Wendake, September 18, 2018 – “First Nation issues are finally getting a nod in the electoral campaign but we want to hear more than just a few references,” stated Chief of the AFNQL Ghislain Picard, reacting to the English debate held yesterday.
During the debate, when questioned about labor shortage, Liberal and Parti quebecois leaders said they would turn to First Nations. “We need to bring Seniors in the workforce, (and) First Nations”, said Philippe Couillard. “Labor shortage is a real issue and there are number of ways to address it: First Nations for example… Ghislain Picard said since there were labor shortage in the regions, could we not maximize the employment of the youth from the First Nations and Inuits? I think it’s a great idea,” added Jean-François Lisée.
“Up to now, we have heard a lot of talk about immigration as a solution to the labor shortage, but very few dared to venture into the realm of First Nations demographic reality, which is that 55 per cent of our population is 25 years old and under. Yesterday, I was glad to hear two of the political party leaders recognize that we have an active population ready to work”, commented Chief Ghislain Picard, who wants to remind the political party leaders that 100 days into the new administration, the AFNQL will invite the next government to a formal meeting with our Chiefs Assembly. “For First Nations, employment, training, jobs, and a host of other sectors related to economy, need measures and a plan. Also, we can’t talk about economy if we don’t talk about access to lands and resources. But first, we need to talk,” concluded Chief Picard.
About the AFNQL The Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador is the political organization regrouping 43 Chiefs of the First Nations in Quebec and Labrador. Follow us on Twitter @APNQL.