Canada can work for everyone, if we all work together

Although a growing number of aboriginal people are productive members of the workforce, far too many rely on the government for support. That must change

Canada can work for everyone, if we all work togetherAs Canada celebrates 150 years, there’s much discussion about the need for reconciliation to make this country work for everyone. There’s no doubt aboriginal people were treated badly as Canada came of age. Other groups, such as the Chinese and Jewish people – who have also been the subject of intense discrimination – have managed…

Indigenous Canadians must embrace the future, not dwell on the past

As Canada begins its next 150 years, there is great potential for prosperity and progress for everyone, provided we accept basic tenets of modern nationhood

Indigenous Canadians must embrace the future, not dwell on the pastCanada's 150th birthday celebration was filled with contradictory emotions. How we progress as a nation depends on how we address those contradictions. There was a quiet, very Canadian pride felt by most of us at the achievements of this young and vigorous democracy. On this auspicious day, we were celebrating a country that has taken…

Ring of Fire: burning down a rare economic opportunity

First Nations can’t veto development in northern Ontario. They must engage in good faith, just like business and governments, and not squander this opportunity

Ring of Fire: burning down a rare economic opportunityBy Joseph Quesnel and Kenneth Green The Fraser Institute It’s often said that successful First Nations must operate at the speed of business, not the speed of government. That certainly applies to First Nations affected by the Ring of Fire mining proposal. Long delays and lack of communication between governments and the nine First Nation communities…

Taxing First Nations encourages accountability, good governance

Indigenous citizens would have real control over their communities and destinies if more funds were generated through taxes on reserves

The Cree Nation government in the James Bay region of Quebec recently approved a draft constitution and governance agreement that – among other things – would give them the power to collect taxes. In an interview with CBC, Bill Namagoose, the Cree Nation executive director said, “It provides security for the Cree Nation. There are no options…

New data pans First Nations custom-made election rules

May lead to discrimination and abuse of power, with disputes frequently ending up in federal court

New data pans First Nations custom-made election rulesVANCOUVER, B.C. Apr. 2, 2017/ Troy Media/ - Last month during band elections on the O’Chiese First Nation in central Alberta, incumbent Chief Darren Whitford won his seventh straight term after a new electoral rule, which required candidates to be fluent in one of the local indigenous languages, disqualified all challengers. Unfortunately, Indigenous and Northern…

Attawapiskat First Nation refuses to address its problems

De Beers decided to shelve plans to expand its mine because of the difficulty of dealing with continual protests from community members

Attawapiskat First Nation refuses to address its problemsANTIGONISH, N.S. Mar. 26, 2017 /Troy Media/ – Attawapiskat is emblematic of so many First Nations that need the money and jobs that come with developing resource partnerships yet waste these opportunities. Attawapiskat First Nation – an isolated northern Ontario reserve – played a prominent role in the Idle No More indigenous protest movement that erupted…

How political activists have weaponized “duty to consult”

First Nations in Ontario are challenging routine maintenance work on a pipeline which carries natural gas from western to eastern Canada

How political activists have weaponized “duty to consult”CALGARY, Alta. March 5, 2017/ Troy Media/ – In 2004, the Supreme Court of Canada created the “duty to consult.” The setting was British Columbia, where aboriginal title had never been ceded by treaty. The ruling made sense in that context; it seems only fair to consult a First Nation about exploitation of land and…

Indigenous communities deserve economic choice

Allowing free market ownership of urban reserves can give First Nations the economic clout to move ahead, despite having to pay taxes

Indigenous communities deserve economic choiceTo help First Nations convert more of their land into urban reserves, the federal government has decided to improve its Additions to Reserve (ATR) policy. It's a step in the right direction but more can be done to enhance the economic benefits. Urban reserves are First Nation-owned land designated by Ottawa. They come complete with tax…

Killing energy projects only hurts First Nations

Stringent environmental oversight already protects native rights to land and water, negating the need for veto rights

Killing energy projects only hurts First NationsThe right of First Nations to question resource development is not the same as a right to veto much-needed projects. Ron Tremblay, Grand Chief of the Wolastoq Grand Council in New Brunswick, said he believes Canada’s adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) gives First Nation communities veto power…

Giving First Nations the power to flourish

Across Canada, significant projects have improved conditions in many communities, thanks to a funding model that demands accountability

Giving First Nations the power to flourishFirst Nations have long been the stepchildren of the Canadian economy. But a funding initiative is changing that. By measures like income, health, longevity, access to services and others, many First Nations people fall well below what are considered normal levels in the rest of Canadian society. The resulting problems rightfully disturb us all. Insufficient and/or…