The Matawa Education and Care Centre (MECC), – formerly, the ‘Matawa Learning Centre,’ yesterday released their report entitled ‘Matawa Education and Care Centre 5th Annual Report on the Seven Youth Inquest – Academic 2020-2021.’ For the first time—it included an alert regarding MECC’s potential inability to meet inquest recommendations 64, 71, 81, 83, 84, 85, 114 as a result of the lack of federal government commitment to funding the Jordan’s Principle and Choose Life programs past March 2022. The continuation of these programs has been advocated over the past number of months and more recently, in a joint Nishnawbe-Aski Nation (NAN), Keewaytinook Okimakanak (KO), Northern Nishnawbe Education Council (NNEC) letter to Indigenous Services Canada Minister Marc Miller on June 10, 2021.
Without this commitment, MECCC will lose the following programs and services for its students:
* Mental Health Staff and Services;
* Special Education Staff and Services;
* Outdoor Education Staff and Services;
* Elders Program;
* Cultural Program;
* Staff Professional Development;
* Student Education and Training;
* a partnership with St. Joseph’s Care Group which includes in-school access to a:
* Clinical Supervisor;
* Mental Health and Addiction Counsellors;
* Child and Youth Workers;
* Nurse Practitioner;
* Family Therapist and
* a Psychiatrist.
“It is incumbent upon Canada to provide funding via a stable and predictable mechanism that allows for long term strategic planning and discretionary decision making as stated in Inquest Recommendation #12,” said MECC Principal, Brad Battiston. “Stable reliable funding moving forward will provide adequate academic and mental wellness programming for our students.