First Nations involvment in Ring of Fire project will come after province and First Nations talk, Kathleen Wynne says
Ontario’s Minister of Aboriginal Affairs is asking First Nations near the Ring of Fire to be patient. First Nations leaders are upset Cliffs is locating its chromite smelter — and 450 jobs — in Sudbury, rather than in northwestern Ontario.
Kathleen Wynne said the mining project will benefit aboriginal communities, but she doesn’t have the details.
“Those have not been finalized,” she said. “We were not announcing those today because we couldn’t. There’s no way we could announce those today because we haven’t had the conversation with you.”
Wynne said she hopes First Nations and the province can sit down and have meaningful discussions, and not end up with a conflict.
One community ‘cannot provide the workforce’
She pointed out that locating the smelter in Sudbury was just the start of many economic spin-offs for northern Ontario.
“One community cannot provide the workforce … for this project,” Wynne said.
Locating the smelter in Sudbury was not a political, but rather a business decision, she noted.
Wynne’s comments were not enough reassurance First Nations would have a part in the project, according to Terry Waboose, the Deputy Grand Chief of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation.
For the rest of this article, please go to the CBC Radio Thunder Bay website: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay/story/2012/05/10/tby-wynne-on-smelter.html