Archive for March, 2019

Alberta Métis Applaud Federal Budget for the Métis Nation

Posted on:

Alberta Métis Applaud Another Transformational Federal Budget for the Métis Nation

“Our Trust in Prime Minister Trudeau Was Well Placed”

Edmonton, AB. (March 20, 2019) On behalf of the Métis Nation within Alberta, MNA President Audrey Poitras applauds Federal Budget 2019, which includes significant Métis Nation specific investments in the areas of health, education, and economic development, as well as important commitments to Métis self-government, land claims, truth and reconciliation, preservation of the Michif language, and to Métis veterans.

“Federal Budget 2019 demonstrates that the trust we placed in Prime Minister Trudeau and his new government four years ago was well placed. Over the last four years, we have worked in partnership with the federal government and have seen transformational budgets that have set a new course for our people in Alberta. Federal Budget 2019 did not disappoint,” said MNA President Poitras.

President Poitras added, “The MNA has always believed that education is key to our people’s success both individually and collectively. This Federal Budget includes a precedent-setting dedicated and ongoing investment in Métis Nation education. These investments will allow our young people to have opportunities their parents and grandparents never had; benefitting the Métis Nation for generations to come.”

In addition, Federal Budget 2019 includes a commitment of $50 million to enhance the Métis Nation’s existing capital corporations to increase Métis entrepreneurship in Alberta. “Our capital corporation—Apeetogosan—is a leader in funding assistance for Métis businesses that create jobs in this province. We are so pleased. This investment will allow our capital corporation to increase funding during this challenging economic time in Alberta.”

Federal Budget 2019 also included the following commitments benefitting Métis children, families, and communities in Alberta:

  • $516 million over ten years to support Métis Nation priorities.
  • $248.6 million over three years to continue to support access to mental health and emotional support services for Indian residential school survivors and their families.
  • $362 million over ten years committed to education funding for Métis citizens.

In the spirit of reconciliation, Federal Budget 2019 also allocates funds to support some of the Calls to Action brought forward by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission including:

  • $126.5 million in 2020-21 for the establishment and operation of a National Council for Reconciliation.
  • $33.8 million to develop and maintain the National Residential School Student Death Register.
  • $10 million over two years to support communities to recognize and commemorate the legacy of residential schools on the proposed National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

“Personally, I am also very gratified to see the long overdue commitment of $30 million in Federal Budget 2019 to finally address the need to recognize our Métis veterans in a respectful manner.  This is a testament to the hard work of many who have always wanted our Métis veterans who have served this country with distinction, to be honoured,” concluded Poitras.

-30-

For more information about the Metis Nation of Alberta, please visit:

albertametis.com

Media contact:

Rolando Inzunza
Director of Communications & Citizen Engagement
780-455-2200 ext. 395
rinzunza@metis.org

Métis Nation of Alberta and Government of Alberta sign historic Métis Harvesting Agreement

Posted on:

Edmonton, AB. (March 13, 2019) Audrey Poitras, President of the Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA), Dan Cardinal, Vice President of the MNA, Shannon Phillips, Minister of Alberta Environment and Parks, and Richard Feehan, Minister of Indigenous Relations today signed an agreement on implementing a new Métis Harvesting in Alberta Policy.

The new Métis Harvesting in Alberta Policy replaces the 2010 policy and recognizes the rights of eligible MNA citizens to hunt, fish, and trap for food in five large regional Métis Harvesting Areas in central and northern Alberta (as opposed to the much smaller 25 local Métis harvesting areas provided for in the 2010 policy).

This agreement is a great step in advancing reconciliation and a result of extensive MNA consultation with our Métis citizens over eight engagement sessions across Alberta in 2018.
The agreement recognizes the MNA’s authority to issue Métis Harvesting Identification Stickers. The Stickers are to be affixed to the MNA citizenship cards of eligible individuals, indicating the Métis Harvesting Area(s) in which they may harvest. The agreement also establishes an Implementation Committee to review any issues related to the policy or Métis harvesting. Further, the agreement commits Alberta to ongoing discussion with the MNA about important outstanding issues, including the recognition of Métis harvesting rights in southern Alberta.

The Métis Nation of Alberta is very excited, through this agreement, to reaffirm its connection to the Métis Nation homeland and to continue its productive relationship with the Government of Alberta.

Quick Facts:

  • Eligible MNA citizens wishing to be identified as Métis Harvesters will be able to acquire a Métis Harvesting Identification Sticker from the MNA.
  • Métis Harvesting Identification Stickers will be issued by the MNA.
  • Each Métis Harvesting Identification Sticker will indicate the valid Métis Harvesting Area(s) for each Métis Harvester.
  • Each eligible Métis Harvester will need to show a pre-1900 ancestral connection to one or more Métis Harvesting Areas.

Quotes:
“The MNA’s new Métis Harvesting Agreement with Alberta is significant. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Métis people as distinct Indigenous people with connections to traditionally used lands and waters and inherent rights to hunt, fish, and trap. We are excited to announce this new agreement, but significant work remains to have Métis harvesting rights in southern Alberta recognized too.”
– Audrey Poitras, President of the Métis Nation of Alberta

“This is a historic day for the Métis Nation of Alberta. We should all be proud, as citizens, to showcase our traditional values and our rights to harvest as a Métis people. We need to continue these collaborative discussions, with respect to our Métis harvesting rights.”
– Dan Cardinal, Vice President of the Métis Nation of Alberta

-30-

For more information, please visit:
albertametis.com/harvesting

Media contact:

Rolando Inzunza
Director of Communications & Citizen Engagement
780-455-2200 ext. 395
rinzunza@metis.org