RCMP are closing off National Indigenous History month by celebrating the career of Const. Adolphus Norris who, born in Inuvik, fought his way into the red serge in spite of ongoing challenges.
In spite of numerous injuries that prevented him from initially joining the force, Norris has now been with the RCMP for 28 years. He works in the RCMP Community and Indigenous Policing department, working as a liason between the force and Indigenous communites to assist them in their policing needs. He also works with the recruiting department, promoting the force as a career path for Indigenous people and working on improving the force’s inclusiveness of women, LGBTQ2S+ and other minorities.
“All achievements, goals and successes in your life, always, Always, start with you,” said Norris. “So believe in yourself. It is key to your dreams and/or dream job. If you believe in yourself, you will ignite magical ingredients that we all possess.
“On that journey of opportunity, inspiration, self-determination and sacrifice, remember a little bit of encouragement will get you places. Opportunity awaits you.”
It’s been a long road of hard work and determination for Norris. Initially deciding he wanted to join the force in the 1980s, he applied to the academy repeatedly, only to be stalled by medical conditions. First needing eye surgery and then heart surgery, he never lost focus on his goals. After recovering from his surgeries enough to meet the physical requirements, Norris went back and completed his high school diploma through the Aboriginal Constable Development Program.
However, after joining the program at the start of 1993, Norris broke his leg in March while training in Inuvik. The initial surgery lead to complications, forcing him to get corrective surgery a second time.
But, he still didn’t give up. After his leg healed, Norris was able to pass the medical exam and finally began training at the academy in May of 1994. He graduated in December and has been with the force ever since.