Please note that the message from the Board is updated at the end of each fiscal year to provide current information on the Board.
From 2019/2020 Annual Report:
“The 2019/2020 year was a busy one for neurological assessments for both adults and children with a record number of appointments attended. Thanks to Dr. Alan Jackson and Dr. Chris Hohl who assessed the majority of adults and children, respectively. The Board was also able to arrange assessments in other locations for people who live outside the First Nations and Kenora area. Appointments were arranged and attended in Winnipeg. Thunder Bay, Toronto, Montreal and London, ON. At the end of the fiscal year (and in the beginning of the new year) neurological assessment clinics were cancelled due to COVID-19.
In the fall of 2018 payments were made to benefit recipients to cover indexing of payments from the inception of the fund in 1987. Starting in April, 2018 and again in April, 2019 monthly payments to individuals were increased to cover the increase in the cost of living in the prior year. The Consumer Price Index is used to make the adjustment. These larger payments made a difference to the quality of life of the recipients.
Thanks to the Board’s physicians Dr. Lisa Monkman and Dr. Sara Goulet; community representatives Aaron Kokopenace for Grassy Narrows and Gloria Paishk for Wabaseemoong; and Rita Lemick, Canada for continuous service throughout the year. With the high volume of activity, thanks to the Board Assistant, Chris Smith for capably keeping everything on track.
Margaret Wanlin, Acting Interim Chairperson
The website will give community members living both in the community and off reserve, visitors and visiting workers to the community and the general public the ability to learn more about the history of the contamination of the river systems, the negotiation process, the development of the Mercury Disability Board and Mercury Disability Fund and how the Board operates.
Historical community information around the contamination and its effect on the communities can be found under the Affected Communities link. The FAQ section answers many questions asked by community members around processing claims, hair and blood sample usage and how to speak to the Board in person.
I recommend taking the time to look around the site to learn more about the mercury contamination issue still facing the communities.
(Former) Chief Eric Fisher, Wabaseemoong Independent Nations
Eligibility to Apply for Benefits
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
Did You Know…
that since inception to March 31, 2020 the Mercury Disability Board has processed 1489 initial applications for benefits.