TWO NASS Valley residents were honoured yesterday with provincial government community safety and crime prevention awards at a ceremony in Burnaby hosted by justice minister Shirley Bond.
The Kenneth M. Lemckert Community Policing Award went to Abeline Stewart who has been the social development administrator with the Gingolx Village Government in Gingolx since February 2010.
“In 2010, concerned about the dangers of underage drinking in the community, and with the support of the Gingolx Village Government, Abby reinstated an evening foot patrol to keep an eye on the community, to assist intoxicated individuals return home safely, to help prevent vandalism, and to assist at-risk youth,” read the citation that accompanied the award.
“In 2011, after consulting with local youth workers about underage drinking, Abby spearheaded a youth march in the community, which targeted at-risk youth with positive messages and provided guidance from elders,” the citation continued.
Stewart also organized materials to make signs for the march.
“As a result of Abby’s efforts, a number of community members in Gingolx are receiving positive messages about treatment options for their addictions,” the citation added.
An individual award went to Sergeant Donovan Tait who has been the commanding officer of the Lisims Nass Valley RCMP detachment since Dec. 2011.
“Sergeant Donovan Tait has forged a model relationship between citizens of the Nisga’a Nation and the RCMP members stationed around the valley,” read his citation.
“After a number of young adults in the community were charged with drug trafficking and other offences, Sgt. Tait worked with community and justice partners to establish alternative justice forums,” the citation said.
The result was an improvement of relations between youth and the community and the entrenchment of alternative justice forums as an effective approach to youth justice, it continued.