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Message from President Chartier – Live Métis Music Every Thursday & Saturday on the MMF Website

April 8, 2020

The current COVID-19 pandemic is affecting our people in many ways.  Many of us who would normally go out to musical events are now stuck at home. Many of us who rely on the arts for their income are now suffering.

In supporting our people and Métis musicians during the coronavirus pandemic, the Manitoba Metis Federation hosted a live & virtual concert “The Beat Goes On” from Winnipeg last Saturday. A great success with thousands of viewers. And the MMF will continue these live shows with great Métis music that will be shared every Thursday evenings at 7:00 pm (8pm ET) and Saturday afternoons at 2:00pm (3pm ET).

Music is what gets us through hard times. Now, more than ever.  Stay apart, but still connected, do it virtually.  Tomorrow, Thursday, the entertainment will be the band C-Weed.  I encourage each one of you to join this MMF special live streaming concert this Thursday at 8 pm ET.

The livestreams are available on the MMF website as well as the Facebook page.

To enjoy last Saturday’s stream, please follow the link:

Physical distancing doesn’t have to be solitary. Take a mental health break from coronavirus news, grab your favourite drinks and snacks, forgot the world outside for an hour or so, watch “The Beat Goes On” with C-Weed while you stay at home and work together to flatten the curve.

We’re all in this together. Hope everyone enjoys the show!

President Clément Chartier, QC

Download Message from MNC President Clément Chartier (PDF)

Download Message from MMF President David Chartrand (PDF)


Manitoba to Extend Supports and Services to Youth Aging Out of the Child Welfare System

April 8, 2020

As part of its COVID-19 response, the Manitoba government is taking steps to extend supports and services to all young adults who would otherwise age out of the Child and Family Services (CFS) system during this difficult time, Families Minister Heather Stefanson announced today.

“This pandemic is creating uncertainty for all Manitobans including many youth in our child welfare system,” said Stefanson.  “Our government will ensure young people who would otherwise age out of CFS care have access to continued financial and other support when they turn 18, giving them a greater chance of independence and success beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.  We will work with child welfare authorities and agencies to ensure funding and supports are in place to make this possible.”

The Manitoba government will continue to extend supports to all youth currently in care who turn 18 between March 20 and Sept. 30.  This includes extending foster care placements and ensuring that youth who choose to move out of foster care continue to receive financial support, the minister noted.

Many youth exiting care at the age of majority choose to transition to an Agreement with a Young Adult, which provides continued care and maintenance funding, with the purpose of assisting youth to transition to independence.  These agreements are voluntary and available to young adults up to the age of 21.  Individuals who currently have a voluntary agreement in place will continue to receive this assistance over the same timeframe, regardless of their age.

Over the next six months, this change could benefit more than 280 youth in care and more than 70 young adults with agreements.

The minister noted Manitoba Housing will also make 10 additional units available to provide stable, secure housing to young adults who are aging out of care and other youth in contact with the child welfare system.  Building on an existing partnership, these units will be set aside for clients of Resource Assistance for Youth.

“The steps the government has taken today for youth aging out of care will help us protect at-risk young people during this difficult time,” said Kelly Holmes, executive director, Resource Assistance for Youth.  “We are all in this together and we appreciate the timely response from the government during this time of crisis.”

A number of other changes have been put in place to support children in care and the child welfare system during the COVID-19 response.  Foster home and residential care licenses will be extended for 60 days, to ensure continuation of care.  The province has activated a mutual aid agreement with child welfare authorities, to help ensure staff and supports are available when they are needed.  The province also continues to share current, accurate information about best practices for children, families, care providers and other partners, based on public health advice.

A comprehensive list of Manitoba government COVID-19 measures can be found at:

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For more information:

  • Public information, contact Manitoba Government Inquiry: 1-866-626-4862 or 204-945-3744.
  • Media requests for general information, contact Communications Services Manitoba: 204-945-3765.
  • Media requests for ministerial comment, contact Communications and Stakeholder Relations: 204-945-4916.


Major Manitoba 150 Celebrations Paused for 2020

Public Health of Manitobans is Our Priority: Premier

Due to the significant public health concerns surrounding COVID-19 and large public gatherings, major Manitoba 150 celebrations are being paused for 2020, Premier Brian Pallister announced today.

“As Manitobans, we all love our beautiful summers and we were looking forward to celebrating Manitoba’s 150th anniversary, but right now, health and safety must come first,” said Pallister.  “We know this is a difficult time for Manitobans, but we will get through this.  We look forward to the days when we can reunite with our friends and neighbours to keep celebrating our great province.”

This year marks the 150th anniversary of Manitoba joining Confederation and many activities and events to commemorate this significant milestone were planned by the Manitoba 150 Host Committee Inc.

All remaining events and public activities associated Manitoba 150 are being postponed, but funding will remain in place to support community projects and events when public health advice advises it is once again safe to hold large public gatherings, said Monique LaCoste and Stuart Murray, co-chairs of the Manitoba 150 Host Committee.

“We invited Manitobans to be ‘United in Celebration’ in 2020 and instead, we are united in the fight against COVID-19,” said Murray. “Manitoba 150 celebrations may be on hold for now, but we know this pandemic will end, and when it does, we’ll be ready with a celebration like no other.”

The Unite 150 Concert featuring a full slate of Manitoba artists, originally planned for June 27 at the Manitoba Legislative Building, will be rescheduled in 2021.

“Once it is safe for Manitobans to gather for Unite 150 under the watchful gaze of the Golden Boy, the theme ‘United in Celebration’ will truly take on its full meaning,” Pallister said.

Questions about Manitoba 150 programming can be emailed to

Every year, the Manitoba government provides support to nearly 50 community events and major festivals.

For organizations under the province’s ‘Community Festivals and Events’ program, that must cancel their events this year due to COVID-19, the province is committed to covering up to 50 per cent of eligible funding.

“Ensuring funding continues to flow will help ensure these Manitoba’s cultural organizations remain viable into the future,” Pallister said.

Organizations with questions about events and funding should email

A comprehensive list of Manitoba government COVID-19 measures can be found at:

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For more information:

  • Public information, contact Manitoba Government Inquiry: 1-866-626-4862 or 204-945-3744.
  • Media requests for general information, contact Communications Services Manitoba: 204-945-3765.
  • Media requests for ministerial comment, contact Communications and Stakeholder Relations: 204-945-4916.


MKO – Funding opportunities: Indigenous Community Support and Emergency Management Assistance Program

Apr 8, 2020

This information is for community leaders, program managers, and community contacts. This is an opportunity for MKO First Nations to access important financial support.

The Government of Canada has announced the 2020-2021 calls for funding for the:

Click on either of the above program names for information on the process and criteria on how to apply:

NOTE: The deadline to submit applications to the Indigenous Community Support Fund is April 13, 2020.

There is no deadline to submit applications to the Emergency Management Assistance Program.


Manitoba First Nations implement curfews during COVID-19 – APTN News

April 7, 2020

As Indigenous communities continue to close their borders to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic, some First Nations in Manitoba are having to take measures one step further by implementing community wide curfews.

As of Tuesday morning, Opaskwayask Cree Nation (OCN) is on a curfew for the next two weeks. The curfew runs from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily.

Onekanew or Chief Christian Sinclair took to social media to make a plea to members in an announcement posted on Facebook.

“Please play your part in respecting the lives of our community. We are doing this to protect the community in its entirety,” said Sinclair. “There are elders and many people with illnesses that could possibly suffer the hardest from…careless actions.”

The northern Manitoba community called a state of emergency last month.

Sinclair expressed concern about some members not taking physical distancing seriously enough.a

Read More:

COVID-19 Pandemic Amplifies Need for Reliable Internet and Phone Service in Northern Manitoba

Apr 7, 2020

Treaty Five Territory, Thompson, MB – Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak Inc. (MKO) is issuing a series of media releases to provide an update on issues being addressed in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic for First Nations in Northern Manitoba.

MKO has grouped the issues into three main themes: protecting First Nations; infrastructure; as well as funding and supplies. The issues are numerous. This media release focuses on communication issues connected to the theme of “infrastructure.”

MKO First Nations leaders and citizens were all too aware of persistent challenges with communications infrastructure before the COVID-19 virus arrived in Northern Manitoba last week. Preparing to cope with a pandemic is bringing a deeper sense of urgency to the need to address infrastructure issues. As the First Nations prepare for the arrival of the COVID-19 virus, they are raising the alarm over the poor Internet and phone services that are the reality for many Northern communities.

“A major infrastructure issue we are dealing with now is the lack of reliable Internet and phone service,” shared Grand Chief Garrison Settee. “Our infrastructure issues are going to make or break our success when it comes to our ability to mitigate the impacts of the virus on the vulnerable citizens in our communities.”

“Reliable, clear, and accessible communication is key during a pandemic,” stated Grand Chief Settee. “First Nations have been encouraged to develop pandemic plans, but an essential component is missing. Many Northern First Nations lack access to reliable Internet and cell phone service. I am worried this lack of access to a reliable communications system may have devastating impacts on First Nations citizens.”

Information on the COVID-19 pandemic is being shared with First Nations in a multitude of ways, including through emails, websites, social media, and regular teleconference calls. Many First Nations have a poor telephone connection, which can make phone calls challenging.

“It is really disheartening that we are living in an age that we do not have the adequate Internet services that our people deserve. Those that have Internet, it’s very slow. It would have been better if we had the most adequate and reliable Internet services in our communities. It would make things much easier but right now this is not the case,” said Grand Chief Settee. “We have been advocating to the government at this present time that they need to invest in the North and do it in such a way that it is not divisive and in a way that everybody will be able to access Internet services without it becoming political. The bottom line is Chiefs need to be able to communicate with Band members in a reliable way in emergency situations. Federal and provincial health leaders also need to be able to communicate with First Nations in a timely and reliable way in the event of an emergency.”

MKO will continue to advocate for Northern First Nations and continues to share updates as they become available and will continue to raise infrastructure issues with provincial and federal partners.

MKO shares information on COVID-19 on our social media accounts and on a new webpage created for this purpose.


MMF President’s Message on COVID-19 – April 7, 2020

April 7, 2020, Manitoba Metis Federation President David Chartrand’s message on COVID-19

  • Métis Laws of the Harvest update: Harvester cards are extended until May 1st
  • Message to Employees: please prepare your direct deposit information
  • Message to Employers: The MMF will award $1,000 to $10,000 to help Métis Businesses
  • Upcoming MMF Cabinet Meeting discussion
    • The LRI is exploring online teaching programs
    • The MMF Youth Committee is working on interactive strategies
    • The MMF is looking at online entertainment for kids
  • Virtual concert “The Beat Goes On” Live-streaming
    • Every Saturday at 2:00 pm (3:00pm ET)
    • Every Thursday at 7:00 pm (8:00pm ET)


Manitoba chief threatens members with banishment if bootlegging continues – APTN News

People are risking the health of their locked-down community by sneaking out to buy booze and drugs, says the chief of Nelson House Cree Nation in northern Manitoba.

So it was a blunt Marcel Moody who warned “bootleggers” – he said included band employees – they would be the losers.

“…We will be taking action to cut off benefits, evict or banish people who refuse to abide by our laws,” the chief said in a community radio broadcast.

“Every time one of you goes to get a bottle of booze or drugs you are jeopardizing all the rest of us. You do not know who that bootlegger or drug dealer has been in contact with.”

Moody told APTN News his council was taking a hard line because the stakes were so high.

Read More:

Largest indigenous exhibition gallery set to open in Winnipeg this fall – Construction Canada

The Inuit Art Centre (IAC), a 3716-m2 (40,000-sf) addition to the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG) in Winnipeg, Man., is set to open this fall. When completed, it will be the country’s largest exhibition gallery devoted to indigenous art.

Winnipeg has an outspoken indigenous culture representing over 12 percent of its population. To reflect that heritage, the city broke ground on the IAC in spring 2018.

Designed by Los Angeles-based firm Michael Maltzan Architecture in collaboration with local associate architect Cibinel Architects Ltd., the IAC connects to the southern edge of the original museum building designed by Gustavo da Roza in 1971. The building will also provide a lecture theatre, research areas, a visible art storage vault, and additional facilities for an expanded studio art and educational program for the local community.

An expansive, light-filled gallery on the top floor will house over 13,000 Inuit carvings, textile prints, and other artwork provided by WAG and the Nunavut government. The design centres on the Inuit Vault, a double-height storage area visible from the outside with a shelving system that parallels the curvature of the envelope. The interior will be accessible to curators and scholars to offer an even more intimate relationship with the museum’s collection.

Read More:

MMF Unveils Supports for Metis Businesses and Entrepreneurs During COVID-19

April 6, 2020

We are in a time of unprecedented economic hardship. Never before have we seen a pandemic affect the economy on this scale. Employers are being forced to lay off employees and record numbers of people across the nation are being forced to apply for Employment Insurance.

The Manitoba Metis Government has been proactively working to mitigate the impact of this crisis since late December. To date, the Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) has implemented a variety of emergency relief programs for our Citizens. A component of this is supporting both entrepreneurs adversely affected by the COVID-19 crisis and Citizens who have been laid off as a result of the crisis with no supports.

As an integral component of the MMF Bridge Financing Initiative, the Louis Riel Capital Corporation (LRCC) is offering the COVID-19 Economic Response for Entrepreneurs. This is a program for Metis small business entrepreneurs and commercial fishers who have been negatively impacted by market changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This program can help address a variety of issues our Metis entrepreneurs are facing. The LRCC is currently providing three types of supports:

Firstly, the LRCC is approving loan payment deferrals for up to six months for existing clients of the LRCC.

Secondly, the LRCC is contributing a minimum of $1,000 up to $10,000 to Metis businesses negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The amount of the LRCC contribution is based on a number of factors, including: the degree to which the coronavirus has impacted the business; the size of the business based on the number of employees; the immediate needs of the business in order to meet their most urgent obligations in the next 30 days, as well as having some assurance that the capital the LRCC provides will sustain the business in the long run.

If you are a Metis small business owner, entrepreneur, or fisher whose business has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 crisis, please apply to the MMF today. Applications are available online at or, or call the MMF toll free number at 1-800-249-1217 or the LRCC at 1-800-387-6004 to apply. We strongly encourage our Metis entrepreneurs to use the online applications as we are expecting a large influx of calls.

Upon registration you will be asked for your Metis Citizenship number and a copy of your photo ID, your business registration documentation, confirmation of employees, and a voided cheque so we can transfer the funds to your account.

Thirdly, we are offering our entrepreneurs supports navigating the assistance offered from federal government emergency programs.

The Government of Canada is also in the corner of small businesses. Prime Minister Trudeau has announced numerous resources for business owners. Canada will now be providing 75 per cent wage subsidies for businesses in efforts to support entrepreneurs in keeping their employees and returning them to the payroll. Canada has also committed to backing interest-free loans up to $40,000 and deferring GST remittances until the end of June. Additional details can be viewed at

If you need help understanding what programs are available from the Canada Emergency Business Account, Loan Guarantee for small and medium-sized enterprises, or co-lending programs, please reach out to the LRCC. The LRCC is working diligently to provide direct support to entrepreneurs and help you understand what programs and initiatives are available.

In addition to helping our Manitoba Metis businesses, under the MMF Bridge Financing Initiative, the MMF is here to work alongside governments as programs and services come into place to support individuals and families. The federal government has announced the new Canada Emergency Response Benefit. While applications begin April 6, MMF will help bridge the gap until payments arrive. MMF is here NOW to provide an emergency financial supplement to eligible Metis people to help alleviate the economic hardship caused by the crisis.

These MMF financial supports are being offered to those who have been laid off directly as a result of the COVID-19 crisis with no support from their employers, those who are not able to work due to school and daycare closures, workers on sick leave and not supported by employers, and individuals with disabilities who cannot leave their homes.

We, the Manitoba Metis, are known for our entrepreneurial abilities and hard work. Though Metis businesses may be suffering from this crisis, you can rest assured the Manitoba Metis Government is on your side and here to support you through these difficult times. MMF is focused on the well-being of our Citizens and we will do all that is possible to ensure our Citizens are looked after.


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