WINNIPEG– In an open conversation today hosted by the University of Winnipeg, former Assembly of First Nations National Chief Phil Fontaine and Liberal Leader Bob Rae discussed the path forward for the relationship between Aboriginal Peoples in Canada and the federal government.
“Today Phil Fontaine and I had a fruitful and productive dialogue about the obstacles to progress faced by Aboriginal communities across the country, on how we can confront public apathy on these issues and how we can create a deeper sense of partnership between Aboriginal Peoples and the Crown,” said Mr. Rae. “As a three-term National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Mr. Fontaine offered unique insight on these pivotal issues.”
The event, “Aboriginal People and Canada: The Way Forward,” featured Mr. Rae and Mr. Fontaine talking about the challenges and opportunities facing Aboriginal Peoples in an open conversation, followed by a question and answer period.
“The Idle No More movement and recent hunger strikes by First Nations leaders have raised awareness and given new profile to the terrible living conditions, poverty and powerlessness felt by Aboriginal Peoples,” said Mr. Rae. “These issues are the shame of our nation and will only be addressed by working constructively with Aboriginal communities to forge a new partnership based on equality and respect.”