Ha Shilth Sa Newspaper December 1st, 2022

Page 1

Uchucklesaht’s first community canoe in generations takes shape

Since January, cedar log has been carved into 45-foot canoe for cultural connection

PortAlberni, BC -At the beginning of January, Hipolite Williams began carving a 35-foot canoe for Uchucklesaht Nation. Through winter, spring, summer, and fall, he and his apprentice, Cooper Styan, worked daily toward carving the red cedar canoe.

The log, chosen by Williams and sourced from Cawak ʔqin Forestry, was 45 feet long, 5 feet at the base, 3.5 to 4 feet at the top, weighing 16, 000 pounds, said RyanAnaka, director of Lands and Resources for Uchucklesaht.

“This one had a perfect half moon kind of shape on one side,” said Williams, who is a member of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations. “Each log, even if it looks perfect on the outside, changes when you open it up.”

Williams, who’s been carving since 1995, said that with the logs that are available currently it’s difficult to get what would have been chosen traditionally. But with what is available today, the primary focus is to choose one with less knots.

“All the knots you see are going to come out on one side,” said Williams. “We make sure we flatten the bottom, find the bottom…and then we take all the knots out of there afterwards.”

When picking a tree in the forest Hipolite said that the side with fewer branches would become the base of the canoe because there would be less knots.

Williams’favorite part of the project was using the adzes to dig out the canoe.

At the bow of the canoe is a thunderbird, carved from the strongest and heaviest part of the log. Having the weight of this piece here functions to carry the canoe forward, said Williams. Designed along the canoe is a sea serpent, and a killer whale to tell the Uchucklesaht origin story.

In October, Williams and Styan tested the canoe in the water.

“With just the two of us paddling, it was really fast, really stable …and went straight,” said Williams. “Ticked all the boxes.”

“When they lifted it up, it weighed about 1,000 pounds, so they took about 15,000 pounds of material away,” said Wilfred Cootes, executive of Lands and Natural Resources for the Uchucklesaht Tribal Government.

Inside this issue...

With the addition of seats, the canoe is expected to weigh roughly 1,500 pounds, according to Cootes.

Cootes said it’s rewarding to see the youth tour onsite and meet Williams and Styan while they bring this to life.

“I absolutely love walking into the tent and smelling the cedar and it really brings so much joy,” said Cootes. “And to see that the cultural aspect of our people come back alive again.”

Styan, who is a Uchucklesaht member, is Williams’first full-time student.

“I figured it’s my duty to learn to teach,” said Williams. “That’s my favorite part, is teaching. I want to teach more and more.”

Williams said that Styan had been learning about adzing and shaping, and nearing the end of the project got into the knives, learning how to carve designs.

Styan didn’t think that carving would be something he would become involved in until he saw the opportunity in the Uchucklesaht Newsletter, he said.

Housing project for abused women underway...............Page 3

Watchdog clears officer in Opitsaht shooting.................Page 5

Festival hosts traditional canoe steaming.......................Page 7

Feed the People returns to in-person event...................Page 11 Washington state bans fish farms..................................Page 15

“I’ve pretty much never really worked on carving before. Other than just fiddling around with knives when [I was] younger,” said Styan.

Styan said it was important to him to be involved in this historic project. He plans to continue carving after it’s done, and has ordered his own carving tools.

“It’s been an ongoing wish for the nation to do this,” saidAnaka, who was tasked with sourcing the tree, organizing grants, and contracts for the project.

Anaka said that in speaking with elders it could have been 50 to 75 years since Uchucklesaht has last seen a community canoe of this caliber to gather around.

“We’re hoping to participate in the canoe journeys, as well as trying to reconnect our citizens and our youth, especially our youth, to the lands and especially the waters,” said Cootes. “To give them those skills and bring that part of their culture back to the children has always been a dream.”

Flu closes Ahousaht schools

Influenza outbreak drops a"endance to 17 per cent

Ahousaht, BC – Students and staff of Maaqtusiis elementary and secondary schools were sent home Monday, Nov. 28 due to high numbers of flu cases.

Of the 238 students attending both the elementary and high school, only 41 showed up for school on Monday.

“Unfortunately,Ahousaht has been hit hard with this nasty flu bug and has affected the attendance in our schools. We closed last week due to low attendance in all departments of the school system,” said Education Director RebeccaAtleo.

She went on to say that only 18 of the 139 elementary students showed up for school on Monday. Of the 99 high school students, 23 made it to school. One parent said that, in one case, there was only one student in the classroom.

Teaching staff were not spared from the flu bug.Atleo says at least a dozen of the staff members are sick.

The school closed Thursday, Nov. 24 due to high absenteeism.

“We directed the custodial staff to do a deep sanitizing of all of the buildings and hoped that people would be better this week. That is not the case as attendance was lower this week than last week,” Atleo told Ha-Shilth-Sa.

Residents are also reporting that pharmacy shelves in Tofino are bare in the cold and flu remedy aisle.

Terry Smith of Tofino Pharmacy confirms that they’ve struggled to get children’s cold remedies for months.

“There’s a Canada-wide shortagethere’s been nothing available for a couple of months,” she said.

Cold and flu remedies are being imported from the US andAustralia, but it is not known when the shipments will arrive.

“When the shipment arrives it will be for all of Canada, so the big box stores will probably get it before the small markets do,” she said.

She said pharmacists are doing whatever they can to help. In the absence of flu remedies in the store, Smith advises parents to speak to the pharmacist about what they can do to help their children.

Atleo has reached out to leadership for further direction. She said there are a high number of residents sick with the flu.As for the schools, “we will reassess on Wednesday to see how it plays out.”

Vol. 49 - No. 23—December 1, 2022 haas^i>sa Canadian Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement No. 40047776
please return
Canada’s Oldest First Nations
- Serving Nuu-chah-nulth-aht since 1974
to: Ha-Shilth-Sa P.O. Box 1383, PortAlberni, B.C. V9Y 7M2
Photo by Alexandra Mehl Hippolyte Williams carves the Thunderbird as the bow of the new canoe at Nucii in PortAlberni, the former site of the Redford School..
Page 2— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022

Housing project underway for women fleeing violence

The upcoming 22-unit complex on City of Port Alberni-owned land is set to be complete in the summer of 2023

PortAlberni, BC –Anew multi-unit facility is being built in PortAlberni, providing safe living spaces for women and their children escaping violence.

TheAttorney General and Ministry Responsible for Housing made the announcement on Nov. 25.

Sage Haven (formerlyAlberni Community and Women’s Services Society) offers first-stage transition homes to women and their children. This new development is set to offer a temporary place to stay for women and children escaping violence.

Sage Haven identified a need for second-stage housing in the community, which provides short-term accommodation with on-site supports. Residents will typically live in the units for six to 24 months before moving to more permanent housing.

“Second-stage housing is key to freeing up space in first-stage housing, which is vital for a woman’s safety,” said a BC Housing spokesperson. “The development will provide women and their children leaving violence with housing where they can comfortably take the time need to stabilize.”

Construction is underway on the 22-unit building on land owned by the City of PortAlberni, and is expected to be complete in summer 2023. The City of Port Alberni has entered into a long-term lease with the province, through BC Housing, to enable this development.

According to the provincial government, BC Housing is investing approximately $8.6 million to the project through the Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund and will provide annual operating funding.

The development is also part of B.C.’s 10-year, $7-billion housing plan. Since 2017, the province has funded more than 36,000 affordable homes that are either complete or underway, including 365 homes in PortAlberni.

Operated by Sage Haven, the new building offers studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom homes for women and gender-diverse people leaving violence, including transgender women, Two-Spirit and non-binary people, and their dependent children in PortAlberni and surrounding areas.

The site is located on the territory of the Tseshaht and Hupacasath First Nations and both First Nations participated in the ground-breaking ceremony on Friday, Nov. 25. Sage Haven is committed to working with them in further ceremonies at the site.

Once complete, women will be offered on-site support services, such as safety planning, crisis intervention, parenting support and tenancy resources, according to Sage Haven. Rent will be calculated at 30 per cent of residents’income, or the provincial shelter rate for those who are receiving income or disability assistance.

home is essential for women and their children who have faced violence and is something every British Columbian should have,” said Grace Lore, Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity.

“I am grateful to all those involved in making these new safe homes a reality for the people of PortAlberni, which will be life-changing for so many women and transgender, Two-Spirit and non-binary people as they build their lives in safety and stability.”

BC Housing has also granted $10 million for the recently announced, Huu-ayaht-led Oomiiqsu (women’s transition home) facility.According to BC Housing, funding comes through the Women’s Transition Housing Fund.

The Oomiiqsu facility will use an Indigenous-led model of care developed by Huu-ay-aht in consultation with its members that will help improve the lives of Indigenous peoples and their families in PortAlberni and the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Citaapi Mahtii signs deed for housing development

PortAlberni, BC - On Tuesday, Nov. 29, GinaAmos, Wally Samuel, George Frank, and Ed Ross met with PortAlberni Mayor Sharie Minions. They came together for the signing of the deed to the former Cedarwood Elementary School, where they plan to build an affordable housing complex forAhousaht members living in PortAlberni.

Roughly four years agoAhousaht’s elected chief and council initiated the search for housing for the First Nation’s members living in PortAlberni, said Ahousaht elder Wally Samuel.

“Alot of us [have] been living here since the ‘60s, and we have almost 500 Ahousahts that live in PortAlberni,” said Samuel.

“It’s something I know we’ve been striving for years and years,” said George Frank (Ma’tuah), ofAhousaht, specifically, Kelthsmaht and Qwaats’wii. “Most of our people are in PortAlberni, and that’s why we chose PortAlberni.”

With units varying from studios to four-bedroom, the complex will provide affordable housing for urbanAhousaht members living in PortAlberni.

“It’s [going to] be important, especially

for the younger generation that can’t afford housing,” said Frank.

Rent will be determined by income to support the younger generation, he continued.

They are also looking at including much needed daycare, he said.

Sharie Minions, PortAlberni’s mayor, said that the way thatAhousaht approached acquiring the land stood out to her.

“It’s really exciting to seeAhousaht come in and seek to follow that proper protocol,” said Minions. “Then to see Tseshaht here for the signing is really meaningful.”

The site of the former Cedarwood School is located at 4210 Cedarwood Street, near the fall fair grounds.

“We know there’s a lot of work yet to actually have the project completed,” said Samuel. “Hopefully, we’ll create jobs for our local guys.”

“We look forward to that economic opportunity for our city here,” added Samuel.

Samuel said that they will include local nations and partners in planning the building’s outer design.

“We’ve been waiting to sign the document for the land and today’s the day,” said Frank.

Construction is expected to be complete in summer 2023.As with all projects for women and children leaving violence, BC Housing is asking the media not to disclose the address of the Sage Haven project for safety reasons.

“Having a safe, supportive space to call

Located in PortAlberni, Oomiiqsu will provide a safe and culturally appropriate home for up to 48 mothers and children who are experiencing violence, mental health and addictions challenges, poverty or other traumas.

Tofino highway opens to two-way traffic this winter

Kennedy Lake, BC – The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure announced that the Kennedy Hill section of Highway 4, which has been under construction since the fall of 2018, will soon open to two-way traffic.

The announcement came in a November 22 ministry update on the project, which was originally scheduled to be complete by fall 2020.

The 1.5-kilometre section of highway is being made safer and will include a rest area with washrooms.

“The road has been straightened and flattened, with better visibility, wider travel lanes and shoulders, and new roadside barriers between the highway and Kennedy Lake,” according to the ministry statement.

They went on to say that, weather per-

mitting, two-way traffic will start flowing again this winter on the Kennedy Hill section of Highway 4, reducing delays for people travelling between PortAlberni and the west coast of Vancouver Island.

The Ministry of Transportation says the project, which is now more than 90 per cent complete, has removed overhanging rock, which was a hazard for commercial vehicles and a source of rockfalls onto the highway.Anew rest area with washroom facilities and viewpoint will be accessible for all vehicle types.An improved drainage system will meet new standards that increase resiliency to the changing climate.

The project is expected to be completed in the spring of 2023. Once both lanes are open, traffic impacts will be reduced to nighttime closures and minor interruptions during the day.

For up-to-date information on Highway 4 conditions, visit DriveBC.

December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 3
Photo from BC NDP Caucus “Having a safe, supportive space to call home is essential for women and their children who have faced violence,” says Grace Lore, parliamentary secretary for Gender Equity. Photo by Alexandra Mehl On Nov. 29 Wally Samuel and other representatives from the Citaapi Mahtii met with Mayor Sharie Minions to sign the deed for an affordable housing project.

Ha-Shilth-Sa newspaper is published by the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council for distribution to the members of the NTC-member First Nations, as well as other interested groups and individuals.

Information and original work contained in this newspaper is protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without written permission from:

Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council P.O. Box 1383, PortAlberni, B.C. V9Y 7M2.

Telephone: (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 Web page: www.hashilthsa.com facebook: Hashilthsa Ntc

2022 Subscription rates:

$35 per year in Canada and $40 per year in the U.S.A. and $45 per year in foreign countries. Payable to the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council.


Eric Plummer (Ext. 243) (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 eric.plummer@nuuchahnulth.org


Denise Titian (Ext. 240) (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 denise.titian@nuuchahnulth.org


Alexandra Mehl (Ext. 286) (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 alexandra.mehl@nuuchahnulth.org

Audio / Video Technician

Mike Watts (Ext. 238) (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 mike.watts@nuuchahnulth.org


Holly Stocking (Ext. 302) (250) 724-5757 Fax: (250) 723-0463 holly.stocking@nuuchahnulth.org


Please note that the deadline for submissions for our next issue is

December 9, 2022

After that date, material submitted and judged appropriate cannot be guaranteed placement but, if material is still relevant, will be included in the following issue.

In an ideal world, submissions would be typed rather than hand-written. Articles can be sent by e-mail to holly.stocking@nuuchahnulth.org (Windows PC).

Submitted pictures must include a brief description of subject(s) and a return address.

Pictures with no return address will remain on file.Allow two - four weeks for return.

Photocopied or faxed photographs cannot be accepted.


Although we would like to be able to cover all stories and events, we will only do so subject to:

- Sufficient advance notice addressed specifically to Ha-Shilth-Sa.

- Reporter availability at the time of the event.

- Editorial space available in the paper.

- Editorial deadlines being adhered to by contributors.


Ha-Shilth-Sa will include letters received from its readers. Letters MUST be signed by the writer and have the writer’s full name, address and phone number on them. Names can be withheld by request.Anonymous submissions will not be accepted.

We reserve the right to edit submitted material for clarity, brevity, grammar and good taste. We will definitely not publish letters dealing with tribal or personal disputes or issues that are critical of Nuu-chah-nulth individuals or groups.

All opinions expressed in letters to the editor are purely those of the writer and will not necessarily coincide with the views or policies of the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council or its member First Nations. Ha-Shilth-Sa includes paid advertising, but this does not imply Ha-Shilth-Sa or Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council recommends or endorses the content of the ads.

Healing centre moves to Duncan

Tsow-Tun Le Lum society prepares to move to new, more spacious facility in 2023

Lantzville, BC – It has served thousands of people on their healing journeys since opening its doors in June 1988 at its home in Nanoose, and now, Tsow-Tun Le Lum is spreading its wings with a move to brand-new facility in Duncan, BC.

Tsow-Tun Le Lum, which means Helping House, is a fully accredited, registered, non-profit treatment society. But Executive Director Nola Jeffrey prefers to call it a healing house, because they offer holistic and cultural supports for people, not only in addictions, but also for survivors of trauma.

The current facility occupies five acres of land, leased from the Nanoose First Nation. The building includes 10 rooms for up to 32 client beds. Jeffrey said there is a women’s side and men’s side and clients sleep in bunk beds.

But the new building offers 16 bedrooms that will house up to 32 clients. In addition, there will be space set aside for gender-fluid people.

“It’s very exciting!” said Jeffrey.

Jeffrey said the new building, which they are still fundraising to complete, was to be ready by October 2022 but there have been delays in construction. They now hope to move in by February 2023 and have taken in their last cohort of clients in the old facility at the end of November 2022.

Tsow-Tun Le Lum offers programs to treat people that misuse substances and another for those dealing with trauma. In order to access the trauma program, clients must have six months sobriety and be working with a counsellor or similar support person.

There are short-term programs like the grief and loss, which runs three weeks.

Tsow-Tun Le Lum has 40 staff members, 20 to 35 cultural workers as well as several elders that live in the facility to support the programs in a cultural way.

The new building, located at 2850 Miller Road in Duncan, was painstakingly designed, keeping in mind the daily activities that will happen there.

“The building faces east because that is where everything starts,” said Jeffrey.



Inside the new building will be a place called the Spiritual Room. Jeffrey said it is a space where elders will do cultural work with clients and where closing ceremonies will be held.

Anew space for Tsow-Tun Le Lum is the exam room reserved for clients accessing medical services.

“Sometimes drug use masks illnesses,” said Jeffrey.

They’ve seen clients entering sobriety discover illnesses that they were not previously aware of.

“It’s important to stay on top of illnesses,” said Jeffery.

She said the First Nations HealthAuthority is working on getting a nurse and maybe even a doctor to serve the facility when it is in session.

“We do our utmost to take care of the people’s needs so that they can focus on

healing,” said Jeffrey.

Clients at Tso-Tun Le Lum will have access to fitness and yoga rooms as well as a space for arts and crafts.

“People using substances stay out of their bodies; when they give up their addictions, being back in their bodies can feel painful,” said Jeffrey. “This is why it is important help them get back into their bodies.”

“Tsow-Tun Le Lum is a safe place where people learn new coping skills and feel good about who they are, let their light shine,” she added. “We use western methodology but most importantly, we use culture.”

The new building came in at a cost of $18 million. First Nations HealthAuthority took care of the bulk of the cost and there were other donors. But the society is $2 million short and is seeking donations.

If you would like to donate to Tsow-Tun Le Lum go to https://www.tsowtunlelum. org/resources/donate/

Legal Information

Ha-Shilth-Sa belongs to every Nuu-chah-nulth person including those who have passed on, and those who are not yet born.Acommunity newspaper cannot exist without community involvement. If you have any great pictures you’ve taken, stories or poems you’ve written, or artwork you have done, please let us know so we can include it in your newspaper. E-mail holly.stocking@nuuchahnulth.org. This year is Ha-Shilth-Sa’s 48th year of serving the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations. We look forward to your continued input and support. Kleco! Kleco!

The advertiser agrees that the publisher shall not be liable for damages arising out of errors in advertisements beyond the amount paid for space actually occupied by the portion of the advertisement in which the error is due to the negligence of the servants or otherwise, and there shall be no liability for non-insertion of any advertisement beyond the amount paid for such advertisements

Page 4— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
Glass walls in the entryway overlook the courtyard and the three fires, representing the three families that pushed for having an addictions treatment centre on Vancouver Island. Photo submitted by Tsow-Tun-Le-Lum the old building, the new facility can serve up to 32 clients, but with more and space for support services It is expected to be complete in February.

Watchdog clears officer of blame in Opitsaht shooting


left in the dark over a decision from investigations office, details delayed until after a trial in June

Opitsaht, BC - B.C.’s police watchdog has ruled out criminal charges from a fatal RCMP shooting in Opitsaht last year, but those affected by the tragedy will have to wait until an upcoming trial is completed for reasons why the officer is being cleared.

On Feb. 27, 2021 two Tofino RCMP officers responded to a call from the Meares Island village reporting a woman was being held against her will.At approximately 9:30 p.m. police arrived at a residence in Opitsaht to “locate a woman in distress,” according to an RCMP press release.An altercation ensued, resulting in the shooting death of 28-year-old Tlao-qui-aht member Julian Jones, while another man was taken into police custody.

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. was on the scene the next day to investigate. The IIO is described as a “civilian led” oversight agency that gets involved when death or serious injury occurs while police are present.After over a year of investigating the incident, on Nov. 17 the agency determined not to recommended charges to Crown counsel, as “there is no reasonable grounds to believe that any officer committed an offence.”

“We’re highly disappointed with the findings,” said Tla-o-qui-aht Councillor Francis Frank, noting that the announcement has emotionally triggered the family of Julian Jones. “We’re also extremely upset with the manner that the IIO chose to roll the findings out. More disturbing for us is that they provide no rhyme, reason or rationale behind the findings.”

According to Ronald J. MacDonald, the IIO’s chief civilian officer, upcoming legal proceedings presented the agency with a tough decision of when to release its findings.Atrial from the incident involving the surviving participants that was scheduled for October has been adjourned until June 2023. Crown counsel asked the IIO to not release details of the investigation until after the trial so that the judicial process isn’t compromised.

“I do understand the significant frustration involved,” said MacDonald. “Either way, the reasons are going to have to wait until what looks like next year.”

For the first time, the IIO appointed an Indigenous monitor from the Tla-o-quiaht community to represent the standpoint of the First Nation. Thomas George submitted a report at the end of the IIO’s investigation, which also will not be publicly available until after the upcom-

ing trial.

“He came into our office and spent the better part of two weeks going through anything he wanted to see in the file,” said MacDonald. “Our goal was to get that opinion as to determine whether there were things we may have missed, anything about the community we weren’t aware of that he may be able to inform us about.”

“I have no recommendations for the integrity of the investigation; the investigation was carried out with excellent procedure,” said Thomas George, in a statement included in an IIO press release fromAug. 2. “I do not see that anyone else needs to be spoken to in order to complete this file. The interviews and evidence collected were fulsome. I am content with the way the IIO conducted the investigation.”

Despite this process, the IIO’s recent announcement has sparked frustration through Nuu-chah-nulth communities. On Nov. 17 the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council stated it was “disillusioned, frustrated and devastated” by the agency’s decision to not recommend charges against police.

Jones’death by police gunshot was the second to affect a Tla-o-qui-aht member within a year, after the shooting of Chantel Moore in Edmundston, New Brunswick on June 4, 2020. Police were called to the 26-year-old’s home to check

on concerns others had for her safety, but this late-night wellness check ended with Moore be fatally shot. The Edmundston Police Department stated that the officer, Jeremy Son, was defending himself as Moore approached him with a knife, but a coroner’s inquest determined the incident was a homicide. The New Brunswick prosecution service deemed Son not criminally responsible, based on an investigation by a Quebec-based police oversight agency.

In its response to the recent IIO an-

“We believe that there has to be other ways and means to defuse or to de-escalate a situation,” added Frank. “Without knowing all of the details of the circumstance, the RCMP could have easily called one of our council members or community members to go in and check on the situation before they responded.”

“Or they could have accompanied them to go in,” continued the Tla-o-qui-aht councillor. “Some familiarity would have helped diffuse the situation from where it escalated to.”

Although discussions with the RCMP have been “cordial” since the fatal shooting in Opitsaht, Frank believes that clear guidelines are long overdue on how police should enter the First Nation’s communities.

“Really there should have been a greater urgency on both parties, including ourselves, on the need to lay in place a clear understanding of our relationship and what protocols should be followed when coming into our communities,” he said.

“That’s not in place yet, and one would have thought after that incident that we all have agreed to expedite that.”

December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 5
Photo by Eric Plummer Pictured is Opitsaht, home to approximately 150 residents, where a fatal clash with the RCMPoccurred on Feb. 27, 2021. nouncement, the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council stressed the need for better police training in de-escalation and disarming people rather than shooting to kill, as well as improvements in communication protocols with First Nations. Francis Frank

Climate disaster hammers First Nations: Delegation

At COP27 province pledges to work with First Nations on cu ing oil and gas emissions by

Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt – How is global warming affecting First Nations communities in British Columbia? B.C.

Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief Terry Teegee says we have seen climate catastrophes in the form of atmospheric rivers, drought, forest fires and a heat dome in the past few years alone.

“The effects of which are most profoundly felt in First Nations communities,” he said in a virtual media conference.

The BCAFN sent a delegation to the COP27 conference, which was held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt from Nov. 6 to 18. Hugh Braker of Tseshaht was there in his role as political executive at the First Nations Summit.

COP27 brought together more than 2,000 speakers and 35,000 participants to take part in discussions around global warming and the environment at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. COP27 means Conference of the Parties and 27 indicates the number of conventions held.

“The hosting of COP27 in the green city of Sharm El-Sheikh this year marks the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change,” said Egypt PresidentAbdel Fattah El-Sisi. “Thirty years and twenty-six COPs later, we now have a much clearer understanding of the extent of the potential climate crisis and what needs to be done to address it effectively.”

“The science is there and clearly shows the urgency with which we must act regarding rapidly reducing emissions of greenhouse gases,” continued Fattah El-Sisi, who stressed the need to help developing countries adapt to the negative environmental impacts from global warming and industrialization.

He noted the ongoing food security crisis and drought inAfrica as examples.

Closer to home, five Indigenous delegates that attended the conference shared their concerns. The BCAssembly of First Nations and members of the First Nations COP27 delegation from British Columbia held a virtual media conference November 16.

Noting the seasonal storms that are intensifying and ocean levels that continue to rise, Hugh Braker said that it’s the Indigenous communities that are being most affected.

“The governments of the world gathered to discuss climate change,” he said. “They don’t seem to understand or appreciate the impacts of climate change on Indigenous peoples of the world. We seem to be an afterthought.”

Union of BC Indian Chiefs Executive Kukpi7, Judy Wilson, pointed out that, by the end of the century, the average global temperature is expected to rise by 2.5 C, and we’re already experiencing a 1.1 C increase.

“We are already experiencing loss and damage,” she said.

The UN, she said, recommends that world leaders strive to keep the situation from getting no worse than it already is.

The plan is to align, she said, alluding to the BC First Nations Climate Strategy Action Plan.

According to BCAFN, they have been working on a provincial First Nations Climate Strategy for the past three years.

Atmospheric rivers are something new in our history, said BCAFN Board Mem-

Ahead of COP27, on Nov. 11 US President Joe Biden met with President El-Sisi

forts to tackle the climate crisis, their longstanding

ber Chief Harvey McLeod.

“The water took land, homes, crops, roads, and livestock,” he said. “There were evacuations. Many of the homes damaged or destroyed were uninsured.

The village of Lytton burned and some of our people are still living in hotels more than a year later.”

To rebuild is expensive, he added.

“This fall, the salmon were dying due to lack of water as they waited downstream to get to their spawning grounds,” said McLeod.

Hugh Braker said Indigenous people of the world are the most affected by climate change.

“Yet we’re at the bottom of the economic ladder,” he added. “Rich folks move to higher ground. We don’t have that luxury. It affects our way of life. We have nowhere to go.”

He urged the governments of the world to speak to their Indigenous people and plan for the catastrophe that’s about to fall upon them.

“It is not of our making,” said Braker.

“We need to have a large Indigenous contingent there to bring a voice loud enough that the leaders of the world hear them.

This is a threat to our culture, traditions, way of life. I can’t imagine our people without cedar or salmon.”

Taylor Behn-Tsakoza was at the COP27 conference as a youth representative with the BCAFN andAssembly of First Nations. She said COP27 had the highest number of Indigenous representatives of all the COPs.

“Hope is alive, seeing our people have influence to help change the mindset of world leaders,” she said.

The BC delegation heard reports at COP27 and recognize there is a need for better disaster response and mitigation.

“We need to eliminate expansion of the oil and gas industry and develop transition plans for our communities that rely on the oil and gas industry,” said Wilson.

“We can’t sell more oil and gas, and reduce carbon emissions at the same time.”

“We need to access more financing and the necessary resources to deal with the climate change issue,” said Teegee.

B.C.’s Environment and Climate Change Strategy Minister George Heyman said there is still much work to be done to bend the curve. He acknowledged the impacts of global warming on Indige-

nous people, affecting their food sources, land, even their languages, he said.

Heyman thanked the leadership council for First Nations ClimateAction Plan Strategy, saying B.C. will work with them to blend plans and bridge gaps. The province has committed $2 million to the First Nations Leadership Council gathering where the issue will be discussed.

Heyman committed to speak to First Nations on how to achieve the 33-38 per cent reduction in oil and gas emission by


38 per cent by 2030

“We need concrete, tangible commitments to reduce emissions to prevent further loss and damage,” said Terry Teegee.

Taylor Behn-Tsakoza encouraged the youth of the world to learn more about climate change. “I hope to see more youth, not only Indigenous, be a part of this so they can listen, learn and add their voice to this discussion,” she said.

Solda’s Family Restaurant would like to thank all their patrons for their support and loyalty. We have been part of your most treasured memories: birthday celebra ons, gradua on dinners, first dates, marriage proposals, engagement par es, bridal showers, and so much more. Since 1969 when Anna and Giovanni opened Solda’s they believed in family and it was important that our customers were treated as an extension of the Solda Family.

Three genera ons of Solda’s have worked in the restaurant and we will always hold a special place in our hearts for celebrating with us throughout the years as we are re ring. We want to say thankyou to everyone who has dined with us, whether you have been dining with us for years or just now found us. Our family and staff have built and shared beau ful memories together that will last us a life me.

Once again, our deepest gra tude with our very best and sincerest wishes, we hope you stay safe and take care of each other. We will miss you all so very much.

Page 6— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
Photo from White House/Wikimedia Commons of Egypt. The leaders discussed global ef- defense partnership, and respecting fundamental freedoms.
KLECKO Solda Family and Staff

Carving festival hosts traditional canoe steaming


cedar vessel measures 29.5 feet, but an age-old process using heated rocks widened the canoe by six inches

Tofino, BC - In the early morning of Saturday, Nov. 26, Carl Martin began preparation for a traditional canoe steaming at Naa’Waya’Sum Coastal Indigenous Gardens.

At around 5 a.m., Martin prepared a fire with roughly 150 rocks. These rocks would then go in the canoe with six inches of water covered by a tarp, explained Martin. It took 45-minutes for

the red cedar wood to expand.

The event was an opportunity to share knowledge of canoe carving and steaming with the community.

Martin and his brother have been making canoes together for over 40 years.

The two of them have made many canoes for nations throughout Nuu-chah-nulth territory, he said.

“My main interest was to teach people at the same time,” said Martin.

Christine Germano, co-creative director with Ivy Cargill-Martin, said they had

originally wanted the steaming to be a part of the Carving on the Edge festival in September, but due to the province’s fire ban they had to post-pone. This year the festival, titled, mułmunčʔałuk, (Taking Care of the Roots) focused on mentorship, wrote Germano in an email to Ha-Shilth-Sa. Since September 2021 Germano has mentored Cargill-Martin as creative director, which was funded by First People Cultural Council.As Cargill-Martin’s final project in the mentorship, she led

the canoe steaming with Carl Martin, wrote Germano.

Since 2010 the Carving on the Edge Festival has celebrated the cultural practice of coastal carving in Tla-o-qui-aht territory, biennially. The festival, held in Tla-o-qui-aht territory, was created by a group of Nuu-Chah-Nulth carvers, elders, and culture-makers, who are known as the ‘Keepers of the Festival’.

Four dead humpbacks wash up on coastal shores

Coastal British Columbia –Afourth dead humpback whale has washed up on the shores of Haida Gwaii. The sad discovery was made Nov. 20.

According Paul Cottrell, a marine mammal coordinator for DFO, the remains are in an advanced state of decomposition and may be the same whale spotted floating offshore from Prince Rupert on Oct. 12.

Cottrell said photographs were taken of the Rupert whale carcass but were not clear enough to confirm whether it is the same whale.

Cottrell the first whale was discovered Aug. 4th and was a humpback. The other three dead humpback whales were discovered from October 23 to November 20 on Haida Gwaii and Vancouver Island beaches.

On Oct. 23 a dead, female humpback whale was found on Malcolm Island near Alert Bay. It was determined that whale died of blunt force trauma, likely a boat strike.

On Nov. 5, a young male humpback whale was found on a Haida Gwaii beach at Masset Inlet. Its death was also determined to be caused by blunt force trauma.

On Nov. 20 a badly decomposed humpback whale was discovered on Haida Gwaii at East Beach.

Cottrell says two of the whales show blunt force trauma consistent with vessel strikes.All the whale carcasses have had

measurements and tissue samples taken and will be necropsied.

Cottrell says two of the dead whales don’t show definitive causes of death.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada are waiting on test results and a report to come back from Dr. Stephen Raverty, a boardcertified veterinary pathologist.

“He’s a world authority, we’re lucky to have him here on the West Coast,” said Cottrell.

He said both grey and humpback populations have rebounded since the commercial whale hunting era ended.

However, there was an unusual mortality event for grey whales beginning in 2019.

“The grey whale population was at 28,000 and went down to 22,000 – we lost about a quarter of the population,” said Cottrell.

While the specific cause is not known, Cottrell says it could be related to changes in the Bering Sea brought on by global warming that may be affecting food supply for grey whales.

“Humpback whales have a healthy population and their movement back to inshore waters is a good sign,” said Cottrell.

Whales, he said, chase food, so this means they are finding forage fish and krill inshore.

“We’re seeing lots of calves, too,” he added.

He called the cluster of humpback whale deaths in the past few weeks a pulse.

“It’s still within the normal range,” he said, adding that they normally see five whale carcasses a year. “We’re at eight

and hope it’s just a blip.”

“That’s why necropsies are so important – we can watch for trends and see if there’s anything we can do to mitigate,” added Cottrell.

For that reason, it is important to report whale carcasses as soon as possible. Fresh carcasses offer more information, he said.

Cottrell said it’s good to see the plastics and ghost gear clean-up programs that are out there. Presently, there is an entangled humpback whale at Quatsino Sound on northwestern Vancouver Island that locals

and fisheries officials are trying to locate and rescue.

“It has a buoy, some line and either crab or prawn gear,” said Cottrell.

Quatsino Sound locals have been searching for the whale. DFO officials said they would go out soon with the weather improving, hoping to find and free the whale of entanglement before it’s too late.

If you see entangled whales or a carcass, call the Marine Mammal Incident Hotline at 1-800-465-4336.

December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 7
Submitted photo Amarine mammal expert with Fisheries and Oceans Canada says that this year’s number of humpback carcasses found on the West Coast is still within the normal range.Above is a dead humpback found in Cape Beale west of Vancouver Island. Photo by Christine Germano Carl Martin (left) fills a red cedar canoe with rocks for steaming at the at Naa’Waya’Sum Coastal Indigenous Gardens, near Tofino, on Nov. 26.

The keepers of Cheewaht: Restoring an ecosystem for generations

A watershed in Ditidaht territory has undergone extensive restoration work, with hopes to returning to its pristine, salmon bearing

Cheewaht Lake, BC - Off the rugged west coast of Vancouver Island, inland from the West Coast Trail, is a quiet and remote lake brimming with vibrant ecosystems. From trumpeter swans to black bears, the Cheewaht Lake watershed provides a home for dense and rare biodiversity.

The Cheewaht Lake watershed is on the traditional territory of Ditidaht First Nation, who, for thousands of years, managed the area from villages along the coast at the mouth of the Cheewaht River.

According to the Government of Canada website, in 1973 logging practices began to pose a threat to the pristine ecosystem, which concerned Ditidaht First Nation and environmental groups. Cheewaht Lake and salmon-bearing streams became a part of the West Coast Trail Unit of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve to protect the area.

Though the Parks Canada protected Cheewaht Lake from industrial activity, logging swept through up to the park boundary, which would impact the Cheewaht Lake watershed years later.

Cla-oose Riverkeepers

Historically, the village of Cla-oose managed the salmon population traveling to Cheewhat Lake, and further upstream to spawn.

“It was… managed well, pre-contact,” said Paul Sieber, the Ditidaht First Nation’s natural resource manager.

They harvested the salmon with fishing weirs and traps. They would methodologically select harvest for the village, and then release the females, said Sieber.

The fishing weirs and the way that the salmon were managed fed the people in the village of Cla-oose for thousands of years, he continued.

Sieber recalls stories that he heard from elders.

“There was a designated riverkeeper, a Cheewaht riverkeeper family, at least one,” he said. “They collectively maintained it [at] the head.”

“[They had] a certain family or combination of families that would actually manage the fishery,” continued Sieber. “They just managed it for the benefit of all, and for the fishermen. They weren’t allowed to overfish it.”

The area not only holds cultural significance for Ditidaht because of the salmon,

but for the many traditional resources it provided for the people, said Sieber.

“It’s very important to the people,” he said. “It’s so culturally important as a food resource.”

Merging Boundaries

When Mike Wright, a registered professional biologist and owner of M.C. Wright andAssociates Ltd., began research at Cheewaht Lake watershed in 1984, he said the streams were in “pristine form” prior to industrial logging.

That same year the industry logged northeast of Cheewaht Lake up to the park boundary, though it didn’t impact Sockeye tributaries, said Wright. In 1986 logging in the upper reaches of a stream leading to Cheewaht Lake started, he continued. This forestry activity affected S-2, one of the three streams that feed the lake.

According to the Government of Canada, at this time Ditidaht First Nation limited their fishing capacity in the area to preserve the salmon population.

“There’s usually a 10-year window before we really start to see things change,” said Wright.

However, in 1989, a sediment wedge and log jam ruptured, which sent gravel and woody debris downstream. This destroyed an area in the stream where coho and sockeye spawned, including the eggs in that area, explained Wright. The woody debris collected at the confluence between S-1 (Stream 1) and S-2, which interrupted the waterflow of S-1 and S-2, he continued.

“We didn’t see heavy impacts, everything we’re experiencing was incremental,” said Wright.

“You’re taking water that would have been more concentrated to transport sediment, and now you’re losing that because it’s going elsewhere,” said Wright. “There’s all these things that get layered on that make incubation success very difficult.”

B.C. Timber Sales hired a specialist who helped determine and design a way to manage the debris jam and sediment transport, he said.

“There’s a lot of investment by industry to get the study, [and] get enough information, so that we could start talking about restoration,” said Wright.

The same specialist was hired by Western Forest Products to design a sediment trap for S-3, he said.


Another issue that emerged from logging was the formation of avulsions, the creation of a new water channel, said Wright.

The sediment traps were built at the top of S-2 and S-3, where gravel and woody debris would be held and emptied. Wright said that the basin filled almost annually.

“What we had to do is get to a point

Page 8— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
Photo submitted by M.C. Wright and Associates Excess Gravel in streams from Photo submitted by M.C. Wright and Associates Josh Tate, a technician with Roc-Star Enterprises Ltd. and Ditidaht Stewardship and Monitoring Program member, works with a team to construct a flow splitter at the confluence of S-1 and S-2. Photo by Alexandra Mehl Where the Parks Canada boundary begins, and subsequently, where old growth begins.

ecosystem for generations to come

its pristine, salmon bearing state before industrial logging took hold

that would have to transport sedilosing that because Wright. “There’s layered on that cult.”

hired a specialist who design a way to mansediment transport, investment by industry to enough information, talking about restorahired by Western design a sediment trap were built at the top gravel and woody emptied. Wright almost annually. get to a point

where we were controlling that sediment so that we could start to plan to work down below,” said Wright.

“[It] was a real wake up, then the populations were at high risk of being extirpated,” noted Wright, reflecting upon 2014.

When the finger pointing stopped

In 2017, the Cheewaht Restoration Working Group was re-established to collaborate on ways to restore salmon spawning streams in the Cheewaht Lake that had been impacted by logging. The working group is made up of a diverse group of representatives. Participation comes from the Ditidaht First Nation, Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council/ Uu-a-thluk, Parks Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Nitinaht Hatchery, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (South Island), British Columbia Timber Sales, Western Forest Products, the Teal-Jones Group, biological consultant MC Wright andAssociates Ltd., as well as the environmental non-governmental organization West CoastAquatic.

“When we created the working group we said, ‘Look, we all know how we got here’,” said Wright. “The finger pointing stops…but we all came together to work towards a solution.”

Sieber said that it was an intermittent process to come together and discuss restoration.

“Without the industry and the First Nations, and DFO [representatives] coming together, that funding wouldn’t have been approved,” said Sieber. “They needed the background and a justification to move forward with the project.”

Parks Canada received a letter from Ditidaht nation urging them to address restoration in the creek, said Yuri Zharikov, an ecologist for Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.

“We put together a proposal for the work and in formulating the proposal, we’ve been working closely with the nation and other land managers in the area,” said Zharikov.

Parks Canada funded the 1.1 million dollars to cover the cost of the project, according to the Government of Canada website.

“What we didn’t know is whether the landscape around the park could be maintained and kept in such a way that no more major impacts would occur,” said Zharikov. “That was the main purpose of the table, to kind of coordinate everybody

in a way that would ensure the success of the restoration.”

The regions that had been previously harvested, causing impacts in the Cheewaht Lake watershed, are no longer being logged, said RyanAbbott, a registered professional biologist at M.C. WrightAssociates.

Restoring a system to its natural state In 2020, the restoration team, which consisted of Ditidaht, Parks Canada, M.C. Wright, Roc-Star Enterprises Ltd., and Nitinaht River Fish Hatchery, hit the ground running beginning phase one of the onsite restoration of S-1, S-2, and S-3.

When the project startedAbbott described the streams as “choked with gravel.” First, they would need an excavator to remove any excess gravel. They began by building a temporary corduroy road, so that the excavator could be brought to the remote location, he explained.

The project was completed with no environmental catastrophe and with limited access to equipment, explainsAbbott.

The team removed a total of 3,206 square metres of gravel, which is over ten times the capacity of the sediment basins at the top of S-2.

“Not only do you have to remove the gravel and try to make the creek stable again. But you have to establish a split where the two creeks diverge from one another in a way that’s going to actually last,” saidAbbott.

The same specialist that designed the sediment basins at the top of S-2 and S-3 also designed a flow splitting structure at the confluence of S-1 and S-2.

“We had to try and figure out a way to make a stable split in this creek, where you’re going to actually reestablish those historic two channels that are going to share the flow between one another,” saidAbbott.

In phase two, which occurred in 2021, the team focused on improving the flow splitter, removing features that contributed to blockages, and anchoring woody debris along the streams.

“What wood does, one of its big functions in a creek like this, especially a creek that can move a lot

of material…it’s the driver of the habitat,” saidAbbott.

Abbott explains that by anchoring wood along the stream, they are able to facilitate the creation of long-term pools because of the increased water pressure and ability to scour gravel.

“We tried to do what we could with the materials that were on site,” saidAbbott. “We also tried to keep with the aesthetic of a park, where you have this kind of natural look.”

The fluvial process, a healthy system The consistent delivery of gravel that continues from the sediment trap about one kilometre upstream from the anadromous barrier is what made this restoration project particularly complicated, saidAbbott.

“Gravel will continue to come, over time. And that’s just part of what they call the fluvial process,” he said. “Rivers, they move more than just water…they basically transport the land, off mountains and onto the beaches.”

Every system transports sediment and gravel, however the problem occurs when the system is out of balance, saidAbbott. Abbott said that to continue the movement of gravel, they ensured that there isn’t as much wood or features in the way. He predicts that the streams will have excess gravel for the next 10 to 20 years.

The flow splitter, at the confluence of S-1 and S-2, has a V shape to it in order for woody debris to deflect into either stream and continue traveling, said Wright.

“This should get back into some form of balance,” saidAbbott.

Salmon returns

According to the Government of Canada Website, in October 2020 salmon started returning to the Cheewaht Lake watershed to spawn in the streams.

This year hundreds to thousands of fish have been filling the creeks to spawn, while black bears in the area have been feasting.

Since restoration Parks Canada has continued to monitor the area for the immediate results of restoration, said Zharikov.

They frequent the streams counting the active fish and carcasses in and around the streams to determine the lifespan of the salmon in the creek, he explains.

Some of the fish are tagged, and when they are scanned it allows Zharikov to understand “what an average individual in the population does,” he said.

This information will then get analyzed, he explained.

“It’s a big run this year…the fish are waiting,” said Zharikov. “Almost lining up, there’s just too many of them.”

In coordination with Parks Canada, Ditidaht’s Stewardship and Monitoring program will continue to check on the restored streams and surrounding ecosystems, said Abbott. They will monitor things like rainfall, water quality, stream levels, and invertebrates.

“This project’s really about Ditidaht.And it was important that we made sure that the sockeye run was going to be there for future generations,” said Wright.

In four years, the eggs from this season will return as adults, and spawn in the Cheewaht watershed’s streams.

“We’ll see the results in four years,” said Sieber. “First results.”

December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 9
Associates member, works with a Alexandra Mehl owth At the mouth of S-2, a sign indicates salmon counting stations throughout the stream. Parks Canada crew work in S-2 counting and scanning tagged fish in the stream. Scanning a fence at the mouth of S-2, a worker collects data from tagged fish when Parks Canada is not actively surveying the stream. AParks Canada crew works in S-2 counting and scanning fish in the stream.

Journey of a hymn reclaimed for Nuu-chah-nulth

Book tells

the story of how a Christian song learned in residential school was transformed into Nuu-chah-nulth

Almost twenty years ago, Gregory Charleson Jr. fell in love with a song that his father, Quuia Charleson, would sing to him. Love Your Creator was a Christian hymn that Quuia learned in residential school.At first, he sang it English.

Quuia said that his son would ask him to sing the song in their language, Hesquiaht. However, he could not speak the language fluently.

Gregory Jr. surprised his father, with the help of the late-elder Larry Paul, and a language teacher. They translated the prayer song from English into Nuu-chahnulth.

“That puts a smile on my face because that’s the best part of the story for me,” said Quuia.

All of them came together for hours continuing to piece the prayer song together, and as a group composed the Nuu-chah-nulth prayer song, Love Your Creator, explained Quuia.

Charleson’s son prompted the beginning of a Nuu-chah-nulth prayer song that’s been sung for the last twenty years, reclaiming the song from English into the Nuu-chah-nulth language.

“There was… a great sense of relief, accomplishment, all of these things, because we did it together,” said Quuia.

They now sing the whole Prayer Song in Nuu-chah-nulth, Quuia rejoiced.

“At the end of the song, we’ll say that one part in English,” said Quuia. “Love you in the morning, love you in the noontime, love you when the sun goes down.”

The prayer song, said Quuia, is a welcoming song that can be used at various events and celebrations as a means of bringing in connection.

“This is a song for everybody. I always say that I don’t own prayers. Prayers belong to everybody.” said Quuia.

He explained an experience with his late-grandmother, who witnessed him sing the prayer song at a basketball game.

She had said that it was the ‘most beautiful song that [she’s] heard’.

“That connection that I have to my son, that I have to my grandmother,” said


“To me, that’s what it’s all about, is connecting people, you know, connecting families.”

“For me, the song is truly about family reconciliation,” said Quuia. “Reconciliation within a family, with myself, with my grandparents, with my late-mother, with my late-father. [It] was really important to recognize those hurts that lied in our family, but more importantly, start to address them.”

Charleson’s prayer song story has been transcribed and published into a children’s book through Wave Makers Press.

Don Bonner, Business Manager at Wave Maker Press, recognizes Quuia as a

knowledge keeper and oral storyteller.

Over the years, Bonner had heard Quuia’s prayer song and story while they went on tribal journeys together.

The idea to publish Love Your Creator into a children’s book was born when Bonner approached Quuia.

Christer Bonner, publisher at Wave Makers Press, said that the process included interviewing and speaking with Quuia, and then transcribing his story into the written word.

“To me, it was all part of trying to help him get…this story out,” said Don Bonner.

Quuia said that Love Your Creator opened the doors for familial reconcilia-

tion by sharing and connecting with his family.

“When I think about what that song means, it was about a connection into my past, the connection into now, and, you know, putting that connection into the future,” said Quuia.

Gregory Jr., who is now a new father, was the first to receive a copy of Love Your Creator.

Love Your Creator can be found at WaveMakerPress.com and Mobius Books in PortAlberni.

“Prayers in front,” said Quuia. “It’s like saying safe travels…our prayers are ahead of us to whatever we’re going to do, [and] wherever we’re going to go.”

It means ‘There is a lot of us, who have the fear of travelling around in heavy fog!’pronounced ‘Aa yah nish alth hii yah yaq ha ooh ch qaak alth my clew hah pa much’ Supplied by ciisma.

Page 10— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
Illustration by Ivy Cargill-Martin Love Your Creator is a recently published children’s book, released by Wave Maker Press.

Feed the People meal returns to in-person service

Gathering takes place Dec. 14, with a bus running from the Port Alberni Friendship Centre to the Athletic Hall

PortAlberni, BC - It’s been three years since the annual Christmas luncheon held by Teechuktl Mental Health Services has been able to happen in person, and preparations are now underway to make sure Feed the People goes off without a hitch.

Teechuktl holds public meals twice yearly, once in the summer and once in the winter, a tradition for the past 12 years after being started by the late Ray Seitcher. Irene Robinson of the Teechuktl Mental Health Services has been involved in the organizing process for the past four years.

“He decided to have a turkey dinner with all the trimmings,” explained Robinson. “His goal was low-income people and homeless, but anyone’s allowed to attend. When he started it, it was small and he wanted everything done by donation because he wanted the people that he was welcoming in, he wanted them to know that we weren’t just doing it because it’s a job. He wanted them to know that we really worried about them and cared for them and loved them, and that there’s always someone there caring for them.”

When she started working on the event, it was hosted in a small church with 120150 people attending. This year, they are planning on having attendance closer to 500.

Homelessness has been a growing issue throughout the province and Vancouver Island, and PortAlberni is no exception.

As of a 2021 count performed by BC Housing, there were 125 homeless people in the city. 65 per cent of those people identified themselves as being Indigenous, despite the fact that, as of the 2016 census, theAboriginal population of Port Alberni was only 17 per cent.

It has not been easy to run the event for the last few years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Year one, an in-person gathering was not able to happen, and instead Teechuktl staff delivered meals. In 2021 caterers were hired, and volunteers and staff delivered meals to those who needed them.

But not all was negative for those years, explains Robinson.

“That one year we had a lot of people step up,” she said. “We went to a meeting, I can’t remember what the name of the committee was, but it was all representatives from all the bands were there

and one guy there challenged the others.

He put in $500 of his own money and challenged the others.”

The others answered, and they ended up with more donations than they expected.

It was not just money either, as the Huuay-aht First Nations ended up donating enough frozen, canned, and smoked fish that they could make food baskets to go out to people as well. But all this left a question, what to do with the extra money?

“[Someone] said, ‘Well, why don’t we get presents for the kids?’So that’s what we did,” said Robinson. “We got the names of people we were delivering to, who had kids and how old they were, and they went out and bought gifts and wrapped them.”

The generosity of previous years has been carried onto this one as well. The AlberniAthletic Hall has donated the use of their centre for the event at no cost, and Teechuktl Mental Health Services received enough donations that they have been able to buy all of the food necessary.

The community has been stepping up in other ways as well, said Robinson.

“We’ve been working with Haahuu-

payak,” she said. “The students up there have a unit on community and the teachers wanted them to see what community looked like. So they’ve been volunteering, coming up to Feed the People... we ask for gently used coats and boots and clothing, just anything people might need.And the Haahuupayak students organize the [clothing] table.”

Those same students also help with decorating the tables and serving water, and will be holding a bake sale on November 30, with all funds raised going to the event. The Teechuktl Mental Health Services has also reached out to local high schools, as students need a set amount of volunteer hours to graduate.

“We reached out to [the Nuu-ChahNulth education team] at the high school and they’re looking at Grade 12 NuuChah-Nulth students who need volunteer hours to graduate.And if they’re available and want to come then we’ll keep track of their hours and hand those in,” said Robinson.

Not everything is accounted for yet though.

“The food has been bought, but we really need socks, gloves, hats, like touques.

Because people who are homeless, this is what they need to try to stay warm. We also need door prizes and door prizes can be anything,” she explained.

Any donations can be brought to the PortAlberni Teechuktl Mental Health Service office, in the old Redford School building at 4841 Redford Street.

Feed the People will be taking place on Wednesday, December 14, with doors opening at 11:30 in the morning.Abus will be available from the PortAlberni Friendship Centre to theAthletic Hall beginning at 10:30 on. If it is a cold day, there will be an area inside in which people can wait for the bus.

While organizing an event like this is not always easy, Robinson says that the sense of community and the appreciation from those who need it makes it all worth it.

“These people, they struggle all year. And they’re just so happy that they’re getting together and being fed and talking to their friends. Just the smiles and the happiness that is at the event, it makes it all worthwhile.”


December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 11 250.724.7629 CYPRESS
Photo by Eric Plummer An in-person Feed the People event has not been held since 2019, due to COVID-19 restrictions, but the gathering returns to theAlberniAthletic Hall this year.

Health Corner

For many of us winter is a time to ‘den up.’ It is colder, stormier, and the days are shorter.

Winter season can change our eating habits. We are hungrier and want foods that ‘warm’and comfort us. Our inner ‘bear’comes out!

Plus, we are often at home more, often because the weather is too cold, wet or icy to spend as much time outside, or because it is dark early.

Winter is a great time to enjoy the foods that satisfy your inner bear, warm you, and keep you healthy.

• Soup: It’s a great way to get more of all the foods you need to be healthy. Soups are a great way to use up vegetables from the fridge or freezer. They have lots of good nutrients and more fibre.

Soups can use up anything and taste great. Saving your leftovers will help you save money by not wasting good food. It’s dinner in a pinch, or it can even be a snack.

• Make a Casserole: With a casserole you are able to use economical cuts of meat (blade steak, chuck steak, chops) with slow cooking methods. Red meat is high in zinc and iron, two minerals that boost the immune system. Legumes (chickpeas, kidney beans, soybeans) are an excellent protein source, low fat, high fibre, low GI and economical. Acasserole with meat, vegetables and a can of beans is a great way to boost your ability to fight disease, as well as being real comfort food.

• Citrus Fruits: While most fresh fruit is in short supply, oranges, mandarins, apples are in season! I always have a box of mandarin oranges to snack on, and you can make a great salad with some citrus and winter greens, like Swiss chard, chicory, or kale.

• Broccoli, Cabbage, and Brussels Sprouts: These are great fresh or frozen, and in season too. While sprouts are great for a Christmas feast, cabbage is wonderful in a salad or made into cabbage rolls or a stir fry. They also last well in the fridge are in the superfood family!

• Salmon: Salmon is another amazing winter food! Not only high in protein, it also is a good source of vitamin D and omega 3 fatty acids. Adouble bonus to help with your immune system, help with your bone health, and boosts mood.

• Vitamin D: We get more vitamin D because the sun is strong enough to help us make vitamin D for ourselves. In winter will still need this vitamin. If you are not eating fatty fish like salmon, or drinking milk, you might also think about a vitamin D supplement, especially if you are an elder or for a newborn. Talk to a dietitian or nurse to find out more.

• Watch your portions: It is very tempting to snack on foods, eat a large plate of food and have seconds, when you are indoors all evening. To avoid eating too much try to:

o Try to eat your meals at the table with the family, o Turn off the TV, o Use smaller plates, o Reserve half your dinner plate for vegetables

• Make healthful swaps or eat healthy foods first, before having a dessert. Add foods that are lower in fat, sugar and salt, and have higher fibre (aim for 4 gm/serving), or are higher in protein

• Stay hydrated! Some of the best winter treats are tea and warm drinks.

o Sometimes we feel ‘hungry’ but really we are thirsty. Try a warming drink like tea or even just hot water with lemon. You may not be hungry for a snack, but thirsty for a drink.

• Eat Plenty of Fruit & Vegetables. Top up your immune system by eating antioxidant-containing fruit and vegetables.

o Choose fruits and vegetables that are in season such as man darin, apples, grapefruit, broc coli, brussel sprouts, carrots, and cauliflower.

o Make the most of frozen and canned fruits, which are readily available, and cheaper, at this time of year.

o Try making each meal or snack half fruit or veggie is a good guideline to follow.

• Keep moving. Find an indoor sport or exercise class, rug up and brave the elements for a walk and arrange to meet a friend so that you have to turn up. Every step counts!

Learning what your body needs is a lifelong journey, day by day. Hopefully some of these tips will help us all feel happy and healthy this winter.

Employment and Training Port

Page 12— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
11 tips to feed your inner bear this winter
Volunteers Needed Need work experience? The Port Alberni Friendship Centre is looking for interested applicants for various positions. Call 250-723-8281 More job postings at www.hashilthsa.com



December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 13

Non-Insured Health Benefits - NIHB

Coverage – Travelling Out Side Of Country

General Principles

1. Prior approval is required.

2. The client must: a. Be eligible for the NIHB Program; and b. Be currently enrolled or eligible to be enrolled in a provincial or territorial health insurance plan and continue to meet residency requirements for provincial/territorial health coverage.

3. For Transportation to Medical Services: For transportation to medical services outside of the country the client must be referred for provincially/territorially insured medical services by a provincial or territorial health care plan for treatment Shaganappi Plaza: wage change for Building Maintenance and Superintendent Windspeaker.com http://www.windspeaker.com/news/sweetgrass-news/building-maintenanceand-superintendent/ ammsa.com http://www.ammsa.com/content/careers/shaganappi-plaza-ltd-calgary outside of Canada.

4. For Supplemental Health Insurance Premiums: Full-time students enrolled in a post-secondary institution to study outside of Canada must provide a letter of confirmation that tuition, which is not an eligible benefit under the NIHB Program, has been paid.

What is covered?

For Supplemental Health Insurance Premiums: -

The cost of privately acquired health insurance premiums for approved students or migrant workers and their legal dependents will be reimbursed.

For Transportation to Medical Services: -

Transportation benefits when eligible clients are medically referred and approved for treatment outside of Canada by a provincial or territorial health care plan.

For further information on coverage outside of Country you are encouraged to call First Nations & Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB), Vancouver BC toll free @ 1-800-317-7878

What You Should Know- “Before” Leaving British Columbia

If you are leaving the province, you should be aware that your coverage may not pay all health care costs.

Health services provided outside Canada often cost more than the amount paid by the Ministry of Health Services. Sometimes the difference is substantial; for example, the amount we pay for emergency inpatient hospital care will not exceed $75 (Canadian) a day for United States of exceeds $1,000 (US) per day and can be as high as $10,000 a day for intensive care.

In addition, some items/services that may be a benefit in BC are not covered outside the province; for example, prescription drugs and optometric services. Further, the Ministry does not subsidize fees charged for ambulance service obtained outside BC.

We advise you to buy additional health insurance to supplement your basic coverage before you leave the province, regardless of whether you’ll be in another part of Canada or outside the country – even if your company or travel agency can advise you about extra coverage to pay for any difference in fees and to provide benefits not covered by the Ministry. If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you must mention this when purchasing additional insurance as most policies will not cover treatment of that condition outside the province.

In some cases you may purchase an insurance policy where the insurance company has a signed agreement with the Ministry. This permits the company to pay physician and hospital claims and receive reimbursement on your behalf thus eliminating the need for you to handle your own claims.

NOTE: Ambulance – If you require ambulance service while in another province or outside Canada, you will need to obtain service from an ambulance company in that jurisdiction and will be charged the fee established by the-out-of-province service provider. Fees range from several hundred to several thousand dollars.

When purchasing additional out-of-province health insurance you are advised to obtain insurance that will cover emergency transportation while you are away and, if necessary the cost of transportation back to BC.

MSP Contact @ 1-250-386-7171 or fax 1-250-952-3427 – In case the number s have changed the web site is: www.healthservices.gov.bc.ca/msp

Meares Island centre undergoes upgrades

Beneށing from $400,000 in improvements, the centre serves as a gathering space for Opitsaht community

Opitsaht, BC - The Meares Island Cultural Centre will get some modernizing upgrades thanks to funding from the First Peoples’Cultural Council.

The Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation was awarded $400,000 from the FPCC as part of more than $5.4 million to support 16 projects that conserve, repair and develop First Nations heritage infrastructure in B.C.

The projects are made possible with funding from the Province of British Columbia’s 150 Time Immemorial Grant Program to the First Peoples’Cultural Foundation.

“The bulk of the money is going to be spent on improvements to the MICC,” said Jim Chisholm, tribal administrator with the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation. “It’s a bit of updating on the inside, [the MICC] is an older building, so improvements will involve updates to the interior.”

Chisholm said upgrades will help modernize the older building and will also include benches being installed along the walkway to the centre.

Chisholm said the MICC is primarily used by Opitsaht community members for meetings and gatherings.

“It’s not really designed for tourism… really the intent isn’t for tourism but more for the residents of Meares Island,” Chisholm said

According to a press release, the FPCC received 63 submissions in response to this funding opportunity and was able to fund 25 per cent of applicants. Funding is awarded by an external peer review process comprised of First Nations experts inAboriginal heritage. The funds are managed by the First Peoples’Cultural Foundation and FPCC administers the grants and provides ongoing support to recipients for project management, work plans and knowledge transfer.

“This funding is vital to ensure Indigenous heritage in B.C. is protected for future generations,” said KarenAird, FPCC heritage program manager in a

press release. “This investment enables First Nations communities to lead work to safeguard their cultural spaces and heritage collections, and demonstrates the urgent need for long-term, sustainable funding to protect First Nations heritage.”

The projects are part of the FPCC Heritage Infrastructure Program supporting First Nations communities in their work to safeguard and celebrate their heritage.

Projects receive two-year funding to conserve structures and heritage sites, with work to be completed by February 2024.

The project proposals reveal the ways that heritage and culture are intertwined in every part of Indigenous life and speak to the significance of how these spaces are used and shared.

“The B.C. Government is committed to working with Indigenous peoples on a path towards lasting reconciliation,” said Nathan Cullen, minister of MunicipalAffairs in the release. “Supporting projects that contribute to First Nations communities as they work to secure their cultural and other significant spaces, is one way the province is contributing to that much broader and critical goal.”

Funded projects range from new initiatives, to upgrades and improvements to existing spaces. Examples of current projects include museum construction, cemetery restoration and trail upgrades to access important cultural areas.

Looking for......

The Caregiver(s) would provide 24-hour care in a culturally safe and suppor!ve environment, responding effec!vely to challenging behaviours.

Compensa!on would be built around the specific needs of the youth and the Caregiver, and could include both direct services and financial support to allow Caregivers to meet the needs of the youth.

For more informa on, please call Joni or Julia at 250-724-3232.

Page 14— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022
Usma Nuu-chah-nulth Family and Child Services are looking for individual/s or families who are interested in caregiving for teens with high-risk behaviors.
Nathan Cullen

Washington bans fish farms, but DFO gives flexibility

The state’s order against ocean net pens looks heavy handed in comparison to Canada’s loosening mandate

With a recent executive order banning commercial fish farms in Washington State waters, British Columbia is left as the only jurisdiction on the North Pacific coast to still have large-scale, industrial finfish aquaculture.

And now the industry faces an approaching deadline to make “a responsible plan to transition from open net pen salmon farming in coastal British Columbia by 2025,” according to a mandate from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

But while it may appear the future of the standard fish farming practice is running out, those with a stake in the industry remain optimistic that the federal government’s call to get net pens out of the ocean will ease in severity, allowing jobs and investments to remain in coastal communities for the time being.

The aquaculture industry received another blow on Nov. 17, when Washington’s Department of Natural Resources ordered the end of commercial net pens in the state.

“Salmon and steelhead populations across Washington State, and in particular the Salish Sea, are not recovering,” reads the order, which is signed by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz.

“Commercial finfish net pen aquaculture poses risks to the state, many of which cannot be avoided even with best management practices. It is important to ensure that commercial finfish net pen aquaculture does not contribute added stressors to salmon, steelhead, Southern Resident killer whales, or the ecosystem.”

The executive order follows an ongoing concern among fish farm opponents: breeding species in higher densities allows sea lice and other pathogens to spread more easily, posing a risk of transmission to the already threatened wild salmon stocks as they pass net pens.

Ocean based finfish farming has faced a shaky future in Washington since 2017, when 260,000Atlantic salmon escaped from a collapsed net pen owned by CookeAquaculture at Cypress Island. Atlantic salmon were found in the Fraser River and coastal Vancouver Island.

The following year Washington’s legislature passed a law phasing out net pen farming of non-native fish. Cooke adapted by raising steelhead on the state’s coast, but now that practice is banned, a government decision that the aquaculture company says will force it to kill 332,000 juvenile steelhead that Cooke was preparing to stock for Pacific locations in 2023.

“Environmental organizations and Commissioner Franz are choosing to ignore the fact that farm-raised fish is one of the healthiest and most efficient ways to feed the global population, with a minimal environmental impact and the lowest carbon footprint of any animal protein,” responded CookeAquaculture in a press release.

North of the border, Washington State’s order has generated concern among First Nations with a stake in fish farming, according an Indigenous group advocating for the industry.Amember of the Tlowitsis Nation, Dallas Smith is spokesperson for the Coalition of First Nations for Finfish Stewardship.

“It’s a scary precedent on what these governments are basing these decisions on,” he said. “We’re seeing similar things with forestry right now. Every time First Nations try to get ahead - which has its own challenges - here we are having to

answer to unaccountable activist groups.”

Opposition to fish farming has been consistent in recent years.Among the groups opposed to the practice is Union of BC Indian Chiefs, which passed a resolution earlier this year to close farms in the Discovery Islands. The highly contested region off the northeast coast of Vancouver Island currently faces a deadline of January, at which time Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray will determine the future of aquaculture in the area.

The UBCIC has pointed to the Canada’s Cohen Commission of Inquiry into the Decline of Sockeye Salmon in the Fraser River, which recommended removing farms from the Discovery Island’s due to their impact on the threatened Fraser stocks.

On the west coast of Vancouver Island dozens of fish farms continue to operate, including some under protocol agreements with local First Nations. Cermaq runs 14 sites in Clayoquot Sound, according to an arrangement that has been in place withAhousaht since 2006. The protocol agreement entails employment opportunities, community projects and environmental stewardship within the First Nation’s territory.

Further south another such agreement

is in place between the Tla-o-qui-aht and Creative Salmon. Drafted in 2014, this protocol specifies that only chinook salmon are to be raised in the net pens at a density of one per cent of the contained space.

In October Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray ventured to some Vancouver Island fish farms, speaking with operators and First Nations representatives about what the looming net-pen transition plan will entail. The Coalition of First Nations had meetings with Murray on Oct. 12 and 14, taking away the key message that “existing operations need to adopt alternative technology that will progressively eliminate or minimize interactions between wild and farmed salmon”.

“We’ve noticed the minister has started to use a lot more opaque language around what transition actually means,” noted Smith. “We’re glad she’s hearing the words of some of our communities.”

The Liberals might have held onto its minority government in the 2021 federal election with a pledge to get net pens out of the ocean by 2025, but that might not necessarily happen as it appeared to Canada’s voters.

“It would not be accurate to define the

transition plan as ‘phasing out’net pens,” stated the BC Salmon FarmersAssociation in an email to Ha-Shilth-Sa.

The federal government’s latest Framework for Discussion proposes that the transition plan “Advance innovation and growth in sustainable aquaculture in British Columbia that progressively minimizes or eliminates interactions between salmon open-net pens and wild salmon while also taking into account social, cultural and economic objectives,” according to a document provided by the salmon farmers association.

It’s a less heavy-handed approach than what was ordered south of the US border. While the direction of the government’s transition plan may not please those opposed to salmon farming, Smith stresses that the practice has cut down on risks to wild stocks over the years.

“This industry has had to evolve a lot,” he said. “Alot of the original sites were just not good. They had too much interaction with wild salmon. But the steps we’ve taken with timing windows and the sites of some of these farms, we’re pretty comfortable with the level of protection that’s there for wild salmon.”

December 1, 2022—Ha-Shilth-Sa—Page 15
Submitted photo Dallas Smith, spokesperson for the Coalition of First Nations for Finfish Stewardship, has been in discussion with Fisheries Minister Joyce Murray about Canada’s plan to transition net pens out of the Pacific by 2025. Joyce Murray Net pens in Nootka Sound, some of the dozens of fish farms on Vancouver Island’s west coast..
Page 16— Ha-Shilth-Sa—December 1, 2022

Turn static files into dynamic content formats.

Create a flipbook
Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.