While parts of Eeyou Istchee are still burning, regional fire marshal Lee-Roy Blacksmith said that fires are becoming less intense and “SOPFEU has withdrawn their troops” – waiting for them to be naturally extinguished. Remaining blazes are still observed by satellite and occasional flyovers to ensure communities are not endangered.
At a special members’ meeting August 12, the Cree Nation of Washaw Sibi selected a location for their future village. After considering four options, community members overwhelmingly chose a site near the town of Matagami.
In the wake of Meta blocking news from its social media platforms, The Quebec Community Newspapers Association (QCNA) has released a list of tips to guide its members. Without the ability to share direct links on Canadian Instagram or Facebook, domestic news outlets are scrambling to keep reaching their online audiences.
As the changing season brings cooler and wetter weather, Quebec’s forest-fire prevention agency SOPFEU is reducing its crews and moving management operations for the James Bay region to Val-d’Or. While fires continued to burn throughout Eeyou Istchee, most are under observation and don’t pose a threat to communities or infrastructure.
After a week of escalating blazes near Wemindji, the community’s access road and the Billy Diamond Highway between kilometres 390 and 590 were closed August 14. With severe fires reaching near the roadside, the situation was to be reassessed daily to seek safe windows for essential travel.
The situation across Eeyou Istchee remains precarious amidst an unprecedented forest fire season, forcing the Cree Nation Government to postpone the Annual General Assembly scheduled for August 29-31 in Eastmain to October 24-26.
The 16th Annual Wabun Youth Gathering was held July 17-21 in Elk Lake, Ontario, for over 60 First Nation youth. This was the first half of a two-part gathering featuring junior participants from age 8 to 13. An event for senior youth will be held in August.
On June 27, the Cree Nation Government and Fisheries and Oceans Canada announced the signing of a landmark conservation agreement to protect the lake sturgeon of the Southern Hudson Bay-James Bay, a species of special concern under the country’s Species at Risk Act (SARA).
In a moment that sent shockwaves through Indigenous communities across Canada, RoseAnne Archibald was removed as national chief of the Assembly of First Nations June 29. The decision, reached through a non-confidence motion, raised questions about accountability, transparency and the path forward for the AFN.