With the common goals of establishing a renewed Nation-to-Nation relationship between Indigenous Nations and Canada, the Government of Canada and the Native Women’s Association signed an Accord on February 1, 2019. The Accord will recognize NWAC as a full participant in decision-making processes at the national and international levels.
This Accord means Canada will work with NWAC to establish a reconciliation building process to decolonize, which includes meetings with the Prime Minister, Ministers, Deputy Ministers responsible for policy development and key federal Cabinet Ministers.
For too long, the voices of Indigenous women, girls and gender diverse people have been silenced. Through this Accord, their perspectives and political voices will be heard and will assist the development and design process of programs, services, policies and laws.
Since 1974, NWAC has advocated for women, girls, gender diverse people and families of many Indigenous Nations, fighting for an inclusive world that understands and respects their diversity and uniqueness.
This historic Accord will allow NWAC and Canada to collaboratively address policy priorities including health and well-being (with particular attention to mental health), economic empowerment, youth well-being and leadership, environmental protection, housing, education, overrepresentation of Indigenous women in prisons, and international relationships, all of which directly affect the lives and rights of Indigenous women, girls and gender diverse people.
NWAC and Canada agreed it is a shared priority to empower Indigenous women, girls and gender diverse people, as leaders, in the design and the co-development of laws, programs services, operational practices and policies.
This Accord is a significant step towards healing and reconciliation. It’s time to end the legacy of colonialism, colonial attitudes, and gender-based violence wherever they remain in all Federal legislation, institutions, policies and operational practices.