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Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program – July 2017

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Family Justice Services is offering Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program at these locations in May 2017:

Estevan – Saturday, July 15, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Regina – Monday, July 10 and Saturday, July 29, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Swift Current – Saturday, July 8, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Weyburn – Saturday, July 8, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

These public information sessions are intended to help people who are considering or may be in the separation/divorce process. Topics of discussion include:

  • Options for resolving disputes and stages of separation and divorce: Presentation of the various stages, losses and changes experienced by separating or divorcing couples. Discussion of the options available for dispute resolution. Information of Child Support Guidelines.
  • Children’s reaction to separation/divorce: Discussion of how children may react at different developmental ages. Video presentation in which children talk about their personal experience of separation and/or divorce.
  • Challenges to parenting post separation/divorce: Presentation on changing family structure and roles. Emphasis on communication and keeping children out of the middle of parental conflict. Discussion video.

There is no fee for these sessions but registration is mandatory. To register, call (306) 787-9905 in Regina or toll-free 1-888-218-2822. Location will be provided when you register. Classes are for adults only. No child care will be provided.

(Scent free facilities)

One Book One Province: Saskatchewan Libraries Promoting Culture

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Alan Kilpatrick, Reference Librarian, Law Society of Saskatchewan Library & Member-at-Large, Saskatchewan Library Association Board

In 2017, the Saskatchewan Library Association (SLA) celebrated 75 years of steadfastly advocating for libraries, culture, and communities in Saskatchewan. To help mark the occasion, the SLA held Saskatchewan’s inaugural provide-wide literacy and reading campaign, One Book One Province (One Book) in March.

One Book encouraged Saskatchewan’s residents to read The Education of Augie Merasty: A Residential School Memoir by Joseph Auguste Merasty and David Carpenter throughout that month. The memoir, published by the University of Regina Press, describes Merasty’s painful experiences as a student at a residential school in Northern Saskatchewan in the mid-1930s.

Beyond simply promoting literacy in Saskatchewan, One Book’s goal was to encourage residents to learn about and discuss residential schools, Indigenous culture and reconciliation, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. SLA’s intent was to provide “opportunities for residents to become more socially engaged in their community through a shared story.” Libraries across the province were encouraged to host community events about the memoir. In addition, the co-author, David Carpenter, participated in a province-wide reading tour.

Unfortunately, Merasty passed away at the age of 87 mere days before One Book’s launch on March 1. One Book One Province was a fitting tribute to his memory and legacy.

Here, co-author and friend David Carpenter reflects on touring the province in March 2017 to promote the book for One Book One Province, in the days immediately following Merasty’s passing.

 

A Sad Beautiful Story
One Book One Province Tour of Saskatchewan

David Carpenter, Excerpt courtesy of the University of Regina Press
Joseph A. Merasty and David Carpenter
University of Regina Press
ISBN: 978-0-88977-457-5
$21.95

 

February 27. Saskatoon.

Augie Merasty died this morning. His youngest daughter, Arlene, phoned first, then his older daughter Joanne, then Anne Pennylegion of the Saskatchewan Library Association. They were all stricken by his sudden passing, Arlene perhaps the most. It hit all of us with the weight of unexpected things. I thought Augie had more time left, because even in the throes of cancer, diabetes, alcoholism, and life on the street, even in his eighties, he had always bounced back. Some say he died at eighty-eight, some say eighty-seven. Depends who you ask.

He died around the time that I was packing up a supply of his books in preparation for my One Book One Province tour of Saskatchewan. This tour is taking me to eleven communities: two in Saskatoon, one in Regina, and eight more in mostly rural Saskatchewan. At each venue I will speak about the process of putting together The Education of Augie Merasty, Augie’s memoir of a brutal existence in St. Therese Residential School from 1935 to 1944. The northern junket up to Prince Albert and beyond is now in jeopardy. The original idea was that I would present with Augie and his daughter Arlene. I would talk about the making of the book and Augie and Arlene would take the story into his life as a father, hunter, fisherman, trapper, boxer, jack of all trades, survivor, memoirist. This was going to be the highlight of the tour of the new edition of his book, and we were all up for it. Most exciting of all, I would get to gab with Augie one more time.

Right now I am preparing for my Saskatchewan Augie tour, but without Augie in the world anymore. I’ve already had a warm-up for the tour with a presentation at a Catholic High in Saskatoon, one of two high schools who pulled the book from the curriculum because some students dreaded the possibility of engaging with its dark truths. So I talked with the students about such things as truth and reconciliation, and about the historical connections between the two. A devoted teacher and a nice bunch of teenagers, but a minority of them were probably not ready for a plunge into the cold hard realities of torture, sexual violence and predation. The other school in Saskatoon simply cancelled my visit, probably because of similar fears. They’re studying this book at the venerable girls’ private school in Toronto, Bishop Strachan, but Saskatoon is perhaps a little too close to home for such truths.

If there is a chance for me to act on the need for reconciliation in this country, in this year of reconciliations, this is it. Augie delivered the truth to me in handwritten stories from 2001 to 2009, stories of shocking brutality that came through the re-opened trap-door of his memory. He began with a comforting catalogue of gentle memories of all the brothers, sisters and priests who cared for the children with kindness and love. Then he made for the dark corners of his life at St. Therese Residential School, where he was singled out for torture, sexual assaults and cruelty from about the age of seven until he left the school around age fourteen.

That is the truth. How might this reconciliation work for me? What exactly can I do?

March 8. Prince Albert.

By my count, there are close to two hundred and fifty people in the gym. I did not expect this because the weather is so bad.

Just as the ceremony is about to begin, our elder for the day arrives. I’ve already met her before, Augie’s sister Gertie. She might still be in her seventies, but only now do I realize what a beautiful face she has, a warm smile, a calming presence. To everyone she is Gertie, and no one mentions a last name. A few white teachers and officials from the college are out there, but perhaps ninety per cent of the audience is made up of Cree and Métis students and Indigenous members of the community.

Needless to say, I am thrilled to behold this audience.

I talk for about forty minutes about my symbiotic relationship with Augie. Obviously, he could not have assembled a book like this without me, but just as obviously, I could never come up with this riveting story without Augie. He suffered for it, but he delivered it. His life was not lucky, but our coming together felt lucky to me, this marriage of two different minds made in Heaven—because in 2001, Augie simply dropped out of the sky. I happened to pick up a telephone on the right day, and soon after that, the story began to unfold. Frequently, Augie was hard to work with and impossible to find when I needed him to answer questions and to finish his manuscript. Frequently, I dreamed of chucking the whole project. Only now can I see that, when we had to be, Augie and I were a good team.

I move away from the mic to a warm applause, and Augie’s daughter, Arlene, approaches the mic. Her sister Katherine is up there too. Katherine has just told me about Augie’s favourite park bench, the one on River Street with a view of the big bridge over the North Saskatchewan River. This bridge, she told me, was the one from which her brother fell to his death, and no one could save him. This was the last moment of his life, and Augie sat on his bench and observed it countless times as though he might commune with this last fatal moment.

Arlene Merasty has never had problems standing up to a big audience, be it live or televised or recorded on national radio. She tells stories about her father in front of a hushed audience, and the one I will cherish the most is the story about her dad’s trapline. One winter afternoon, Arlene, her dad, and some other family were relaxing in Arlene’s place in Prince Albert. Augie rose up and declared that he was going to check his trapline. Arlene had no idea what Augie meant, as they were living in the middle of the city. Hours later Augie returned to the house with a pole at the back of his neck suspended over his shoulders. On one side of the pole were three dead rabbits, and three more on the other side of the pole. Augie gutted and cleaned the animals and they all had a great feast.

“What did you do?” Arlene asked her dad. “Raid a pet store?”

“My trapline,” Augie replied.

“What trapline?”

Augie replied, “The golf course.”

With her memories of her father, Arlene absolutely stole the show. There is lot of love in the hall today.

I took my place at the book table to do some signing, and the line of readers was very long. One of the students in line, perhaps nineteen or twenty, declared, “Mr. Carpenter, I want you to know, we did this book real deep!” Reactions like that to Augie’s story really make me smile. At a time when some educators push books to the bottom of the agenda, it’s wonderful to encounter passionate readers and their teachers. Today they treat Augie’s memoir like a saint’s relic. And the testaments keep on coming all along the line, Cree and Métis readers and their devoted teachers. Today we are all part of a sad beautiful story.

 

This article was originally published in the 2017 Summer Issue of the Benchers’ Digest. Be sure to check it out for more great articles relating to National Aboriginal Day.

 

Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program for High Conflict Situations

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From Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice

Saskatchewan Family Justice Services offers a Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program for High Conflict Situations. Parents who have attended the regular Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program may benefit from attending this session.

If you are a parent experiencing high conflict with your ex-partner, this 6-hour session will address the following:

  • Reasons for conflict
  • Benefits of lowering the conflict
  • Co-operation vs. parallel parenting
  • Options for parenting when domestic violence is present
  • Effects of high conflict on children
  • How to handle difficult questions your child may ask
  • Resolving blame and guilt

Sessions will be held in:

Regina Saskatoon
June 19, 2017, Monday

9:00 am to 4:00 pm

To register, call

1-888-218-2822 or (306) 787-9905

June 15, 2017, Thursday

9:00 am to 4:00 pm

To register, call

1-877-964-5501 or (306) 964-4401

The regular Parenting After Separation and Divorce sessions are also available in Regina on these dates:

Saturday, June 10, 2017 – 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Saturday, June 24, 2017 – 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Topics of discussion include:

  • Options for resolving disputes and stages of separation and divorce: Presentation of the various stages, losses and changes experienced by separating or divorcing couples. Discussion of the options available for dispute resolution. Information of Child Support Guidelines.
  • Children’s reaction to separation/divorce: Discussion of how children may react at different developmental ages. Video presentation in which children talk about their personal experience of separation and/or divorce.
  • Challenges to parenting post separation/divorce: Presentation on changing family structure and roles. Emphasis on communication and keeping children out of the middle of parental conflict. Discussion video.

To register, call (306) 787-9905 in Regina or toll-free 1-888-218-2822. Location will be provided when you register. Classes are for adults only. No child care will be provided.

 

Access to Legal Information Innovation in Saskatchewan

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By Alan Kilpatrick

This talk was presented at the 2017 Saskatchewan Library Association Conference and the 2017 Canadian Association of Law Libraries Conference by Alan Kilpatrick, Reference Librarian, BA, MLIS.

Introduction

We all know that access to justice in Canada is inadequate.  Over 12 million Canadians will experience at least one legal problem in a three-year period.  Unfortunately, legal services are becoming increasingly inaccessible.  Our justice system has been described as too complex, slow, and expensive.  The justice system, overwhelmed by the increase in those representing themselves (self-represented litigants), is not meeting the needs of all Canadians.

A major barrier to accessing justice you may not be aware of is the inaccessibility of legal information.  Having access to legal information enables people to identify the full range of legal options available to them.  In some cases, having access to legal information allows people to resolve legal problems outside the court system altogether.  To improve access to justice, we first need to improve access to legal information.

A variety of organizations, such as the Action Committee on Access to Justice in Family and Civil Matters for example, have recognized gaps in the public’s access to information about the law.  At a time when legal information is readily available online, gaps still exist.  Not all Canadians have access to the internet and it can be extremely challenging to determine if online legal information is credible, reliable, or up to date.  There is a confusing lack of coordination among the organizations that provide public legal information and a strong need for intermediaries to guide the public to trustworthy sources of legal information.

This is exactly where the Law Society Library’s interest in legal information innovation developed.  Read the rest of this entry »

Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program – May 2017

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Family Justice Services is offering Parenting After Separation and Divorce Program at these locations in May 2017:

Estevan – Saturday, May 13, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Regina – Saturday, May 13 and May 27, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Swift Current – Saturday, May 27, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

Yorkton – Saturday, May 13, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

These public information sessions are intended to help people who are considering or may be in the separation/divorce process. Topics of discussion include:

  • Options for resolving disputes and stages of separation and divorce: Presentation of the various stages, losses and changes experienced by separating or divorcing couples. Discussion of the options available for dispute resolution. Information of Child Support Guidelines.
  • Children’s reaction to separation/divorce: Discussion of how children may react at different developmental ages. Video presentation in which children talk about their personal experience of separation and/or divorce.
  • Challenges to parenting post separation/divorce: Presentation on changing family structure and roles. Emphasis on communication and keeping children out of the middle of parental conflict. Discussion video.

There is no fee for these sessions but registration is mandatory. To register, call (306) 787-9905 in Regina or toll-free 1-888-218-2822. Location will be provided when you register. Classes are for adults only. No child care will be provided.

 

CBA Mid-winter Meeting

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CBA Mid-winter meeting kicks off this morning in Saskatoon. Here are some pictures from our Librarian Alan Kilpatrick.

cba2017exh_4 cba2017exh_3 cba2017exh_2 cba2017exh_1

 

Looking for Legal Research Assistance? Ask a Librarian!

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By Alan Kilpatrick

Having trouble with your legal research and looking for some help?  Would you like to identify the best resource or ebook for a particular area of the law?  Do you need training on the latest AskLibndatabase like WestlawNext?  Or, are you suffering information overload from the sheer number of legal resources out there?

If you are experiencing any of this, hit this button right now!

The Law Society of Saskatchewan Library is pleased to provide members with a full range of legal research services.  Law librarians possess a unique knowledge of legal resources and highly specialized skills to search those resources effectively and expertly.  We can work with you to develop research strategies, identify the ideal resources for you research, and add value to your legal research.

Ken Fox and Alan Kilpatrick are Reference Librarians with the Law Society of Saskatchewan Library.  Ken is located in Saskatoon branch in the court house on Spadina Crescent. Alan is located in our Regina branch in the court house on Victoria Avenue.

Please contact us at reference@lawsociety.ca or 306-569-8020 if you require any research assistance.

Ken Fox
Reference Librarian
Law Society of Saskatchewan Library
520 Spadina Cres. E.
Saskatoon, SK
(306) 933-5141
Alan Kilpatrick
Reference Librarian
Law Society of Saskatchewan Library
2425 Victoria Avenue, 2nd Floor
Regina, SK S4P 4W6
(306) 569-8020