Wait Times covid-19 benefits

Update: Covid-19 Support Benefits Wait Times

We would like to thank community members for their continued support, patience, and understanding as we continue to provide funding through our Covid-19 support programs. The Seniors Essential Travel and Essential Worker Childcare Programs have seen a large volume of applicants and many people have received this valuable assistance.

We would like to remind individuals, families and community that the process time goal for COVID-19 payments is 6 to 8 weeks, however in some instances we are currently at more than 8 weeks.

Payments are continuously being issued and we are making every effort to keep the processing/payment time low.

For more information on FAQ please visit: https://qalipu.ca/covid-19-support-programs/  or contact your COVID-19 Teams at: https://qalipu.ca/about/office-and-e-mail-addresses/

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Notice Regarding Office Closure in Corner Brook

In order to assist Western Health as they try to understand the extent of possible community spread of the Covid-19 virus, and out of an abundance of caution, both Corner Brook office locations are closed effective immediately. Staff will continue to provide service from their home office locations and can best be reached by email found here: https://qalipu.ca/about/office-and-e-mail-addresses/ (https://qalipu.ca/about/office-and-e-mail-addresses/)

An update regarding office opening or continued closure will be provided on Friday.

Visitors are reminded that due to ongoing precautions with the Covid-19 pandemic, an appointment is required before coming into any office location of the Qalipu First Nation. Please call 634-0996 to make an appointment.

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NON-INSURED HEALTH BENEFITS (NIHB) PROGRAM UPDATED April 1, 2021

The meal allowance rate has been updated for NIHB eligible clients. Clients must have been approved for NIHB medical transportation benefits to access medically necessary health services that cannot be obtained in their community of residence. NIHB Clients are still required to submit the NIHB Medical Transportation Reimbursement Form.

The rates are in effect for the 2021 – 2022 fiscal year (April 1, 2021 – March 31, 2022) for clients served by all NIHB Regions are:

  Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Regular Rate (ages 4 to adult) S15.00 $15.00 $30.00
Infant/Toddler Rate (0-3, inclusive) $7.50 $7.50 15.00

 

There have been no changes made to the weekly meal allowance, it remains at $168 for a single traveller and $252 for a client and escort.   Private vehicle rates will remain the same at 0.215 cents a kilometer.

For the complete update on NIHB please visit:  ISC – NIHB Program Updates

Community Feedback

Socio-Economic Agreement with Marathon Gold: Consultations with Membership—What we Heard

In October 2019, Qalipu First Nation was approached by Marathon Gold, a gold resource development company focused on a gold reserve located in our territory in central Newfoundland. Representatives from the company expressed a desire to share plans and consult with our membership on project development.

To best serve our members interests – primarily to ensure environmental stewardship is a top priority for our Nation on all major development projects happening within our territory, and also to access economic opportunities (employment, education and training, procurement and contracting) for our members and communities—the Band put in place a committee to work with Marathon Gold on these topics and the development of a Socio-Economic Agreement (SEA).

In September 2020 and again in January 2021 the Band hosted virtual community engagement sessions in partnership with Marathon Gold to provide in depth project details, create an opportunity to ask questions, as well as to share the drafts of the SEA and invite feedback before moving forward.  An additional engagement session was also held in January 2021 with youth representatives to gather their unique perspectives, and written submissions were accepted to ensure those who could not attend virtual sessions could still contribute their feedback.

Following is a summary of what we heard.

 

September 17, 2020 Virtual Community Consultation

We had 20 participants including two staff from Marathon Gold and two Ward Councilors from QFN. The conversation was primarily focused on questions posed to the team from Marathon Gold related to the development. Question posed included questions related to:

  • Understanding the Environmental Impact Assessment process as it relates to current and future planned developments.
  • Reclamation including revegetation plans and how QFN can play a role.
  • Questions head waters and water sheds in the area.
  • Caribou migration and impacts
  • Questions also arose around the process to develop and roll out the SEA. There was some question as to the timing of the signing preceding the release of the Environmental Impact Study (EIS)..

 

January 11, 2021 Qalipu Youth Network

We had 12 participants in this session which was targeted towards members of the Qalipu Youth Network. In this session, the participants asked about the reclamation plans and expressed interest in ensuring that QFN us engaged and that the reclamation plan has long -term commitment to environmental monitoring beyond the reclamation stage. There were questions about the opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship and a desire to see Qalipu member-owned businesses given support in developing procurement opportunities. There were calls for aggressive targets for diversity / employment / procurement.

 

January 25, 2021, Virtual Community Consultation (part 2)

There were 28 participants present for this session including two Ward Councillors. The discussions focused on merits of the contents of the SEA. While it was generally agreed that the SEA was a good starting place for our negotiations with Marathon Gold, some felt that the SEA or subsequent agreements should have:

  • indigenous procurement
  • employment targets
  • community investment funds in the way of monies for cultural programming, scholarships, and other member-focused initiatives. This was discussed with Marathon Gold and added to the draft SEA.
  • Procurement procedures have key performance indicators which encourage suppliers and contractors to engage local, indigenous-owned small businesses.
  • Youth engagement to support training and mentorship opportunities.

The issue of caribou migration was brought up as a concern around the impacts of the project and the feedback was that while developing stewardship policies, the Environmental Stewardship Committee (ESC) should use the EIS documents to recommend and encourage best practices in relation to the environment.

 

Written Submissions

Feedback gathered through written submissions was predominantly SEA-specific in nature with recommendations that hard targets are set in procurement, employment, and the active engagement of the ESC. There were some concerns expressed that this SEA does not attach any financial obligations in Marathon Gold for the costs of engagement and environmental committees. There was also a call for the addition of a targeted Supplier development sessions with Indigenous suppliers as a means of supporting member-0wned businesses in looking for upcoming procurement opportunities and help in how to prepare bids.

One member taking a more wholistic, multi-generational view. While he stated that he “has not formulated an opinion on whether or not (he) support the mining project” and did recognize the positive economic impacts this project will have on Central Newfoundland, he was cautious to remind QFN of the long-term impacts of development in the Natural Resource Sector and the need to keep environmental stewardship and these lasting effects in front of us as we continue to talk to resource development proponents now and in the future.

 

Conclusion

The input from membership has been shared with Marathon Gold and there is agreement that as discussions proceeds around each aspect of this SEA that future agreements will set measurable goals, and targets for employment, training, procurement, and environmental stewardship.

YSEP Voter Reg

Qalipu First Nation Voter Registration Student Summer Employment Program

Purpose

Registration of voters for the upcoming Qalipu election.

Voter Registration Clerks will contact voting age members to collect and/or verify mailing addresses to ensure everyone has a chance to vote in the upcoming election via receipt of a voter information package in the mail.

Those with incorrect or unregistered mailing addresses will not receive the voter information package.

Background

In 2018, voters ratified an amendment to the Election Code that changes the way we vote.  Instead of heading to the polls, voters will receive a voter information package and secure PIN in the mail.  To vote, voters will have to register a valid mailing address with us so that we can send them the necessary information.

Upon receipt of the package, voters will use their secure PIN to vote by phone or over the internet.

A Voter Registration Clerk summer student will be put in place in each of Qalipu’s nine Wards to contact members by phone, email or in person where known personal connections can be utilized.

The position will be 14 weeks in duration running from May 10, 2021 to August 13, 2021.

Responsibilities

Voter Registration Clerks will use the ginu membership database to contact Band members by phone to update their contact and other information.  Duties include but are not limited to:

  • Follow a prepared script
  • Make phone calls to Band members
  • Send emails to Band members where phone numbers are not listed
  • Enter accurate information into the ginu membership database
  • Maintain confidentiality of membership information
  • Track daily calls/emails and database errors and updates using a tracking spreadsheet and/or administrator web updates
  • Endeavour to make community connections and share update information with Band members who do not have contact information listed in the database
  • Liaise with the Indian Registration Administrator to facilitate updates to the Indian Registrar
  • Other duties as required

Qualifications: The ideal student is comfortable speaking with new people and can effectively represent the Qalipu First Nation with a positive and friendly attitude.  Students must be able to stay motivated on task with minimal supervision, have knowledge of spreadsheets, databases and a proficiency in the operation of a computer.  Ability to work with a team toward a common goal.

Student must have access to own phone line and high speed internet access (reimbursements will be provided to offset costs)

Education: The candidate must be a post-secondary student who is returning to full-time studies in the fall.

Experience: No experience necessary, training will be provided.  Experience working in client service environment is an asset.

Working Conditions: This position is home based.  The duties can be met during various hours with possibility of evenings and weekends to make up the hours.

Eligibility

To be eligible for summer employment through the ISETP Youth Program, a student:

  • Must be planning to return to full-time studies in September of the current year
  • Must have been registered as a full-time student in the previous academic year; and
  • Be a member of the Qalipu First Nation or Self-Identified Indigenous Person (students are asked to indicate on their cover letter their Indigenous Ancestry)

Apply

Please apply by sending your resume to Employment Coordinator Yvonne MacDonald at ymacdonald@qalipu.ca

Deadline to apply

Please apply by April 16 at 4:00 PM

Voter Registration

Qalipu Election Voter Registration

An Election for Qalipu Chief and Council is coming up this Fall!

Did you know that voting will be done online or over the phone using a secure PIN that we will send to voters in the mail?

We will need your mailing address to send your voter information package and PIN. 

 

Not sure if you’ve got the correct mailing address and other information listed on your ginu membership profile and not sure how to check it?

Please feel free to use this online fillable form to send us your latest information and we’ll update your information for you!

https://qalipu.ca/member-information-update-form/

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Covid-19 Vaccination Registration for Band Members is Now Available

Covid vaccine for Band Members now available

Please be advised, priority registration for the Covid-19 vaccination is now available to Indigenous peoples in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Qalipu Band members are invited to register through the provincial government websites fillable form linked here, or by calling 1-833-668-3930.

Locations for vaccination clinics will be determined as individuals register and health authorities gain a better understanding of demographics has been achieved.  The Band has advocated for mobile clinics to reach our more remote communities so that Band members will not have to travel long distances to receive the vaccination.

All Band members have access to priority registration however, appointments will be booked first for those aged 60+.

All are encouraged to receive this vaccination and take this important step toward reducing the spread and impact of the Covid-19 virus.

Covid vaccine for Band Members graphic

Priority Vaccination for Qalipu Band Members

Please be advised, priority vaccination for Qalipu Band members will begin next week. Registration will take place online through the Regional Health Authorities; we will share the registration link on our website, social media and newsletter as soon as it becomes available.

Priority will be given to Band members aged 60+.

Please remember to have your Band registration number ready when completing the registration form.

We encourage everyone to support their families, friends and community members who may have limited online access or ability in completing the online registration form.

End of EWCB 2 (1)

Essential Worker Childcare Benefit Fund Now Fully Allocated

$154,000 in total benefits have been processed for payout to members of the Band who were essential workers with childcare costs during the pandemic.

Eligible applicants who did not receive approval for benefits before the fund expired will be kept on file. We will continue discussions with our partners around securing additional funds to better meet the needs of our membership. Those applications will be processed should additional funds be secured.

Although there are no remaining funds to distribute at this time, the application will remain open to give the Band a better understanding of need.

covid benefits q and a

Questions and Answers – Covid-19 Support Benefits for Seniors and Essential Workers

Question: My receipt does not have a receipt number. Can I still use it?

 

Answer: We require all invoices, receipts to have a unique identification number (Receipt Number/Invoice Number). These unique numbers allow us to identify invoices/receipts that have already been reimbursed or outstanding.  This is a requirement of all departments within QFN. It ensures accountability.

Question: Why is there any age limit of 13 on the QFN Essential Worker Childcare program?

 

Answer: The program is modeled after a NL program: Essential Worker Child Care Service.  At the time of proposal this program was ending, and we noted a need to continue the support. We adapted the programs to meet our community needs.

Question: I’m rotational worker or I work one week and am off another. How does the Essential Worker Childcare help me?

 

Answer: If your employer deems you an essential worker. Have your employer identify the weeks that you are required to report to the worksite.   The program is designed to support members that are required to report to work and can not work from home.

Question: Can I access the QFN Essential Worker Childcare program while I’m on Employment Insurance, Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefits, Canada Recovery Sickness Benefits, maternity, parental, medical, or other types of leaves?

 

Answer: No, as you are on leave from your employment.  The program eligibility is for members who are required to report to work and have been deemed essential to the employers operations.

Question: I’m just finding out about the QFN Vulnerable Population Essential Transportation Reimbursement Program. Can I apply for past months, is it retroactive?

 

Answer: Unfortunately, no. As the pandemic level changes and we move into the next wave(s) of Covid-19, we need to ensure that QFN seniors are supported by having financial barriers reduced relating to accessing essential supplies.  Therefore, there is an option for $50 travel subsidy and prearranged shuttle/taxi service. To ensure accessibility, the program is designed to support seniors monthly.

Question: I do not have a Band number (034XXXXXXX), but I have Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada file number. Can I use that to access the QFN COVID-19 programs?

 

Answer: If we can not validate your Band Membership, we can not provide support under these programs. Both the Essential Worker Childcare and Vulnerable Population Essential Transportation Reimbursement Program are for members only, in Canada. This is part of the funding requirement.

Question: I applied online. I’m mailing the application too.

 

Answer: We ask that members do not do this as it will increase the volume of applications, and the application will be flagged as a duplicate.   We encourage members to submit online.

Question: The paper application says a signature is required, while the online applications does not.  Why?

 

Answer: By submitting online, you are declaring and authorizing QFN to process your application.  This includes auditing. Your authorization allows us to collect information from you (including receipts) for services provided to you. The release of any records that are relevant to the processing and payment of this claim to Qalipu First Nation, it is agents or contractors, or Regulatory Body. You’re declaring the information that you submit online to be true and accurate and verifying that it does not contain a claim for any benefit or service previously paid for by Qalipu First Nation or by any other plan(s)/program(s) that is noted in the statement or explanations of benefits.

Question: I didn’t submit an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) form when I applied for benefits, and Qalipu does not have my direct deposit information on file from a previous transaction.  Where should I send the form now if I want to receive my benefits?

 

Answer: If we do not have EFT information on file for you and you did not include it in your application, we will send a cheque in the mail.

Question: I submitted my application and I want to know if you received it.  I called/sent an email and have not received confirmation that you received my application.  What’s going on?

 

Answer: We have received thousands of applications and do not have enough staff resources to search for individual applications.  This means we are not able to provide verification of received applications.  When you apply online, you will know your application was received by the confirmation message that reads Thank you, your message has been sent.

Question: I don’t have access to a computer or internet.  How can I apply for these benefits?

 

Answer: Since our office locations are closed, we encourage you to ask someone in your family or a friend to help fill out the form online on your behalf.   Many seniors have applied for the travel benefit this way.

 

If you are unable to do this, you can request a form be mailed to you by calling 634-5163 and leaving a message.  We will respond as quickly as resources permit.

Question: Do I have to apply every month for the seniors travel benefit?

 

Answer: Yes.  Applications for February do not carry forward beyond this month and so on.  You must apply each month.

Question: Do I have to pay taxes on these benefits?

 

Answer: No.  The travel benefit for seniors is like a reimbursement; it goes through Accounts Payable, does not require a SIN and does not lead to the generation of a T4.

 

We are unsure at this time whether members will be taxed on the childcare benefit.  Once we receive a response from the Canada Revenue Agency, we will post an update.

Question: Will there be opportunities to apply for these benefits later?

 

Answer: We have a limited amount of money for these benefits currently, however we are seeking additional funds.  We know that the demand for these benefits is there, and now that the program has been established, we will be working with our partners in seeking additional funds to carry this program for a longer period of time.

Question: When will I receive my payment?

 

Answer: We are working to keep things moving and aim to process payment within 6-8 weeks of receipt of your application.

Question: Can I submit my application for the Essential Worker Childcare Benefit now, and submit the supporting documents (like the confirmation from my employer) later?

 

Answer: No.  Please submit your complete application. Partially complete applications will be rejected.

Question: For the Essential Worker Childcare Benefit, can I submit one receipt for the whole year or do I need a receipt for each month?

 

Answer: Yes, you can submit a receipt for the whole year.  Please ensure that the name on the receipt matches the name of the applicant, that it shows the date(s) for which the service was provided, the name of the provider, the date of the receipt, and has an invoice number.

Question: I realized after I sent my application that I made an error or forgot to attach something.  Can I submit this now?

 

Answer: No, due to the high volume of applications and limited staff resources we cannot accept incomplete or incorrect applications and go looking for the other information.  Incomplete applications will be rejected.  You will still be able to apply again.

Do you have a question about these benefits that we haven’t answered? Email: communications@qalipu.ca