Council Meeting Report

Council Meeting Report – May 25, 2024

Meeting of Chief and Council

The Qalipu Chief and Council met on Saturday, March 25 for their regular meeting in Corner Brook. All members of the Council were in attendance except for Bobby White, Ward Councillor for Flat Bay and Hayward Young, Ward Councillor for Stephenville. Charlene Combden, Ward Councillor for Exploits joined the meeting virtually. A large contingency of members attended the meeting. Thank you to those members for attending and we appreciate the concerns that they brought forward.

Jordan’s Principle Service Positions

Council discussed a briefing note from the Health & Wellness department regarding the two Jordan’s Principle Service positions. The request from the department was to make the Jordan’s Principle Service Coordinator and the Jordan’s Principle Service officer positions permanent in the organization chart. Comments were made in discussion that these positions are extremely important for the organization. These positions are currently filled and are in the Corner brook office, and it was discussed that due to the geographical location of members, it be considered that any additional positions be placed in QFN offices outside of Corner Brook. Increased communication to members regarding this service would raise awareness.

Motion to make the Jordan’s Principle Service Coordinator and the Jordan’s Principle Service Officer permanent positions was moved by Calvin and seconded by Sherry.

All councillors were in favour of the motion.

Organizational Chart

Council reviewed an organizational chart that was updated to include the Jordan’s Principle Service Coordinator and the Jordan’s Principle Service Offer under the Health & Wellness department. Another new change to this chart was the Project manager in the Executive Office. The Project Manager would assist with grant and proposal wiring, would look for new opportunities and ensure that reporting is competed, and all actions were carried out. A councillor commented that they were happy to see this position on the chart as they believe it would be a huge benefit to the organization and would assist all staff in completing tasks to better serve the membership.

Another addition to the organization chart is the administrative assistant in the finance department.

The updates to the organization chart motion was moved by Calvin and seconded by Terri. Motion was carried.

Amendments to council by-laws

Section 9.2 of the QFN Council procedures reads that councillors may add items to the agenda of regular or special meetings by submitting a notice to the band manager at least 7 calendar days before a regular scheduled council meeting.

A briefing note from the executive office would like to amend section 9.2(a) to state that councillors may add items to the agenda of regular or special meetings. Adding items to regular schedule council meetings would need to be submitted by a notice to the band manager in 13 days before the regular schedule meeting. This change would allow for sufficient time for the band manager and administrative staff to prepare the council agenda packages. This will ensure that council members receive their package 10 calendar days prior to a regular schedule council meeting.

After some discussion, council stated they would like to change the 13 days notice to 15 days.

This motion was moved by Ivan and seconded by Terri. Motion was carried.

Culture, tourism, and community development AOP Amendment

Two items were added back into the annual operational plan (AOP) for the Culture, Tourism, and Community Development department under section 2.6.8

The first item is to work with interested parties in Indian Point (Millertown) to develop a plan for Wigwam Point and area. This plan will preserve and protect the area around Indian Point.

The second item is to proceed with the development of Wigwam Point (Peterview) by working with the community to provide site enhancement.

These amendments were moved by Frank and seconded by Sherry. Motion was carried.

Standing Committee Reports

Councillors reviewed the standing committee reports prior to the council meeting. Comments were made regarding the Culture, Tourism and Community Development standing committee that the work of this department touches members in positive ways as it helps them heal from trauma and stay connected to their indigenous roots. Activities and events are available to members and communities and programs such as the Moon Time Program is being well perceived.

Q4 financial statements were also discussed, and a motion was made for approval of the statements, moved by Calvin and seconded by Ivan. Motion was carried.

Band Managers Update:

Band manager, Charles Pender reported that the By-Law review and HR review are ongoing, and meetings were happening weekly with the internal working committee. Notice of staff engagement survey has been sent to staff and more information will be circulated to them once survey launch approaches.

Two new guardian positions were advertised recently. These positions would place guardians in the Port au Port / St. George’s area. The funding for these positions is coming from a partnership with QFN and Ocean’s Collaborative.

Members are encouraged to go into the Kinu profile to verify that the information on file is correct. Having an email on file would be extremely beneficial to members to ensure that members receive their voting packages for the upcoming Fall 2024 election. If anyone requires assistance with updating the information on their membership profile, staff are available by contacting one of our offices.

Next Meeting of Council

The next regularly scheduled meeting of Chief and Council will be on July 20th, 2024.


Council Meeting Report March 2024_edited

Council Meeting Report – March 23 2024

Meeting of Chief and Council

The Qalipu Chief and Council met on Saturday, March 23 for their regular meeting.  Originally scheduled for Corner Brook, the meeting went ahead virtually due to winter storm warnings on the west coast of Newfoundland.

All members of the Council were in attendance except for Jasen Benwah, Ward Councilor for Port au Port and Bobby White, Ward Councilor for Flat Bay.

2024-25 Budget Approval

The main objective of this meeting was to review and approve Annual Operating Plans (AOPs) for all Departments and associated prepared budgets for the upcoming 2024-25 fiscal year.  Council approved the budgets with the condition that typos be corrected, and more specific details be provided on the allocated spending for two new projects in the Health and Wellness Department.

Band members can listen to the discussion around the new budget and its particulars on spending by logging in to their KINU membership profile (recordings of meetings can be found under the “Communications” tab and clicking on “Previous Live Streams”)

Highlights from QFN Annual Operating Plans:

Health and Wellness Department

  • Increase staffing and resources required to deliver Non-Insured Health Benefits.
  • Marketing and outreach to increase awareness of mental health counselling services that are available to Band members.
  • Finalize the five-year strategic plan.
  • Grow the Housing division and pursue additional housing support for Band members.

Education and Training Department

  • Continue delivery of funding programs for students.
  • Develop a Youth Strategy focused on assisting young people with career exploration opportunities, finding jobs, creating businesses, and gaining workplace skills.
  • Pursue partnerships and targeted training opportunities that help Band members gain employment.
  • Support small businesses hiring Indigenous students through the Youth Summer Employment Program.

Environment and Natural Resources

  • Patrols on St. George’s Bay, Bay of Islands, Glenwood and Gand Bay areas under the Aboriginal Fisheries Strategy program.
  • Participate in consultation related to Environmental Impact Assessments.
  • Continue research and monitoring around several species at risk including piping plover, pine marten and little brown bats.
  • Work with provincial working groups focused on species and habitat conservation.

Culture, Tourism and Community Development Department

  • Support tourism businesses entering the industry.
  • Explore potential retail and wholesale opportunities for Indigenous artisans.
  • Develop a digital resource manual for Entrepreneurial Support Program.
  • Host a Qalipu Business Forum.


  • Implement new payroll software.
  • Work with staff to train on new policies under Financial Administration Law.
  • Regular meetings with the Finance and Audit Committee to provide financial reports on all QFN expenditures.
  • Identify budget and funding to develop and issue a Request for Proposals for a salary review.

Operations Department

  • Cybersecurity training plan for staff at QFN.
  • Work with the infrastructure team to map out needs for 2024-25.
  • Provide in-person assistance in key locations to help assist members with SCIS applications and renewals.
  • Provide passport-style photo service for SCIS applications and renewals.

Change to Finance Policy – Credit Card for the Chief

Management, including all the Directors and the Band Manager, at Qalipu First Nation have band-issued credit cards to cover the costs associated with business expenses or travel on band business.   Directors have a limit of $5000 while the Band Manager has a $25,000 credit cap.

Band-issued cards eliminate the need for the individual to bear a burden on their personal credit cards and make it easier for the Finance Department to reconcile expenses and match charges to appropriate budgets.

The Finance and Audit Committee brought forward a recommendation to amend the finance policy to improve efficiencies and remove unnecessary barriers by also making a credit card available to the Chief at the Senior Management level.

A committee member explained, “Sometimes there are multiple nights stay at a place where the band doesn’t have direct billing, and it’s all going on her own card.  Charges like this along with taxis, meals and incidentals…before an expense claim can be made and settled to recoup the costs…these charges can add up to a large sum very quickly.  It’s inefficient and unnecessary.”

The Council voted to accept the recommendation of the Finance and Audit Committee.

Election Update

2024 is an election year for Qalipu First Nation and in October, Band members will have the opportunity to vote for their leaders for the next four years.

A tentative schedule for the election was tabled.

The call for nomination of candidates will occur on September 27 and close on October 4.  The voting window is expected to open on October 19 and close on October 25.

Voting will be conducted online or over the phone and members should be sure to list their email with the Band to receive their secure voter PIN.

The details and dates surrounding the election will officially be announced and set into motion with the appointment of an Elector Officer later this year.

Next Meeting of Council

The next regularly scheduled meeting of Chief and Council will be on May 25, 2024.

Qalipu Chief and Council received a presentation from the Town of Stephenville (L-R) Gander Bay Ward Councilor Calvin Francis, Corner Brook Ward Councilor Brian Dicks, Flat Bay Ward Councilor Ben Bennett, Grand Falls-Windsor Ward Councilor Andy Barker, Town of Stephenville Councilor Mark Felix, Qalipu Chief Brendan Mitchell, Stephenville Mayor Tom Rose, Port au Port Ward Councilor Jasen Benwah, Benoit’s Cove Ward Councilor Bern White and Stephenville Ward Councilor Gerard Alexander Click here to view the council meeting report

Council Meeting Report – March 16, 2018

man having presentation at seminar

Council Meeting Report – June 10, 2017

Finance: Donation and Sponsorship Policy

It was identified that, at present, other than the Cultural Support Program through the Qalipu Cultural Foundation (QCF), Council does not have a formal policy on how to respond to requests for sponsorships and donations from both individuals and groups but rather uses an ad hoc approach. All agreed that the development of policy on how the Band gives out donations, who they are given to and under what conditions must be established. The Band Manager will work with staff and Council to prepare a draft policy on sponsorships and donations.

One councilor commented that donations or sponsorships must be compatible with the Band’s core values. A high volume of requests come to Council and not all can be supported.

The Chair of the Finance Committee commented that an allocation for donations had not been budgeted for in this fiscal year and although the Council has approved multiple donations this year, it is difficult to manage a balanced budget if something has not been planned. It was his recommendation that the Council implement, not only a policy, but also a set budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

The Chair also commented on accountability to the membership. He said making donations can’t be a free for all. Policy, budgeting, criteria, and reporting need to be established.

A discussion took place about the QCF being in place with funds and rules governing the support of cultural initiatives but, the question remains about how to fund other initiatives such as Aboriginal youth who are involved in sport, or other activities that are not of a cultural nature.

While discussing QCF, Council expressed lack of understanding on how the QCF decides approval of its funding requests, and how much should be given. It was agreed that a representative of QCF make a presentation to Council at an upcoming meeting so that everyone is aware of the policies and procedures that have been put in place by this charitable organization.

A discussion took place regarding two letters that were received requesting support for athletes from NL who will attend the North American Indigenous Games.

All agreed that funding youth to participate in the games would be a very valuable investment.

One member of Council commented that supporting Mi’kmaq athletes on Team Mi’kmaq for the provincial games last year had been more straight forward following a detailed presentation from a representative of the Aboriginal Sports Circle. It was suggested that it would have been helpful to have a presentation or a visit from the Aboriginal Sports Circle to give an understanding of what was needed so that they could better respond to the request.

Without sufficient information about the actual financial needs of the initiative and the athletes themselves, and in the absence of a donations policy or budget, Council decided to take $1000 from savings for the donation. In a subsequent special meeting, Council decided to enhance the donation to $15,000.

Question and Answers with Membership

A member in attendance questioned whether there was a website dedicated to members as far as getting information out. Council confirmed there is a regularly updated website and that the Band actively communicates on social media (Facebook and Twitter). The member then wanted to know whether there was a members only tool for communication. The ginu membership portal is a place where members can login to add an email address and receive emails that are periodically sent out to the membership. It is possible that this portal could be updated to add a communications tab that would be visible to members only.

The same individual asked ‘what is the protocol for requesting information and receiving a response from the Band? It was clarified that If a member is looking for information on books and records such as financials, minutes, etc. a request is to be made to the Band Council. There is no set amount of time stated for this type of request other than to say that a reasonable notice is required. Response times may vary depending on the item requested. Some special requests may require action from council. If this is the case, an explanation is given along with an estimate of time required to make a decision.

Another member in attendance commented that not enough notice had been given prior to the meeting. He said that at least two weeks notice should be given. Council agreed that in this instance, the meeting notice had not been put up as early as usual. It will endeavor to give two weeks notice in the future. The same member also requested that more reminders be put out for upcoming events like the regular meetings of Council and other items.

Another member in attendance inquired as to whether the Band had any intention of helping “the people who have been left behind”.

Chief Mitchell commented that he has been doing everything he can to work with government for people who were negatively impacted by the enrolment outcomes.

A member in attendance talked about the Daniels Symposium. The individual said he had attended the forum in Corner Brook to participate live at the Daniels Symposium. He said that only seven people had turned out for this important forum in Corner Brook. He said, “We need more indigenous people to come together.”

Another member in attendance suggested that the Gros Morne Indigenous Cultural Festival had been planned with good intentions but that much of the misunderstanding that took place could have been avoided if there was a committee of community consultants. Council took this as a good reminder to go forward with plans to establish an Elders Advisory Council. The member also suggested that the Blanket Exercise might be helpful at this time. Another member suggested that a big talking circle is needed.

A Visit from CAP National Chief Bertrand

The Congress of Aboriginal People (CAP) National Chief Robert Bertrand was in Newfoundland to meet with the Qalipu Council and members in attendance. He noted that he was trying to meet with as many members of CAP as possible throughout Canada.

Chief Bertrand noted that his organization meets with federal and provincial ministers to bring forward the interests and concerns of non-status, off-reserve aboriginal people.

Adding to the Daniels Symposium comment , Chief Bertrand said that there is a lot of work to be done but that the Daniels decision means that, legally, all indigenous people are now Indians under 91.24 of the Indian Act. He said that what this means has many interpretations. Chief Bertrand mentioned that he has a draft report from the Symposium which needs to be approved by the board before publishing on the CAP website. He said the report will be sent to various levels of government.

A member of Council asked what CAP was doing to support Qalipu on the enrolment file.

Chief Bertrand said, “We sympathize, there is a situation here and it was caused by the federal government but they left you to pick up the pieces. The last meeting I had with Minister Carolyn Bennett I did bring it up. She’s well aware of it. We are working on it.”

The member of Council requested that Chief Bertrand write a letter of support for Qalipu, specifically in support of those current members who have been notified they will lose their status. Chief Bertrand agreed to do this.

Chief Bertrand added that Chief Mitchell should feel welcome to call on him for support on any initiative.

A member in attendance inquired as to whether Chief Bertrand had been in contact with MMFNAN and whether this group would become the CAP affiliate for Newfoundland. Chief Bertrand responded that he would not come into Newfoundland and negotiate with a body to replace Qalipu. He said it would be Qalipu’s decision to walk away from CAP or not. CAP will respect Qalipu’s decision to stay with CAP or move on to the Assembly of First Nations (AFN).

Business Structure and Election Committee Update

The Band Manager provided a presentation on the Cox and Palmer review of Qalipu’s economic development branch.

Council established a special committee to review the recommendations of Cox and Palmer and bring forward recommendations for organizational structure for the next meeting of Council.

Election Committee Update: A 2018 Election timeline was presented which works within the current election bylaws. Since bylaws cannot be changed without a referendum, the committee plans to make changes that allow for a longer space between nominations and voting, and a longer period for mail-in-ballots. A motion was passed to accept the proposed timeline pending review by legal. Once the proposed timeline is reviewed by legal it will be presented to membership.

A survey will be issued in September regarding suggestions from membership on how to update the election bylaws with a referendum vote to take place at the same time as the 2018 Election. Members at large will also be engaged to sit on the Election Reform Committee in the fall.

Next Meeting of Council: August 26 in Corner Brook
Contact Mabel MacDonald to register at or call 634-5111


Archived Enrolment Information Popup

Please Check Here for Updates on the Qalipu Enrolment Process

Public Notices

The Enrolment Committee is reassessing the applications of people who were denied founding membership in the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation in 2017. The Enrolment Committee expects to be finished those reassessments in Winter 2020.

These applicants were sent information about the Wells Implementation in a letter dated January 31, 2019. They were offered an opportunity to submit additional documentation to meet the self-identification criterion.

Update for individuals affected by the implementation of the Wells decision in the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation enrollment process: the Enrollment Committee decision letters will be sent on July 13, 2020. For more information, visit:

If your address has recently changed, please update it by contacting the Government of Canada’s Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation line at 1-800-561-2266.

*Update March 27, 2017 – Deadline for applicants/members to file an appeal has been extended to April 13, 2017

“Although the ‘Instructions for Submitting and Appeal’ indicates that your Appeal Notice must be witnessed, all appeal notices completed by applicants eligible to appeal (witnessed or not witnessed) and submitted on or before April 13, 2017, will be considered by the Appeal Master.”

Federation of Newfoundland Indians (FNI) Appealing on Behalf of Some Applicants, Notifications Arriving in the Mail *April 7, 2017
Important Notice: Eligibility to Appeal *March 15, 2017
Public Notice Changes to Appeal Deadline
 *Feb 20, 2017
Information on Criteria of Group Acceptance through Residency *Feb 14, 2017
Public Notice Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Enrolment Process Applicants Found Ineligible Based on Self-ID *Feb 10, 2017

Membership Search Service – Were You Already a Member of an Existing Band?

If you were a documented band member in one of Newfoundland’s Mi’kmaq bands prior to the signing of the Agreement in Principle (AIP) on June 23, 2008, then your name should be on the master list of band members that was compiled at that time.  The Mi’kmaq bands of Newfoundland that were recognized for inclusion at the time of the AIP included the Federation of Newfoundland Indians (FNI), Ktaqamkuk Mi’kmaq Alliance, Benoit First Nation and Sip’kop Mi’kmaq Band.

Click here for more information

End of Enrollment Support Team

At Qalipu First Nation, we are doing everything we can to offer support for our members and applicants. We have put in place an End of Enrolment Support Team including Enrolment Assistants that will be available to take your call or meet with you in one of our four office locations –  St. George’s, Corner Brook, Glenwood and Grand Falls-Windsor.

To contact our End of Enrolment Support Team:

St. Georges:  709 647 3514
Glenwood:  855 263 6440 (toll free) or 709 679 2338
Grand Falls-Windsor:  709 489 2898
Corner Brook:  844 368 7160 (toll free) or 709 634 4010
*Toll Free (in Newfoundland only)

Are you looking for more information about Enrolment? Find it here:

End of Enrolment Q & A: Appeals Process
End of Enrolment Q & A: General Information

Are you interested in the history leading up to the creation of our First Nation, including where we are today? Click the link below for a summary:

Road to Recognition of the Newfoundland Mi’kmaq-History

Would you like to review all the details of the Agreement and related documents? Find these documents here:

How about the Supplemental Agreement?

What has Chief Mitchell been saying about the end of Enrolment? Click on the links below to hear from our Chief in news items posted by the Qalipu First Nation.

Message from the Chief – March 31 2017
Statement Regarding Ottawa Meeting
Qalipu First Nation Disappointed by Enrolment Outcome
Christmas Greetings from the Chief
Chief to Demonstrators: I have an obligation to act in the best interest of our First Nation
Video: Chief Mitchell talks Enrolment at Corner Brook Café