Thursday, December 01, 2011

The facts on the Attawapiskat housing and community crisis

I have been meaning to try and sort through the claims about funding for the Attawapiskat First Nations community. The northern community is a disgrace. The Conservative government have attempted to blame poor band management, pointing to $90 million in funding over the past five years.
Fortunately, I don't have to, because âpihtawikosisân lays out the facts here, with useful links to the source documents, including band financial reports.
Well worth a read.


DPL said...

Hi Paul
The band has provided a lot of information on the running of that place. First things first though. Get the citizens out of the shacks and tents, fix the sewer get some heat and water for all, then start talking about audits by the Ministry. I spent 10 years as a non Indian occupier on land set aside and were stuck under the Indian act as well. self taxation exists in a band wants it, but if they have nothing of value to tax, why bother. To compare the chiefs wages with the Premier or senior managers is a bit of a red herring.

A Fist nations Gazette exists and it does show band management, bylaws and other things. But due to the Indian Act, most things are signed off by the DIAND minister. Heck he even has to approve a Indian's will. Section 28 for example says that any agreement written or oral by an Indian is not legal unless covered by a federal head lease. So it's rather strange that some chiefs want to see the end of the Indian Act but when assorted DIAND Ministers over the years try to make changes, the same senior chiefs argue against the changes. IN our time spent living on land set aside working to support modern treaties, being on a Regional advisory Committee and knew the folks running the Self taxation system. There is a long way to go till real self government really exists. The report mentions the BNA Act but didn't mention section 35 of the Charter. Both sections show plainly that its the duty of the Federal government for the safe keeping of Indians, and of course we can go farther back to the Royal Proclamation. But now is now. Those folks are freezing and living in dumps. Fly in some prefab buildings and do the audits later. My goodness my wife and her parents lived in Churchill and Chesterfield Inlet 60 years ago and had proper housing, as Federal employees.Have we not advanced in the last 60 years? Sadly on some reserves the answer is now. There is an airport, use it.

DPL said...

It's rather sad to see the Conservative government blaming every one but themselves, and almost as sad to see the lack or interest by so many people. Mike Holmes said today. Quit building such crappy buildings He's on the BCB page