Nation To Nation: The panel tackles wildfires and band membership - APTN NewsAPTN News

Nation To Nation: The panel tackles wildfires and band membership

APTN Nation To Nation
Wednesday, a deal was announced on finally passing Bill S-3. It ends sex discrimination in the Indian Act by restoring status to women who married non-status men.

The Liberals wanted a cut-off date of 1951 – but an amendment by Senator Marilou McPhedran, nicknamed “all the way,” would have gone back to 1869.

The government got a partial victory, keeping the cut-off of 1951, with a promise to extend it after a three-year period of consultation with First Nations.

The political panel on N2N discussed the new developments, including the possibility it will add people to band memberships.

“Then we’re going to have to augment the funding into the communities,” said NDP MP Charlie Angus. “So that communities are not forced to make these tough decisions. And they’re not fair decisions that communities should have to make.”

As well, the panel looked back at last summer’s devastating wildfires in western Canada and their devastating effects on First Nations.

This week the House Committee on Indigenous Affairs has been hearing witness testimony on the fires.

A lot of it on Tuesday centered around more funding, more engagement and more consultation.

“We have a lot to teach as well. We need people to come and see what we’re capable of doing,” said Curtis Dick of the First Nations Emergency Services Society. “We don’t have all the toys that many municipalities have. We don’t have all those stuff. But more importantly we have human resources.”

And legal analyst, Wayne Garnons-Williams, joined host Todd Lamirande to discuss the upcoming vacancy on the Supreme Court of Canada.

He says it’s time for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to appoint an Indigenous person to the position.

“So to have at the highest point an Indigenous expert guiding the court on Indigenous issues, as well as a bunch of other issues, it’s so important.”

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