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Program Information
 CKLN News 
 Consultations on First Nations Governance Act draw protest across Canada
 Matthew Coon Come, Roberta Jamieson, Charles Fox and many more
 CKLN 88.1 fm  
 For non-profit use only.
Audio from all-night vigil and 3,000-strong "Freedom March" against FNGA in Toronto, March 20 and 21, 2003.
Producer: CKLN News
Uploaded by:
In 1969, then Minister of Indian Affairs Jean Chretien introduced the "white paper" on Indian policy. Canada's First Nations saw that the goal of the policy was assimilation. Their unified and uncompromising response was unprecedented and resulted in the defeat in the legislation and a tide towards increasing exertion of aboriginal rights and title.

In 1982, the Constitution Act was passed. Section 35 explicitly recognized the nation-to-nation relationship between the First Nations and Canada, and underscored Canada's responsibility for making sure that treaty rights are respected.

But now in 2003, Jean Chretien's Liberals are bringing back a new version of the White Paper. A set of several new laws is going through Canada's legislative process. The government claims to be modernizing the Indian Act. First Nations are rejected that argument. The proposals are made without any meaningful consultation, they say; in fact they ignore what First Nations have said repeatedly about their needs and priorities.

Since being tabled for second reading in Parliament on October 9, 2002, the First Nations Governance Act (FNGA) has gone to the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs. The committee is touring Canada but has not visited one First Nations community. On March 21st, the committee met in Toronto.

3,000 First Nations people rallied outside. Buses and cars rolled in from around southern Ontario - Six Nations of the Grand River, Tyendinega Mohawk Territory, Walpole Island... and many other communities.

The FNGA, if implemented, will require First Nations to develop models for financial management, elections, and administration. If the Ministry of Indian and Northern Affairs does not like those models, a standard one will be imposed. There is no allowance made for traditional governance, and no provision for new First Nations structures to monitor elections or finances on reserves -- which is what the First Nations have been trying to establish.

Other pieces to look out for include the First Nations Financial
Institutions Act and the First Nations Federal Indian Claims Commission Act.

For more information check out:
Chiefs of Ontario
Assembly of First Nations

The rally was organized by the Native Canadian Centre and the newly-forming Aboriginal Peoples Council of Toronto.

Files uploaded here:

1. Audio from the vigil at Toronto's Union Station, Thursday March 20: Denise Toulouse of Anishnabe Health, and Pauline Short (Bird Clan, Alberta), a grandmother and teacher.

2. Drum opening the rally on March 21 (Native Canadian Centre)

3. Women's drum (Native Canadian Centre)

4. Roberta Jamieson, chief, Six Nations of the Grand River and one of the most outspoken of the band council chiefs

5. Matthew Coon Come, Grand Chief, Assembly of First Nations

6. Charles Fox, Ontario Regional Chief

7. Avvy Go, lawyer and anti-racist activist

8. letter from Lincoln Alexander of the Canadian Centre for Race Relations

9. Honour Song (Native Canadian Centre drum)

  Download Program Podcast
03:40:09 English
  View Script
Denise Toulouse, Pauline Shirt at vigil  00:12:17  64Kbps mp3
(5.57MB) Mono
154 Download File...
Drum (Native Canadian Centre, Toronto)  00:06:47  64Kbps mp3
(2.96MB) Mono
152 Download File...
Women's Drum (Native Canadian Centre, Toronto)  00:03:53  64Kbps mp3
(1.62MB) Mono
146 Download File...
Roberta Jamieson  00:05:01  64Kbps mp3
(2.29MB) Mono
25 Download File...
Matthew Coon Come  00:07:31  64Kbps mp3
(3.35MB) Mono
153 Download File...
Charles Fox  02:52:00  64Kbps mp3
(78.74MB) Mono
145 Download File...
Avvy Go  00:03:39  64Kbps mp3
(1.55MB) Mono
153 Download File...
Canadian Centre on Race Relations  00:03:17  64Kbps mp3
(1.45MB) Mono
151 Download File...
Honour Song  00:05:44  64Kbps mp3
(2.49MB) Mono
155 Download File...