Sioux Lookout Friendship Accord Economic Development Corporation Lands Historic Partnership

Northern College News and Events

SIOUX LOOKOUT, ON – May 26th, 2021 – Today marks a historic day. The Sioux Lookout Friendship Accord (SLFA) and the signatory communities – Cat Lake, Slate Falls, KI Big Trout Lake and Lac Seul First Nation, are overjoyed that they have secured the partnerships to establish the Sioux Lookout Mining Centre of Excellence. To date, an impressive number – nine (9) regional mining companies have also signed on as partners with the Sioux Lookout Mining Centre of Excellence to provide financial support, training opportunities and jobs. 

“Together, we are more. This Accord demonstrates the way in which we can join forces to become a stronger, more responsive educator of our own people in a workforce that awaits them. Delivering skills-based training in-community in this way will further support learners and contribute to their success,” stated Jacob Dockstator, Executive Director of the Sioux Lookout Friendship Accord Economic Development Corporation (SLFAEDC). 

The Sioux Lookout Mining Centre of Excellence is being carried out in partnership with Northern College’s Haileybury School of Mines, enabling the SLFAEDC to tap into a long-established global network of leaders and expertise in the most up-to-date mining and related technologies. The Haileybury School of Mines has a long and well-regarded history, established over a century ago in 1912. 

“Collaboration brings success to addressing labour market needs – this we know,” stated Audrey J. Penner, President and CEO of Northern College, about the Accord. “The goal of the partnership is to increase First Nation participation, opportunities, and inclusiveness in regional area mining projects, which strengthens everyone,” she added. “Our longstanding programming brings innovation, built in close collaboration with global mining operations throughout the years, to this region of the province, which is exciting to see.” 

“This is a long-time in the making and there is more to come,” stated Chief Bull of Lac Seul First Nation. “We are looking at a vibrant future in the resource sector and we want our youth to have full advantage of these opportunities without leaving their family or community. This collaboration with Northern College ensures continuity of mine-related training delivered and available across the region to build a future labour pool.” 

In the past decade, Northwestern Ontario has seen a resurgence in the mining industry like never before. Coupled with the vision for First Nation youth to fully participate in the mining sector, the communities came together and also approached mining operations in the area to see that in-community training related to mining could and would be realized. 

“Sioux Lookout is known as the Hub of the North because of the strategic location of the Accord’s base community,” said Mayor Lawrance. He added, “Our primary industry is providing Health Services, Education and Training, and E-commerce to 33 First Nation communities in the North who use Sioux Lookout as a Hub. The Sioux Lookout Mining Centre of Excellence is indicative of the Municipality’s positive and growing relationship with neighbouring First Nations and we welcome today’s announcement”. 

-30-

Contact for more information: 

Jake Dockstator, JD, MBA 
Executive Director | Sioux Lookout Friendship Accord Economic Development Corporation – SLFAEDC 
PO Box 158, 53 Front Street| Sioux Lookout | ON | P8T 1A4 
Mobile: (905) 330-3519 Email: dockstator@slfa.ca