After 500 years of injustice and treatment as 2nd class citizens in their own country, the first tribes of Canada “celebrated” National Aboriginal Day.
As expected, the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau was in attendance even gave his word to change the name of the day to ‘National Indigenous Peoples Day’ which is still as reluctant as the present name but that is neither here or there and besides, Assembly of First Nations national chief, Perry Bellegarde, liked the name, saying that it would be in accordance with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
As the leader of the country, Mr. Trudeau has been made privy to the struggles of the indigenous peoples: poverty, drug and alcohol addictions, lack of better education, amenities, etc.
He promised that the government will basically walk hand-in-hand with them in order to ‘close the socio-economic gaps, support greater self-determination and creating more opportunities to work on “shared priorities”.
According to him, the nation of Canada values no other relationship more than the one it has within the Indigenous Peoples.
If you are a cynic, this is the part of the article where you say something to the effect of, “oh, please! Spare me!”
Chief Bellegarde’s words:
“It’s important to be consistent with international terminology. It’s an important step, no question.”
Chief Perry Bellegarde spoke on behalf of all the Indigenous Peoples by insinuating that even though they have suffered—to say the least—over the past five centuries, that their resilience is evident in their presence—in their “culture, songs and dances.”
He also touched on the fact that Canadians are becoming more aware about the issues that disturb his peoples.
“What’s hopeful for me is that Canadians are starting to get it. To have those statistics that plague Indigenous peoples be real in 2017 is just not acceptable anymore….To see the poverty, and to see the systemic discrimination within police and within health care system, it’s just not acceptable and I think there’s a crying need for changes. That’s what’s hopeful and providing inspiration for a better country going forward.”
PM Trudeau attended an event at the former US embassy – a space now dedicated to the Metis, First Nations and Inuit peoples.
It won’t shock some of you reading this article which say that talk is cheap. Well, it sure is!
The indigenous peoples are facing crises that are beyond them and truth be told, only the government can handle most of them especially the violence against the women of this community.
Let us see if the Trudeau government will be able to achieve great things, make stride in such a case.
There is work to be done.