Yesterday, Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, along with Richard Feehan, Alberta Minister of Indigenous Relations joined Chief Tony Alexis of Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation to announce the construction of a new regional water line and water infrastructure to ensure a safe and secure water supply for the community.
“It’s evident that our natural water source is at risk and a water line would be essential to help protect this precious resource for future generations,” said Chief Alexis. “After working to develop partnerships with all levels of government, they have taken this positive step to ensure my community and other communities will have access to clean, sustainable drinking water.”
The project will connect the Nation to the West Inter Lake District regional water supply system in addition to constructing a potable water supply line, pumphouse, and treated water reservoir. The Government of Canada plans to invest approximately $10 million to support the completion of the project.
“Today’s announcement means that soon Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation will be able to do something that the rest of us take for granted every day – a basic life necessity – access to running water,” said Minister Bennett at the announcement.
Minister Feehan said, “Alberta’s decision to help bring clean water to First Nations communities is part of our commitment to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP). Healthy water means healthy families and healthy communities which is what all people living in Alberta deserve.”
The Alberta government is investing $7.15 million to complete the Alexis Nakota Sioux water tie-in project connecting the regional water system to the reserve. This project is part of Alberta’s $100 million commitment over four years to ensure Alberta First Nations have access to clean and safe drinking water.
A video of the announcement is available on facebook.