Delivered on March 7, 2017
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to announce the Government of the Northwest Territories has partnered with the Government of Canada to provide more in-person services to the residents of the Northwest Territories, through our Single Window Service Centers.
Earlier this year, our two governments launched a 12-month service delivery pilot project in Fort Providence, Fort Liard and Tuktoyaktuk. Government Services Officers in these communities are now providing in-person services on behalf of Service Canada, in addition to their current duties for the Government of the Northwest Territories.
The Government Services Officers were trained to help residents with applications for six federal programs: Apprenticeship Grants, Canada Pension Plan, Employment Insurance, Guaranteed Income Supplement, Old Age Security and the Wage Earner Protection Program.
Mr. Speaker, our Single Window Service Centers have been an important way to make sure the residents of the Northwest Territories’ small communities have access to government programs and services in a way that works for them. We are pleased to be partnering with the Government of Canada to formally extend access to Government of Canada programs and services in these three communities.
The Single Window Service Centers are an already successful program, and since it was launched in 2010, the program has grown across the Northwest Territories from eight to 20 centers and has helped residents with over 40,000 requests for services.
In 2014, the Government of the Northwest Territories received a national award from the Institute of Public Administration of Canada for the Single Window Service Centers recognizing the model for its innovative management. Connecting residents with the programs and services they need is important and we continue to work and improve upon the services that the Government Service Officers provide.
Mr. Speaker, we are currently working on establishing the 21st Single Window Service Center on Hay River Dene Reserve Kátł’odeeche First Nation with an anticipated opening early in April.
Mr. Speaker, this initiative is an important way that government is more accessible to residents and I want to thank Members, community residents, local leadership, as well as community and Government of the Northwest Territories’ staff for their ongoing support.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker.