Decades of government inaction. Sept. 2016: Japanese experts in mercury poisoning report that 90 per cent of the population of Grassy Narrows and Wabaseemoong First Nations show signs of exposure to the toxin, including people born years after the dumping of mercury ended. The federal government had pushed for a design that was more like an assisted-living home, while Grassy Narrows had drawn up its own blueprint for a facility that gave specialized care to mercury poisoning patients. The people of Grassy Narrows have been told by doctors that they are sick. After the Japanese scientists learned of reports of similar symptoms in Canada, their research brought them to the Grassy Narrows and White Dog First Nations in northwestern Ontario. They migrated northward and westward during the late 17th and early 18th centuries in search of animals to supply the fur trade. Four decades later, the effects of that mercury – an estimated 9,000 kg – are still present. Strangely, though, 90 per cent of the people of Grassy Narrows still suffer from mercury poisoning, at the highest levels in Ontario. The report, released in English today in Toronto, outlines the long-term effects on people who lived along the Wabigoon-English River system in northwestern Ontario. GRASSY NARROWS — Recent reports have raised alarm over the impact of mercury poisoning on those who eat fish from the lakes and rivers surrounding Asubpeeschoseewagong Netum Anishinabek (Grassy Narrows First Nation), located 80 kilometres north of Kenora — but despite the risks, many residents continue to eat the fish: there are simply too few other options for food. The people of Grassy Narrows First Nation in northwest Ontario have been hard-hit by mercury poisoning, after the government allowed a pulp mill to dump 10 tons of waste into a river in the 1960s. Ancestors of the northern Ojibwe are thought to have originally inhabited the north shore of the upper Great Lakes. Grassy Narrows argued that Ontario has no jurisdiction over logging on our Territory due to promises made by Canada in Treaty 3 and the constitution. Hanada also said there needs to be ongoing research into the cumulative effect on people who have continued to eat the fish from the waters near Grassy Narrows. The Grassy Narrows & Islington Band Mercury Disability Board. The Grassy Narrows & Islington Band Mercury Disability Board. “Our philosophy is you design from the inside out. The damaging effects are still seen today. The paper mill closed in 1970. First Nations people from Grassy Narrows, Ont., continue to suffer the effects of mercury poisoning more than 40 years after commercial fishing was closed, a new report shows. The lead author of the report, Masazumi Harada, began researching the effects of mercury poisoning in Minamata, Japan, in 1961. Bill Fobister, a 73-year-old former chief of Grassy Narrows, says he hopes to move into the treatment centre if it is built by the time his own mercury-poisoning symptoms require it. The Mercury Care Home would provide live-in care for 22 community members of any age who are suffering from mercury poisoning and are not well enough to live at home, but want to stay close to their families in Grassy Narrows. Members of Wabaseemoong Independent Nations and Grassy Narrows First Nation whose health may have been affected by mercury poisioning in the English and Wabigoon river systems may be entitled to an award from the Mercury Disability Fund. I think of them a lot, and they took that away.". After years of advocacy by the communities, … We have to maintain what we are.". "Our community members have suffered for so long," Grassy Narrows First Nation Chief Randy Fobister said in a recent interview. Grassy Narrows and Whitedog First Nations. Several Japanese doctors who had been involved in studying Minamata disease in Japan travelled to Canada to investigate the mercury poisoning in these people. What did the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) rule. They found  that "33.7 per cent  [54 people] of the target group would be diagnosed as Minamata Disease patients " and that "a total of 58.7 per cent [94 people] was affected by mercury.". Fishing is central to their culture, traditions and economy. While many community members protest logging companies Keewatin doesn't have to be told. Mercury Poisoning in Grassy Narrows Ilyniak 47 The community is divided over the appropriateness of certain tactics (p.o. He told Porter, "we hope the future generations can make a change and find different opportunities. Residents of Grassy Narrows First Nation, about 100 kilometres northeast of Kenora, Ont., have grappled with long-standing mental and physical health issues due to toxic mercury levels in the nearby English-Wabigoon River.So have many in Wabaseemoong Independent Nations, also known as Whitedog First Nation, about 130 kilometres away. Other symptoms include muscle weakness, numbness or stinging pain. In 1986, both the federal government and the province of Ontario enacted legislation to carry out the terms of the settlement. The fur trade economy transformed Ojibwe social organization and resource use. In November 1985, Wabaseemoong Independent Nations (formerly Islington, formerly Whitedog) and Grassy Narrows First Nation negotiated an out of court settlement with the federal government, the province of Ontario, and two paper companies (Reed Incorporated and Great Lakes Forest Products Limited) for all claims due to mercury contamination in the English and Wabigoon river systems. The Grassy Narrows people have a special relationship to the river. He did note that for outsiders, eating one or two fish from the lake isn’t harmful now. A river poisoned with mercury. For a person to be eligible to apply for benefits (per legislation), that person must be a current member of Grassy Narrows First Nation or Wabaseemoong Independent Nations; a past member of one of the two bands; or a registered Indian who was customarily resident on one the two first nation communities prior to the first day of October 1985. that since inception to March 31, 2020 the Mercury Disability Board has processed 1489 initial applications for benefits. The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services and Chief Rudy Turtle of the Asubpeeschoseewagong Netum Anishinabek (Grassy Narrows First Nation) signed a framework agreement to provide federal support to the community to support the mercury care home. 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