More resignations – including losing top lawyer - hit MMIWG inquiry - APTN NewsAPTN News

More resignations – including losing top lawyer – hit MMIWG inquiry

Kathleen Martens
APTN News
The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls is dealing with more resignations.

APTN News has learned two key members of the inquiry’s communications team are the latest to depart, meaning nearly 30 staffers have left the federally-funded probe.

Shaylen Smith and Nadine Gros-Louis are the latest to go, confirmed Catherine Kloczkowski, special advisor – project management.

Gros-Louis took a provincial job with the Quebec government, Kloczkowski said in an email.

And Smith is pursuing “new opportunities.”

The inquiry is looking to fill two positions until it hands in its final report in spring 2019 on the root causes of violence against Indigenous women and girls.

“As you can appreciate,” Kloczkowski added, “with the announcement in June of a six month extension instead of the anticipated two year extension requested, staff are understandably beginning to think about their next steps and career opportunities beyond the National Inquiry.”

Smith and Gros-Louis aren’t household names but were go-to personnel for media outlets seeking information and arranging interviews with inquiry commissioners and employees.

Jennifer Cox, the commission’s co-lead legal counsel, is also gone, APTN has learned.

She followed Breen Ouellette  out the door to become the seventh lawyer to exit the inquiry.

Cox was named Project Lead of the Enhanced Child Family Initiative at the Mi’kmaq Rights Initiative in October that will see the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia assume control over child welfare matters.

Some former staff members have spoken out in the past – saying the inquiry is hobbled by poor management and infighting.

But Chief Commissioner Marion Buller has declined to comment publicly on the turnover, citing privacy around personnel issues.

And the lawyers sign contracts that forbid them from sharing any inquiry information.

They swear in witnesses and handle sensitive testimony that will form the final report.

The inquiry has two final hearings remaining – Nov. 26-30 in Calgary and Dec. 10-14 in Ottawa.

The two-year inquiry was established by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in September 2016.

His government rejected a request to double the time period – and $50 million in funding – of its mandate.

kmartens@aptn.ca

@katmarte

 

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8 Responses to “More resignations – including losing top lawyer – hit MMIWG inquiry”

  1. piitaawa@hotmail.com'
    Celeste Strikes With A Gun November 17, 2018 at 6:57 pm #

    This inquiry is a waste of time, money, and energy unless Canada thinks the inquiry will genocide us. As a Peigan Indian woman living on our Reserve, I know they are only interested in hearing our stories to see our trauma, and to protest. When it comes to solutions, we are deemed to be too stupid and they refuse to listen to us. Instead, white women say the solution is human rights. I see full-blooded women who were dispossessed from their territories. I see white women having jobs on our Indian Reserve instead of us. We are the victims. Amnesty International is a Christian organization and it has done so much damage to us.

  2. p*******@hotmail.com'
    Celeste Strikes With A Gun February 19, 2019 at 7:46 pm #

    This inquiry is a waste of time, money, and energy unless Canada thinks the inquiry will genocide us. As a Peigan Indian woman living on our Reserve, I know they are only interested in hearing our stories to see our trauma, and to protest. When it comes to solutions, we are deemed to be too stupid and they refuse to listen to us. Instead, white women say the solution is human rights. I see full-blooded women who were dispossessed from their territories. I see white women having jobs on our Indian Reserve instead of us. We are the victims. Amnesty International is a Christian organization and it has done so much damage to us.

  3. kodycarlick500@gmail.com'
    kody carlick November 17, 2018 at 1:09 am #

    Canadian taxpayers do not approve of the 53 million dollars allocated to the inquiry,the inquiry has accounted for 1.3 million of the 5.3 million.Iam a native and my band is in B.C.,we have never had any missing or murdered members of our band,we raise our kids with different values than other bands,our community is a dry community,no alcohol or drugs are permitted in our community which leads to violence in many cases,rather than the inquiry traveling to various areas on all expenses paid,spend the remainder of the 5.3 million to educate those of the consequences of leaving their communities to the city life of action and adventure and end up a statistic and bashing our law enforcement for not doing their job,Im in favor of a end to the inquiry along with many others !!1

  4. k*************@gmail.com'
    kody carlick February 19, 2019 at 7:46 pm #

    Canadian taxpayers do not approve of the 53 million dollars allocated to the inquiry,the inquiry has accounted for 1.3 million of the 5.3 million.Iam a native and my band is in B.C.,we have never had any missing or murdered members of our band,we raise our kids with different values than other bands,our community is a dry community,no alcohol or drugs are permitted in our community which leads to violence in many cases,rather than the inquiry traveling to various areas on all expenses paid,spend the remainder of the 5.3 million to educate those of the consequences of leaving their communities to the city life of action and adventure and end up a statistic and bashing our law enforcement for not doing their job,Im in favor of a end to the inquiry along with many others !!1

  5. Wahlelderlaw@gmail.com'
    Judith November 16, 2018 at 7:24 am #

    I’m very distressed to hear of this. This oy can hamper the inquiry. Very sad

  6. w***********@gmail.com'
    Judith February 19, 2019 at 7:46 pm #

    I’m very distressed to hear of this. This oy can hamper the inquiry. Very sad

  7. Sballantyne16@gmail.com'
    Sharon November 14, 2018 at 7:25 pm #

    What is going on? This is scandalous and unjust where are answers for the families?This govt should be ashamed.

  8. s************@gmail.com'
    Sharon February 19, 2019 at 7:46 pm #

    What is going on? This is scandalous and unjust where are answers for the families?This govt should be ashamed.