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Thunder Bay Police slow to respond to Missing Aboriginal Youth


THUNDER BAY –  February 12, 2011   -- It has been almost a week since Jordan Wabasse, 15 has  Jordan Wabassegone missing.  And yet Thunder Bay Police has not bothered to send an email to Lake Superior News about this being missing 15 year old. One has to hope it is not because he is a First Nation Youth.

One hopes that Thunder Bay Council, and especailly their representative Joe Virdiramo
will report to council on why it took so long for Thunder Bay Police to do everything in their power to find this youth.

The power of the Internet, social networking, friends and family all are working together to find Jordan Wabasse a missing 15-year-old. The teenager, who is 6’1″ tall, and has dark hair was last seen on Monday, February 7th. The effort to find Jordan has continued to grow over the week, as friends and family working with the Thunder Bay Police Service are searching for the teenager.

In stories like this, it is easy to forget how the parents, family and friends are impacted. Jordan, is from Webequie First Nation. Webequie is located on the northern peninsula of Eastwood Island on the Winisk Lake, 540 kilometers north of the city of Thunder Bay, or 450 kilometers north of the town of Sioux Lookout. Access is only by air or a seasonal winter road. There is no year-round road access. The nearest year-round road access is the town of Pickle Lake, 250 km to the southwest, or the town of Nakina, 320 km to the southeast. Charter air service to Webequie is available from both of these communities.

Like many young people from First Nations communities, Jordan is in Thunder Bay to complete his high school education. To offer a glimpse into this young man, two years ago, he competed as part of a team from Webequie with the 3rd Junior Canadian Rangers in air rifle marksmanship.

Over the past thirty hours since posting a story on the missing teenager, two things have happened. First social networking has kicked in as people from across Northwestern Ontario have read the article, posted it to their Facebook profiles and added their comments and prayers.

Second the community has rallied to help. Right now if you want to help, donations are being accepted to help with the search. Cash or food can be given. You can drop off items over the weekend at the Travelodge Airlane Travelodge Airlane Tiberio Room A. The telephone number for the Travelodge Airlane is (807) 473-1600. Sandra Brown of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) can be contacted at 623-8228.

The family and friends are starting to coordinate search units. Right now it sounds like there will probably be other teams coming in from other First Nations to assist with the search. The family are still asking for the public’s assistance. If you have any information, you are requested to share it with either the family, or the Thunder Bay Police Service. If you have any info contact the Thunder Bay Police (807) 684-1200 or his parents (807) 472-3845 or his boarding home (807) 285-7282 ASAP.

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