Topic: Today’s News

Apuiat Project Opportunity to Build a Political Relationship on a Solid Foundation

Wendake, November 1, 2018 – Outside of the media debate on the continuation of the Apuiat Wind Project, of which the Innu Nation is the promoter in the North Shore region, the Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador (AFNQL), Ghislain Picard, wants to emphasize the importance of a government-to-government relationship with the First Nations involved.

The intention to build a strong relationship with First Nations was reflected in a correspondence from the leader of the CAQ during the election campaign, and this was confirmed in a first meeting held last Friday between Premier François Legault, the Minister Responsible for Native Affairs, Sylvie D’Amours and the Chief of the AFNQL, Ghislain Picard.

“First Nations economy has emerged from discussions as an essential element in enhancing the current socio-economic conditions of communities. In the circumstances and based on the will expressed by Premier Legault to establish a new positive and constructive relationship, a high- level political dialogue is not only desirable, but urgent, in order to allow the Innu Nation and the government of Quebec to establish the desired framework for discussion,” said Ghislain Picard, Chief of the AFNQL.

“In good faith, we have offered our cooperation to bring together the conditions for a harmonious relationship between the Government of Quebec and those of First Nations. This is an important step towards creating a sustainable political relationship. The fate of the Apuiat Project is an example of an opportunity to seize, because any process that excludes First Nations is bound to fail,” concluded Ghislain 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.

 

Call for proposals – Grants and Contributions

The Department of Culture and Heritage is now accepting applications and proposals for projects that promote, protect or preserve and revitalize the culture, language, arts and heritage of Nunavut.

Community-based, non-profit organizations, municipal corporations or individuals can apply for funding under the following categories:

 Heritage programs – preserving cultural legacy.

 Elders and youth programs – support for Elders and youth activities.

 Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit – maintaining Inuit societal values with social well-being initiatives.

 Official languages – language promotion, protection and preservation. Projects must take place between April 1, 2019, and March 31, 2020. Societies, associations and corporations must provide proof of good standing with Nunavut Legal

Registries. The deadline is January 31, 2019, at 5 p.m. EST. For more information, call 867-975-5519 or email chfunds@gov.nu.ca. You can also visit www.ch.gov.nu.ca.

European Parliament Subcommittee on Human Rights Reaches out to the Native Women’s Association of Canada – Raises Concerns about Discrimination Against Indigenous Women in Canada

Ottawa, ON – Today, the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) met with representatives from the European Parliament Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI) to discuss the ongoing systemic and aggravated forms of discrimination against Indigenous women, girls and gender-diverse people in Canada.

“The international community’s concern regarding the staggering rates of violence against Indigenous women in Canada demonstrates the need for action,” said NWAC’s President Francyne Joe. “It is important the world is aware of how colonization continues to negatively impact our women and how Canada is failing their obligations.”

DROI, made similarities between Indigenous women’s issues in Canada and Romani women in Europe. Soraya Post, a member of DROI pledged support to NWAC offering an alliance. Post is tired of fighting for equality and basic human rights for women.

“I don’t want an apology and I am tired of begging. I am demanding. I want action,” said Post.

Despite NWAC’s ongoing efforts to advocate for Indigenous women, girls and gender-diverse people, Canada has failed to include Indigenous women’s political voices at critical decision-making tables and to provide stable and equitable funding to NWAC.

“Our goal is to seek support from the international community to put an end to the discrimination against Indigenous women and the discrimination against NWAC as the organization that represents them,” said Joe.

Assembly of First Nations National Chief Congratulates Bobby Cameron on Re-Election as Chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations and Saskatchewan Regional Chief for the AFN

(Ottawa, ON): Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde congratulates Bobby Cameron on his re-election yesterday as Chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) and AFN Regional Chief for Saskatchewan. The FSIN Legislative Assembly and Election took place at the TCU Place in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan on October 24 and 25, 2018.

“On behalf of the AFN Executive Committee, I congratulate Regional Chief Bobby Cameron on his re-election and look forward to our continued work together on enforcing and implementing First Nations rights and title,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “Regional Chief Cameron has been a strong voice on the AFN Executive Committee for the rights and priorities of First Nations in Saskatchewan and across the country and we value his ongoing experience and insight.  I acknowledge and offer congratulations to FSIN First Vice-Chief Morley Watson and Third-Vice Chief Edward Henry (Dutch) Lerat as they join the FSIN executive to advocate and represent Saskatchewan First Nations.”

Regional Chief Bobby Cameron is a member of the Witchekan Lake First Nation and was elected to his first term for Chief of FSIN and AFN Regional Chief in 2015.  The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations represents 74 First Nations in Saskatchewan.

The AFN is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada. Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Updates.

Court Denies Injunction but Orders Treaty 8 Infringement Trial before Site C Reservoir Flooding

(Fort St. John, B.C., Treaty 8 Territory, October 24, 2018) 

The British Columbia Supreme Court has ordered that a full trial should occur prior to the flooding of the Site C Reservoir in its ruling on an injunction application brought by West Moberly First Nations with support from Prophet River First Nation.

The Court agreed with West Moberly that there is a “serious issue to be tried” and a risk of “irreparable harm” being suffered prior to trial, but declined to grant the requested injunction. However, it ordered that a full trial should occur before the Site C reservoir could be flooded in 2023, leaving open the possibility of a permanent halt to the project.

“We will do whatever it takes to protect the land and to preserve the customs and traditions of our Dunne-za ancestors,” said Chief Kirk Tsakoza of Prophet River First Nation.

“We have every intention of proceeding to trial, and will be deciding whether an appeal of this judgement is necessary as well,” said Chief Roland Willson.

“The Court may have chosen not to suspend work on the dam, but that doesn’t mean this Project will ever be completed. As the 200 evacuees at Old Fort could tell you, the unstable north banks of the Peace River may have other plans,” said Chief Tsakoza.

“This judgement doesn’t transform Site C into a good project. It’s not a vindication. It’s another warning shot. The question to ask is how many billions of dollars will be wasted, and how many human lives will be put at risk by carrying on with this boondoggle?” said Chief Willson.

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada launches extensive new educational resources

OTTAWAOct. 22, 2018 /CNW/ – Against the backdrop of the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill, students from the Ottawa Inuit Children’s Centre stepped onto the long-awaited Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada (IPAC) Giant Floor Map.Parliamentarians, leaders representing First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, representatives from Indspire, and members of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS) joined students on the gymnasium-sized map, in a story-sharing circle to hear about the work that went into creating the Atlas. Organized by the Indigenous Caucus of the Liberal Party, the launch celebrated the completion of Canadian Geographic‘s innovative Indigenous Peoples Atlas ofCanada educational resources.

“Thoughout the Truth and Reconciliation Commission we heard from Survivors that education was the way forward for reconciliation,” says Ry Moran, Director of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. “The IPAC Educational Resources will provide the necessary tools for teachers to educate the next generation, and all of Canadians, about Indigenous histories, nations, territories and Identities.”

Canadians of all ages are keen to learn more about Indigenous history and perspectives in Canada. The Atlas has already sold 8,000 copies through pre-orders alone, and the four-volume collection is now available in bookstores and online. A second printing is underway and will be available as of Nov. 17, 2018.

The educational resources that accompany the Atlas are unique in both their content and scope. Much of the information presented in these resources has never been made available in written form or shared with educators before now. And the extent of history and geography covered by these resources is impressive — most of Canadian Geographic Education’s teacher’s guides are about 35 pages long, but the IPAC teacher’s guide offers more than 170 pages of activities and lesson plans.

Teachers are already lining up to book IPAC’s educational materials for their schools. When the IPAC Giant Floor Mapsite went live on Sept. 26, Can Geo Education received 68 bookings in just three weeks. All Can Geo Education’s resources are bilingual and free to use or book. In addition, 30 IPAC Giant Floor Maps have been sold to schools and groups across Canada.

For the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism, that definitely will support Canada’s efforts at reconciliation with Indigenous People. “This project will ensure that young Canadians have the opportunity to learn more about the culture and heritage of Indigenous Peoples, including the dark history of residential schools. The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada was a Canada 150 project that we were proud to support, because it involved the participation of Indigenous Peoples and responded to the Call to Action to better educate our children on these issues. I congratulate the Royal Canadian Geographical Society for undertaking this creative and exciting project, which we hope will move us down the path of reconciliation.”

John Geiger, CEO of the RCGS, attributes the success of the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada to the enthusiasm and interest from both Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians in having materials that reflect the perspectives and stories of all peoples in Canada. “We have collaborated with Indigenous partners to produce these unique educational resources and along the way these partnerships have grown into friendships. I hope as more Canadians learn through IPAC, this understanding will nurture more empathy and reconciliation with Indigenous People, which has always been our goal,” said Geiger.

“Canadian Geographic’s Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada is a ground-breaking new educational resource,” says Vance Badawey, M.P for Niagara Centre and member of the Indigenous Caucus of the Liberal Party. “It is my hope this project will help build multicultural understanding, encourage dialogue, and foster mutual respect between all Canadians. A key to a better Canada lies in forging stronger relationships with Indigenous Peoples.”

The Atlas content has been produced in partnership with the Assembly of First Nations, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council, the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, and Indspire. These partners represent an unparalleled breadth and depth of knowledge, expertise, and strong ties to their respective communities and networks. The RCGS provided the technical expertise on the project. The Atlas partners are pleased with the fruit of their year-long labours, having worked hard to develop these innovative teaching tools, which will soon be introduced into classrooms all across Canada.

For Clément Chartier, President of the Métis National Council, who spoke at today’s launch, all the hard work has paid off. “If one wants to explore the many dimensions of the Métis Nation and its history and culture, the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada is the place to go.”

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada was created in response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, which cites the development of culturally appropriate curricula for Indigenous students as a top priority. Lack of appropriate educational and financial resources for Canada’s Indigenous students has long been deemed a contributing factor to the marginalization of Indigenous communities.

“The Assembly of First Nations is encouraged by the interest shown in the Indigenous Peoples Atlas. We hope to build on the momentum of this success and continue to encourage learning about First Nation cultures and contributions in shaping our country, says Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde. “We all have a role in reconciliation, and these tools and resources can help educators, students, schools and communities tell the story of our shared history. We need to move forward together to advance understanding and mutual respect.”

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada includes a four-volume print atlas, an online interactive atlas with an accompanying app, Giant Floor Maps, and various other educational resources for classrooms. This ambitious, ground-breaking educational resource is unprecedented in scope, as well as in the level of Indigenous participation and content creation on a geography-related project.

“When flying over the lands and waters of Inuit Nunangat, our homeland, an outsider might just see rocks, snow or tundra. Inuit see our home. We recognize the places where we fish, hunt or gather berries, the places where our families have traveled for generations following the seasonal changes of our environment. It is this spirit of Inuit Nunangat that we are proud to offer a glimpse of through the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada,” said Natan Obed, President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami. “We hope that we can also share insights into our history and our political desires for unity and self-determination.”

“Indspire is thrilled that the materials have had such an enthusiastic response. This information is brand new to many Canadians and we applaud the educators who are using these materials in their classrooms to better inform their students about First Nations, Inuit and Métis people” said Roberta Jamieson, President & CEO, Indspire. “Education is the key to reconciliation and this is another crucial step in educating Canadians about who we are, and reminding Canadians and our young people that our stories matter, our histories matter, and we remain a vital part of Canada.”

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada teaching resources are now available to all Indigenous schools through the partners’ distribution channels and to more than 21,000 Can Geo Education members. The four-volume set of books will be sold and distributed by Kids Can Press, through an exclusive partnership with Canadian Geographic that will enable this important resource to be made available not only across Canada but around the world. The partnership will also see the future development of much-needed children’s content, inspired by the collaborative efforts of Indigenous communities and Can Geo Education.

Government of Canada is taking steps to support recovery of the Southern Resident Killer Whales in the Salish Sea

News release

October 22, 2018                     VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA

Canada has the longest coastline in the world, serving as home to rich biodiversity and precious ecosystems. The Government of Canada is building on its historic Oceans Protection Plan, and taking immediate action to preserve and restore marine ecosystems to help endangered whale populations recover.

In June 2018, the Government of Canada announced the $167.4 million Whales Initiative that increases Transport Canada’s research and monitoring of underwater noise and vessel movement. Building on this, today, Terry Beech, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport announced measures to support the recovery of endangered whale populations. Transport Canada will be working with multiple partners on the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Enhancing Cetacean Habitat and Observation (ECHO) program which is looking at ways to reduce underwater noise in key areas where there are Southern Resident Killer Whales.

These $1.6 million measures will include the deployment of an underwater hydrophone at Boundary Pass in the Salish Sea. Over the coming months, the hydrophone will collect individual vessel and mammal noise profiles and the information will be used to develop measures to further support the recovery of the Southern Resident Killer Whales. In addition, with support from the National Research Council of Canada, Transport Canada will carry out a four-year project to better predict propeller noise and hull vibration of a vessel.

The $1.5 billion Oceans Protection Plan is the largest investment ever made to protect Canada’s coasts and waterways. Through this plan, the Government of Canada is creating a world-leading marine safety system that provides economic opportunities for Canadians today, while protecting our coasts and waterways for generations to come. This work is being done in close collaboration with Indigenous peoples, local stakeholders and coastal communities.

Quotes

“I am proud of how we are working to address recovery of these iconic species. By increasing our research and monitoring, we are getting a better understanding of how we can reduce human-caused threats and successfully recover endangered whale populations.”

The Honourable Marc Garneau,
Minister of Transport

“Canada’s Whales Initiative builds on the success of the Oceans Protection Plan to support the recovery of endangered whale populations. Coming from the West Coast and thanks to my work on this issue during my previous experience as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, I am keenly aware of the plight of the Southern Resident Killer Whale. I know how important the survival of this whale population is for Canadians and I am proud to be advancing key initiatives to help address their recovery.”

Terry Beech
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

“A key focus of the ECHO Program is supporting the recovery of southern resident killer whales, and the underwater hydrophone is critical to our understanding of how underwater vessel noise might be affecting these and other at-risk species,” said Duncan Wilson, Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility at Vancouver Fraser Port Authority. “Transport Canada’s initiative aligns well with our environmental objectives and we are pleased to see their ongoing commitment to protect the marine environment.”

Duncan Wilson
Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility at Vancouver Fraser Port Authority

Quick facts

  • In Haro Strait, a voluntary vessel slowdown in summer 2018 was built on the successful 2017 slowdown in the same area that significantly reduced underwater noise in critical habitat when Southern Resident Killer Whales were present.
  • Beginning in August 2018, the Strait of Juan de Fuca lateral displacement trial has seen consistent shifts of commercial vessels away from key Southern Resident Killer Whale foraging areas.
  • Transport Canada is adding an additional aircraft to its fleet for the National Aerial Surveillance Program. It is also adding a state of the art maritime search radar on each coast and infra-red sensors for all of the program’s aircraft.
  • During summer 2018, there were no reported deaths of the North Atlantic right whale in Canadian waters.

Enquête TV Program on Abuses Committed by the Oblates Impunity Must Stop

Enquête TV Program on Abuses Committed by the Oblates Impunity Must Stop

Wendake, October 22, 2018 – Following the broadcast of Radio-Canada’s television program Enquête on October 18th revealing other cases of abuse committed on First Nations children by ten Oblate priests, the Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador (AFNQL) Ghislain Picard questions the silence of the Catholic Church.

“Here we have other cases in addition to a multitude of examples that demonstrate that acts of contrition will not suffice. The Catholic Church must stop procrastinating. All churches have made excuses except for them. What does the Pope’s silence mean? Impunity is unacceptable,” says
Ghislain Picard.

The broadcast once again highlighted several cases of sexual abuse of minors of the Atikamekw and Innu nations over decades. These latest cases are in addition to events that have already been publicly revealed and where intergenerational impacts have had heavy consequences on individuals, families and communities affected.

“The Catholic Church must respond to these reprehensible acts. This is an essential first step to pave the way for healing for the victims. Considering all that we now know, the silence of the Catholic Church would suffice to justify holding a public inquiry, ” concluded Chief Picard.

About the AFNQL

The Assembly of First Nations of Quebec and Labrador is the political organization regrouping 43 Chiefs of the First Nations in Quebec and Labrador. Follow us on Twitter @APNQL

INNU NATION CONCERNED ABOUT IMPACT TO INNU WORKERS AS RESULT OF NALCOR STOP-WORK ORDER ISSUED TO ASTALDI AT MUSKRAT FALLS (LOWER CHURCHILL PROJECT)

SHESHATSHIU, LABRADOR, NL – Innu Nation leaders are in St. John’s today to meet with Stan Marshall, Nalcor Energy CEO about the stop work order that Nalcor has issued to Astaldi.

Innu Nation’s Grand Chief Gregory Rich said “Innu Nation has an Impacts and Benefits Agreement with Nalcor Energy that contractors at the Muskrat Falls site must respect”.

“Innu Nation will meet with Nalcor today to ensure that Nalcor fulfills its IBA obligations to Innu Nation and that Innu workers are transferred into other positions or have first priority for return to work, as required in our IBA” said Grand Chief Rich.

There are 50 Innu workers employed by Astaldi. In a statement to Innu workers issued by Astaldi this morning, all Innu workers remain on site. Innu Nation will continue to monitor the situation.

The Lower Churchill Impacts and Benefits Agreement is part of the historic Tshash Petapen (New Dawn) Agreement that Innu Nation signed with Nalcor Energy and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador on September 26th, 2008.

The University of Sudbury celebrates Indigenous recipients of substantial scholarships

SUDBURY – During a ceremony held at the University of Sudbury yesterday (Thursday, October 18th) at 10 a.m., three Indigenous students were recognized and were officially awarded their substantial scholarships.

A total sum of $18,000 was recently awarded in scholarships to deserving students of the Indigenous Studies program at the University of Sudbury. The recipients recognized this year were: Erin Fairbairn, who received the continuing $7,000 Dr. Constance Elaine Jayne Williams and Charles L. Williams Educational Trust Scholarship; Bneshiinh McLeod, who received the $4,000 Maple Grove United Church Scholarship; and Sonnie Debassige, who received the continuing $7,000 Rotary Aboriginal Scholarship Fund.

Erin Fairbairn is from Wikemikong Unceded Indian Reserve. She is a full-time student currently in her third year of the Indigenous Studies program, while concurrently working towards her Bachelor of Education. Working hard at balancing academics and her home life, as she has a family of her own, Erin says that she has dreamt of becoming a teacher of Indigenous Studies for as long as she can remember and that she looks forward to doing her part in the decolonization of education

Bneshiinh McLeod is an Anishinaabekwe from Mississauga First Nation, and a full-time student working towards a Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous Studies. She is currently the Vice-President of the Indigenous Students Circle, where she provides outreach and support to the Indigenous student population of the Laurentian Federation.

Sonnie Debassige, from M’Chigeeng First Nation, is a full-time student who is also working towards a Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous Studies and hopes to pursue her studies in that field at the doctoral level. Sonnie is very involved in offering cultural teachings within the Laurentian Federation, which she indicates can contribute to the reconciliation efforts.

The University is pleased to be able to offer such scholarships with the help of its donors, to assist these dedicated individuals in their studies and help foster their success as they continue their academic journeys and careers. We extend our most sincere congratulations to these recipients, who will surely use their knowledge and experience to make a difference.

About the Maple Grove United Church Scholarship: The Maple Grove United Church Scholarship was established in 2014 to assist Indigenous students in meeting their financial needs during the course of their full-time studies within the Laurentian Federation.

About the Dr. Constance Elaine Jayne Williams and Charles L. Williams Educational Trust Scholarship:
Established in 2017, this scholarship is awarded to an Indigenous student pursuing full-time studies in the Indigenous Studies program at the University of Sudbury, from any of the following Ojibway bands: M’Chigeeng First Nation, Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation, Wikemikong Unceded Indian Reserve, Sheguiandah First Nation, Sheshegwaning First Nation. This is a continuing scholarship, meaning that the recipients will continue to receive the annual amount until completion of their degree, as long as they continue to meet the requirements and remain in good academic standing.

About the Rotary Aboriginal Scholarship: Fund Established in 2016, the Rotary Indigenous Scholarship was established at the University of Sudbury due to the generous donation of the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar. This scholarship is meant to assist Indigenous students in meeting their financial needs during the course of their full-time studies within the Laurentian Federation. This is a continuing scholarship, meaning that the recipients will continue to receive the annual amount until completion of their degree, as long as they continue to meet the requirements and remain in good academic standing.

About the University of Sudbury : The University of Sudbury is proud of its bilingual and tri-cultural environment and of its Jesuit tradition of educating the whole person. As Northern Ontario’s longest-standing postsecondary institution and a member of the Laurentian University Federation, the University of Sudbury remains committed to a focus on a liberal arts education by providing programming in Journalism (French only), Folklore and Ethnology (French only), Religious Studies, Philosophy and Indigenous Studies.

Detailed information about the University’s programs can be found at www.usudbury.ca.
For more information, please contact Marianne Denis-Séguin at the University of Sudbury (mdenis3@usudbury.ca)