Residents asked to stay home for Thanksgiving
The NWT’s chief public health officer issued a new health order on Sept. 30, that extended until 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 11, which was Thanksgiving.
Dr. Kami Kandola said residents should stay home and visit virtually with family instead of gathering for the holiday.
At the time, there were 283 active cases of Covid-19 in the territory.
Capitol Theatre opens to vaccinated patrons
Yellowknife’s Capitol Theatre reopened to the vaccinated public on Oct. 29 after more than a year out of service.
Patrons had to be fully vaccinated and respect other health protocols to see a movie, or even just buy snacks at the concession stand.
The theatre reopened just in time to screen No Time To Die, the new James Bond movie; Venom: Let There Be Carnage; and Halloween Kills.
Norn accused of threatening colleagues
MLA Steve Norn faced fresh accusations of misconduct after private social media messages surfaced where he appeared to threaten his colleagues.
“You squeezed my heart,” he wrote to several other members on Oct. 3, the eve of the inquiry into his conduct. “Whoever backed this, I’m coming for you.”
Norn was already under scrutiny for allegedly violating a mandatory Covid-19 quarantine in April.
Fire department leadership under scrutiny
The union representing Yellowknife’s firefighters held meetings with senior city officials as late as Oct. 8 to discuss a crisis of leadership within the department.
Former fire chief John Fredericks was no longer employed by the municipality as of Oct. 1, causing leadership duties to fall to three of Fredericks’ deputies.
Workers said this arrangement led to confusion and infighting within the department.
Dene chief announces trip to Vatican
Dene National Chief Norman Yakeleya accepted an invitation from Pope Francis to visit the Vatican in December.
Yakeleya and his delegation hoped to receive a formal apology from the Pope for the Catholic Church’s role in Canada’s residential school system.
The trip would later be postponed due to the emergence of the Covid-19 Omicron variant.
Emergency order creates temporary shelter
With temperatures quickly dropping in Yellowknife, Minister of Municipal and Community Affairs Shane Thompson used his powers under the Emergency Management Act to push through the opening of a new temporary shelter on Oct. 15.
The former Northern Frontier Visitors Centre was chosen as the location, with the YK arena being used as an interim shelter until the other site was ready to open.
Yellowknife City Council had previously voted against installing a new day shelter at the intersection of Franklin Avenue and 48 Street, choosing to hold out for a better location.
Norn inquiry affidavit leaked to clerk’s office
A confidential affidavit related to the inquiry into MLA Steve Norn was leaked to the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly’s office sometime before a Board of Management meeting on Oct. 4.
The affidavit, authored by Nunakput MLA Jackie Jacobson, details Jacobson’s perception of an argument between assembly clerk Tim Mercer and Minister Shane Thompson in March.
Jacobson was then asked to excuse himself from a Board of Management meeting related to a “personnel matter” because of the conflict of interest posed by the document.
Jacobson said he was told only the sole adjudicator into the Norn inquiry and the two lawyers involved in that inquiry would see the document.
Pope agrees to visit Canada
The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) announced that Pope Francis had accepted an invitation to visit Canada.
In its statement on Oct. 27, the CCCB said the visit would be centered on the theme of “healing and reconciliation.”
As of December, no date had yet been set for the visit.
City council rejects temporary homeless shelter
Yellowknife’s city council voted against a plan to install a temporary shelter at the corner of Franklin Avenue and 48 Street on Oct. 4.
Among those who opposed the motion, there was general skepticism that the Department of Health and Social Services had exhausted all other possible options for the location of the shelter.
In late September, Health and Social Services Minister Julie Green said the Franklin and 48 Street location “is truly our last option. We do not have any more aces up our sleeve.”