Commemorative sculpture and park installation faces delays

Due to a series of challenges faced by artist Mary Longman, the unveilings of the Passage Home sculpture and Healing Garden park installation will be delayed by several months from their original dates.

The project includes a walking path surrounded by five maple trees and five custom benches, with a bronze cased traditional travel carriage with moccasins and a bison bundle inside as the star of the show.

The project is a memorial to Indigenous children who died away from home and those who are still finding their way back as a result of residential schools, day schools, and the 60s Scoop.

The sculpture was originally supposed to be unveiled on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, and the park was to be unveiled on National Indigenous Peoples Day, but Longman didn’t receive grant money for the project from Canada Council for the Arts until this February.

“Things kind of started behind schedule right from the get-go,” said Longman during Tuesday’s Executive Committee meeting.

Since starting the project, Longman said they’ve also found different delays with contractors and changing construction plans.

“Overall, I think that I was overly ambitious with the timeline, trying to accomplish essentially two artworks within an eight-month span,” she added.

Not only did Longman take on the task of designing the park itself, but also the actual sculpture, which typically take around two years to complete on average.

“Ideally, we wanted it last year and I got stuck on the date of Truth and Reconciliation Day, rather than being more realistic about how much time it would take,” said Longman.

She provided an alternate Oct. 30 to Nov. 30 unveiling date for the sculpture, as the design is just entering the 3D printing stage now.
Longman believes the park itself should still be finished by this summer, pending the completion of the custom benches.

Mayor Greg Dionne voiced his concerns with having to move to the project’s unveiling once again.

“We have to make sure that we communicate what we’re doing to the public because this is a serious situation,” said Dionne.

As a result of the project’s delay, Dionne moved a motion that the City will enter into a new agreement with Longman with solid timelines, which was passed six to one.

Prince Albert Children’s Choir celebrates year-end with annual spring concert

The Prince Albert Children’s Choir will be hosting its year-end spring concert on Sunday at St. Mark Parish on Sixth Ave. E, with doors to open at 1:30 p.m. for the 2 p.m. show time.

Artistic Director Megan Fournier-Mewis said this weekend’s concert is “affordable spring entertainment for the whole family”, with entry to the show costing $5 per person or $10 a family.

All 26 members of both the ages five to ten preparatory choir, as well as the ages nine to 18 concert choir, will be performing a variety of tunes ranging from Canadian folk, pop music, Disney and DreamWorks hits, and some 60s favourites.

A song by Gordon Lightfoot, who recently passed at the beginning of May, that was arranged by Fournier-Mewis’ father will also be performed as a tribute by the Children’s Choir at Sunday’s concert.

“They were able to workshop it and really make it their own,” said Fournier-Mewis. “It’s really evolved into something special.”
Fournier-Mewis’ daughter Katie is a member of the choir and said since children start from a young age, they are able to grow their talents throughout.

“This group of children is amazing to work with,” said Fournier-Mewis of both the new and familiar faces that belong to this year’s choir.

“They’re a very collaborative group [and] they’re a very diverse group, which is great because a choir by definition is diversity unified.

“It’s all different voices coming together as one.”

Joining the spring concert is guest performer Sanjana Brijlall, a former member of the Prince Albert Children’s Choir who is now studying voice at the University of Saskatchewan.

“We are thrilled to have her back”, said Fournier-Mewis.

To further support the Prince Albert Children’s Choir, a raffle table will also be set up at Sunday’s concert as a fundraiser.

Community Services proposes unique year-round washroom concept for Little Red River Park

The City of Prince Albert may be bringing a unique concept to Little Red River Park this summer, with the inclusion of a year-round accessible public washroom for park guests created from a converted shipping container.

Parks and Open Spaces Manager Tim Yeaman presented the out-of-the-box concept to members of Council during Tuesday’s Executive Committee meeting, where he explained how the Community Services Department landed on the unique recommendation.

During the City’s last budget deliberations, Council approved $210,000 for top priorities for Little Red River Park during the 2023 operating year, which included new washrooms in the park and a warm-up shelter.

Back in February/March, Community Services began to explore available washroom concepts and reached out to other communities and companies that may offer different options.

The department’s original plan was to develop compostable washrooms, but the company Yeaman was dealing with stopped communications, forcing him back to square one.

In the end, Community Services found success in connecting with Saskatoon-based company, The Container Guy, that specializes in converting Sea-Cans into usable space.

CEO of The Container Guys, Channing McCorriston, was featured on season five of Dragons Den, where he was looking for investment into his company that created durable temporary office solutions, which he co-created with two other students from Saskatoon.

“Since that time, Mr. McCorriston has moved on from ‘3Twenty Modular’ and forged ahead with the creation of The Container Guys, expanding on those early days and taking the container modification industry to new heights,” Yeaman wrote in his report to Council. “They are an industry leader and have completed thousands of modification projects in virtually every major industry and their methods are being adopted by people all over the world as the industry standard.”

During discussions with The Container Guys, Yeaman realized that their “wish list” for the original washroom concept would cost in excess of $100,000.

A Request for Proposals was then sent out in the beginning of May to see if the department could garner interest from other vendors, which Yeaman said saw two other contractors bid on the project. The pricing provided by the two other companies exceeded $200,000 per proposal, putting them both out of reach for the project.

“Even going through the evaluation process, the washrooms were 80 plus per cent higher than the lowest bid, which also drew some concern on our part because we had limited budget to work with,” said Yeaman.

After going back to the drawing board, Community Services and The Container Guys came up with the concept of turning a 40-foot shipping container into year-round accessible public washrooms while staying within the City’s budget.

Also included in the design is a utility room, a storage room, a septic and clean water holding tank, as well as wrapping the front of the shipping container for aesthetic purposes.

“This by far is probably one of the most unique projects we’ve strived to complete within Little Red River Park,” noted Yeaman.

The facility will be built off-site and delivered to Little Red, with the City only needing to connect the building to power for immediate use. According to Yeaman, the washrooms will not be open to the public 24/7. They will only be open during park hours and locked after the park closes.

Yeaman noted some complex issues that guided the department’s search for different year-round washroom concepts that meet the needs of the park.

“Little Red is unique in nature,” said Yeaman. “We certainly had some struggles out there.”

A few of the hurdles they needed to overcome included the possibility of flooding in the park’s core area and the lack of supporting infrastructure like water, sewer, and power.

Yeaman said that for a cost of $1,500, power can be brought to the site to allow for motion sensor lights and year-round heating and cooling inside the facility.

Bringing power to the location also allows for the City to move forward with adding security cameras at the front of the park and being able to operate the snow gun at the toboggan hill.

The washrooms would replace the outhouse near the toboggan hill to service the high demand in the location. However, the modified shipping container will be placed on screw piles to allow for movement to other areas of the park if needed in the future.

The converted Sea-Can washrooms could be just one of five washrooms park-wide that Community Services may be looking to develop in the future, and it’s also the largest one that the department has planned.

Yeaman said the department would consider developing similar, yet smaller year-round washrooms near the northwest parking lot location, as the area sees lots of traffic from the 700 members of the Prince Albert Nordic Ski Club. Seasonal use washrooms could also be placed in the areas near the swinging bridge, the horseshoe and the upper east plains.

“With all the great improvements that are going on out there, we see this as a real need,” added Yeaman.

The recommendation to award The Container Guys with the contract services of supply, construction and install of the new washrooms will be brought forward to a future City Council meeting for final approval before the Community Services Department can begin to work with the company on the construction process.

If approved, the projected delivery date for the new washrooms will be at the end of August or early September of 2023.

Local developers propose plan to build retail liquor store, high-class hotel in The Yard District

Prince Albert City Council held a special meeting on Tuesday, where they approved a development permit application for a new liquor store to be located in The Yard District in the near future.

Abdul and Faizan Hirani are planning to commence construction this year on an 8,000 square foot retail liquor store in the City’s newest subdivision.

Once the project is completed, the Hiranis said they will cease their current operations at Bailey’s Cold Beer & Wine prior to the opening of the new location.

The store will consist of approximately 4,000 square feet of retail space, 2,000 square feet of walk-in cooler space, and 2,000 square feet of storage and office space, said City Planner Craig Guidinger.

According to a report from Administration, the property will need to be rezoned from Future Urban Development to Highway Commercial, where liquor stores are considered discretionary uses.

The father-son developer duo is also looking to construct a luxury branded franchise hotel and retail space at the site, alongside the liquor store.

Guidinger explained that the applicants are currently only asking for approval for the liquor store, but they are looking for a potential tenant to be part of the development.

“What is being proposed is they are applying for a liquor store right now, and they are absolutely applying for a hotel in the near future,” he said, noting that as the reason why the Hiranis were looking to purchase two lots.

In a letter they wrote to City Council, the Hiranis state that construction on the 100-room hotel will begin in spring of 2024 and estimate that the project will take around 16 months to complete, making them operational slightly after the opening of the City’s recreation centre.

“With the influx of new travelers, multi-night events, and social media buzz, the timing of this project is key to its success,” reads the letter.

The proposed liquor store will be located at 4280 Seventh Ave. E, just south of the City’s future recreation centre

Woman who assaulted Prince Albert senior receives four-and-a-half-year prison sentence

The woman who entered a Prince Albert seniors’ living complex and assaulted an 89-year-old man last January entered a guilty plea to aggravated assault right before her trial was set to take place Wednesday.

In a Prince Albert Provincial Court room on May 24, 40-year-old April Ross was sentenced to four and a half years for pushing and severely injuring retired corrections officer Carl Klarenbach, with a seven-month credit for time served.

According to the agreed statement of facts, on the evening of Jan. 2, Klarenbach, his wife Bev, and several other Northcote Manor residents were playing cards on the complex’s main floor, when they noticed an unknown woman wandering around inside.

The group pressed Ross for answers as to why she was there. Ross replied that she was visiting someone in the building. The residents told her to leave, but Ross became aggravated and grabbed what was described by the Crown as a butter knife from the kitchen drawers and threatened to stab someone.

Crown Prosecutor MaryAnne Larson stated that Klarenbach grabbed a garbage can for protection, but was pushed back by the suspect, hitting his head on the ground where he almost immediately lost consciousness. Ross then fled the scene on foot.

Police were called to Northcote Manor following the assault and were met by EMS, who transported Klarenbach to hospital. He received a CT scan upon arrival, which revealed that he was suffering from a skull fracture.

Following interviews with witnesses, law enforcement searched for the suspect and located Ross matching the description several blocks away, an hour after the incident occurred.

During the ride in the police vehicle, Ross would admit to pushing Klarenbach, but claimed it was in self-defense. According to the officer’s report, Ross did not appear intoxicated during her arrest.

Since he was admitted, Klarenbach has been suffering from rapidly progressing dementia and cognitive impairment as a result of the fall. The physician undertaking Klarenbach’s care in the Victoria Hospital reported that because of his condition, the senior will not be discharged.
Carl’s son Curtis Klarenbach was in attendance during Ross’ sentencing, where he and his late mother’s victim impact statements were read before the court.

“April Ross has robbed us of so many things… I think she should be robbed of her future too,” Bev Klarenbach’s statement said.
Curtis wrote that his mother “died of a broken heart”, and he feels as if he has lost both of his parents.

Throughout the hearing, a distraught Ross could be heard crying from the prisoner’s box while saying she never meant to hurt Klarenbach.
Ross has a long criminal history dating back to 1997, with her record showing a number of convictions for assault causing bodily harm, robbery, and uttering threats.

A member of the Sturgeon Lake First Nation, Ross’ lawyer said she was physically and sexually abused as a child. Born to alcoholic parents, Ross grew up in and out of foster care prior to being on the streets and briefly spending time in a regional psychiatric center.
Because of her history, Ross is fearful of men and can react violently to confrontation, which is not an excuse but provides a picture of her life, said Ross’ lawyer.

When asked if she had anything to say, Ross apologized and said she wishes she could go back in time to change what happened.
“[It] shouldn’t have turned out this way,” said Ross. “I will have to live with this for the rest of my life.”
Judge Felicia Daunt said while Ross only pushed Klarenbach, the level of his injury is so severe and permanent that it could almost be considered manslaughter.

Daunt noted that she would make a recommendation that Ross’ remaining three year and seven-month sentence be served at a regional psychiatric centre.

Daunt told Ross that she hopes the sentence is long enough to work on herself.

Residents of northern Saskatchewan ask everyone to pray for rain

As wildfire continues to push the boundaries of their homes and threaten the safety of their residents, two northern Sask. communities are left feeling like they’re on their own.

“The Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) has gone silent, and we haven’t been able to get an up-to-date status on the fire pushing towards Patuanak for more than 24 hours now,” Emergency Management Coordinator for Patuanak and La Plonge, Candyce Paul said on Saturday.

“We should have a direct line; we are the ones on the ground dealing with the situation.”

Neither the provincial nor federal governments have prepared enough since Saskatchewan wildfires forced thousands of people from their northern homes back in 2015, said Paul.

The lack of support in previous years has pushed the communities to prepare themselves in advance for what they knew was coming with this season’s hot and dry summer conditions.

“We’ve taken it on in English River pretty much ourselves, with very limited funding,” said Paul. “We knew since 2015 that we’ve got to look after ourselves, but the thing is, we don’t have the equipment [and] we don’t have the resources.”

According to Paul, having access to emergency items like their own propane tanks and generators is one of the biggest needs for La Plonge.

After receiving advanced warning from the SPSA that wildfire was coming in close to the area, Meadow Lake Tribal Council (MLTC) was able to help coordinate evacuation efforts to send community members to North Battleford with the support of the Emergency Management Team.

MLTC has taken on a huge role in supporting the people of Patuanak and La Plonge, said Paul.

“It’s a big operation trying to move a whole community of people, it’s a lot of responsibilities,” said Paul. “We have a team of our health staff and our teaching staff and other members of the administration, many of them are down in North Battleford looking after the needs of the people.”

Paul said fully funded emergency management teams should be set up in every northern and remote community, so residents aren’t left scrambling to deal with emergency situations by themselves.

“Hopefully we can advocate for that in the future; we have to,” said Paul. “This is not the first disaster, and this will not be the last.”

The worst is yet to come, she added.

“This is an era of climate chaos, and this is the tip of the iceberg,” said Paul. “Later this summer, we may be dealing with fire and heat, and that’s going to be really hard on our people.”

Dealing with the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic gave the Emergency Management Team an opportunity to start addressing what was needed in the communities in preparation for their next emergency.

The team’s main takeaway was that communication is essential.

“For us to keep our people informed, that helps keep them calm. It gives them a sense of how long they’re going to be in this situation, so they can wrap their heads around it. It relieves a lot of stress,” said Paul. “The uncertainty is really bothersome for some people.”

Paul is unsure when the people of Patuanak and La Plonge will be able to make their way home but asked that everyone keeps praying for rain.

‘It’s kind of embedded in our DNA’; Patuanak Emergency Management Team provides community support as fight against northern Sask. wildfires continues

As 24 wildfires continue to burn across northern Saskatchewan, the Northern Hamlet of Patuanak and the adjoining Patuanak, English River First Nation, located more than 300 kilometres north of Prince Albert, are doing their best to support their community members with limited resources available to them.

Since evacuations were ordered last week, a small army of around 66 volunteers that comprise the Patuanak Emergency Management Team have been working tirelessly to take care of the community members that stayed behind and keep everything running smoothly.

Michael Wolverine with the Emergency Management Team contributes Patuanak’s organization in a time of crisis to their previous experience with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’ve had a bit of practice with the whole pandemic thing, keeping the team consistent and all trained up with the support of our staff,” said Wolverine. “It’s a little bit different because the pandemic was kind of scary for a lot of people. It was new, it was different. Nobody knew what was going to happen.”

Wildfires are nothing new for the community of Patuanak, giving their Emergency Management Team a slight advantage in preparing for what they knew was on the horizon.

“Forest fires, we’ve been dealing with that for many, many years. It’s kind of embedded in our DNA as survivors of the land up here; we’ve learned over the years,” said Wolverine. “It’s a learning process. It’s not perfect by any means but that’s where we take what we know, and we improve. It’s a learning curve every single day.”

While they’ve received very limited support from the province since wildfires began encroaching on the community and forced many to evacuate their homes, Patuanak’s industry partners like Cameco and Des Nedhe Group have done all they can to provide the team with much-needed resources.

“They’ve been really helping us through this,” said Wolverine. “They’re providing everything possible. Anything that we need, they’ll send to us. We’ve made requests for things like asset protection, hoses, all that kind of stuff.”

Thanks to the Emergency Management Team’s proactive thinking, Patuanak was able to purchase more than 80 personal air purifiers in the nick of time for the homes of priority one and two residents, which include elders and those with chronic conditions like asthma.

Meadow Lake Tribal Council also provided the community with large air scrubbers through their emergency response plan, with one set up in the arena that has been designated as a clean air and volunteer drop-in center.

According to staff from the Beauval grocery store, Patuanak purchased close to $5,000 worth of groceries to feed their volunteers three square meals a day.

“I’m very fortunate to have all of these guys here, that are dedicated and willing to risk their health and their lives to protect their community,” said Wolverine. “I’m giving these guys absolute kudos because these are the ones who are sitting in the front lines and got everybody out, tracked everybody so that we know exactly who is where and what they’re doing. I couldn’t have done it without [them].”

Going forward, Wolverine said Patuanak will be reviewing their emergency procedures to ensure that all the resources they require will be readily available to them when needed.

“This whole scrambling thing, it’s not beneficial to anybody,” said Wolverine. “For our partners who are absolutely stressed out trying to find things for us and us not knowing when we will be receiving them.”

As of Saturday afternoon, one Patuanak community member had lost their cabin to wildfire.

Mayor of the Hamlet of Patuanak, Hazel Maurice, said the community has been quiet since a majority of their community members were evacuated to other parts of the province.

“We’ll be notified when the smoke clears and the fire is extinguished completely, but we need rain before anybody comes back,” said Maurice. “It’s been lonely, even the dogs are lonely.”

Evacuations in Patuanak began last week once the Shaw fire began heading towards the main road. With only one way in or out, community members will be forced to flee the flames by boat if the fire blocks their exit.

“It was a sudden thing, nobody was prepared for it,” she added.

While cool weather in the north over the last few days has calmed the fire down a bit, Patuanak will be feeling the impact on their ability to harvest food going into the future.

“The animals are in distress,” said Maurice. “The ducks, the way they sound… A couple days ago, the eagles were overhead, and they could barely even fly. Even the fish, they die after a fire like this.”

According to a member of the fire crew in Patuanak as of 11:45 a.m. on Saturday, crews have begun rebuilding the fire guard and dug trenches around the wildfire perimeter with heavy equipment, helping to minimize the spread of the blaze.

Smoke conditions continue to affect communities in north-central Saskatchewan, says SPSA

As of 10 a.m. on Tuesday morning, there were 23 active wildfires burning across the province, said the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) while providing an update on Saskatchewan’s wildfire situation.

Twelve wildfires are undergoing assessment, three fires are contained, three are classified as protecting property, and five are not contained.

According to SPSA President and Fire Commissioner Marlo Pritchard, Saskatchewan has seen 183 wildfires to date, which is 77 more than the five-year average.

“Generally, these fires are extremely aggressive because of the spring conditions and because of the large volume of smoke they have been generating, that has greatly curtailed some of our activity,” said Vice President of Operations, Steve Roberts. “Both to get into these fires and get crews on the ground, but also to assess where we might have risks and threats by these fires.”

Due to the shortage of spring rain and lack of green up, the SPSA is seeing more area burnt than in previous wildfire seasons.

“We often have a number of fires, but rarely do they get as large as this,” said Roberts.

Pritchard noted that various things must be evaluated before the SPSA can begin taking action on a wildfire.
This includes the size, intensity, and location of the fire, the threat it may pose, the SPSA’s ability to successfully protect people, property and communities, the resources required to contain the fire, the cost to manage the fire compared to risk, how safe it is to respond, and how or if the response minimizes economic impact.

“The magnitude of a response does not necessarily equate to a wildfire’s distance from a community,” added Pritchard.
Pritchard emphasized that the SPSA has no “let it burn” policy.

“The SPSA assesses every wildfire and makes a decision about the best way to manage each one,” said Pritchard.
Human life is the first and foremost priority for the SPSA, as well as communities, major public infrastructure, commercial, forest, and other values.

“Healthy, vibrant forests are naturally renewed by fire, so it makes ecological sense to allow some non-threatening fires to occur unhindered,” he noted.

The SPSA has provided air scrubbers to communities affected by wildfires, allowing them to safely shelter in place as special air quality statements remain in effect for areas of north-central Saskatchewan.

“Smoke is playing a significant role at this time of year on our suppression efforts,” said Roberts.

The agency recommended avoiding the area of the Smith fire, located north of Churchill River, due to the smoke conditions.

As of 1 p.m. on May 23, Canada Post reinstated normal delivery and postal services in the communities of Beauval, Buffalo Narrows, Clearwater, Ile-a-la-Crosse, Island Lake, and Turnor Lake.

Red delivery service alerts continue in the communities of Patuanak and Dillon.

Travel advisories remain in place for Montreal River and around the area of Besnard Lake, said the SPSA.

Wildfires have caused the closure of two highways in the province. Signage and barricades staffed by the Ministry of Highways are set up on Highway 910 from the junction of Highway 165 to Besnard Lake and Highway 911 from Highway 106 to Deschambault Lake.

The MacKay Lake and Wadin Bay campgrounds are also currently closed due to the Sharp fire.

Some precipitation is expected for the central part of the province in the coming days, but Roberts said the rain will miss most of Saskatchewan’s northern forest area.

“Overall though, temperatures will drop,” said Roberts. “Where we receive precipitation and lower temperatures and higher humidities, we will be able to make much more significant headway on some of these fires.”

Once the SPSA is able to secure the fires and slow their growth, smoke conditions will begin to lift and benefit evacuees.

The SPSA is reminding residents to take extreme caution when on or near dry grass, operating ATVs, using tools, and disposing of smoking materials.

“We want to urge everyone across the province to be diligent in preventing fires and protecting their communities by taking those little actions that matter,” said Pritchard.

Residents with questions or those who have been evacuated can reach out to the SPSA’s toll-free information line at 1-855-559-5502. Information can also be found online at the SPSA website at

Amphibious airtankers from Quebec heading to northern Sask. to aid in wildfire suppression efforts

Twenty-nine active wildfires are still burning across the province and with Friday marking the beginning of May long weekend, the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA) is reminding residents to remain diligent while outdoors.

“Take extreme caution, especially when on or near dry grass, or when operating all-terrain vehicles, using tools, or disposing of smoking materials,” said SPSA President and Fire Commissioner Marlo Pritchard.

While giving a brief update on the wildfire situation in Saskatchewan on Friday, Pritchard encouraged checking the Highway Hotline regularly before leaving on your weekend destination.

“Highways may be closed or impacted due to wildfire or smoke,” said Pritchard. “Please avoid travel to the impacted areas in the north at this time.”

As of 9 a.m. on Friday morning, Highway 165 from Junction 910 to Junction 914 was currently the only highway closed in the province due to wildfire.

While most highway closures have reopened since earlier in the week, “that could change depending on wildfire and smoke behavior”.
Pritchard warns that Highway 10 will be closed off for fire operations soon, so anyone in or near the Besnard Lake campground is asked to leave the area immediately.

Travel advisories also remain in place for the area of Montreal River and Besnard Lake.

To compliment the SPSA’s wildfire suppression efforts, two CL-415 amphibious tankers provided by the Government of Quebec are enroute to Saskatchewan and will be integrated into the aerial fleet over the weekend.

A total of four pilots and two engineers will accompany the aircrafts while in the province for the next two weeks. The support is being provided through an already established mutual aid resource compact between the provinces, said Pritchard.

“We urge everyone across the province to be diligent in preventing fires and protecting their communities,” said Pritchard. “Every small action matters.”

The SPSA launched a toll-free information line earlier in the week for those who have evacuated their communities or for questions around the provincial fire ban. Information can be found by calling 1-855-559-5502.

FSIN demand accountability for death of baby Tanner Brass

The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) are calling for accountability and transparency from the Prince Albert Police Service, following the release of the Saskatchewan Public Complaint Commission’s (PCC) report into the death of 13-month-old Tanner Brass which found two Prince Albert police officers neglectful of their duty.

“The Prince Albert Police Service had a duty to protect Kyla and her child, Tanner, [and] they failed Kyla, an Indigenous woman, and her child, miserably,” said Eleanor Sunchild, Kyla Frenchman’s lawyer.

The report states that though both officers were aware of the concerns raised by Kyla in her 911 call, neither went inside the home in which Tanner was killed to ensure his safety. 

“[They] were incorrect in their belief that they required a warrant or permission… to enter the residence. Under these circumstances, they did not,” reads the PCC’s report.

“There should never be officers that go to calls, including domestic disturbance calls involving children, who do not know the law or authority that they hold when attending these type of calls,” said Sunchild. 

While the report noted that the two responding officers did not reach out to a superior for additional assistance, FSIN said they feel that senior management also had a role to play.

“It’s not just the frontline officers that are being pointed the blame to, it was the commanding officer on duty that night who could have made the call to intervene,” said FSIN Vice Chief David Pratt. “Rather than listen to Kyla and support her story, they immediately stereotyped her as being another drunken Indian.”

Prince Albert Police Chief Jon Bergen announced his retirement on Thursday, hours after the PCC’s report was released to the public. Until a permanent replacement can be found, an interim Police Chief will be seconded from the Saskatoon Police Service effective immediately.

“We look forward to working with the new chief to enhance relationships between the First Nation community and Prince Albert Police Service,” said FSIN Vice Chief Dutch Lerat.

FSIN is calling for the immediate dismissal of the responding officers, as well as criminal charges laid against them for criminal negligence causing death.

They’re also asking for a full-scale investigation into the Prince Albert Police Service and an inquest into the death of Tanner Brass.

“Police investigating police will always fail,” said FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron. “You must have First Nation experts, First Nation individuals who are trained, educated in the law system to be part of these investigations.”

The PCC report noted inconsistencies between what was alleged by Kyla and what the PCC found, but Lerat said they believe essential details of what happened on Feb. 10, 2022, were not considered.

“When Kyla interacted with the police, she was in shock and she was in trauma,” said Lerat. “It is completely understandable that she was not able to communicate clearly.”

“We don’t lie when it comes to tragedies such as this,” said Cameron. “We feel it, we live it, we experience it, we breathe it.”

Sunchild added that Kyla Frenchman will be pursuing legal action against the Prince Albert Police Service in the near future.

The Minister of Corrections, Policing and Public Safety Christine Tell broke her silence on Friday afternoon by thanking the Public Complaints Commission for its work and offering sympathy to the family of Tanner Brass.

“This situation was tragic and the details now released highlight the need for immediate change within the Prince Albert Police Service,” said Tell. “I am confident that the new interim Chief of Police will begin the process of change that is necessary.”

Tell added that she looks forward to the continued support of the Prince Albert Board of Police Commissioners as they prepare for the release of the Prince Albert Police Service Special Inquiry final report in the coming weeks.

The Public Complaints Commission receives, investigates, and reviews complaints against municipal police. The PCC is a five-person, non-police body appointed by the government.

Police were called to the 200 Block of 23rd Street West at 5:44 a.m. on Feb. 10, 2022 following complaints of a family dispute. Officers transported one person to police cells, but were called back to the residence just before 11 a.m. following reports of a homicide involving a child. Police discovered a deceased 13-month-old boy, later identified as Tanner Brass, on arrival.

Kaij Brass, Tanner’s father, was arrested at the scene and charged with second degree murder.