There is a ‘crisis of confidence’ in Metis Nation of Ontario writes founding president - APTN NewsAPTN News

There is a ‘crisis of confidence’ in Metis Nation of Ontario writes founding president

Metis Nation of Ontario

Dennis Ward
APTN News
The founding President of the Metis Nation of Ontario (MNO) says there is a cloud hanging over the heads of Metis people in that province.

Tony Belcourt is not alone in expressing concerns.

Metis Council’s in Ontario are raising alarms over a lack of transparency at the top of the MNO, spending practices and negotiations with the federal government.

In a recent blog post, Belcourt wrote there is a “crisis of confidence” in the Metis Nation of Ontario.

Belcourt says many in the province are going to lose their citizenship card and voting rights.

In a phone interview, the long-time Metis rights leader says the MNO is trying to “ignore or get rid of the very people who built the organization in the first place.  Before there wasn’t any money.  There’s millions at the table now but when we started there wasn’t a penny.”

Belcourt believes there are currently a lot of citizens of the Metis Nation in Ontario that are “concerned, upset and emotionally distraught.”

Belcourt is not alone.

The Sudbury Metis Council recently passed a resolution calling on the Provisional Council of the Metis Nation of Ontario to “immediately call a special assembly” to provide information and direction to the PCMNO on a number of pressing issues.

Among them, a “forensic audit investigation of the executive and senior management of the MNO by Deloitte leaked on social media, providing some troubling financial facts and mismanagement of MNO funds.”

The resolution also calls for more information on the one-year probation the MNO is currently on following a vote by the Metis National Council, and the Canada – MNO Framework Agreement being negotiated “without consultation with its citizens.”

The Provisional Council of the MNO is comprised of a five member executive, nine regional councillors, four senators, a youth representative and a post-secondary representative.

The resolution has been approved by other Metis councils in Ontario including the Clear Waters Metis Council (CWMC).

Clear Waters Metis Council Women’s representative, Tobias Clarke says there is a “lack of transparency and openness from the Provisional Council of the Metis Nation of Ontario.”

Clarke, in a series of Facebook messages says she feels the MNO leadership is “demonizing, bullying” and using “scare tactics throughout the nation regarding MNO citizens who are speaking out and asking questions.”

APTN News has obtained a copy of the report by Deloitte titled “Metis Nation of Ontario: Investigation into potential overpayments of compensation and related payments to executive and senior management.”

The report says Deloitte was “engaged by MNO in late December 2017 to undertake the investigation.”

The report identified four primary issues including “compensation policies” and “compensation calculation errors resulting in overpayments to Executives.”

The MNO would not verify the validity of the report or whether it was a draft report.

A request for an interview with MNO President Margaret Froh also went unanswered.

Belcourt and Clarke both expressed concerns about Deloitte document but wanted to wait for “hard facts.”

Belcourt feels some of the issues going on internally with the MNO are related to the start of a new registry process that Belcourt says “has a narrow definition of who may be a Metis citizen.”

One of the conditions the MNO must meet before the MNC probation will be lifted is to “abide by the 2004 Métis Nation directive providing that all members shall re-register under the 2002 criteria with no grandfathering-in of members.”

The MNC also wants the MNO to rescind its declaration of six new historic Metis communities.

According to the resolution being circulated, there are concerns that complying with all of the conditions would eliminate 90 percent of the MNO citizens in Ontario.

The resolution being approved by some Metis councils is calling for a Special Assembly to be scheduled before May 1st.

Belcourt feels one of the ways to correct the crisis of confidence would be for the Provisional Council of the Metis Nation of Ontario to issue a declaration that the MNO represents all MNO citizens.

Clarke agrees.

She says “the only path forward should be for the PCMNO to properly represent all the MNO citizens inclusively with no divide.”

dward@aptn.ca

@denniswardnews

 

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26 Responses to “There is a ‘crisis of confidence’ in Metis Nation of Ontario writes founding president”

  1. a********@yahoo.com'
    Andy Pann February 19, 2019 at 3:47 pm #

    The people of the Red river settlement negotiated with Canada to join confederation. Therefore the government of Canada only has an obligation to these people. the MNC represents these people and offspring.

  2. andy.pann@yahoo.com'
    Andy Pann February 17, 2019 at 1:54 pm #

    The people of the Red river settlement negotiated with Canada to join confederation. Therefore the government of Canada only has an obligation to these people. the MNC represents these people and offspring.

  3. Qallunette@gmail.com'
    Johanne Brissette February 2, 2019 at 3:36 pm #

    The refusal to recognize historic communities after provinding – at their request, no less – extensive research combining both oral history and empirical proof is the job of Colonizers.

  4. q*********@gmail.com'
    Johanne Brissette February 19, 2019 at 5:48 pm #

    The refusal to recognize historic communities after provinding – at their request, no less – extensive research combining both oral history and empirical proof is the job of Colonizers.

  5. colin__james@hotmail.com'
    Colin J D February 1, 2019 at 10:41 pm #

    If the MNC doesn’t want us Powley Metis we should do what the Metis NWT did, and leave the MNC. The Ontario communities could have something similar to the Alberta settlements but with our land use rights. I am Metis from a historic Ontario Community (Mattawa). Mattawa has a history of Metis, half-breed, French breed, etc who had kinship ties to one another and to those further west including the Red River Settlement. We also have documentation as a group petitioning for a church for our community. We have a history of separation from Europeans and First Nations as documented by Indian affairs agents. We had our own way of jigging and playing music. Seems to me all this came about when settlement money got involved. Canada offers money and Chartier starts to cut out the people who started winning rights for all Metis.

  6. c***********@hotmail.com'
    Colin J D February 19, 2019 at 5:48 pm #

    If the MNC doesn’t want us Powley Metis we should do what the Metis NWT did, and leave the MNC. The Ontario communities could have something similar to the Alberta settlements but with our land use rights. I am Metis from a historic Ontario Community (Mattawa). Mattawa has a history of Metis, half-breed, French breed, etc who had kinship ties to one another and to those further west including the Red River Settlement. We also have documentation as a group petitioning for a church for our community. We have a history of separation from Europeans and First Nations as documented by Indian affairs agents. We had our own way of jigging and playing music. Seems to me all this came about when settlement money got involved. Canada offers money and Chartier starts to cut out the people who started winning rights for all Metis.

  7. lawsonrobyn@hotmail.com'
    Robyn L. February 1, 2019 at 7:00 am #

    This is almost comical in how it all came about. It’s funny how all this interest in ‘transparency’ only came about after the MNC/MN announcement that the MNO needed to clean its registries of membership that did not meet the verification requirements to be considered Metis Citizens.

    Tobias Clarke et al have since gone on a social media rampage to ‘bring down’ MNO leadership when they would not categorically state they would not cull the memberships. Clarke is an ‘eastern metis’ by her own admission, a group known to not exist in history, which is why they crow-barred into the Metis Nation. This is what’s at the bottom of this crisis of confidence.

    • Qallunette@gmail.com'
      Qallunette February 1, 2019 at 7:04 pm #

      Once again, here comes Robyn with her uninformed, uninspired, unqualified and surely invaluable opinions.

      What a pro career communicator.

    • jmalone@xcountry.tv'
      Jeri February 2, 2019 at 3:17 am #

      You’re full of it Robyn, there is a lot of historical research for the Eastern Metis .. Considering the McCargar case told MNA that they can only speak for their own members and not for the Metis community at large, what makes you think MNC is the ultimate authority ? The Native Council of Canada is who got the Metis into the constitution (1982) that Aboriginal association was years in the making before MNC (1983) .. There is no federal definition of Metis and just because Chartier keeps trying to narrow it down , does not make it so .. The Congress of Aboriginal people also have an accord with the gov, they also are one of the 2 national Canadian organizations who represent Metis and CAP was originally The Native Council of Canada. Who do you think has a more of a mandate to speak for them .. You lie about the existence of the Eastern Metis , Katherine Sorbey , a Mi’kmaq Elder and Historian was one of the founding Members of the Metis and Non-Status Indian Association of Nova Scotia , Frank Palmater is in the RCAP reports specifically Métis Circle Special Consultation, Ottawa, ON 94-04-05 – rcap-432 talking about being a Micmac Metis in the Maritimes. Yet you state false arguments over and over, I wonder why that is !!

  8. charlene_lavallee@yahoo.com'
    Charlene Lavallee February 1, 2019 at 4:07 am #

    We have a crisis in confidence of the Metis Nation of Saskatchewan also. Gag orders were implemented on the Provincial Metis Council in Saskatchewan. shortly after the election May 27th, 2017. Financials were blacked out, certain Local President suddenly not being represented, disputed resignation of Provincial Treasurer pushed through, resignation of Regional Representative with 2 Masters Degrees and a PHD candidate in Indigenous Land and Governance because the negotiations being conducted with the Federal Government go against everything she knows and has learned.
    The Metis are in a state of Crisis! I personally do not support the MNC’s new map or it’s “new” definition of who is Metis. I have seen many posts that Louis Riel would not even fit the new criteria. I do not know his lineage but if that’s true, this definition obviously all about politics.

  9. Larry.prevost@eastlink.ca'
    Larry February 1, 2019 at 3:15 am #

    We fought back 20 years a hold MNO card
    Know the want to eleminate us
    France Picotte told us as long she hold power we didn’t have to worry about loosing any things we fought so hard to advence the MNO

  10. Fgdubeau@yahoo.ca'
    Gary DuBeau February 1, 2019 at 2:03 am #

    I would have to agree, there are just to many unanswered questions! We are not getting the answer that a membership should be receiving from the people that have been put it a position to look after our best interests!
    If the people that set the foundation for recognition of the Metis rights are not deserving of answers! Then, who is?

  11. l**********@hotmail.com'
    Robyn L. February 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm #

    This is almost comical in how it all came about. It’s funny how all this interest in ‘transparency’ only came about after the MNC/MN announcement that the MNO needed to clean its registries of membership that did not meet the verification requirements to be considered Metis Citizens.

    Tobias Clarke et al have since gone on a social media rampage to ‘bring down’ MNO leadership when they would not categorically state they would not cull the memberships. Clarke is an ‘eastern metis’ by her own admission, a group known to not exist in history, which is why they crow-barred into the Metis Nation. This is what’s at the bottom of this crisis of confidence.

    • q*********@gmail.com'
      Qallunette February 19, 2019 at 8:21 pm #

      Once again, here comes Robyn with her uninformed, uninspired, unqualified and surely invaluable opinions.

      What a pro career communicator.

    • j******@xcountry.tv'
      Jeri February 19, 2019 at 5:48 pm #

      You’re full of it Robyn, there is a lot of historical research for the Eastern Metis .. Considering the McCargar case told MNA that they can only speak for their own members and not for the Metis community at large, what makes you think MNC is the ultimate authority ? The Native Council of Canada is who got the Metis into the constitution (1982) that Aboriginal association was years in the making before MNC (1983) .. There is no federal definition of Metis and just because Chartier keeps trying to narrow it down , does not make it so .. The Congress of Aboriginal people also have an accord with the gov, they also are one of the 2 national Canadian organizations who represent Metis and CAP was originally The Native Council of Canada. Who do you think has a more of a mandate to speak for them .. You lie about the existence of the Eastern Metis , Katherine Sorbey , a Mi’kmaq Elder and Historian was one of the founding Members of the Metis and Non-Status Indian Association of Nova Scotia , Frank Palmater is in the RCAP reports specifically Métis Circle Special Consultation, Ottawa, ON 94-04-05 – rcap-432 talking about being a Micmac Metis in the Maritimes. Yet you state false arguments over and over, I wonder why that is !!

  12. robertfranz@hotmail.ca'
    Honorie January 31, 2019 at 11:13 pm #

    Has anyone been talking to the rights bearing Metis of verified families on this subject. Seems to be all one sided. I have a question who caused the registry to be in such a mess, people were given false identity thinking they were Metis and they weren’t. If they are Metis find your ancestry.

    • metismarc@gmail.com'
      Marc Thibault February 1, 2019 at 4:23 pm #

      Trust me we are concerned also

    • tim1robbins@gmail.com'
      Tim February 1, 2019 at 7:30 pm #

      Yes. Well said.

  13. Terrydesjardins88@gmail.com'
    Terry Desjardins January 31, 2019 at 11:07 pm #

    Thank you for investigating this and repirting on this issue with the MNO PCMNO. If they resend the six historic communities that even the government of Ontario agrees were historic that means the MNO will not follow their mandate and do research for other communities, like the one you mentioned in the Powley decision. That decision the states there were historic media communities from Sault Ste. Marie down through Detroit. Windsor Essex and Kent were part of Detroit in historic times. Prior to the border being put in after the war of 1812. When Margaret Ferrone was campaigning she came to this area and told the citizens hear that the MNO would do the research if anybody could provide any proof, this was prior to the SCC decision in Powley. I They have sent ample documentation end links to the MNO and they recently informed me that they’re still not doing the research at this time. I don’t believe they ever well in my opinion. Specially since Cording to one of your interviews with the president of the MNC, “the president of the MNO stated she will be able to comply with their terms within a few months.” Which includes illuminating the six historic communities therefore why would they do research on more?

    I am an MNO Citizen pass council member and past chair of the WEKMCC.

  14. c****************@yahoo.com'
    Charlene Lavallee February 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm #

    We have a crisis in confidence of the Metis Nation of Saskatchewan also. Gag orders were implemented on the Provincial Metis Council in Saskatchewan. shortly after the election May 27th, 2017. Financials were blacked out, certain Local President suddenly not being represented, disputed resignation of Provincial Treasurer pushed through, resignation of Regional Representative with 2 Masters Degrees and a PHD candidate in Indigenous Land and Governance because the negotiations being conducted with the Federal Government go against everything she knows and has learned.
    The Metis are in a state of Crisis! I personally do not support the MNC’s new map or it’s “new” definition of who is Metis. I have seen many posts that Louis Riel would not even fit the new criteria. I do not know his lineage but if that’s true, this definition obviously all about politics.

  15. l************@eastlink.ca'
    Larry February 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm #

    We fought back 20 years a hold MNO card
    Know the want to eleminate us
    France Picotte told us as long she hold power we didn’t have to worry about loosing any things we fought so hard to advence the MNO

  16. f*******@yahoo.ca'
    Gary DuBeau February 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm #

    I would have to agree, there are just to many unanswered questions! We are not getting the answer that a membership should be receiving from the people that have been put it a position to look after our best interests!
    If the people that set the foundation for recognition of the Metis rights are not deserving of answers! Then, who is?

  17. r**********@hotmail.ca'
    Honorie February 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm #

    Has anyone been talking to the rights bearing Metis of verified families on this subject. Seems to be all one sided. I have a question who caused the registry to be in such a mess, people were given false identity thinking they were Metis and they weren’t. If they are Metis find your ancestry.

    • m********@gmail.com'
      Marc Thibault February 19, 2019 at 8:16 pm #

      Trust me we are concerned also

    • t**********@gmail.com'
      Tim February 19, 2019 at 7:40 pm #

      Yes. Well said.

  18. t****************@gmail.com'
    Terry Desjardins February 19, 2019 at 5:34 pm #

    Thank you for investigating this and repirting on this issue with the MNO PCMNO. If they resend the six historic communities that even the government of Ontario agrees were historic that means the MNO will not follow their mandate and do research for other communities, like the one you mentioned in the Powley decision. That decision the states there were historic media communities from Sault Ste. Marie down through Detroit. Windsor Essex and Kent were part of Detroit in historic times. Prior to the border being put in after the war of 1812. When Margaret Ferrone was campaigning she came to this area and told the citizens hear that the MNO would do the research if anybody could provide any proof, this was prior to the SCC decision in Powley. I They have sent ample documentation end links to the MNO and they recently informed me that they’re still not doing the research at this time. I don’t believe they ever well in my opinion. Specially since Cording to one of your interviews with the president of the MNC, “the president of the MNO stated she will be able to comply with their terms within a few months.” Which includes illuminating the six historic communities therefore why would they do research on more?

    I am an MNO Citizen pass council member and past chair of the WEKMCC.