December 25, 2015

Here's how Trudeau's Liberal pandering will hurt First Nations, not help them

Lauren SouthernArchive

First Nations groups have suffered for a long time.

They’ve been victims of the broken reserve model, a pliant welfare system, and endemic corruption within their leadership.

Contrary to popular belief, Stephen Harper passed laws that produced substantive gains for First Nations peoples. He passed the First Nations Financial Transparency Act, which required First Nations groups to publicly disclose their audited financial statements, including the salaries and expenses of their chiefs and councillors.

He also passed the Family Homes on Reserves and Matrimonial Interests or Rights Act, a subsection of which extends the protections against spousal abuse enjoyed by non-reserve women in Canada to First Nations reserve women, who are abused at a severely elevated rate.

Certainly not enough to turn the situation around, but it was a start.

Many First Nations people have enjoyed extraordinary benefit from transparency legislation.

Despite this, Justin Trudeau’s Liberals have caved to the demands of well-paid First Nations chiefs and councils and have stopped enforcing the key provisions of the First Nations Financial Transparency Act.

There is now no legal requirement for First Nations leaders to disclose how they spend the money they receive from the Canadian government.

As the director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation Aaron Wudrick put it, “many First Nations people across the country will again be in the dark as to how their elected leaders spend public dollars”.

Without financial disclosures, First Nations communities are worse off.

In an interview for the National Post, Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett stated: “We will work in full partnership with First Nations leadership and organizations on the way forward to improve accountability and transparency. This cannot be achieved without the engagement of First Nations and its members.”

It was being achieved, with action, not conversational engagement. As far as I’m concerned, this is code for “we’ll hold discussions, but won’t get anything done because we’re afraid of being called racists”.

We’re bound to see a repeat of the spending crises that have struck First Nations communities in the past. A lack of transparency allowed the infamous Attawapiskat spending scandal to occur, in which nearly $100 million were misspent in one small reserve over five years.

(Attawapiskat housing conditions)

It wouldn’t be possible for something similar to happen again with the yearly disclosures mandated by transparency legislation passed under Harper. Similarly, a $300 million 2008 grant from the federal government to build 25,000 homes has so far built only a tiny fraction. We need more transparency within First Nations communities, not less.

Some First Nations bands have condemned the Family Homes on Reserves and Matrimonial Interests Act. They would rather the government had catered to their specific demands and created watered-down regulations that fail to police the problem of domestic violence in native communities.

If Trudeau continues to pander to these ridiculous demands, he could push Parliament towards a repeal of the Family Homes on Reserves and Matrimonial Interests Act as well, undoing the only substantive protection extended to Aboriginal women in decades.

The Liberals don’t care if First Nations leadership are corrupt; they’re perfectly willing to keep funneling money into unscrupulous tribal governments to secure the moral high ground.

The longtime absence of these legal protections has caused murder and crime in Aboriginal communities to remain elevated at frighteningly high rates.

First Nations communities suffer from the highest rate of violent crime in Canada, and First Nations people have a staggering incarceration rate. The Liberals’ preference would be to ignore the problem and allow the murder and abuse rates of First Nations peoples to soar—whilst simultaneously berating the past Conservative government for not doing enough to address missing and murdered Aboriginals.

The Liberals appear to be deathly afraid of offending political leaders in the Aboriginal community, and will allow the gulf between the outcomes of First Nations peoples and other Canadians to widen as a result.

Tensions between the two communities will increase, and those who need help and want accountability within their Native communities will be isolated.

Trudeau will score his political points, no matter the cost to First Nations communities around the country.


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commented 2016-01-20 20:27:10 -0500
also forgot to note…take all wildlife in spawning season kill everything that moves in the springtime. believe me when I tell you this experienced this in the day
commented 2016-01-20 20:21:54 -0500
is it just me how does this work(pun) free housing, medical, education no savings no RRSP , native gas free cabs/bus cloths food when will this stop…never!
commented 2016-01-17 14:42:03 -0500
Hey does anybody remember the BC Reservation where they kept finding bald eagles in garbage bags minus their feet ? The Chief swore it was white guys to blame,made national news , yet when the Chiefs own son got busted in the states with a locker full of eagles feet selling them on the black market well gee whiz, not a peep on The National ! Now being a good Canadian citizen who knows a First Nations leader is as honest as the day is long…..does this mean that his son is white ? Please explain
commented 2016-01-17 13:25:38 -0500
J Kay pointed out a sad fact – when a First Nations person does want to live his or her own life it isn’t acceptable. instead of being a model for Democracy too many reserves are run as regimes . I’ve known several First Nations people who have gone out and worked damn hard to make a better life for themselves and their families despite being harassed and bullied by other First Nations people for “trying to be white” , the favored tactic is to steal their vehicle and burn it. As for the ‘deplorable’ health issues the Chiefs love to harp about – hiv , aids , diabetes , drugs and alcohol , you can blame whitey all you want – I like every other person on the planet am the one responsible for the health of my body, I’m the one who decides what goes into it : my life, my body, nobody else is to blame but me .
commented 2016-01-15 04:42:23 -0500
And to be “historically authentic” the costumes the “first nations” wear are not authentic by their use of modern dies, frame materials, fake leathers, beads and threads… It is all “theatre”…
commented 2016-01-15 04:34:53 -0500
Good point Colin… I wonder what the reaction would be if Canadians of, say, Ukrainian, Finnish, Italian, Lithuanian, Hungarian, Dutch, Polish or Vietnamese or Japanese ancestry started showing up at ceremonies in their ancestral dress?…
commented 2016-01-13 09:30:34 -0500
When are native canadians going to stop wearing dime store head dresses…it is ridiculous
commented 2016-01-13 09:06:05 -0500
Reserves are a model the greenie roaches call sustainable developement as can be witnessed in communist style sustainable developement housing projects.
commented 2016-01-05 15:34:04 -0500
Don MacDonald, What about Chief In-Love-With-Himself?
commented 2016-01-05 02:14:58 -0500
What Prime Minister Ryan Seacrest doesn’t understand is that the FN doesn’t have respect for him or any other non FN politician.
Remember Svend Robinson , the NDP MP from Vancouver who championed every request the Chiefs asked for , reasonable or otherwise ? In turn the Chiefs gave Robinson a war bonnet and bestowed upon him the name " White Swan ". The CBC media ate it up. An FN friend who I worked with told me all the Chiefs had a good laugh because Swans are not part of FN culture in most tribes . They called him White Swan because it’s a toilet paper brand and they considered the NDP member to be a huge @sswipe.
I wonder what JT’s honorary name will be ?
commented 2016-01-04 17:01:02 -0500
Did you know a similar report on residential schools which was released just recently as a part of the Truth and Reconciliation business came out in 1993?

Guess who was in charge. (LPC)

Guess how big of an issue the made it. (they swept it under the rug)
commented 2016-01-03 03:12:16 -0500
And, for the umpteenth time, “The Chief’s driveway will always be paved..”… Even at that holiday home in Florida…
commented 2015-12-30 08:13:53 -0500
DAVID EDEN, says, “Every Band member has the right to post secondary education.”
They may have a right but not all aboriginal people receive free post secondary education. An aboriginal friend of ours wasn’t able to obtain funding for his degree and took out OSAP which the band refused to pay off, after he graduated. While at the same time, about 2/3 of his aboriginal classmates who were funded, dropped out before the end of the course.
commented 2015-12-29 11:58:26 -0500
The picture of Attawapiskat housing conditions , did anyone notice the blue house in the background ? That’s a P.R. shot if I ever saw one. Remember Chief Spence had the Band Police remove reporters before they could talk to band members and get an eyes on perspective of the housing ? First Nations Bands are self government ,even the Band schools do not have to follow standard school curriculum ( remember the Band in Manitoba teaching grade six math in High School ? ). Band Council even designates who lives in which house, with self gov’t many Bands are reminiscent of Boss Tweed of New York. All those homes with black mold – it’s called a bathroom fan with a humidistat.Every Band member has the right to post secondary education ; electrician, carpenter, lawyer , doctor…all with no out of pocket expenses-lodging, meals,tuition,even paid a wage to go to school all on the taxpayers expense.As for the Reserves with drug and alcohol issues , again self gov’t- zero tolerance ,other Bands enforce it. Poor housing ,education,let’s open the books on the budget for reserves, I think it will show that Chiefs and Band Councils like the Attawapiskat are more prejudiced to First Nations people than us ‘whiteys’ . How much longer does the taxpayer have to bear the burden of a hand up while certain Band Chiefs and Councils use it as a hand out ?
commented 2015-12-28 13:42:42 -0500
Thanks Dale, for making a précis of what I was attempting to say. The Left have spent decades destroying the traditional Family lifestyle and they are very successful at achieving their goal , in Ontario, by targeting the Children. In Alberta , they made a mistake by targeting the Family Farm under the guise of ‘helping’ the Children. The goal was the same. The Natives are just as screwed under Justin as the Blacks are under Obama.
commented 2015-12-28 12:01:59 -0500
Money is the root of all evil, and it is apparent in the way Lieberals think it all belongs to them. They will find out what happens to those who live and die worshipping money.
commented 2015-12-28 01:54:34 -0500
You know, its come to the point that I really don’t care anymore. The stench of the corruption is so strong that I used to feel like vomiting. But not anymore. What do we know? The Chiefs who were discovered to be siphoning off most of the cash will be emboldened to get back on the horse with a vengeance. They will be right back at it. The government knows its losing billions in cigarette tax $$$ to the native chiefs, but the don’t care. So why should we? Most of the stupid bleeding heart politically correct liberals have never set foot on a reserve. They are painful places for the most part. But, the average Native is going to have to take the bull by the horns and fix this one themselves. Good Hunting
commented 2015-12-27 15:22:23 -0500
Good comments from many posters here who have hit the nail on the head… But we keep saying Justin, Justin, Justin while the real problem is his puppet master Gerald Butts and his staff who are creating these ghettoes of bought voters… Justin doesn’t have the brain power beyond the fact that it takes a match to light a campfire… The rollout of Liberal policies to subvert traditional Canadian values will be finessed by Butts, just as the shadowy Valerie Jarrett has advised Obama what to do to aid the growth of the Muslim Caliphate…
commented 2015-12-27 14:11:26 -0500
Well stated Rae. You’ve hit the nail (problem) squarely on the head. As long as we encourage a fatherless and socialist society, we’ll continue to deteriorate into the mess we’ve been experiencing for some time and things will not improve, regardless how much of our hard-earned money is thrown at the problem.
commented 2015-12-27 10:51:46 -0500
So Nathan W should a government constantly and forever funnel money into reserves and extend it’s laws into them. Or deal with them as a separate entity/ nation and let them decide their own governance, laws, economy. As for executive boards you seem to not understand that private and public play by different rules and there is a good reason for that we can choose not to buy products or invest in a company. We can’t choose not to pay taxes so the least we can get out of it is oversight into where that money is going and oversight on how well they’re executing their platform so we can make educated decisions on which party to vote for.
commented 2015-12-27 10:51:17 -0500
@nathan, you are such a tool, get a life…
commented 2015-12-27 03:27:03 -0500
If only the Conservatives would have applied the same principles of transparency to themselves as they applied to people they don’t like, like First Nations and unions. Where were the laws to protect shareholders by requiring executive boards to disclose THEIR accounts?
We should be less paternalistic, and facilitate the ability of First Nations to demand whatever level of transparency they deem suitable from their leaders, and not dictate to them how things should be done.
commented 2015-12-26 21:55:55 -0500
Judging from the pic of Attawapiskat housing conditions, pm trudope and chief theresa “spendsalot” will get along just fine.

Both live in the lap of luxury and do not give a damn about the people they “rule”

Yet they give money away like crazy to those who will do them both big favours.
commented 2015-12-26 15:16:21 -0500
Trudeau, just like he said, is just being very transparent .
You know because you can see right through his head only to be imaged by some brown pickle shaped objects in the middle.
Oh, probably remnant pieces of fuddle-duddle.
commented 2015-12-26 15:05:34 -0500
This is but the beginning of dark days ahead. As a result of this lieberal gov’t brought on by stupid voters and/or electoral fraud, Lieberals will move post haste to solidify their hold on Canada by bribing easily manipulated segments of society before the ultimate coup. The changing of our electoral system (promised by Justie/achievable with a majority) will create a permanent lieberal hegemony to justify the end game of an “admired communist dictatorship”! PET was unsuccessful in this regard having been thrown out of office before completion. Justie along with his backroom schemers and henchmen will move the agenda forward quickly! At the end, Canada will have either an “electoral” system reminiscent of the old Soviet Union, or possibly a system with no votes at all…….the ultimate goal for narcissistic rulers! That’s if Justie’s pandering to Muslims and the importation of jihadists does not destroy Canada first!
commented 2015-12-26 13:13:26 -0500
pandering..the word has never been used more accurately
commented 2015-12-26 11:48:15 -0500
It is amazing to me how far the lefts " White guilt" will go. The deny sin nature in a very one. Supposing that natives were perfect and somehow still are until we interfered with them. Unbelieveable!
I have been personally involved with reserve life and the people it destroys.
However this is what you have to do when you deny the facts right in front of you and spin the lie to make others look like they are wicked. When they demand openess from people.
What a tangled Web we weave when we practice to deceive. More children will suffer, more women will be abused and die and on and on it will continue.
But as long as conservatives look bad and the corrupt chiefs get their money back….
And the ruling party looks good!
Thanks CBC and the media you’ve done well! May God have mercy on your souls
commented 2015-12-26 09:27:17 -0500
Indians will be the next big liberal victims, only a liberal would cancel having to open the books to find out where the money went. Only a liberal would then announce they are moving forward in a transparent way after cancelling the only useful tool they had . complete incompetence billions more down the indian money pit and for what, a few chiefs get a new set of wheels, possibly some vacation proptery, new homes for the chiefs family, the rest just don’t fit the liberal victim image yet. Best advice to natives is take the law into your own hands if the chief is a liberal stooge hiding millions from those who need it, go and take it. The libs, wont do anything for you, as you see words scare them, they are terrified of being called racist, How can the run the country when words scare them,
commented 2015-12-26 09:20:40 -0500
RAE FRAZER, At a Special Chief’s Assembly in 2014, Ovide Mercredi and others spoke about forming large indigenous groups, ie treaty groups such as Treaty No 6 or linguistic groups like the Cree Nation to find answers to their specific problems and come up with ways to solve them. You can see Chief Ava Hill from Six Nations where she mentions that they created their own Matrimonial Interest Law :