The First Ministers’ Meeting is set to start today in Ottawa and some First Nations groups are upset because they didn’t get invited.
Congress of Aboriginals National Chief Robert Bertrand is deeply concerned about the lack of participation the federal government extends to First Nations Advocacy groups, as CAP was not invited to partake in the meeting centred around sustainable economic growth.
Bertrand says “It has become abundantly clear that Prime Minister Trudeau is not interested in a renewed relationship with all Indigenous Peoples but rather one based on a selection of his own choosing, while at the same time silencing important voices who have a right to be at the table.”
CAP has been involved in political endeavours in Canada since participating in the First Ministers’ Conference on Aboriginal Constitutional Matters in 1983. Since Trudeau has taken office, CAP says he is “cherry picking which Indigenous peoples [they] want to recognize and deal with”.
Bertrand is calling on Trudeau to put his money where his mouth is and finally finish instituting the recommendations of the TRC and UNDRIP.
Congress of Aboriginal Peoples is an organization that has been representing status, non-status First Nations and Metis, as well as southern living Inuit living off reserve. Today, over 70% of Indigenous people live off reserve.