Monday, January 28, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THUNDER BAY, ON: Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Harvey Yesno looks forward to working with newly elected Ontario Liberal Party leader Kathleen Wynne and insists that the Ontario Premier’s Office work with the 49 NAN First Nations on core northern priorities such as resource development investments and establish an agreement on resource revenue sharing.
“Treaty and resource revenue sharing are key to addressing the pressing and dire challenges facing the remote First Nations of northern Ontario,” said NAN Grand Chief Harvey Yesno. “Our treaty partners, Canada and Ontario must come to the table to address these issues, and not just to dialogue or discuss but strategize and implement. NAN First Nations need the process for formal agreements to get underway.”
A former school board trustee, Wynne has held several posts in outgoing premier Dalton McGuinty’s cabinets, including education, transportation and aboriginal affairs. NAN leadership has declared that provincial relations with First Nations, specifically the sharing of resources in Ontario’s remote north that is poised for significant developments, should be high priority in the coming months.
NAN leaders along with other national leaders have been demanding that Canada and Ontario renew its treaty relationship with First Nations, and agree to share the wealth that comes from extracting natural resources found in their traditional and treaty territories.
“Ontario is behind the times in terms of First Nations relations and the development of significant resource sharing agreements compared to other provinces across the country. Ontario needs to be more progressive and follow the examples of other provinces such as Quebec, BC and Manitoba to work with First Nations in a positive way,” Grand Chief Yesno said.
“Nishnawbe Aski Nation will continue to call Canada and Ontario to the treaty table, and our Chiefs will ensure that we will reach agreements for resource revenue sharing. Canada and Ontario must honour the obligations of the treaty promises and maintain the honour of the Crown.”
Nishnawbe Aski Nation is a political territorial organization representing 49 First Nation communities in James Bay Treaty No. 9 and Ontario portions of Treaty No. 5 – an area covering two thirds of the province of Ontario in Canada.
For more information please contact: Jamie Monastyrski, A/Director of Communications – Nishnawbe Aski Nation (807) 625-4978 or cell (807) 630-7087 email [email protected]