Politics

Identity of the Northwest Territories’ new senator revealed


Margaret Dawn Anderson is the new senator for the Northwest Territories.

Anderson, who is Inuvialuit, served as a territorial public servant for more than two decades – specializing in community justice.

She fills the NWT’s lone seat in the Senate, which had been vacant for more than a year following the retirement of Nick Sibbeston.

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The Prime Minister’s Office announced Anderson’s appointment on Wednesday morning, alongside that of Pat Duncan, who will represent the Yukon.

Anderson has had involvement in Inuvialuit self-government negotiations, the Prime Minister’s Office said, in her most recent role: working for the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation as a policy intern while completing her Masters degree in Indigenous governance.

Community benefits

Anderson also worked as the director of community justice and policing, helping to evolve a wellness court system for the NWT.

In 2012, while serving as acting assistant director of corrections, she received a Premier’s Award in the NWT for her “outstanding service” to the territory – one of two such awards she has received to date.

At the time, the Premier’s Office said Anderson had “worked diligently to lead, develop and implement several projects benefitting community partners in delivering programs to clients.

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“In addition,” her 2012 commendation continued, “Ms Anderson led the revision of training information specifically for RCMP members in assisting with diversion cases that are more appropriate to community-based agencies.

“She also developed, researched and delivered an eight-week program of Planning Action Responsibility to support domestic violence treatment options.”

Alongside two other appointments, the naming of Anderson and Duncan brings the Senate to a full, 105-member complement for the first time in eight years.

Applicants to become the next NWT senator had to be aged between 30 and 75, be a Canadian citizen, and fulfil a few related requirements.

Senators are appointed by the Governor General, on the Prime Minister’s advice, following recommendations made by an Independent Advisory Board for Senate Appointments.

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