OTTAWA – National Indigenous Peoples Day provides an opportunity for Canadians to celebrate and learn more about the cultural diversity of the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples.
Green Party Leader Elizabeth May (MP, Saanich-Gulf Islands) stated: "National Indigenous Peoples Day is a time to celebrate the extraordinary resilience of Indigenous culture after centuries of colonization and 150 years of repression under the Indian Act. May our nation’s future be marked by a new and profound respect between the original inhabitants and titleholders of this land and those of settler culture. We must do more than decolonize; we must ‘Indigenize’ Canada. As a people we must live in harmony with the Earth and all its beings. In the spirit in which we say 'all my relations' ."
Said Green Party Indigenous affairs critic Lorraine Rekmans: "For me, this year's celebrations of Indigenous culture and heritage are overshadowed by very serious and sombre issues including the findings of the Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women's inquiry and the Indigenous child welfare crisis we are facing. This is a day when all Canadians should pause, reflect on what sort of country this has become since Confederation and take stock of how we can all do better in caring for one another."
Green Party candidate for Victoria, Racelle Kooy, said: “For this National Indigenous Peoples Day, I reflect on the federal government’s decision to say no to free prior and informed consent to many First Nations and yes to the Trans Mountain pipeline.
“My St’at’imc and Secwepemc Elders ensured that I understood the significance of healthy waterways and the critical role apex predators play in an ecosystem. To fast-track the extinction of the southern resident orcas from the Salish Sea is to exacerbate the collapse of that ecosystem. How arrogant we have become as humans, thinking we can on one hand ignore the science of the impacts of an inevitable spill and increased tanker traffic and on the other hand think that we can outsmart nature to fix an ecosystem post spill. It’s time to stop virtue signalling regarding the climate emergency and Indigenous people and undertake clear concrete steps to lift the burden from the next generations.”
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