Agreement between Canada and Alberta Doubles the Number of Field Service Officers Working with First Nations

Canada and Alberta announce extension to emergency management agreement to assist First Nations

CALGARY, March 20, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, and the Honourable Jim Prentice, Premier of Alberta, today announced a 10-year extension to the emergency management agreement for the provision of emergency management services to the 45 First Nations in Alberta.

Through this agreement with the Alberta Emergency Management Agency, First Nations in Alberta will receive on-reserve support across four pillars of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. This includes a direct provincial presence, as required, during emergency events on-reserve that is integrated with the broader Provincial response, as well as preparedness training and emergency planning assistance.

During his address, Minister Valcourt announced a $14.6 million commitment in this 10-year agreement.

The extension of this agreement puts emergency management on reserve on a solid footing and will protect the safety and well being of First Nations residents in Alberta now and into the future.

Quick facts

  • This agreement continues a stable and strong relationship. For the past 25 years, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada has worked collaboratively with the Government of Alberta and First Nations to support the provision of emergency management services to First Nations in Alberta that are consistent with services all Albertans receive.
  • This agreement will also provide for service enhancements, including increasing the number of First Nations Field Officers from two to four plus a manager, and adding on-site training to the role of the Field Officers.
  • First Nations Field Officers are the primary liaison point for entry to the entire program. They provide assistance and advice during an emergency, including coordination of any provincial and, if requested, on-site deployment to support First Nation communities.

Quotes

"Our Government is working to keep Canadians safe; that's why we are taking action to strengthen emergency management on reserve. This agreement will provide for more Field Officers working with First Nations and will ensure that all residents on First Nation communities in Alberta receive emergency services comparable to those that protect every other Canadian."

Bernard Valcourt
Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

"It is important that all Albertans are prepared for disasters and emergencies. We are pleased we're able to work with the federal government to provide long-term emergency management training to First Nations communities in Alberta. This funding ensures community resiliency is enhanced, staff get the training they need, and that the emergency plans and responses that will save lives and property are developed."

Jim Prentice
Premier of Alberta

"The 2013 flood has been one of the most challenging concerns Siksika Nation has faced, where many of our members experienced complete devastation. Only through the work of many volunteers and countless hours of committed people was restoration brought back into the community. Flood relief came from not only the front lines of many people from both on and off reserve members but recognizing the support and efforts of both the federal and provincial governments. It is only through these partnerships are we able to continue to move forward to healing and restoration of our community. We thank both the government of Alberta and the federal government for their contributions and support through this very difficult journey."

Chief Vincent Yellow Old Woman
Siksika Nation

"I value the important partnerships that contribute in delivering emergency management services to First Nations in Alberta. The combination of our own on-reserve emergency management and those services delivered by the Alberta Emergency Management Agency, ensure that First Nations in Alberta receive the protection and planning necessary in dealing with emergencies."

Chief Charles Weasel Head
Blood Tribe

Related products

News Release – Harper Government Announces New Measures to Strengthen Emergency Management on Reserve 
Backgrounder: Emergency Management Assistance Program

Additional links

AANDC National Emergency Management Plan 
Alberta Emergency Management Agency

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SOURCE Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada

For further information: Emily Hillstrom, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, 819-997-0002; Media Relations, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, 819-953-1160

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