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NAN calls on new Ford government to prioritize Ontario’s relationship with First Nations

Election 'lacked any substantive conversation about First Nations,' says Grand Chief Derek Fox
NAN Grand Chief Derek Fox
NAN Grand Chief Derek Fox (NAN Facebook page)

THUNDER BAY, ON: Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Derek Fox congratulates Doug Ford on his re-election and will look to his new government to prioritize Ontario’s Treaty relationship with NAN First Nations:

“This election focused on the economy, housing, and health care, but lacked any substantive conversation about First Nations and the issues our leaders are struggling to overcome. The Ford campaign prioritized the province’s economic recovery but did little to explain what actions his new government will take to strengthen our communities and ensure that they share in this prosperity, including resource development within NAN territory.

Our leaders have high expectations of our provincial Treaty partner to advance their priorities and continue to close the gap in the quality of life between First Nations people and the rest of the province. We look to the Premier to uphold Ontario’s responsibility and work with us to accelerate progress to strengthen our Nations and improve the lives of our citizens.

The path forward requires the province to not only acknowledge the spirit and intent of our Treaty, but to accept our Nations as equal partners and work with us on a good way to overcome the unique challenges our communities face. We are prepared to work with this government to help heal our citizens and support the long-term sustainable growth of our communities.”

NAN acknowledges the leadership of outgoing NDP leader Andrea Horwath for her advocacy as leader of the official opposition, and outgoing Timmins MPP Gilles Bisson for his support of NAN’s eastern communities. NAN also congratulates Kingfisher Lake First Nation member Sol Mamakwa on his re-election in the Kiiwetinoong riding.

NAN looks forward to working with MPPs elected in ridings across NAN territory including: Greg Rickford (Kenora-Rainy River), Michael Mantha (Algoma-Manitoulin), Guy Bourgouin (Mushkegowuk-James Bay), France Gélinas (Nickel Belt), John Vanthof (Timiskaming-Cochrane), and Lise Vaugeois (Thunder Bay-Superior North).

The Executive Council will continue to strengthen NAN’s relationship with this new government to address the priorities member First Nations including: housing and infrastructure, mental health & addictions, environment and climate change, health, education, and emergency management.