Woman Complains About FSIN Leaders’ Availability

Friday, September 01, 2006 at 15:40



A Saskatoon woman believes political leaders at the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations need to be more accessible to the public.


Patricia Chartier says she requested a face-to-face meeting with an FSIN executive member earlier this summer, only to have the meeting re-scheduled on three occasions.


She was then offered a chance to discuss her concerns with a high-ranking staff member at the FSIN, but declined the offer.


Chartier wants to air her concerns over the erosion of treaty rights with someone who has political influence.


She says the response she got from the FSIN is nothing like how a similar request was handled by provincial Justice Minister Frank Quennell — who talked with her three hours after her initial call and then came by her house to discuss the issue further.


FSIN chief of staff Ron Crowe says there is no protocol about how federation officials handle requests like this from the general public, but adds there are no barriers, either.


Crowe says FSIN executive members try to make themselves available to all that want to meet with them — but busy schedules sometimes get in the way.


Crowe also says FSIN leaders talk to hundreds of people a day and have made an effort to visit communities to make sure they are accessible.


Chartier believes the situation would improve if average First Nations citizens could vote in FSIN elections.