.

During her career, Justice Klatt has had the opportunity to sit on various boards and committees as a way of serving the community. She has been an active volunteer in those endeavors.

Justice Klatt lives in Regina with her spouse and their two children.

Quick facts

  • At the Superior Court level, more than 300 judges have been appointed since November 2015. These exceptional jurists represent the diversity that strengthens Canada. Of these judges, more than half are women, and appointments reflect an increased representation of visible minorities, Indigenous, LGBTQ2S and those who self-identify as having a disability.
  • The Government of Canada is committed to promoting access to justice for all Canadians. To improve outcomes for Canadian families, Budget 2018 will provide funding of $77.2 million over four years to support the expansion of unified family courts, beginning in 2019-2020. This investment in the family justice system will create 39 new judicial positions in Alberta, Ontario, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • In addition, Budget 2018 provided funding for a further seven judicial positions in Saskatchewan and Ontario, at a cost of $17.1 million over five years.
  • The funding outlined in Budget 2018 comes on top of resources allocated under Budget 2017, which created 28 new judicial positions across the country.
  • In addition, the Government will invest $6 million over two years, beginning in 2018-2019, to support the judicial discipline process through which allegations of judicial misconduct are investigated. In this way, the Government will ensure that a robust process remains in place to allow Canadians to voice their concerns and submit complaints about judicial conduct to the Canadian Judicial Council and the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs.
  • Federal judicial appointments are made by the Governor General, acting on the advice of the federal Cabinet and recommendations from the Minister of Justice.
  • The Judicial Advisory Committees across Canada play a key role in evaluating judicial applications. There are 17 Judicial Advisory Committees, with each province and territory represented.
  • Significant reforms to the role and structure of the Judicial Advisory Committees, aimed at enhancing the independence and transparency of the process, were announced on October 20, 2016. Sixteen Judicial Advisory Committees have been reconstituted to date.


For more information, media may contact:

Rachel Rappaport
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice

Media Relations
Department of Justice Canada


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