AMC Stands with Tataskweyak Cree Nation in Calling for Better Fire Safety Resources

February 15, 2023

Treaty One Territory, Manitoba

AMC Communications

Treaty One Territory, Manitoba – Grand Chief Cathy Merrick and The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) send heartfelt prayers to Tataskweyak Cree Nation and the 49 people who were displaced and are still recovering from what could have been a fatal apartment fire. We say special prayers for the 17-year-old girl and toddler airlifted to Winnipeg after sustaining injuries from the fire. Grand Chief Merrick commends the bravery of the teen who sustained their injuries while rescuing others from the fire.

“It is absolutely heartbreaking to lose so much so quickly,” said Grand Chief Cathy Merrick. “The AMC supports Chief Taralee Beardy of Tataskweyak Cree Nation in calling for more fire safety resources. Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) could have avoided tragedies like this had they provided the necessary fire safety equipment and resources, such as a new fire truck, instead of leaving the First Nation to buy used equipment.”

report released in 2020 by Canada’s National Indigenous Fire Safety Council shared that people living on First Nations are ten times more likely to die in a house fire than people living elsewhere in Canada. These statistics should be unacceptable in an age with such advanced equipment and technology.

Multiple First Nations in Manitoba need Fire Departments or adequate equipment. First Nations such as War Lake First Nation, Fox Lake Cree Nation, and Misipawistik Cree Nation need more resources and funding to create a Fire Department and purchase adequate equipment. Some First Nations have had to resort to signing agreements with neighbouring communities to provide Fire Safety Services or purchasing inadequate equipment in the face of having no equipment at all.

“Our First Nation Citizens deserve to feel safe in their homes and in their Nations. We call on Indigenous Services Canada to respond to Tataskweyak Cree Nation’s request for better resources and ensure all First Nations in Manitoba have adequate Fire Safety resources to keep their citizens safe.” Said Grand Chief Cathy Merrick.


Tataskweyak Cree Nation’s CFO, Sharon Garson, has organized a GoFundMe fundraiser for those who would like to support the families displaced by this Fire:


For more information, please contact:

Communications Team

Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs



About the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs

The AMC was formed in 1988 by the Chiefs in Manitoba to advocate on issues that commonly affect First Nations in Manitoba. AMC is an authorized representative of 62 of the 63 First Nations in Manitoba with a total of more than 151,000 First Nation citizens in the province, accounting for approximately 12 percent of the provincial population. AMC represents a diversity of Anishinaabe (Ojibway), Nehetho / Ininew (Cree), Anishininew (Ojibwe-Cree), Denesuline (Dene) and Dakota Oyate (Dakota) people.