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  • » For balance in the north | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    have dismissed it as inadequate They say the Ministry of Natural Resources is trying to address conservation concerns without sufficiently holding back the logging industry In other words suck and blow at the same time If the government cannot find the appropriate balance between just two interests caribou and logging how will it manage the even bigger challenges inherent in developing land use plans for the entire far north an area twice the size of the United Kingdom Legislation laying out the principles for northern land use is expected to be introduced in the coming days before the Legislature rises for the summer A year ago Premier Dalton McGuinty was applauded for promising to set aside at least half the Northern Boreal region for permanent protection New mines and logging will be allowed on the other half if industry works with local First Nations communities In short the government plans to achieve environmental protection First Nations empowerment and economic development in one stroke Yet each of those goals is a challenge on its own and the government doesn t want to achieve one by steamrolling another The region is one of the world s few remaining untouched tracts of wilderness

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/175/for-balance-in-the-north (2016-02-09)
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  • » What’s missing in Mining Act changes? The Right to Say NO | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    Nations to say NO to all aspects of mining from prospecting to exploration to full mine development in their traditional territories The First Nations clarify that the Ontario government must respect and adhere to Constitutional duty of consultation and accommodation and the internationally recognized right of free prior and informed consent This has not been addressed by the proposed changes Minister Gravelle introduced on April 30 2009 The Supreme Court of Canada has said that consultation and accommodation have to be meaningful How can they be meaningful if we don t have the right to say NO to mining that will impact our lives and culture says Grand Chief Stan Louttit of the Mushkegowuk Council The Mushkegowuk Council is comprised of seven communities including Attawapiskat Fort Albany Kashechewan Moose Cree New Post Chapleau Cree and Missanabie Cree Their homelands cover a vast area in and around James Bay of the Boreal Forest Changes to the Act were prompted in part by ongoing conflicts between mineral exploration companies and First Nations that resulted in the incarceration of Bob Lovelace and KI Six last year These amendments will not resolve the KI Platinex conflict Further conflict is all but inevitable says Sam McKay Councillor and Spokesperson for Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug KI Mr McKay was one of KI Six who spent 68 days in jail The proposed changes to the Mining Act are smoke and mirrors says Mireille Lapointe Co Chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation They are meant to placate and silence dissent Consultation without the right to say NO is meaningless and a cynical exercise adds Chief Lapointe Bob Lovelace of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation spent 101 days in jail for saying NO to uranium exploration The call for respect for free prior and informed consent is widely supported including

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/172/what%e2%80%99s-missing-in-mining-act-changes-the-right-to-say-no (2016-02-09)
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  • » MANITOBA INCREASES SUPPORT FOR PIMACHIOWIN AKI WORLD HERITAGE PROJECT ON EAST SIDE OF LAKE WINNIPEG | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    Struthers The minister noted the Little Grand Rapids and Pauingassi First Nations will receive priority attention as their land use plans will be an essential component of the nomination document for the UNESCO world heritage designation The minister notes this investment includes a 30 per cent increase in grant funding for the Pimachiowin Aki Corporation to prepare the nomination document and video Manitoba Conservation funding in 2009 10 will increase by 80 000 to 340 000 The Pimachiowin Aki Corporation which is led by the Poplar River Little Grand Rapids Pauingassi and Pikagikum Ont First Nations has a number of projects underway that will contribute to the final nomination document Extensive community consultations research mapping and comprehensive community based land use planning are required to complete the nomination It will include the final boundaries of the site and will also describe the innovative ways the area will be managed using both traditional Anishinabe and western scientific knowledge We continue to support the vision of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Manitoba and Ontario and want to do our part to ensure this nomination meets the tough standards set by the World Heritage Committee and that it is developed as quickly as possible said Culture Heritage Tourism and Sport Minister Eric Robinson acting minister of Aboriginal and northern affairs Pimachiowin Aki spokesperson Sophia Rabliauskas noted that while these plans are being developed the corporation is continuing its work on a variety of studies and community consultations required for the nomination The completed nomination will include the final boundaries of the site and will also describe the innovative ways the area will be managed using both traditional Anishinabe and western scientific knowledge Our UNESCO nomination has to be very detailed starting with a vision from each of the First Nations partners on

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/169/manitoba-increases-support-for-pimachiowin-aki-world-heritage-project-on-east-side-of-lake-winnipeg (2016-02-09)
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  • » PROVINCE, TREATY ONE FIRST NATIONS SIGN MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING TO STRENGTHEN WORKING RELATIONSHIP | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    Aboriginal and northern affairs minister Conservation Minister Stan Struthers and Treaty One chiefs We welcome the opportunity to have a more productive working relationship with the Treaty One First Nations and this agreement signifies the movement toward developing a government to government relationship said Robinson Treaty One has a number of issues to address with the province and this document helps create the forum for discussions This agreement will further improve and strengthen the work done by the First Nations and the provincial government on treaty rights and provides the opportunity for greater clarity and understanding said Struthers As well existing levels of treaty knowledge in the provincial government will be enhanced through this initiative The chiefs of Treaty One welcome this memorandum of understanding as a new renovation of the 1871 treaty in a way that does not relieve the federal Crown of its responsibilities It is only right that neighbours should work together in this way and we congratulate the provincial government for having accepted our invitation to work together said Chief Terrance Nelson of Roseau River Anishinabe First Nation one of the Treaty One First Nations The memorandum creates a collaborative process to co ordinate discussions on

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/167/province-treaty-one-first-nations-sign-memorandum-of-understanding-to-strengthen-working-relationship (2016-02-09)
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  • » Language challenge for Cree Nation | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    Free Press MARCEL Balfour is challenging the 5 500 residents of Norway House Cree Nation to become proficient in Cree by the year 2020 Balfour chief of Norway House persuaded the band council earlier this week to adopt a multi faceted motion that will make Cree the community s official language and will encourage residents to speak Cree as often as possible Balfour 40 readily admits he is far from being proficient in Cree but adds he s prepared to do whatever it takes I ll have to roll up my sleeves and get with the program Balfour said The resolution also designates the third Monday of September as Cree Language Day and a local holiday when all band employees and members will speak only Cree We want to have councillors go into the schools and have the students see them speaking Cree Balfour said Balfour estimates that about 75 per cent of the community understands Cree and between 50 to 60 per cent can speak Cree to some degree He said he chose 2020 as the target year because it s a realistic time frame The band council has been pressuring the Frontier School Division to bring in a Cree immersion program at the two schools it operates in the community Balfour said but added the division has been dragging its heels He said he hoped the resolution will pressure the division to comply with council s wishes Balfour said English is the language of business on council and in most places in the community adding it seems it s the older generation that is more comfortable speaking Cree Balfour said he was adopted twice and grew up in southern Manitoba A lawyer by profession Balfour said being able to speak Cree is vital to the community I think

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/162/language-challenge-for-cree-nation (2016-02-09)
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  • » Floody Authority Amendment Act Introduced In Manitoba Legislature | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    Lemieux The construction of this road provides an incredible opportunity to help lower transportation costs increase economic development opportunities and enhance the quality of life for residents living in the remote and isolated communities of this region The proposed legislation would formally expand the MFA s mandate to assume responsibility for the East Side Transportation Initiative The initiative includes construction of a 170 kilometre all season road from PR 304 near Manigotagan to Bloodvein First Nation and through to Berens River First Nation The initiative also includes a study to examine potential transportation infrastructure improvements for the remainder of the entire region Lemieux noted this legislation would also change the name of the Manitoba Floodway Authority to the Manitoba Floodway and East Side Road Authority This new legislation follows though on key recommendations and the commitment we made to east side First Nations in the Promises to Keep report that was done in 2004 after extensive talks with First Nations People said Culture Heritage Tourism and Sport Minister Eric Robinson acting minister of Aboriginal and northern affairs One finding of the study concluded that an all weather road would be a solution to long term transportation issues in the area and today we make the dream of an all weather road a reality for the many residents in this region The MFA has been working with the Aboriginal community to ensure employment and economic development opportunities for Aboriginal contractors on the floodway project said Ernie Gilroy CEO of the MFA This new role will allow us to continue to build on the success of this approach Lemieux noted that a key focus will be to ensure that First Nations people living in the area have a meaningful role in the construction of the road and that employment and economic development

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/143/floody-authority-amendment-act-introduced-in-manitoba-legislature (2016-02-09)
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  • » All-weather road set for east side of lake | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    side of Lake Winnipeg will start this year with the upgrade of Rice River Road from Hollow Water to Bloodvein about 90 kilometres to the north The next stage will extend the route further north to Berens River by 2013 What happens next is up to First Nations and the Manitoba Floodway Authority MFA which will be given legislative blessing to move from upgrading the floodway to managing construction of the road system Legislation was introduced Thursday The residents cannot be asked to wait any longer MFA chief executive officer Ernie Gilroy said adding many of the communities are socially and economically disadvantaged Infrastructure Minister Ron Lemieux said consultations are already underway to select the best routes which will in time connect Little Grand Rapids to the east and Island Lake to the north with other communities Communities will be consulted on the final route Colon added That will be written in stone The province has budgeted 27 million towards the early stages of the project and expects that costs will escalate as the road pushes through swampy terrain and bridges have to be built over rivers Lemieux said the big question is whether Ottawa will contribute funding Is the federal government going to be a partner with us he said He and Culture Heritage and Tourism Minister Eric Robinson said the road system will also open up the area for aboriginal led development such as in mining and tourism Many of the communities are already connected by an extensive winter road system but Colon said that system of trucking in goods like fuel and groceries is getting more expensive and less dependable with climate change and shorter winters In milder winter goods have to be flown which is extremely costly Robinson the area s MLA said comparisons will be

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/139/all-weather-road-set-for-east-side-of-lake (2016-02-09)
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  • » First Nations excluded from land use planning | Aboriginal Boreal Conservation Leaders
    planned from April 20 to May 4 in various locations around the province including one meeting at the Norwood Hotel in Winnipeg April 27 A 64 page document entitled Provincial Land Use Policies Draft for Consultation includes some perfunctory references to First Nations They re restricted to references to the outstanding 1 4 million acres in treaty land entitlement obligations that make up roughly one per cent of the province s land mass The best thing that can be said about that process is that progress is at best glacial The latest document completely ignores the issue of traditional land use a surprising omission given the Doer government s progressive record on honouring First Nations in Manitoba After all Manitoba was the first province to introduce First Nation community land use planning legislation Doer is enjoying attention on the international stage for his efforts to preserve a 40 000 square kilometres area of pristine boreal forest in the Pimachiowin Aki the proposed UNESCO World Heritage Site It shows Doer listens to the people he shares the province with on this land Pimachiowin Aki is a First Nations led land use plan that grew out of ancient links to the boreal region for the people of Poplar River First Nation on the northeast side of Lake Winnipeg So what happened Why are First Nations curiously absent from the biggest land use review in recent memory First Nation leaders are asking the premier those questions right now If the people of Manitoba don t want First Nations to hold up progress why do they elect officials who sideline First Nations when it comes to land It s a bullying tactic Nobody would take such disregard lying down First Nations aren t opposed to land development There s no intent to frustrate the

    Original URL path: http://www.abcleaders.org/news/137/first-nations-excluded-from-land-use-planning (2016-02-09)
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