Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

March 19, 2009 14:08 ET

Canada's Economic Action Plan Delivers New Water Treatment System for Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation in Quebec

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 19, 2009) - The Government of Canada is taking action to ensure members of Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation have access to reliable water and wastewater facilities by supporting a new water treatment system, thanks to Canada's Economic Action Plan (http://www.budget.gc.ca/2009/home-accueil-eng.asp).

"It is essential for First Nations to have the same quality and access to water as all Canadians," said the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, on behalf of the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians. "Improving water and wastewater facilities in First Nation communities is a priority for our Government."

This new water treatment system for Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg is part of the $165 million for water and wastewater projects included in the $1.4 billion investment for Aboriginal peoples under the Economic Action Plan. This project will include the development of municipal water and wastewater networks for the urban portion of the community.

"Access to potable water and a safe sewer system have been for a long time priority concerns expressed by members of our community. The announcement being made today is therefore well received by the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg community as it comes to confirm the firm support for the full completion of its water and sewer project" said Chief Gilbert W. Whiteduck from the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation.

The Government of Canada is investing in projects that will provide lasting, sustainable benefits for First Nation communities. The government has made solid progress in improving water conditions on reserves across the country. For example, the number of high risk systems has been reduced by two-thirds. In 2006, there were 193 high risk systems. Today, this number has been reduced to 58. There were also 21 priority communities identified in 2006, meaning they had both a high-risk system and a drinking water advisory. Today, only four communities remain on that list.

The government is also taking decisive action to improve water conditions through the First Nations Water and Wastewater Action Plan (http://www.ainc-inac.gc.ca/ai/mr/nr/j-a2008/2-3019-eng.asp?p1=209557&p2=6293).

Costs of projects announced today will be identified following the competitive tendering process.

This news release is also available on the Internet at: www.inac-ainc.gc.ca

Backgrounders on water are available on the Internet at: www.inac-ainc.gc.ca

First Nations profiles are available on the Internet at: http://www.ainc-inac.gc.ca/ap/fn/index-eng.asp

Contact Information

  • INAC
    Media Relations
    819-953-1160
    or
    Nina Chiarelli
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl
    819-997-0002