Friday, December 31, 2010

warming ourselves

December 31,2010
Seventh Day of Christmas
    Yesterday was very significant. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip had their first great- grandchild and we had our ninth grandchild. David and Rosalia Caswell of Kingston, Ontario had a baby boy, 7 lbs.14oz. His name is John Bernard Caswell. The John is named after John the Evangelist and his grandfather John. The baby is to be called John.  The Queen’s grandson Phillip, son of Princess Anne, and Phillip’s wife. Autumn, formely of Montreal, Canada had the Royal baby boy. Name is not yet announced to our knowledge.
    And now back to fuel. The North is full of ugly large patches of burnt, dead trees. The most environmentally sound thing is to do what people do. They cut down the dead trees, chop them up and burn them. When enough people do this the forest is renewed. Berries and new trees have room. Eventually the scenery is beautiful again.
    The most economical thing for people to do is to gather their own wood and use it as fuel rather than propane, or oil fuel which easily can cost $300 a month. If people can’t get wood there are those who will get it for them. It is a useful, kind thing to do. Young men use up energy and sometimes community service points in the process.
    And now back to Sask Housing Corporation, specifically Lac La Ronge Housing Corporation. People have asked for wood furnaces while renovations are being done. LLRHA has refused. The houses have a chimney for wood furnaces . Still LLRHA refuses. Some former public houses like ours have both a furnace for wood and one for oil fuel. This is very useful for us.If public housing doesn’t want to help people that way and people want a wood stove why won’t they give them one? The rationale may be
 that wood burning may cause more fires. Everyone knows how to look after wood heating
 and how to clean chimneys. Even we learned.
    Obviously the most sound policy is to do what helps people be more self- sufficient and more economical. It seems that is what LLRHA and SHC hates. They can’t stand people looking after themselves because then people are harder to control. If people want to work instead of living on welfare that fuel bill alone will kill their effort. On welfare electricity, oil fuel,water , rent is automatically paid by the taxpayer. If you start working you are immediately faced with fuel,$300 monthly, water,$160 to $320 monthly, electricity,$150 monthly, rent, 1/4 your income if Vawn Skogstad likes you. If it doesn’t it may be 120% of your income as he once claimed was ours or somewhere in between. One has to have a pretty high paying job to be able to afford an immediate hike of $1200 monthly. Usually when people begin to work they have part time and low income jobs. The policy was that one could get some welfare in transition as one began work or had low income work. Perhaps the math was too complicated  for La Ronge Social Services. Perhaps they didn’t know how or didn’t want to press the right computer buttons. Perhaps this policy has been abandoned.
    Band chiefs may get incomes of $180,000 yearly but there are a limited market for chiefs and no market here since Brabant Lake is Not a reserve. Us Indians are far more numerous. Could we please have the right to heat our own houses with resources available? Could we please have wood burning furnaces when requested ?
    Could we also have after paying rent for a very, very long time have title to our houses. that is actually own them. Yes, John and I have title to our house after a ten year battle but what about the rest of the people? They also would like to run their own lives which begins by running their own home.
    Merry Christmas as the Season continues. Happy Mother of God Day tomorrow.  Love Gay