#Indigenous, #TruthandReconciliationCommission; #ewsidentialschools; #PhilipBrass; #FirstNation; #CanadianRootsExchange; #MaxFineDay; #NationalCouncilonReconciliation; #RuthSmillie
Ottawa, Mar 28 (Canadian-Media): Indigenous land acknowledgments, since the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's 94 calls to action were released in 2015, had been urging all levels of government to change policies and programs to repair the harm caused by residential schools and move forward with reconciliation, media reports said.
According to some Indigenous and non-Indigenous people land acknowledgments are hollow when they aren't followed up with further reconciliatory action.
Acknowledging traditional land is rooted in a spiritual understanding of spiritual territory, said Philip Brass, an Indigenous consultant from the Peepeekisis Cree Nation -- a Cree First Nation in southern Saskatchewan, Canada -- and added they have an even deeper significance.
"From a traditional practice, land acknowledgment for Indigenous people...is a tradition that is really rooted in a spiritual understanding of spiritual territory, so that's something fundamentally different about what we are seeing today...They can't be the only thing to do..."I think it can delay real systemic change in action, which is needed [for] any notions of reconciliation," said Brass
"There should be a meaning behind these statements...They aren't the wrong thing to do," said Max FineDay, executive director of Canadian Roots Exchange, a national non-profit that works with youth to advance reconciliation.
"It's just that they can't be the only thing to do," said FineDay.
FineDay, also a member of the interim National Council on Reconciliation, said both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people making these acknowledgments need to take action themselves and added,
"If they aren't familiar with it … reflect on what that means to them personally."
More recently Regina's Globe Theatre, which earlier had been reciting land acknowledgments before each production soon after the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission were released, has turned its attention to Indigenous storytelling and engaging with Indigenous history.
"When the Truth and Reconciliation report came out, we came together as a team and came up with a list of actions that we could take immediately, mid-term and long-term, in order to be engaged in that process of learning, acknowledgment and honouring," said Ruth Smillie, the theatre's artistic director.
Ruth Smillie (left)/Twitter
The theatre's 'Making Treaty 4', which would be staged in mid-April, explores the historical and contemporary significance of Treaty 4, encompassing Regina Saskatchewan. The theatre also plans to offer counselling for audience members.
#NativeWomen'sAssociationofCanada; #NWAC; #FrancyneJoe; #CarolynBennett; #VivianeMichel; #indigenous; #QuebecNativeWomen
Toronto, Mar 21 (Canadian-Media): Federal government's 2019 budget had been denounced by Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC) president Francyne Joe as it did not include any dedicated funding for indigenous women, media reports said.
In spite of signing of an accord with Canada by Crown-Indigenous Relations minister Carolyn Bennett, which recognized NWAC as a full participant in decision making at the national and international levels, the budget was reportedly blanketed and ignored any culturally relevant, gender-based line item.
"It takes a significant amount of time for proposals to be written, then you're waiting to find out if they've been approved," Joe said.
According to the accord parties agreed to negotiate a working plan and a contribution agreement for enhanced core-like funding to enable recognition of indigenous women's priorities to empower them.
Joe pointed out that the budget included a chapter on advancing reconciliation, but the indigenous women had been excluded from decision making.
"This budget ignores the issues that we brought to the table," said Joe.
Viviane Michel, president of Quebec Native Women, which is one of the 10 provincial chapters of the organization, said the need for healing programs following the inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls had been overlooked in this federal budget.
"Families, survivors, communities, children — they need to start healing no matter what...need a guarantee that funding is coming...to advance healing centres and allow for training of counsellors and elders so that we're prepared," said Joe.
March 15, 2019 – Ottawa, ON – Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
The Government of Canada is continuing the work of righting past wrongs, especially those involving Indigenous children, by resolving Childhood Claims through negotiation rather than litigation.
On March 12, 2019, the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, along with Claudette Commanda and Roger Augustine, announced that parties have reached a proposed settlement agreement recognizing the harms suffered by former students of Indian Day Schools.
From now until May 3, 2019, class members will have an opportunity to review the proposed settlement agreement and provide their comments to the Court. In May 2019, the parties will seek Federal Court approval of the proposed settlement. Once approved by the Court, and following opt-out and appeal periods, compensation and other benefits will be available to eligible class members.
The Government of Canada is proud of the work accomplished together with former students and their counsel in reaching this proposed settlement agreement. We will continue to work with survivors and Indigenous partners to advance reconciliation, promote Indigenous languages and culture, and support the healing and commemoration of those affected by the harmful policies of the past.
Quotes“Today marks a historic step forward, as we have reached a proposed settlement agreement for former students of Indian Day Schools. This truly is an example of the type of work we can accomplish together when we negotiate rather than litigate resolution of Childhood Claims. It wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless leadership, advocacy, and commitment to justice demonstrated by the class members. Canada is committed to righting historical wrongs, and will continue to work with survivors in the spirit of healing, commemoration and reconciliation.”
The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
“I was six years old when I attended the Congway School. I was excited and happy on the first day of school because I would meet new friends. My excitement turned to fear because the teacher was very strict and very mean to the children. From that day on, each school day, I would dread going to school because I feared the teacher. I was repeatedly physically abused. She would hit us with a ruler if we were not sitting properly or if she did not like the way we looked or spoke. We were punished if we spoke Algonquin. We were called “savages”. She constantly told me I was lazy and would not amount to anything good. I felt helpless and the fear walked with me for a long time. I want the world to know the abuse suffered by First Nation children in the Canadian government’s ‘school’ system. First Nation children and Inuit children experienced hardships in government run day schools, our truths must be told. No child should experience suffering and pain because of the color of their skin or culture.”
Claudette Commanda, Class Member
#FarNorthAct, #DonnyMorris, #northernOntarioFirstNation; #Ontario; #FarNorthAct; #DougFord
Toronto, Mar 15 (Canadian-Media): Concerned that Ontario proceed with its planned repeal of the Far North Act, Donny Morris, the chief of northern Ontario First Nation said whatever rules and regulations replace it, Ontario will have to work with his community's own laws, media reports said.
Donny Morris (Extreme Right)/Twitter
Far North Act is reportedly an Act with respect to land use planning and protection in the Far North
First Nations in Ontario constitute many nations. Common First Nations ethnicities in the province include the Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, and the Cree. In southern portions of this province, there are reserves of the Mohawk, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Seneca and Tuscarora.
Ontario's proposal to do away with the 2010 legislation, enacted to set guidelines for land-use planning in the far north has drawn criticism from First Nations, saying they were never consulted when the previous Liberal government enacted it.
"The Far North Act may be on its way out, but our laws, our Indigenous legal orders will remain," Morris's letter said.
"Repeal your laws but respect our laws," Morris's letter stated.
"We had never recognized or acknowledged the Far North Act, we never took any funds that they provided for land use planning," Morris told CBC News. "I just sent a letter to them ... we have a treaty-based understanding with both levels of governments...and that mutual respect should be shown."
"We as a government up north will determine our future ... don't impose any of your new rules or whatever you're trying to impose on us."
The proposed repeal of the Far North Act is open to public comment until April 11.
The press secretary for Indigenous Affairs Minister Greg Rickford said the government will continue to engage with northern First Nations during the consultation process "and discuss how we can collaboratively open the north up for business."
Morris had not got a response to his letter and said,
"We'll be willing to sit down and hash out our boundary, our territory and our rules and policies with them."