“This is a disaster waiting for a place to happen and they’re setting it up to fail.”

The Tlicho Friendship Centre is at odds with the Justice Department over the stability of the New Day Mens Healing Program at the John Howard Society.

The counseling centre submitted a complaint in June to the Justice Department about the John Howard Society’s capacity to run the New Day Mens Healing Program.

“They had responded to me within 2 or 3 days,” says Joe Pinteracs, Executive Director of the Tlicho Friendship Centre in Behchoko. “It was just indicating that they had received our complaint and that we would be contacted at some point in the near future. We have been waiting breathlessly as it were.”

Justice Minister Louis Sebert defended his decision to give the New Day Mens Healing Program  to the John Howard Society at last months standing committee, saying “The RFP’s (request for proposals) went out seeking bidders. There were no bidders.”

According to Pinteracs, The Tlicho Friendship Centre as well as the Northwest Territories and Nunavut counsel of Friendship Centres offered to run the program.

“First I would be saying to the Premier and the Minister, what the hell are you doing?”, says Pinteracs. “We had a program that has this incredible track record of success and they’ve ripped it apart.”

The John Howard Society, located on 48th Street in Yellowknife, is open Monday to Friday from 1pm to 5pm.