Flooding, funding and frustration: Northwest Territories saw this and more in 2021

A vaccine against COVID-19 helped Indigenous people in the Northwest Territories kick off 2021.

While the fight for proper Indigenous names on official documents will continue into 2022.

“They are taking away the right to use our names,” says Shene Gahdele, “and the right to use the proper spelling.”

There was progress on the struggle to get squatters off traditional land.

And a survey on the safety of women using taxicabs in the capital of Yellowknife.

“We noticed the post of a woman sharing her experience of sexual harassment in a cab as a warning to other women,” says Louise Elders, executive director of the NWT Status of Women Council.

“There were so many responses from other women we thought we needed to pay attention.”

APTN News cruised the ice road north of Yellowknife to visit the Bathurst Caribou Mobile Management Program. And it helped tell the story of devastating spring flooding in the Dehcho communities of Fort Simpson and Jean Marie River.

Our reporter also joined a canoe journey along the Sahtud’e from Deline to Tulita that paid tribute to the last numbered treaty –  Treaty 11 – signed in Canada in 1921.

“We’re still here and we’re doing a lot of things better because of them signing in 1921,” says Grand Chief Wilbert Kochon of the Sahtu Dene Council.

But when one story ends another begins – such as the birthing crisis at Stanton Territorial Hospital in Yellowknife.

As 2021 drew to a close, expectant mothers were being forced to travel to Edmonton – nearly 15,000 km south – to deliver their babies.