Federal budget fails to address youth suicide; Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

ANISHINABEK NATION HEAD OFFICE (March 20, 2019)— Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Glen Hare says that while the federal budget is planning to spend $4.5 billion over the next five years to narrow the socio-economic gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, it lacks in areas of youth suicide and Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

“Acknowledging and respecting the nation-to-nation relationship has been the foundation of our success,” says Grand Council Chief Hare. “Now is the time for Canada to work directly with Anishinabek First Nations in implementing their own solutions for a more stable future. We know our citizens best and have solutions to the challenges they face on a daily basis. First Nations know the path forward and the Anishinabek Nation is  prepared to seize the opportunities outlined in Budget 2019 and look forward to the implementation the strengthening governance tools provided in the budget. I was particularly pleased to see the reference for the Anishinabek Education System noted in this budget. The commitment and incredible work being done by our Participating First Nations and the Kinoomaadziwin Education Body on implementation of the Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement, is necessary for the success of the Anishinabek Education System.”

The budget includes commitments to assist in resolving a range of First Nations priorities such as services for children, $1.2 billion for Jordan’s Principle, response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action,

$333.7 million earmarked for revitalizing Indigenous Languages, building more low-income rental units and $2 billion to address the First Nation Boil Water Advisory crisis.

“The 2019 federal budget is a decent acknowledgement of a number of supports that will aid in overcoming some of the funding challenges faced by our First Nations,” says Hare. “My concern with this budget is the spread of commitments over a five-year period when the need has been demonstrated across all areas for decades; especially in areas of essential services and housing needs in our communities.”

The Anishinabek Nation is the political advocate for 40 member communities across Ontario, representing approximately 65,000 people. The Anishinabek Nation is the oldest political organization in Ontario and can trace its roots back to the Confederacy of Three Fires, which existed long before European contact.

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