In an effort to inform, update and hear from Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) leadership across the Province a Telephone Town Hall was held on September 2, 2020. These call-in sessions provide regular updates to MNO leadership and the community on priority issues, including updates on available Covid-19 supports, work being done by the Provisional Council of the Métis Nation of Ontario (PCMNO), MNO Registry updates and developments regarding the MNO’s 2020 virtual Annual General Assembly.
Covid-19 Update – MNO Supports
MNO continues to deliver quality programs and services in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. New supports have been developed including a 24-hour Mental Health and Addictions crisis line (1-877-767-7572), in addition to legal and financial counseling services. The MNO is currently working on new rent relief and similar assistance programs; enhanced educational supports to help Métis families transition into fall; and will be introducing MNO “navigators” as a contact source to best connect Citizens to MNO programs and services.
For any inquiries on available resources, please contact 613-549-1674 x.307 or 1-800-263-4889 (toll free) or via email firstname.lastname@example.org
Covid-19 Update – Funding
To date, over $1,733,000 in emergency Covid-19 support has been distributed directly to MNO citizens and families. This includes income relief, rent relief, food security, emergency family funding, funding for children with special needs and technology for children.
Covid-19 funds for families have been used to:
- Support over 980 Métis children
- Support over 60 families through the Child Care Support Program
- Provide local support to Citizens through MNO Community Councils
- Secure and distribute Protective Personal Equipment (PPE) to Councils, MNO staff and offices
- Provide 400 Learning at Home Kits to Métis families (Back to School Kits will be made available shortly)
- Enrol 200 Métis children (0-5) to the Imagination Library program
- Support 335 post-secondary students for the coming school year
Covid-19 Update – Canada Supports
In addition to the $3.75 million committed by Canada to the MNO for Covid-19 relief, another $1.8 million has recently been announced. The MNO will also receive $937,000 for mental health supports.
Return to and use of MNO office space
As a government and an employer of more than 250 staff the MNO is required to ensure that all offices have practices in place to follow public health guidelines, such as social distancing. When it comes to use of office space, priority will be given to employees with client-facing services (Monday-Thursday 8:30AM-4:30PM). Councils are requested to schedule use of space for Fridays and weekends, or after 4:30PM on weekdays, but may contact employees to make alternative arrangements if necessary. Other policies discussed include:
- Cleaning and disinfection
- Contact tracing
- Reporting of symptoms
- Indoor and outdoor events
Governance Compensation Framework
As the MNO progresses toward fully recognized Self-Government it continues to grow and evolve its democratic governing institutions.
For the past few years, the MNO has engaged the services of third party consultant, Mercer Canada, in the researching and developing of new MNO compensation frameworks for MNO Staff and senior executives. A fair, accountable and transparent framework for the PCMNO has now been adopted which takes into consideration the varying roles, responsibilities, and time commitments for elected leadership.
Following an extensive review of the current compensation system of the PCMNO, and an analysis of similar positions in comparable labour markets, territorial governments of similar size and other Métis governments, a detailed compensation framework was presented to the PCMNO Executive, the MNO’s Finance and Audit Committee, and to the PCMNO for ultimate review and approval.
The MNO represents the last Métis government to adopt a formalized governance compensation framework informed by Mercer’s extensive comparative research and data. A bulletin on the newly adopted frameworks was provided to Community Council leadership and further information will be posted to the MNO website. As the MNO transitions into self-government, this accountability and transparency with Citizens is critical and open communication with MNO communities remains a priority.
Housing Stabilization Program *New*
The MNO has received funding to provide housing and homelessness support services in response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. The funds are provided by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing’s Social Services Relief Fund (SSRF) via Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services (OAHS).
The new program will provide aid to those:
- facing eviction and have received an eviction notice from their landlord
- who are precariously housed and need short term shelter support (e.g motel stays, heat disconnection notice)
- who are homeless
For more information please contact the Métis Housing Stabilization Team at 613-298-0153 or at email@example.com
MNO Registry Updates
The MNO Registry is hosting a Virtual Mobile Registry from September 21 – 24, 2020. The Registry team is happy to book a virtual appointment with you, either by Zoom (video conferencing) or phone. Appointments will be made available between 11am – 7pm and can be booked by calling 1-855-798-1006 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Details will be made available shortly.
During the initial stages of Covid-19, the MNO Registry had advised Citizens of potential delays in response time. The Registry would like to make Citizens aware that the original five-day turnaround period has since been restored, and MNO Registry messaging has been updated. The MNO apologizes for any confusion or inconveniences this may have caused.
Virtual Annual General Assembly
The 2020 Annual General Assembly (AGA) will take place virtually on November 7,2020 to ensure the safety and wellbeing of citizens, families and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. We want to thank the Toronto and York Region Métis Council for their understanding as we defer their hosting of the AGA to a future year when it can be held in person. Details will be provided on the MNO website.
As per MNO by-laws and Electoral Code, there are four different elections that will be happening surrounding the AGA:
- Election of four PCMNO Senators and from those four the Executive Senator – these positions are elected by Senators
- Election of the MNO Women’s council – all Citizens who are women will have the opportunity to vote
- Filling of vacancies for MNO Youth Council – MNO youth will have the opportunity to vote
- Filling of vacancies for MNO Veterans Council – MNO veterans will have the opportunity to vote
The PCMNO has extended the appointment of Chief Electoral Officer Paul DeVillers to support these elections. Details for candidates and for electors will be posted and widely communicated in the near future.