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Métis women appointed provincial court judges in Saskatchewan

Two Métis women have been appointed judges at two provincial courts in Saskatchewan. File / Global News

The Government of Saskatchewan announced on Friday that two Métis women have been appointed provincial court judges.

Natasha Crooks was appointed to the bench in Saskatoon.

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“Her contributions to the legal profession in the province over the last 12 years have been incredibly valuable,” Saskatchewan Justice Minister Don Morgan said in a press release.

“Her commitment to public service and diverse experience will enhance the judicial system in our province.”

Crooks was raised in southern Saskatchewan and later received her law degree in 2004 from the University of Saskatchewan. She articled with the Department of Justice Canada and began her career with a general litigation practice on behalf of many federal government departments.

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Crooks is the chairperson of the Aboriginal Circle, a national committee for the Parole Board of Canada, which provides advice on issues affecting Aboriginal offenders, victims and communities.

Mary McAuley, who grew up in Cumberland House, was appointed a provincial court judge in La Ronge.

“She has made valuable contributions to the legal profession in the province for more than 10 years,” Morgan said in a press release.

“Her diverse experience will certainly enhance the judicial system in our province.”

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McAuley also received her law degree from the University of Saskatchewan. She has practiced with McAuley Law Firm since 2012, which she started on her own in Prince Albert.

She is one of the only fluent Cree speaking Métis women practicing law in the province. Government officials said McAuley’s first language and cultural understandings in working and communicating with Cree-speaking people in the justice system will be an asset.

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