The political panel is back and takes aim at the department of Indigenous services - APTN NewsAPTN News

The political panel is back and takes aim at the department of Indigenous services

Nation to Nation
The N2N political panel was back Thursday after a six week absence and Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott was the topic of discussion.

In the past few weeks, Philpott has made a number of announcements and promises. Her department called an emergency meeting on child and family services last week, for example.

“I would hardly characterize it as an emergency meeting,” said Conservative MP Cathy McLeod.

“An emergency meeting would have come… right after the human rights tribunal ruling came out in the first place, right after the motion, the unanimous motion in the house that they needed to transfer the money and comply. So it was good to see it happen. But it sure wasn’t an emergency meeting.”

After a human rights tribunal issued another compliance order to stop discriminating against Indigenous children on reserve Thursday, Philpott issued a statement saying letters had been sent to 105 child and family service agencies across Canada.

“Indicating to them that we will fully fund immediately going forward, as well as retroactively, a series of costs that are pertained largely to prevention work and the actual costs that it takes for these agencies to do that prevention work,” said Philpott.

NDP MP Niki Ashton was critical of how long it has taken to get to this point.

“It shouldn’t take four compliance orders for the government to act,” she told N2N host Todd Lamirande. “This needs, should have been done yesterday, years ago.”

As well, the leader of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, Arlen Dumas, appeared on N2N.

He was the host of 37 First Nations who had representatives in Winnipeg this week. They met to determine what a nation to nation relationship with Ottawa should look like.

“Remove ourselves from the archaic bureaucracy and the faceless bureaucrats who historically have impeded our progress together,” said Dumas.

And an Indigenous woman from Mexico is currently in Ottawa.

Alicia Bustamante is an Otomi whose ancestral land she says is under threat from development. The Mexican government is pushing a major highway development through her community.

It has led to clashes between the Otomi and Mexican police.

Bustamante wants Canadians and their politicians to take notice.

“So that everyone knows and hoping this will stop the Mexican government from imprisoning us or killing us.”

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