Nipisihkopahk Acimowin

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Opaskowi Pîsim July 2021



ansi and welcome to another edition of the Acimowin. The Covid 19 vaccine phone number is 780-585-3973 ext. 286 if you want to get it and your encouraged to do so for the nation’s safety. Moving on, The Integrated Family Services had a staff meet Facebook: @samsoncreenation and greet on June 24, 2021, and you can see the story on page 8. On page 10 you can read Chief Vernon Saddleback’s message to the people on Aboriginal Day. On page 12 you can read the Open Letter from Chief Saddleback regarding the monuments in Twitter: @SamsonCree Maskwacis and the recent discoveries across western Canada. Crane Iron Enegy Services owner Clayton Crane got interviewed at the Legacy Run 215+ Convoy which took place in Wetaskiwin and Instagram: @samsoncreenation you can read that on page 19. Next Acimowin July 23, 2021

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Table of Contents

Above: July 1, 2021, Grass dancer at the Legacy Run 215+ Convoy at Wetaskiwin Reynolds Alberta Museum.

SCN Covid 19 Colour Code Flag The Samson Cree Nation Acimowin (Newsletter) System for your window. Communications Coordinator, Delorna Makinaw. Maskwacis Covid 19 Time Line. Email: Events Planner, Angela Boysis-Bull. SCN Covid 19 Vaccine Email: Registration Phone Number. Integrated Family Services Staff Samson Communications Department: Box 159 Meet & Greet Drive Through. Maskwacis, AB T0C 1N0. Ph: 780-585-3793 ext. 233 or Mini Pow Wow at HBMC. 266. Chief Vernon Saddleback Open Letter Regarding Monuments. Photo from Kamloops BC Residential School. Chief Vernon Saddleback Update via his Facebook page. Interview with Clayton Crane, Rider on Legacy Run 215+. Legacy Run 215+ Convoy in Wetaskiwin.

SCN Departments: Please send your announcements, events or information to the Acimowin for publication. Email: Ph: 780-585-3793 ext. 266 The Acimowin is released bi-weekly every month. Advertisers please call the Communications Office. Community events can be forwarded to the Newsletter Please make it a JPEG format to save paper.

Vision Statement Samson Cree Nation is a healthy, educated, knowledgeable and industrious community. Mission Statement Samson Cree Nation is a Sovereign Nation that is dedicated to improving the quality of life for all our People by maximizing our Human Resources and respecting our Cree Language and Traditions of our Peoples. Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation 3

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Pandemic Declared

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Maskwacis Covid 19 Timeline Total Cases

SCN Departments

Please send your announcements, events or information to the Acimowin for publication. Email: Ph: 780-585-3793 ext. 266 4

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Indian Day Schools Class Action Settlement: Claim Due by July 13, 2022. 6

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June 24, 2021 Howard Buffalo Memorial Center (HBMC) Parking lot in Samson. The Integrated Family Services (IFS) had a staff meet and greet drive through BBQ with Samson Councilor Ryan Lightning present and handing out food and gift bags. If you have any questions about the upcoming programs please give IFS a call at 780-585-2254 or email: Thank you Carmella Cutknife, Clarence Cutknife and their workers for the event.

Councilor Ryan Lightning

Carmella Cutknife & Clarence Cutknife


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June 21, 2021 HBMC in Samson. On behalf on SCN Chief & Council I want to wish all First Nations, Metis and Inuit a wonderful National Indigenous Peoples Day! In the spirit of Wahkotowin, reach out to your loved ones and family members. Call your parents, call an old friend and do not forget to tell your children you love them. All Canadians enjoy this beautiful day! Ekosi Pitima

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Kamloops BC residential school photo by Delorna Makinaw July 1, 2021.

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Samson Community Friendship Center Source: Samson Community Friendship Center Facebook. Soup Kitchen Monday to Friday 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM Every Wednesdays at 12:00 PM. soup and bannock with desert. Our Volunteers networking group come together and build the entire community a beautiful, hearty meal. New Volunteers are always welcome to the kitchen. Free WIFI and much more. Positive choices make for better lifestyles. Call Janet at the Food Bank. PH 780-361-7383

Dr. Heather Dreise

Samson Cree Nation: Pediatry PEDIATRIC CLINIC NOW OPEN Dr. Heather Dreise-Pediatrician Location: former MYI Building Hours: Tuesday & Thursday 9 AM to 4 PM For Appointments call 780-585-4062. Walk Ins are available.

From the Office of Samson Gas Utility Box 1200 Maskwacis, AB T0C 1N0 Ph: 780-585-3793 Email: gasutility.scn@ Lyle Littlepoplar, Manager 1-780-335-6073 Everette Omeasoo, Supervisor 1-780-312-9748 Gas Co-op Shop 780-585-3547 Please Leave A Message Email: Please call EXT#215, Cell 780-335-6073 or Email: If you have any questions on this matter. Thank you.

The Acimowin (Samson’s local newsletter) Submission Dates for 2021.

July Friday April 9 Friday April 23 August Friday March 13 Friday March 27

September Friday May 10 Friday May 24 October Friday Oct. 8 Friday Oct. 22

Integrated Family Services (IFS) Ph: 780-5852254 Email: MMIWG 24/7 Toll Free Support Phone Line: 1-844-413-6649 Maskwacis Mobile Mental Health: Call us at any time on our hotline 780-362-2150 or Email : 14 Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation

Please be advised that the Samson Cree Nation Personnel Department has a New Email Address: Anybody applying for a job or submitting their documents to Personnel Department can send to the email provided. Thank You.

The Samson Community Initiatives Program 780-585-0111 Check them out on Facebook. @samsoncommunityinitiativesprogram

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July 2, 2021 Chief Vernon Saddleback update via his Facebook page. Chief Vernon Saddleback: Good afternoon everybody. It’s funny we didn’t have a lot of work days but it was a busy week. I’ll do my best with my internet connection because it’s not the best. This past Monday June 28 and Tuesday June 29, 2021, we did a two day meeting with Council. We’re trying to figure out our post pandemic plan. I challenged Council to think about how we are going to think about infrastructure. We have an increase in population. We are thinking about building a new gymnasium or hockey arena or an Elders lodge. We want to build a gas station out at Bonnet Farms. We are at 9000 plus people and we haven’t built anything in a long time, so we have to build. It was a great team building experience with Council. It was nice to get the whole team together because we’ve been Zooming for months. On Wednesday June 30, we had a meeting with the Treaty 6 Chiefs. There were discussions about a lot of issues. We met with the federal people first then the provincial people after. First, we talked with Marc Miller from the federal government, and they announced 27 million that’s already been marked for searches at residential schools. This money was already made available so we don’t know if they are going to increase it from there. We are also asking for more money for mental health supports. One stand we are taking is for commemorative monuments to put in place at these sites and legislation to protect these grave sites. It’s not enough that we find these sites we need to protect them after the fact. We met with the federal representatives and they’ve identified that there are 146 residential schools that they are looking at. Elder Richard Lightning sat in on the meeting and he said that they need to look at the Charles Camsell hospital in Edmonton. Richard said we need to go look there because a lot of our people were treated at the Charles Camsell hospital back in the day. The federal representatives announced there will be an extension of the Indian Dayschool program by three more years making the deadline 2027. As for the Maskwacis residential school it is located in Ermineskin and Chief Ermineskin mentioned that they are aware that many other people came to the Ermineskin residential school. Ermineskin will be working with the other three nations when the time comes on this important matter. Samson will support Ermineskin in the direction they want to go. When Alberta Minister Rick Wilson came on he said that the province will be allocating 8 million in funding for community and local driven projects associated with the residential schools. The 8 million from the Alberta government funds can be used for engagement, research and related activities associated with the deaths and burials at the residential schools. We can get ground penetrating radar or support programs. The province said they want to work with us to find the truth behind the residential schools. We really appreciate that from the province of Alberta. A lot of our technicians are going to get on that and figure out how to utilize it. This coming Monday July 5, 2021, the Alberta 16 Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation

government will be announcing a massive mental health support program. So when Minister Rick Wilson came into the meeting and if you remember the prior meeting with the federal representatives, Elder Richard Lightning brought up the Charles Camsell hospital in Edmonton. Rick Wilson brought up the Charles Camsell hospital idea as well. So it is a location that the province will be looking at. That was fascinating to hear. I met with the Maskwacis Cultural College (MCC) and we are still trying to find a permanent home for the college. We will be meeting all Summer long to see how we can assist the college. That was Wednesday June 30th. On Thursday June 1 it was Canada day. [Chief takes a minute to reflect]. The tough part about Canada day was the massive call to cancel it out of respect for the residential schools. It was controversial. The mayor of Wetaskiwin, Tyler Gandam, called me and asked if he should cancel Canada day. I’ve been told by the Elders that there can be no reconciliation until the truth comes out. We’ve always known as First Nations that they were always mass grave sites. It’s time for the rest of Canada to find out that painful part of our history. I told Mayor Gandam that we have to go ahead. So he invited me to the Legion hall and I want to thank the people at the Legion. They brought the residential schools up and apologized for it and they also acknowledged the painful history of our region. I appreciate the people of Wetaskiwin on trying to find a way to reconcile it for themselves and for the region. They had two drum groups and dancers at the Legion and this was done so we can share our culture and traditions. At 1:30 PM June 1st, I met with Bob Small and the Legacy Run 215+ Convoy at the Reynolds Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin [video edited]. Open Letter, July 1, 2021, Chief Vernon Saddleback: “They, the survivors, are asking our nation members to preserve the monuments, including churches, as evidence as a testament to what really happened to them, and to refrain from destroying evidence. Our community has experienced ‘collective trauma’ and has the right to remember, and the right to justice, as an ongoing individual and collective process that will require public education, positive meaningful engagement, and truth telling. Our Elders state they will always advise against the use of retaliation, revenge, destructive tendencies/behaviours and counsel for a collective positive mind set in the face of challenge.’ That is powerful and it came from our Elders of Samson Cree Nation. That is the official response from the nation that we do not burn churches. It’s not our way. Yes I know it’s a time of anger but there are healthier ways to express your anger. So I am going to ask everybody to be calm as you can be at this moment. I attended residential school and if you need help please call the National Indian Residential School Crisis Line 1-866-925-4419. This is for people who are suffering from post traumatic related to the residential schools and if you’re a child of a residential school person [video edited]. Phone numbers: Maskwacis Health 780-585-2268 or 780-312-5268. Samson Outreach Team 780335-9347. Mobile Mental Health 780-362-2150 Please reach out if you are struggling with post traumatic stress issues related to what’s been going on. It is affecting our Elders. We need to remember that this is a very painful subject for them. My heart, my prayers and blessings go out to all those who have been affected by the residential schools but let’s not be rash about our decisions. Our Elders want our monuments protected because it is part of our truth telling process. The Elders council said that reconciliation doesn’t happen until the truth comes out. You know what the truth is coming out. More and more residential schools are finding Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation 17

more mass grave sites and we need to go through this painful process as our healing continues with respect to the residential schools. With that, my blessings to everyone. My internet keeps freezing so my apologies for that. That’s how rural internet works. I can’t wait for Council to start launching projects soon. As soon as we get it organized we will get it out to the people. The election process is going and the referendum law is almost done, the Elders have been working on that and Councilor Holly Johnson is part of that process so thank you Holly. Councilor Laurie Buffalo is part of the Treaty Elders and they provided us a letter in response to the churches. Our Council are busy and I am grateful to everyone of them. They are a reflection of the people [video edited].

Guide: Is there anything else you would like to add before we end or anybody you would like to say thank you too? Clayton: Today I rode without my leather jacket or pants. I just wore a T-shirt and every little rock I felt, that was a soul that hit my body. That was a child’s soul that was found at one of the sites. I felt thousands of rocks. Guide: Thank you Clayton for the interview.

Legacy Run 215+ Convoy. From Enoch to Wetaskiwin. July 1, 2021.

I am grateful to everyone of you [video edited]…Erica Johnson and Marcella Dion out at Pigeon Lake. Thank you both and I reached out to both of them [video edited]…Enjoy your weekend. Blessings to everyone and have a great weekend everybody. Ekosi Thank you. July 1, 2021: Clayton Crane interview at the Legacy run 215 Convoy at the Wetaskiwin Reynolds Museum. Guide: What company do you work for? Clayton: Crane Iron Energy Services call 780-312-5105 or Email: craneironenergy at telus dot net. You can get a hold of me on Facebook. Guide: You were on this ride from the Enoch River Cree casino to the Reynolds Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin. How many bikers were there? Clayton: I would have to say about 200 with Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal riders. Guide: Have you ever been in a group of riders this big before? Clayton: I’ve been on few bike runs. Yes I have. Guide: What makes this day so special? Clayton: Our ancestors that we’ve lost have finally been found. Which raises awareness to everybody in the world that there was residential school abuse that was happening. So this ride is to bring awareness to everyone that didn’t know about it. Guide: Were you in residential or dayschool? Clayton: No I was not. I went to the Ponoka school. I’m going to be honest it wasn’t a good experience. Guide: What do you want to say to the youth who are just experiencing this for the first time? Clayton: Honour and respect your Elders. Get the courage to talk to them. Spend more time with them and that time is so precious. We are losing our Elders. You need to know your culture and language and get involved in cultural community events. Stay away from the drugs and alcohol. Today’s generation is the Aware Generation. We are part of the survivors out there. It’s up to us to make the future generations aware of this issue. We are warriors of the people. 18 Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation

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July 2021 Wednesday









Canada Day/ Convoy from Enoch to Erm.

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AFN National Chief Election



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July 1, 2021, Legacy Run 215+ Convoy, Wetaskiwin

►Jim O Cultural Centre News: Samson Band Members $150 Non Refundable. Non Samson Band Members $150 Non Refundable. $50 Damage Deposit. Centre must be cleaned after use, kitchen cleaned up, floors swept, chairs put away. Call 780-5853793 ext. 159. No Double Booking. No Smoking. No Public Phone. ►Samson Trades: High volume of calls due to not changing furnace filters, please do not pour grease down the drains, the Housing department has moved into the Trades Center.

To see the back issues of the Acimowin. 28 Samson Communications Department @SamsonCreeNation

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