Following the July 25-26 Provisional Council of the Métis Nation of Ontario (PCMNO) meeting, a Telephone Town Hall was held with MNO leadership on July 29, 2020. These call-in sessions are meant to provide regular updates to MNO leadership and community on priority issues, including recent registry updates, MNO branch and program developments and other relevant news.

“We’d like to extend our gratitude to the PCMNO, staff and advisors who are working hard to support us during this exciting time,” said President Froh in her opening remarks. “Tonight, we’ll be providing an update on the recent PCMNO meeting and opportunities for the community to ask questions – this is all part of an ongoing commitment to enhance our reporting to the community.”

PCMNO Meeting Recap

The Telephone Town Hall kicked off with a recap of the of the July 25-26 PCMNO meeting, the last in the 3-part orientation series for returning and newly elected PCMNO leadership. Among items discussed include:

  • Secretary Treasurer’s Report
  • Captains of the Hunt and Incidental Cabins update
  • Discussion on Conflicts of Interest
  • Governance Compensation Framework
  • Métis Government Recognition and Self-Government Agreement
  • Draft MNO Code of Conduct Policy
  • Committee Appointment and Updates
  • 2020 Virtual Annual General Assembly (AGA)

For a more detailed review of the discussions that took place during the PCMNO meeting over the weekend, refer to this recent recap.

Committee Appointments and Updates

The recent PCMNO meeting reviewed the draft Terms of Reference and appointments for two Committees: the MNO Economic Development Working Group and the Infinity Trust Board.

  • Regional Councilors David Dusome, Mitch Case and Peter Rivers will serve on the Working Group, and Métis Citizens with an interest in economic development are invited to put their names forward.
  • MNO President Margaret Froh and Chair Hank Rowlinson were appointed as MNO Trustees for the Infinity Trust. The Independent Trustees will be selected within the year. The PCMNO acknowledged the substantive contributions of Regional Councillor Stenlund who had been serving as an MNO Trustee.

A new Project Advisory Group focused on Métis Child, Youth and Family Services (CFS) is also being developed. Terms of Reference and expressions of interest for the Advisory Group will be circulated shortly.

More information on these MNO Committees can also be found on the PCMNO recap.

Virtual Annual General Assembly 2020

A resolution passed at the previous PCMNO meeting approved the use of Data on the Spot (DOTS) as a digital platform to conduct this year’s Virtual Annual General Assembly (AGA). Representatives from DOTS provided a demonstration of their technology, showing how a secure and dynamic Virtual AGA could be realized that meets the specific needs of the MNO. The AGA will include integrated video capabilities, voting infrastructure and participation in the AGA will be accessible on all devices (including by landline phone for those without internet access). Services will be available in both French and English.

More in depth training sessions for using DOTS will be held in the near future and communication materials will be circulated to the community well in advance of the Assembly.

At this time, the 2020 AGA date has been set for November 7, 2020 and will include review and adoption of the past AGA minutes, review and adoption of financial statements, update on Self-Government, report from Advisory Councils, holding the MNO Cultural Commission Annual General Meeting and any other key business that must be conducted.

Healing and Wellness Update

The Healing and Wellness Branch has secured an additional $500,000 in funding to enhance diabetes prevention supports and services, which brings the total funding for the program to $665,000. These funds will go to support Citizens requiring dialysis to access supplies and nutrition, and help the Healing and Wellness Branch establish a provincial diabetes support team to deliver programs and supports.

Other MNO Branches are currently developing informational reports to highlight the variety of programs and services available. These reports will be recorded via Zoom and shared with the community in the near future.

MNO Youth Opportunities

Students in grades 10-12 have been invited to take part in Été: a virtual summer youth cultural camp. The camp will run from August 17-20 from 12:30-5PM.

The fourth annual Métis Youth Leadership Conference (YLC) is open to youth 16-29 takes place this August. The Conference will be held virtually through Zoom August 22-23 from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM. Youth who have applied to the YLC should expect to hear from the admin team soon with updates on the status of their applications.

MNO Registry updates

President Froh also recognized the work being done to enhance and support the MNO Registry and the importance of updating address lists. At this time, there have been 3000 personal information updates since June 2019; 1900 since March of this year. Registry is working closely with MNO Community Councils and branches to continue improving the accuracy of the Registry lists.

Registry will send Council Presidents lists of local citizens twice a year (January and June/July). If Councils require a list outside of those times, they can be requested directly from the MNO Registrar. New tools are being developed to help Citizens update their information; and workshops will also be held with communities and staff.

Additionally, the MNO is undertaking a Registry Drive to educate applicants about the process of becoming an MNO citizen and/or MNO Harvester, and to increase MNO citizenship and access to MNO programs. Developing and improving communications strategies with the MNO community has been identified as a priority in both the Registry enhancements and work towards the realization of self-government.

Métis Veteran Recognized

A ceremony in Midland was held on July 29, 2020 to honour Métis Veteran Leonard Landrigan, the tenth MNO Métis World War 2 Veteran to be recognized for his service. The MNO President and MNO Veterans Council President were present at the ceremony, where Landrigan was acknowledged for his service, provided with a compensation cheque of $20,000 and a long-awaited formal apology from the federal government.

Posted July 31, 2020