Native Issues Get Token Mention In Throne Speech

Wednesday, April 05, 2006 at 15:19



Aboriginal people got only a brief mention in the Conservatives’ throne speech yesterday.


The Tories promised to “seek to improve opportunity for all Canadians, including Aboriginal Peoples and new immigrants”.


Much to the dismay of Aboriginal leaders, there was no word of the Kelowna Accord or the residential schools compensation agreement.


Assembly of First Nations national chief Phil Fontaine says he was disappointed that there was no reference to those agreements or closing the gap of quality of life between First Nations people and other Canadians.


Fontaine says he and other native leaders will be watching the budget closely to get a better sense of where the Tories truly stand on Aboriginal issues.


Meanwhile, Metis National Council president Clem Chartier says it’s very disconcerting that the Tories didn’t use the throne speech to reiterate their commitment to the principles and objectives of the Kelowna Accord, as they promised throughout the election campaign.