The first three issues are fundamental to First Nation-Crown relations and the most important to me. After that, the issues I listed are in no particular order, but are all important.
If you are wondering why there are so many blank spaces in my chart -so am I. I have reviewed all the election platforms on all the parties websites and it is SLIM PICKENS when it comes to real meaningful promises or commitments for Aboriginal peoples.
I wonder if the parties think that because Harper was so bad with Aboriginal issues that we are so desperate as to accept any promise, no matter how small?
BLOC - The word "Aboriginal" only appears once in the Bloc's platform and simply says they will deal with First Nations on a Nation-to-Nation basis.
NDP - The NDP's platform outline on their website lacks any details yet and there is no mention of Aboriginal issues - more to come I am sure.
FIRST PEOPLES - Even the First Peoples National Party has next to nothing on their website except for a call to abolish Senate and replace it with elected Aboriginal people and to ensure all schools and universities teach Native Studies courses.
GREEN - The Green Party commits to add $800M a year to federal funding for education, housing, and water. They also promise to have Canada implement UNDRIP as well as Kelowna.
PC - The Conservatives do far more boasting than offering any real substantial commitments to Aboriginal peoples. It ends up being more assimilation with a side order of paternalism with their tiresome focus on chief's salaries.
LIBERAL - Then there is the Liberal Party, who has produced a detailed platform which does mention Aboriginal peoples. The Liberal promises are as follows:
(1) a partial removal of the funding cap on First Nation post-secondary education with an extra $200M in the first 2 years;
(2) stable funding for First Nations University of Canada;
(3) $5M per year (for 3 years) for a Metis scholarship;
(4) $300M for k-12 education in year 2;
(5) Will continue support for Aboriginal Headstart;
(6) Will create a First Nation Auditor General;
(7) Will have an inquiry into the number of Murdered and Missing Aboriginal Women; and
(8) "Retain lessons and spirit of Kelowna process".
So, as the weeks go on and the parties speak more about their platforms and release more details, if they make any promises for Aboriginal peoples, I will add them to my chart. In the meantime, this chart should stand as a glaring reminder of how little attention our issues have received so far and to demand more from these parties.
What is being promised so far leaves something to be desired. Perhaps if any of the parties are reading my blog, they might want to consider either including or beefing up their sections on Aboriginal peoples. We are the First Peoples of this land and our rights are constitutionally enshrined. We have treaties signed between Nations that have yet to be recognized and implemented.
We also have a crisis in First Nation poverty caused by colonial policies of land and resource theft, denial of basic rights and freedoms and an active policy of assimilation. Until those issues are addressed, a few election promises won't make much of a difference in the everyday lives of Indigenous peoples.
Honour FN vets in War 1812 commem.
Remove Senate, elect Abs
Treaty Recog & Implementation
Priority funds to enhance fish stocks, greater FN role, Land & treaty tribunal, respect douglas treaty
Address Land Claims
Invest in FN land management
Eco-tourism for FNs, extend protect area, honour intent of land claims agrees, no extinguish
Remove 2% Funding Cap
Partial, $200M/2 yr
plus capital $ for business
“lessons & spirit”
Yes, restore $5.1B in funds
Increase PSE Funding
FNUC stable $,
$5M Metis scholarship
Adult education in north, skills training in north
Yes, $1B per yr for 4 years, grants for Ab students
Increase k-12 Funding
$300M in yr 2
*$800M, promote culture & language
Proper Funds for Housing
safety upgrades to fuel tanks in north
Proper Funds for Water
promote clean technologies
Child & Family Equal Funds
Reduce toxin exposure
Make all Laws s.35 Compliant
work in collab w FN re national conservation strategy, hunting advisory panel, respect economic groups
Respect s.35, but no commercial seal hunt, no whale hunt
Make all laws s.15 Compliant
recruit more Ab doctors
task force re Abs in justice system
Fund FN police, fire & EMS
No, but FN AG
Murdered & Missing Ab Wom. Inquiry
federal response to violence, funds for Ab women orgs
FNs Lead Any Legislative Changes re FNs
accountability legislation re chiefs salaries
phase out Indian Act
Consult & Accommodate!!!
Consult with Abs in poverty legislation, lower carbon