Time to Start Down the Road to Reconciliation: Statement by the Green party leader on National Aboriginal Day

Fredericton – David Coon, MLA for Fredericton South and Leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick issued the following statement in recognition of National Aboriginal Day:

“Today is National Aboriginal Day. Two years ago, this month the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada released 94 calls to action for governments and educational institutions to begin down the road of reconciliation with First Nations.

Universities across our province have been responding, but our provincial government has been silent on its efforts. Implementing the TRC Calls to Action in New Brunswick is a first step toward reconciliation. This is not an indigenous issue, this is a societal issue for all New Brunswickers. Premier Gallant needs to break his silence and tell New Brunswickers how he intends to lead our Province down a path of reconciliation with the Wolastoqiyik, Passamaquoddy and Mi’kmaq peoples.

My bill to amend the Education Act to mandate the inclusion of First Nations culture and history in public school curricula passed with the support of all parties in the Legislature. This implements one of the TRC Calls to Action. It’s a start, but 93 Calls to Action remain to be acted upon.”

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> Non-Violence

A culture of cooperation, caring and understanding is essential to ending violence in our society. Rehabilitation rather than vengeance must be the goal of our justice system.

> Self-Determination and Citizenship

We must have the opportunity and the responsibility as citizens to contribute to the common good, which requires that all have the capacity to participate in community life.

> Social Justice and Equality

Everyone must have equal access to the necessities of life and be treated with dignity and respect. Treaties with First Nations must be honoured.

> Participatory Democracy

We must be able to participate in decisions that affect our lives and be guaranteed that our votes are reflected in the make-up of the Legislative Assembly.

> Local Self-Reliance

Our communities should be in control of their own destinies, supported by strong local economies, and sustained by local sources of food and renewable energy.

> Living within Our Ecological Means

We must live within the ecological limits of the Earth, while meeting our needs without threatening our children's future or the survival of other species.

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