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Remains found at Kamloops residential school 'not an isolated incident,' Indigenous experts and leaders warn

Colin Parkinson

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There is residual damage from that and we are obligated to help. However a lot of solutions also must come from within. I see that that happening in the coastal communities, I think though the remote communities are going to continue to suffer as the circle of issues is hard to break with no other options. The reality is that a number of the remote communities are not really sustainable, due to our ham fisted methods of relocation in the past, the decision needs to be theirs and then we help facilitate it. I would like to see a Federal indigenous police force, that is part of the RCMP (admin, training, etc), but separate with a different uniform. Their role is to come into troubled communities and deal with some of the problems in ways the RCMP can't at the moment. I would like to see an expanded Ranger program giving more training, support and opportunities for these communities, with foreign exchange programs with other Arctic Nations with similar units.
Building up more access to the communities both physical and electronic will help. I was utterly shocked at how little Northern infrastructure Ontario has, someone should be lined up and shot for that. BC has very few completed isolated communities and it make a big difference.
 

The Bread Guy

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.... I was utterly shocked at how little Northern infrastructure Ontario has, someone should be lined up and shot for that ...
(y)

Expensive putting roads & wires in those areas (one figure I remember from the distant past is something like $1M/km), so provincial & federal governments of all mixes of Red/Blue didn't seem to want to spend that scale of money.
 

lenaitch

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Most remote FNTs in n/w Ontario are policed by the Nishnawabi Aski Police Serice, which free-standing with joint federal-provincial funding (the adequacy of the funding is subject to much debate). They are supported by the OPP like any other police service. It was offered to all but a few opted to be policed by Band Special Constables under the OPP.

I don't know how long ago, but access choice was between year-round roads or provincially-operated air strips - the decision was air strips. I don't recall a real ground swell of demand for year-round roads - many in the communities fear social encroachment because they would be public roads to the reserve boundary. Maintaining a year-round road on muskeg is astonishingly expensive, and the FNTs, some as small as a few hundred residents, are scattered all over the north.

With the proposed haul road to the Ring of Fire chromite deposit, there is a range of opinions; some want it to go through their community, others don't.
 

The Bread Guy

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... I don't recall a real ground swell of demand for year-round roads - many in the communities fear social encroachment because they would be public roads to the reserve boundary ...
Another good point: there is no consensus on full-time road connection. And those that oppose all-season access also worry about the bad things that might come in - not that the bad things stay out now, but it would only accelerate.
 

Colin Parkinson

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It's not going to get cheaper the longer you wait to build. It take a very long time to reach many of them and if you plan the road right you make air transport cheaper and faster to the non connected ones as goods can be trucked closer.
 

Loachman

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Oh, I am well aware of the family/clan politics/corruption/lack of transparency within a significant number First Nations. The thing is: they can always point the finger and “blame whitey”. Most times, they are at least partially right.

I am saying this- give them the financial resources and let them figure it out. Right now, no non-native can give any criticism or suggestion to improve FN life without it being taken the wrong way.

I would prefer to provide support payments to individual people rather than band governments, as many of the latter are very corrupt as has been noted.

The bands could then tax their people to pay for services. The desire of the people to enforce accountability should improve as it should be much more obvious that they are being ripped off and who is ripping them off.

Property rights should help, as well, as then people would have ownership of and incentive to maintain and improve their houses as they could no longer be displaced at the whim of a corrupt band council.
 

SeaKingTacco

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I would prefer to provide support payments to individual people rather than band governments, as many of the latter are very corrupt as has been noted.

The bands could then tax their people to pay for services. The desire of the people to enforce accountability should improve as it should be much more obvious that they are being ripped off and who is ripping them off.

Property rights should help, as well, as then people would have ownership of and incentive to maintain and improve their houses as they could no longer be displaced at the whim of a corrupt band council.
Good luck with that.

There is a well connected, vocal group at the top of most band structures that jealously guards their power.
 

FJAG

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And there are limits as to what the Federal government can do, legally and morally, under the various treaties it has entered into with FNs.

🍻
 

The Bread Guy

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It's not going to get cheaper the longer you wait to build. It take a very long time to reach many of them and if you plan the road right you make air transport cheaper and faster to the non connected ones as goods can be trucked closer.
Sounds like you're making way too much sense for any realistic government solution there, bud .... Not to mention the concept of "it only costs $x million to fix up the diesel generating station this time, but we'll have to find $xxxM to get power lines up there."
 

OldSolduer

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Good luck with that.

There is a well connected, vocal group at the top of most band structures that jealously guards their power.
And the very public battle between the Métis and FN aren’t helping here in Manitoba
 

Jarnhamar

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Giving a large sum of money to every FN could have some unintended consequences.

If teenagers and young adults started abandoning the reserves and the north to head to the big city it wouldn't take long for the government to get accused of trying to pick up where the residential schools left off by those left on the reserves with a dwindling population and workforce.

Many of us have seen some of the negative effects of what a large influx of cash can do to CAF members suffering from substance abuse problems or mental health issues. If there are alcohol and drug problems on certain reserves a large influx of cash in everyone's pocket could be pretty detrimental.
 

lenaitch

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It's not going to get cheaper the longer you wait to build. It take a very long time to reach many of them and if you plan the road right you make air transport cheaper and faster to the non connected ones as goods can be trucked closer.

If it were only "the road":

Map-of-Nishnawbe-Aski-Nation-member-communities-road-access-and-nearest-emergency-care (2).png

This is just northwestern Ontario.
Sounds like you're making way too much sense for any realistic government solution there, bud .... Not to mention the concept of "it only costs $x million to fix up the diesel generating station this time, but we'll have to find $xxxM to get power lines up there."

Actually, that initiative is already under way:


It's a lot easier to build and maintain a pole line than a year-round road.

The upfront cost would reduce costs in areas such as transportation, consumer goods and housing; however, I'm still not convinced there is a consensus amongst the communities for road connectivity, but stand to be corrected.

These FNTs are located in their various traditional territories. One challenge is they are now living a non-traditional lifestyle. Short of resource royalties and some level of employment, there is simply no economic basis for these communities without government support.
 

The Bread Guy

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... I'm still not convinced there is a consensus amongst the communities for road connectivity, but stand to be corrected ....
I read the situation the same as you.
Actually, that initiative is already under way:

(...)

It's a lot easier to build and maintain a pole line than a year-round road ...
Good point - not all the remote communities, and still early days, but a good start.
 

lenaitch

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I read the situation the same as you.

Good point - not all the remote communities, and still early days, but a good start.

They have to first increase the grid capacity to Pickle Lake and Red Lake. I don't know why the eastern communities aren't included. Some are quite independent but there might be a legal/technical issue involved - this is area closest to the Ring of Fire mining area. Two are already on the grid because they lie close to the current feed from Red Lake. It also doesn't include the communities along the coast of Hudson Bay.
 

Colin Parkinson

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If it were only "the road":

View attachment 65371

This is just northwestern Ontario.


Actually, that initiative is already under way:


It's a lot easier to build and maintain a pole line than a year-round road.

The upfront cost would reduce costs in areas such as transportation, consumer goods and housing; however, I'm still not convinced there is a consensus amongst the communities for road connectivity, but stand to be corrected.

These FNTs are located in their various traditional territories. One challenge is they are now living a non-traditional lifestyle. Short of resource royalties and some level of employment, there is simply no economic basis for these communities without government support.
Now compare it to other Provinces which have a smaller population, tax base, younger and you will see how Ontario has done a piss poor job.
 

The Bread Guy

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Now compare it to other Provinces which have a smaller population, tax base, younger and you will see how Ontario has done a piss poor job.
Political lack of will at all levels & all parties notwithstanding, I'm going to guess there's also more geography in play in NW Ontario (40+ communities in an area the size of France) when you compare province-to-province, but I stand to be corrected.
 

Brad Sallows

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Short of resource royalties and some level of employment, there is simply no economic basis for these communities without government support.

When a mine/mill with a company town closes, so does the company town.

If teenagers and young adults started abandoning the reserves and the north to head to the big city

Best case, they do.
 

Colin Parkinson

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Lack of will, you needed a W.A.C. Bennett with some vision. Having spent a lot time on infrastructure projects in Northern BC and the Yukon, I seen the will to increase connectivity of the communities both physically and electronically.
 

brihard

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Giving a large sum of money to every FN could have some unintended consequences.

If teenagers and young adults started abandoning the reserves and the north to head to the big city it wouldn't take long for the government to get accused of trying to pick up where the residential schools left off by those left on the reserves with a dwindling population and workforce.

Many of us have seen some of the negative effects of what a large influx of cash can do to CAF members suffering from substance abuse problems or mental health issues. If there are alcohol and drug problems on certain reserves a large influx of cash in everyone's pocket could be pretty detrimental.

It’s been a serious issue with CERB. Certainly not one limited to First Nations of course. There are a certain segment of people across all of the population who, given a windfall, are going to quickly piss it away. CERB parties rife with drugs, alcohol, and stupidity have been a definite thing.
 

dapaterson

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It’s been a serious issue with CERB. Certainly not one limited to First Nations of course. There are a certain segment of people across all of the population who, given a windfall, are going to quickly piss it away. CERB parties rife with drugs, alcohol, and stupidity have been a definite thing.

I spent ninety percent of my money on wine, women and song and just wasted the other ten percent.

Ronnie Hawkins
 
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