Transcript: Ontario Hubs: Announcements in the Northeast | May 10, 2019

Jeyan sits in the studio. He's is in his thirties, with short black hair and a trimmed beard. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and burgundy tie.

A caption on screen reads "Ontario Hubs: Announcements in the Northeast. Jeyan Jeganathan. @JeyanTVO. @theagenda."

Jeyan says FLOODING IN OTTAWA AND
MUSKOKA GOT MUCH OF THE
ATTENTION LAST WEEK AS HOMES AND
COTTAGES WERE SWALLOWED BY
RISING WATER LEVELS.
BUT NORTHERN ONTARIO, FROM
SAULT Ste. MARIE TO TIMMINS,
ALSO SCRAMBLED AS AUTHORITIES
ISSUED FLOOD WARNINGS IN MANY
AREAS.
THAT'S ALL IN ADDITION TO THE
RECURRING FLOODING THAT'S PUT
THE CREE COMMUNITY OF
KASHECHEWAN IN JEOPARDY YEAR
AFTER YEAR.
CLAUDE SHARMA IS OUR NORTHEAST
ONTARIO HUB EDITOR, AND HE JOINS
US VIA SKYPE FROM HIS HOME IN
GREATER SUDBURY.

Claude is in his thirties, clean-shaven, with dark hair in a pompadour. He's wearing glasses, a gray suit, and a white shirt.

Jeyan continues WELCOME TO THE SHOW, CLAUDE.

Claude says HI, JEYAN.

Jeyan says LET'S JUMP RIGHT
INTO IT.
WHY IS KASHECHEWAN FIRST NATIONS
SO SUSCEPTIBLE TO FLOODING YEAR
AFTER YEAR?

The caption changes to "Claude Sharma. Northeastern Ontario Hub Editor."
Then, it changes again to "Fate of a flooding first nation."

A satellite view of Canada homes in on Ontario, then on James Bay, as Kashechewan First Nation appears highlighted.

Claude says WELL, JEYAN, JUST A QUICK
HISTORY LESSON.
THE FIRST NATIONS COMMUNITY WAS
FORCED TO LOCATE TO A NEW AREA
BACK IN THE 1950s FROM THE
CANADIAN GOVERNMENT.
EVIDENTLY THEY MOVED TO A
FLOOD-PRONE AREA ON THE BANKS OF
THE ALBANY RIVER.
FLOODING OCCURS THERE PRETTY
MUCH EVERY SPRING.
WHAT HAPPENS IS THERE'S AN ICE
BREAK-UP IN THE SPRINGTIME.
THE ICE JAMS THE ALBANY RIVER
WHICH CREATES FAST AND
HIGH-RISING WATER, IT GUSHES
RIGHT INTO THE FIRST NATIONS
COMMUNITY.
ON TOP OF THAT THE DIKE THERE
NEEDS MAINTENANCE YEARLY AND IT
REALLY ISN'T SUSTAINABLE TO KEEP
THE WATER OUT OF THAT FIRST
NATION COMMUNITY.

Jeyan says ALL RIGHT.
SO WE HAVE SOME PICTURES FROM
THE FLOOD IN 2006.
THAT'S WHEN THE COMMUNITY WAS
HIT PARTICULARLY HARD.
TELL US WHAT WE'RE LOOKING AT
AND HOW LONG HAS THIS PROBLEM
BEEN GOING ON FOR?

Pictures flash by showing flooded communities.

Claude says YEAH.
SO THESE PICTURES ARE BACK FROM
2006, CONSIDERED A MAJOR FLOOD
THERE, AND WHAT MAKES THIS SUCH
A BIG PROBLEM DURING THAT TIME
IS THAT THEY HAD TO DEAL WITH
THREE EVACUATIONS IN KIND OF A
12-MONTH SPAN.
ONE OF THE REASONS THEY
EVACUATED ONE TIME IS THE FIRST
NATIONS COMMUNITY WAS DEALING
WITH CONTAMINATED WATER.
HOW FAR DOES THIS GO BACK
EXACTLY?
ACCORDING TO THE FEDERAL
GOVERNMENT, THEY'RE SAYING ONE
OF THE FIRST MAJOR FLOODS WAS
ALSO IN 1976, AND SINCE THEN, 17
TIMES THE FIRST NATIONS
COMMUNITY HAS HAD TO EVACUATE
BETWEEN 1976 AND NOW 2019.

Jeyan says WHEN THEY DO
EVACUATE, WHAT HAPPENS TO THE
RESIDENTS AROUND THIS TIME?

Claude says SO WHAT HAPPENS IS, THEY FLY INTO WHAT IS CALLED HOST
COMMUNITIES.
SO LET'S USE THIS YEAR, FOR EXAMPLE.

A map of the area appears, where red arrows originating in Kashechewan First Nation point at Thunder Bay, Hearst, Kapuskasing, Cochrane and Timmins.

Claude continues FIVE DIFFERENT COMMUNITIES,
THUNDER BAY, KAPUSKASING,
COCHRANE AND TIMMINS.
A TEMPORARY LAYOVER AND THE
MAJORITY WERE SHIPPED OVER TO
COCHRANE.
SO THEY STAY IN HOTELS FOR THE
DURATION OF THE EVACUATION.
THAT COULD BE ANYWHERE FROM TEN
DAYS, THREE WEEKS, SEVERAL
MONTHS, EVEN LONGER.
IT JUST ALL DEPENDS ON HOW THE
FLOODING SITUATION IS GOING ON
UP IN KASHECHEWAN.

Jeyan says YOU HAD A CHANCE TO
SPEAK TO SOME OF THE EVACUEES.
WHO WERE THEY HANDLING NOT JUST
THE DISPLACEMENT THIS YEAR BUT
THE ANNUAL RECURRING FLOODING
AND EVACUATIONS OVER AND OVER
AND OVER AGAIN?

Claude says THEY'RE SICK AND TIRED OF IT.
IT'S HARD ON EVERYBODY, FROM THE
ELDERS DOWN TO THE YOUTH.
AND IT'S UP TO EACH HOST
COMMUNITY, HOW THEY DO IT
DIFFERENTLY, HOW ARE THEY GOING
TO ENTERTAIN THE EVACUEES?
FOR EXAMPLE, I KNOW WHEN I WAS
IN KAPUSKASING, THE CAO THERE
WANTED TO HELP BRING HOMES TO
THE EVACUEES.
SO HE WAS CONSTRUCTING A TEPEE
WITH MEMBERS.
THEY PUT ON DIFFERENT FORMS OF
ENTERTAINMENT.
A LOT OF THEM TOLD ME THEY WERE
BORED.

Jeyan says THIS IS HAPPENING MARCH,
APRIL, MAY.
THE KIDS WOULD PROBABLY BE IN
SCHOOL AT THIS POINT.
HOW IS THIS AFFECTING THAT?

Claude says WELL, I MEAN, EACH YEAR THEY
CAN MISS ANYWHERE FROM THREE TO
SIX WEEKS, LONGER THAN THAT, AND
IF YOU THINK ABOUT IT, I WAS
TOLD THAT THE EVACUATIONS HAVE
HAPPENED EVERY YEAR SINCE 2011,
2012.
THAT'S SEVEN, EIGHT YEARS IN A
ROW THEY'RE MISSING MULTIPLE
MONTHS OF SCHOOL EACH YEAR.
BUT ONE BIG PROBLEM TOO ON TOP
OF THAT IS THAT THIS YEAR THE
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, WHICH IS
KINDERGARTEN TO GRADE 6, THAT
SCHOOL HAD TO CLOSE DOWN FOR THE
YEAR.
SORRY, THEY GO IN SCHOOL IN
PORTABLES.
AND THOSE PORTABLES WERE JUST
DEEMED UNSAFE.
THE PORTABLE STRUCTURES WERE
SHIFTING.
THE DOORS WERE JAMMING.
THE FIRE ALARMS WEREN'T WORKING.
THE ELECTRICAL PROBLEMS WERE
MOUNTING, ACCOUNTING FOR
FREEZING CLASSROOMS.
SO THEN THE STUDENTS, 400, HAD
TO SHIFT TO THE HIGH SCHOOL.
THE HIGH SCHOOL WHICH HAS ABOUT
200 OR SO STUDENTS.
SO THEY HAD TO SHIFT THE
SCHOOLING THIS YEAR.
AND BY THAT I MEAN THE
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS HAD
TO GO TO SCHOOL FOR FOUR HOURS
IN THE MORNING AND THEN THE HIGH
SCHOOL STUDENTS HAD TO GO TO
SCHOOL FROM 1:00 TO 7:00 AT
NIGHT.

Jeyan says OH, WOW.

Claude says THE ELEMENTARY AND HIGH
SCHOOL STUDENTS ALREADY MISSING
OUT ON SIGNIFICANT TIME BECAUSE
THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL WASN'T UP
TO STANDARDS.

Jeyan says THERE SEEMS TO BE
SOME GOOD NEWS.
THERE WAS A SIGNIFICANT
DEVELOPMENT YESTERDAY ON THIS
FRONT.
WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT WHAT
THEY'RE CALLING THE RELOCATION
IMPLEMENTATION PLAN THAT WAS
ANNOUNCED ON THURSDAY?

The caption changes to "Claude Sharma, @ClaudeSharma."

Claude says YEAH.
SO THE FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT
RELOCATION PLAN, AND IT WAS
SIGNED BY KASHECHEWAN FIRST
NATION CHIEF LEO FRIDAY AS WELL
AS MINISTER OF INDIGENOUS
AFFAIRS GREG RICKFORD FOR THE
PROVINCE AND MINISTER OF
INDIGENOUS SERVICES SEAMUS
O'REGAN FOR THE FEDERAL
GOVERNMENT, AND THIS IS
SOMETHING THAT THEY'VE BEEN
WANTING FOR SUCH A LONG TIME,
AND ACCORDING TO MINISTER
O'REGAN, HE WAS SAYING IF IT ALL
GOES WELL THAT THEY CAN SEE THE
RELOCATION HAPPENING IN ABOUT 8
TO 10 YEARS AND THIS WILL BE TO
HIGHER GROUND, ABOUT 30
KILOMETRES SOUTHWEST OF WHERE
KASHECHEWAN CURRENTLY IS.

Jeyan says HISTORICALLY
SPEAKING, HOW SIGNIFICANT IS
THIS AGREEMENT?

Claude says WELL, ONTARIO REGIONAL CHIEF ROSEANNE ARCHIBALD SAID THIS IS
SIGNIFICANT AND THE REASON WHY
SHE SAID THIS IS SIGNIFICANT IS
BECAUSE THERE'S A PATH, THERE
ARE DETAILS IN THIS AGREEMENT
THAT KIND OF LAY OUT THE
FOUNDATION OF WHAT TO EXPECT AND
WHEN TO EXPECT IT.
SHE'S HAPPY WITH THAT.
OTHER FIRST NATION LEADERS AT
THE MEDIA CONFERENCE ON THURSDAY
WERE AS WELL.
BUT I SPOKE TO CHIEF LEO FRIDAY
AFTER AND HE WAS SAYING THERE'S
MIXED EMOTIONS THERE.
THE REASON BEING, YES, THIS IS
GREAT THAT THEY PUT PEN TO PAPER
AND THAT THERE ARE MORE DETAILS,
BUT HE'S STILL SCARED FOR THE
FIRST NATIONS COMMUNITY.
PROMISES BY THE FEDERAL
GOVERNMENT HAVE BEEN BROKEN
BEFORE.
HE WANTS TO SEE MORE TANGIBLE
EVIDENCE BEFORE HE CAN
CELEBRATE.

Jeyan says CHANGING GEARS
QUICKLY.
ANOTHER MAJOR DEVELOPMENT IN
YOUR REGION THIS WEEK.
WHAT DO WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT
SAULT STE. MARIE ECONOMY?
THEY MIGHT BE GETTING A BIG
BOOST THERE.

The caption changes to "Big win for Sault Ste. Marie."

Claude says YEAH.
WELL, NORONT RESOURCES, THE
CANADIAN-BASED MINING COMPANY
AND HAS THE LARGEST LAND
POSITION IN THE RING OF FIRE IN
NORTHERN ONTARIO, WHICH IS A
MULTI-METAL AREA, THEY WANTED TO
CREATE OR DEVELOP A SMELTER IN
NORTHERN ONTARIO.
SO IT WAS DOWN TO FOUR CITIES.
SAULT STE. MARIE, SUDBURY,
TIMMINS, AND THUNDER BAY.
GREAT NEWS FOR SAULT STE. MARIE.
IT'S GOING TO REALLY DIVERSIFY
THEIR ECONOMY AND OBVIOUSLY
OFFICIALS THERE ARE THRILLED
THAT NORONT CHOSE SAULT STE.
MARIE TO BUILD THE FACILITY.

Jeyan says WHEN WE LOOK AT THE
NUMBER OF JOBS NOT ONLY IN TERMS
OF BUILDING IT BUT LONG... IN
TERMS OF THE LONGSTANDING, HOW
MANY JOBS WILL WE BE ABLE TO GET
OUT OF THERE?

Claude says KEEP IN MIND THIS IS
SOMETHING THAT... A PROJECT
WE'RE GOING TO SEE SHOVELS IN
THE GROUND BY 2025 AND THEN WITH
ALL THINGS GOING ACCORDING TO
PLAN, THEY HOPE THAT BY 2028,
THE BUILDING WILL BE
RESURRECTED.
SO THAT'S STILL A LONG WAYS
AWAY.
BUT 300 TO 500 DIRECT JOBS,
PEOPLE WILL BE EMPLOYED AT THE
SMELTER, WITH UP TO 1,000
INDIRECT JOBS LEADING UP TO THE
BUILD AND AFTER THE BUILD.

Jeyan says CURIOUS TO KNOW, I
KNOW IT WAS BETWEEN SAULT STE.
MARIE AND TIMMINS IN THE FINAL
STRETCH.
HOW ARE CITY OFFICIALS TAKING IT
IN TIMMINS?

Claude says OBVIOUSLY VERY DISAPPOINTED.
THE MAYOR AND ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION THERE
WERE QUICK TO RESPOND WHEN IT
WAS AWARDED TO SAULT STE. MARIE.
BUT THEY FEEL THEY STILL HAVE
SKIN IN THE GAME.
THEY SAID THIS IS A LONG, LONG
PROCESS.
A ROAD STILL HAS TO BE BUILT.
AND THAT'S A MAJOR FACTOR IN ALL
OF THIS. INFRASTRUCTURE HAS TO
BE PUT IN PLACE. SO BETWEEN NOW
AND THEN, MUCH CAN CHANGE.
I KNOW THE MAYOR HAS GONE ON THE
RECORD TO SAY THAT NORONT
RESOURCES FOR HIM IS A JUNIOR
MINING COMPANY AND WE'VE SEEN A
LOT OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS,
EVEN LONGER THAN THAT, IS A LOT
OF MINING COMPANIES... A LOT OF
ACQUISITIONS FROM BIGGER
COMPANIES.
SO WHAT IF NORONT IS BOUGHT?
SO I GUESS BETWEEN NOW AND WHEN
MORE THINGS DEVELOP, TIMMINS
OFFICIALS ARE JUST LOOKING
FORWARD TO THAT EXIT INTERVIEW
WITH NORONT TO KIND OF SEE WHERE
THEY WENT WRONG, WHERE THEY CAN
IMPROVE, AND KIND OF GO FROM
THERE, JEYAN.

The caption changes to "Producer: Patricia Kozicka, @TrishKozicka."

Jeyan says SOMETHING TO KEEP AN
EYE ON. THANK YOU SO MUCH,
CLAUDE SHARMA. THAT'S CLAUDE
SHARMA, OUR NORTHEAST ONTARIO
HUB EDITOR JOINING US FROM HIS
HOME IN GREATER SUDBURY.
THANKS AGAIN.

Claude says THANK YOU.

An animated slate reads "Ontario Hubs. Ontario Hubs are made possible by The Barry and Laurie Green Family Charitable Trust and Goldie Feldman."

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