To all membership of Soda Creek Indian Band,
I have put some thought into my Council nomination platform. I am still one to believe in our title and rights as First Nations people and saying this I look to many past circumstances where I have defended our title and rights in political meetings with various non-status representatives and I hope to continue to do so.
I believe that I bring a strong voice for the people of Soda Creek. This voice needs to be heard, especially now in the times we are in. The decisions made at Chief and Council need to be of the needs and wants of the Soda Creek membership, some of which include jobs. Not just jobs, but jobs that pay more than minimal wage. When we create jobs with better wages it also creates hope and stability for the membership. Accessible jobs also give our youth something to look forward too and gives them incentives to better themselves and their families.
There are other needs are, such as housing. I know this is a sore subject, but I will push for new initiatives to access funds for membership housing (e.g., own source revenue and other revenue sharing agreements).
The other topic I will continue to bring up is seniors living for our elders and people in need. I have in the past offered one of my fields for a place to build a long-term care home and I will continue to support and push for this need. I will not let the voices of our elders be drowned out. We need to show respect and honour to the ones we value so much.
I would just like to thank you for the opportunity to represent the Soda Creek Indian Band in the Council seat, if I were to be re-elected.
Marnie Haines Howell
Hello everyone/Weyt-kp xwexweytep,
I am running for the current councilor seat that is available. I’ve recently joined the Xat’sull Education Department here at the band office and have been enjoying it. Many of you know I’m the daughter or Doreen, late Bob Haines and great grand-daughter of Augusta Evans.
I grew up in Deep Creek and Soda Creek, playing by or fishing in the creeks and rivers; hiking up to granny Annie Sellars’s to visit; hiking to Herman Sellars’s swimming pool; playing on the old Soda Creek reserve after church, during special events; or after hockey practices with the old Soda Creek Falcons!
After graduation I left home, moving to the Yukon, where I took teacher training through the University of Regina, received my Bachelor Degree in Education, 1994 and taught in the Yukon for 13 years. After taking a break from teaching there, I also worked for the Yukon Government in various departments – Health and Social Services; Land Claims Secretariat; Community Services; and Education. I left the Yukon, heading to Nanaimo, BC. I then trained as a Certified Dental Assistant. Doing that for a few years, I ended up in Alberta, dental assisting and teaching again. But it was time to come home in 2016 where I dental assisted; worked at Three Corners Health Services Society; taught in all grades for School District 27; and briefly taught at Little Chiefs Primary School.
Although I haven’t been around our community over the years I’ve remained aware of community events and issues. At the age of 52, I now come with maturity and willingness to contribute positively to our community, having gained experience and wisdom. I am ready to commit and want to be here for the long haul. All my career paths, decisions and choices have brought me back here for a reason and I’m ready to face it fully.
I come to you with a clear mind that demonstrates honesty, hard work and professionalism. I have an excellent work ethic which I learned from my hard-working and truck-driving dad – even having ridden with him and worked with him in his logging truck as a child on any breaks from school. I have never done drugs in my life. I’ve never had issues with alcohol. I have lived a healthy lifestyle, trying always to be positive and cheerful. I have practiced yoga for 27 years now, which involves meditative practices. I exercise with cross country skiing; jogging; canoeing; hiking; and riding bikes. I eat well and I play well! I think life is about a good work/life balance and should involve laughter and joy. I work very hard but do enjoy, for example going for a Harley ride with my husband! I mainly love being in nature – in touch with the land, going fishing or just sitting on mountain tops, reflecting on life and getting re-energized.
I’ve been working since I was 11 years old in every possible job imagined – be it a babysitter; tea server; baker; day care worker; dental assistant; teacher of grades K-12; a black belt karate instructor; and recently a rock truck driver in a gold mine in the Yukon. I have worked with the 14 First Nations of the Yukon at various levels; worked with Cree and Ojibway in Saskatchewan through teacher training; and Cree in Alberta. I bring an ability to work with people from “the bottom of the totem pole to the top.” I know how to communicate at all levels. I commit myself to tasks, always doing my best, no matter what. Granny Lizzie Evans always said, “if you’re going to do something, do it right or don’t do it at all” which is how I’ve always lived my life. I am always willing to learn new things, giving it my all, thirsting for knowledge. I am an avid reader of books, articles and documents. I watch or read local, provincial and global news to be informed of events everywhere. I do cross-words and knitting to keep my mind active and sharp. I practice self-help reading/writing activities with regular counselling because I am always trying to improve myself. A Northern Tutchone elder called me “K’ok’ utsin” which means “Nose-In-Book.”
I am telling you all this because I feel I can bring a lot to our council in terms of experience; the ability to assist in good decision making that is for our community and its members. I think I can be a voice for those who don’t feel confident enough to speak up – a calm; non-threatening; and professionally spoken voice to represent our people as a whole, yet in an assertive manner that moves us ahead. Our community has faced many challenges; conflict; pain and suffering, always pulling through and trudging on. We need to keep the forward and positive momentum to keep striving towards a positive future for all.
I will always represent the truth with openness – to be a reminder to people from outside the community helping and working for us that we are here for our community and its members only and always. It has taken me “flying from the nest,” going away, to come home, appreciate the beauty of our lands and people. I am willing to represent you all to the best of my ability. If you allow me to, I will be impeccable with my word and work hard to maintain integrity in all decision-making processes and ensuring fair practices are being followed.
I wish the other candidates luck, positivity and strength to move ahead and would support them should I not get in as councilor. Thank you all for your consideration. Stay well and stay safe!
Marnie Haines Howell
Weyt-kp. My name is Donna Dixon. My parents are Barbara Dixon and the late Philip Dixon. My paternal grandparents are the late Louisa (Bates) and Norman Michel and my maternal grandparents are the late Beatrice (Armstrong) and Douglas Dixon. Over the last three years I have been involved in raising my two nieces and two nephews ages 2, 6, 7, and 8. Needless to say it has been a very busy 3 years and probably one of the most important jobs I’ve had the opportunity and pleasure to be involved in; I wouldn’t change it for the world.
I spent the majority of my working days, working for our community. Lately my life experience has led me to be more involved in the area of Child and Family. However, I come to the table with experience in almost all of our community departments including but not limited to Treaty, Health, Natural Resources, Administration and Political positions. I have also participated in policy development and have a working knowledge of all aspect of government including national, provincial, municipal and local First Nations governments.
I believe that we only move forward if we do it together and in a way that is respectful to First Nation history and knowledge. Our community has worked hard to get where we are and there are so many more opportunities that we have the ability to be a part of or to pave the road towards. I believe that my open mind allows me the ability to effectively address concerns and challenges at a political level. I also believe that there are many positive things that are happening in our community and that there are successes that we need to more openly celebrate and recognize.
Over the next six months I would like to gear my attention toward transparency and communication. I would also like to see a move towards portfolios holders within our Chief and Council so all of our Council members have an equal and active role at the table.
I would like to end by thanking the community members for participating in this process, for showing your support and providing valuable feedback by voicing your concerns and opinions. We can’t move forward without it. Yerí7 skukwstsétsemc.
On jobs, would like to get a hold of all businesses the band are affiliated with. See if any members that are employed with them, and if not see what we have to do to get personel employed with them. Do they need certificates?
Check with Tribal Council. They should have a database to tell who has what certificates.
It’s also a positive step to get a building built at the campsite, we also need someone there at fulltime, we also need to update the extremities, Wifi, better hook-ups, upgrade bathrooms.
There has to be grants out there in tourism to help with these upgrades.
We have to look at more apprenticeships for all these areas.
Also what is happening with this study about Indigenous Bloom, maybe there’s opportunities out there other then just them.
Also what is happening with this Ranch?
Would there be members interested in starting to learn more about Ranching aspects, and again there should be programs out there that can help get this off the ground.
Could this lead up to getting members interested into working the fields again on the Reserve. Repair all the fencing on the reserve so members can let there animals graze where it would be appropriate for everyone.
Also, it would be nice to see gardens come back.