Ontario Representation at Indigenous Leaders and Premiers Meeting Confuses New Democrats

ontario legislature

THUNDER BAY – Ontario’s Indigenous Affairs Minister, Greg Rickford was in Saskatoon this week along with Premier Doug Ford. It appears that information was not shared with the opposition New Democrats.

Sol Mamakwa, Ontario NDP Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation critic, and MPP for Kiiwetinoong issued the following statement after the Doug Ford skipped a meeting between Indigenous leaders and Canada’s premiers: “It’s clear that Doug Ford and his government does not see Indigenous leaders as true partners. It was disheartening to see Mr. Ford skip the opportunity to attend the Premiers and Indigenous leaders meeting, and added insult to injury when he refused to provide an explanation.

“If Ford were truly committed to working with Indigenous leaders, and meeting our people, he would spend time in our communities, and meet with us outside of Queen’s Park.

“All premiers need to take action to move reconciliation forward by meeting with Indigenous leaders in a government-to-government relationship. It’s time to move beyond lip service to meaningful engagement, and action. That starts with showing up, actively listening to concerns, and taking concrete steps toward meaningful agreed-upon solutions.”

Sydney Stonier, the press secretary for Minister Greg Rickford tells NetNewsLedger“Minister of Indigenous Affairs, Greg Rickford was honoured to attend the Indigenous leader’s event in Saskatchewan so that he could work collaboratively with Canada’s Premiers and Indigenous Leaders, and to represent Ontario.”

“Premier Ford and Minister Rickford were also pleased to have recently met with Chief Perry Bellegarde at Queen’s Park to discuss shared priorities of economic development, working toward reconciliation, and respecting the rights of Indigenous parents,” adds Stonier.