Windspeaker Media News: July 4 to July 8, 2022

Saturday, July 9th, 2022 8:24am


“There are certain things that I can't explain. Those things that I can't, I just take as divine intervention…”

After connecting with her home, Splatsin member wants to help others

By Shari Narine,

JULY 4—There was so much that Charlene SanJenko didn’t know when she was 11 years old. First, that Splatsin First Nation Kukpi7 Wayne Christian “was literally walking for me”. Over the Thanksgiving weekend in 1980, Christian led the Indian Child Caravan from Prince George to Vancouver where a rally was held to bring awareness to the high number of children taken into foster care.

"Our own musicians came up, we had three different groups that went up to sing. It allows our young people to have a stage to share their gift."

Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation celebrates annual Nakota Strong Music Festival

By Daniel Barker-Tremblay,

JULY 4—Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation was electric on July 1 as the Nakota Strong Music Festival took place — with entertainment and food, it brought a community closer together. Chief Tony Alexis told CFWE news that the idea was first brought up by council member Hank Alexis to bring in performers from across Canada and the United States to perform at the festival.

Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation celebrates annual ‘Nakota Strong Music Festival’ - CFWE (

"I was really overwhelmed, and very proud of her. Her drive to step towards her culture, to make a difference."

Grade 11 student makes positive impact with community fridge and documentary

By Daniel Barker-Tremblay,

JULY 4—A high school student’s efforts have brought a community fridge to a high school in Edmonton.

Stevie Lawrence, a Grade 11 student from Duncan’s First Nation, received the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation’s “Imagine a Canada” grant in June after submitting an essay about her idea of bringing her community fridge to the Victoria School of the Arts in Edmonton.

Grade 11 student makes positive impact with community fridge and documentary - CFWE (

“We elected her and that should be respected.”

Despite ‘embarrassing’ ‘soap opera’ playing out at the AFN, national chief finds support from the chiefs-in-assembly

By Shari Narine,

JULY 5—National Chief RoseAnne Archibald has received the support of chiefs-in-assembly and remains in her position as head of the Assembly of First Nations. Chiefs spoke emphatically today, the first of the three-day AFN annual general assembly in Vancouver, admonishing the executive committee for overstepping their boundaries and declaring Archibald’s suspension unilaterally June 17 for allegedly breaching confidentiality in respect to a workplace investigation against her.

“Not only is he one of the most beloved and respected players in Blades’ history, he went on to have an outstanding professional career as a player.”

Rabbit accepts assistant coaching position with Saskatoon Blades

By Sam Laskaris,

JULY 6—Wacey Rabbit is returning to his old stomping grounds. Rabbit, a member of Kainai Nation in Alberta, originally thought he would be going back to Port Alberni in British Columbia for the next couple of hockey seasons. But that all changed when the Saskatoon Blades, Rabbit’s old junior club, came calling.

“The current structure is a threat. It is a danger… to your sovereignty, to your jurisdiction, to your rights, to the survival of your communities.”

Archibald calls for the overhaul of the AFN structure as she pleaded her case to the chiefs

By Shari Narine,

JULY 6—As RoseAnne Archibald successfully fended off suspension from her position as national chief July 5, she continued to call for the dismantling of the colonial constructs that make up the Assembly of First Nations (AFN). While some chiefs at the AFN’s annual general assembly in Vancouver may not be willing to go quite that far, many agreed changes are needed to the organization.

“Every time you decide to squabble amongst yourselves you forget the children and young people that you once swore to protect.”

Youth council chastises AFN chiefs for ‘drama’ that overshadowed the tragedy of a missing boy

By Shari Narine,

JULY 6—Rosalie LaBillois, co-chair of the Assembly of First Nations Youth Council, admonished AFN leadership this morning for putting the “drama of the day” yesterday in front of showing support for the family of a missing five-year-old boy, Frank Young. When our youth council had seen a room of empty chairs to support them, our hearts were broken,” said LaBillois, struggling through tears.

“Our story is long and we’ve been through so much and we have had to fight the government.”

Difficult process to endure but representative plaintiffs forged ahead to $20 billion child welfare settlement

By Shari Narine,

JULY 7—A historic agreement that will help First Nations children and their caregivers wronged by the federal child welfare system would have gone nowhere had it not been for its representative plaintiffs. “My life has a purpose,” said Karen Osachoff. She was joined by her sister Melissa Walterson and the four other representative plaintiffs to be blanketed by the Assembly of First Nations July 6.

“It’s not only chiefs who want to understand what’s going on. Our grassroots people want those answers as well.”

Forensic audit of at least 10 years of AFN finances approved by chiefs

By Shari Narine,

JULY 7—Chiefs voted in favour of a forensic audit to be undertaken of at least the past 10 years of “financial activity of the (Assembly of First Nations), with particular attention to recent AFN salary payouts and contracts.” The second emergency resolution in three days at the AFN’s annual general assembly in Vancouver passed, this one receiving support from 75 per cent of the chiefs.

“It will be monumental to broadcast in the language of our ancestors on Treaty Six territory.”

Windspeaker Media to broadcast Canadian Football League contest in Cree

By Sam Laskaris,

JULY 8—An historic moment in Canadian sporting history will be made later this month and Windspeaker Media will play a major role. Windspeaker Media has joined forces with the Edmonton Elks of the Canadian Football League (CFL) to have its July 22 home contest versus the Winnipeg Blue Bombers broadcast in the nêhiyawêwin (Cree) language.