Stop Hurting Our Innocent Children – Mushkegowuk Council

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Project Coast
Project Coast

MushkegowukMOOSE FACTORY – The Mushkegowuk Chiefs highly commend the team of law enforcement experts that carefully planned and executed Project COAST. “The selling and use of illegal and prescription drugs only compounds the existing serious health and social crisis in our communities, and the outcome of this province wide operation comes as very good news for a majority of our citizens and community service agencies” says Grand Chief Jonathon Solomon.

At the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Chiefs Assembly held in Timmins on May 17-19, 2016, Fort Albany First Nation Chief Andrew Solomon pleaded to the drug dealers to “Stop hurting our innocent children and stop destroying our communities.”

At their Annual General Meeting (Mamowihitowin of the Mushkegowuk) in October 2015, the Mushkegowuk Leadership passed a resolution that supported and directed various agencies, including the Nishnawbe Aski Police Service and Ontario Provincial Police to take more action to combat the importation of illegal drugs and alcohol into the Mushkegowuk communities. Key points in the assembly resolution read;

…the supply, demand and use of illegal drugs (including abuse of prescription drugs) and alcohol is the leading cause of criminal activity in our Mushkegowuk communities;

…illegal drugs and alcohol continue to be the main cause of premature deaths and destruction of families in our communities, and cause life-long hardship for our elders, innocent children and families;

…illegal drugs and alcohol continue to adversely affect our police, health, child welfare, education and social services

It is estimated that the value of the drugs seized by Project COAST is at $2.1 million and among other criminal activity items, $200,000 in cash was also seized.  It is estimated that illegal drugs typically sell in the Mushkegowuk communities at four times the street price compared to urban centres. “These large figures clearly tells us how much money is taken from our impoverished communities by the criminals. Could you imagine how such large amounts of funds could be used to improve our children’s lives,” says Grand Chief Solomon.

“Project COAST will definitely help reduce many unnecessary hardships for our children, youth and elders. All our citizens, even those that are living a clean and healthy life are affected in some way or another by the trafficking of illegal drugs prescription drugs and alcohol. As it is, our communities are already under so much stress from the past happenings and we do not need this criminal activity in our communities at all, and we will continue to work strategically with law enforcement services to eliminate the trafficking of illegal drugs, prescription drugs and alcohol,” says Grand Chief Solomon.