Minutes of Proceedings and Evidence of the Special Committee on Indian Self-Government, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, No 15 (28 March 1983)
By: Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Canada, Parliament, Minutes of Proceedings and Evidence of the Special Committee on Indian Self-Government, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, No 15 (28 March 1983).
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HOUSE OF COMMONS
Issue No. 15
In Kettle Point, Ontario
Monday, March 28, 1983
Chairman: Mr. Keith Penner
Minutes of Proceedings and Evidence
of the Special Committee on
The status, development and responsibilities of Band
governments on Indian reserves, as well as the financial
relationships between the Government of Canada and
(See back cover)
First Session of the
Thirty-second Parliament, 1980-81-82-83
SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON
Chairman: Mr. Keith Penner
Vice-Chairman: Mr. Stan Schellenberger
Clerk of the Special Committee
MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS
MONDAY, MARCH 28, 1983
The Special Committee on Indian Self-Government met in Kettle Point, Ontario at 9:48 o’clock a.m., this day, the Acting Chairman, Mr. Burghardt, presiding.
Members of the Committee present: Messrs. Allmand, Burghardt, Manly and Oberle.
Ex—officio member present: From the Assembly of First Nations: Ms. Roberta Jamieson.
Liaison member present: From the Native Women’s Association of Canada: Ms. Sandra Isaac.
In attendance: From the Research Branch of the Library of Parliament: Mrs. Barbara Reynolds, Research Officer.
Witnesses: From the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point Reserve: Chief Milton (Bud) George. From the Saugeen Reserve: Chief James Mason. From the Chippewas of the Thames Reserve: Chief Ether Deleary. From the Anishinabek Nation: Chief R.K. (Joe) Miskokomon, Grand Council Chief.
The Committee resumed consideration of its Order of Reference dated Wednesday, December 22, 1982. (See Minutes of Proceedings, Wednesday, December 22, 1982, Issue No. 1.)
Chief George made a statement.
Chief Mason recited a prayer.
Chief Deleary made a statement.
Chief Miskokomon made a statement and answered questions.
it was agreed that the document entitled “Presentation On Policing By The Ontario Indian Police Association” submitted by Mr. Winston Williams, President. Ontario Indian Police Association be printed as an appendix to this day’s Minutes of Proceedings and Evidence. (See Appendix “SEND-15”).
Chief George made a statement and answered questions.
Chief Deleary made a statement and answered questions.
Chief Mason made a statement.
At 12:50 o`clock p.m., the Committee adjourned until 1:45 o’clock p.m., this afternoon.
The Special Committee on Indian Self-Government met in Kettle Point, Ontario at 2:00 o’clock p.m., the Acting Chair- man, Mr. Burghardt, presiding.
Members of the Committee present: Messrs. Allmand, Burghardt, Manly and Oberle.
Ex-officio member present: From the Assembly of First Nations: Ms. Roberta Jamieson.
Liaison member present: From the Native Women’s Association of Canada: Ms. Sandra Isaac.
In attendance: From the Research Branch of the Library of Parliament: Mrs. Barbara Reynolds, Research Officer.
Witnesses: From the Saugeen Reserve: Chief James Mason. From the Christian Island Reserve: Chief Rod Monague. From the Chippewa: of the Thames Reserve: Chief Ether Deleary. From the Chippewas of Sarnia: Chief Ray Rogers. From the Anishinabek Nation: Chief R.K. (Joe) Miskokomon, Grand Council Chief.
The Committee resumed consideration of its Order of Reference dated Wednesday, December 22, 1982. (See Minutes of Proceedings, Wednesday, December 22, 1982. Issue No. 1.)
Chief Mason answered questions.
Chief Monague made a statement and answered questions.
At 4:05 o’clock p.m.. the sitting was suspended.
At 4:20 o’clock p.m. the sitting resumed.
Chief Deleary made a statement and with. Chief Rogers, Chief Mason, Chief Monague and Chief Miskokomon, answered questions.
Chief Deleary made a further statement and answered questions.
At 6:36 o`clock pm., the Committee adjourned until 7:15 o’clock pm., this evening.
The Special Committee on Indian Self-Government met in Kettle Point, Ontario at 7:21 o’clock p.m., the Acting Chair- man, Mr, Burghardt, presiding.
Members of the Committee present: Messrs. Allmand, Burghardt, Manly and Oberle.
Ex-officio member present: From the Assembly of First Nations: Ms. Roberta Jamieson.
Liaison member present: From the Native Women’s Association of Canada: Ms. Sandra Isaac.
In attendance: From the Research Branch of the Library of Parliament: Mrs. Barbara Reynolds, Research Officer.
Witnesses: From the Chippewas of Sarnia: Chief Ray Rogers.
From the Anishinabek Nation: Chief R.K. (Joe) Miskokomon, Grand Council Chief. From the Saugeen Reserve: Chief James Mason.
The Committee resumed consideration of its Order of Reference dated Wednesday, December 22, 1982. (See Minutes of Proceedings, Wednesday. December 22, 1982, Issue No. 1.)
it was agreed that the document entitled “Presentation on Health” submitted by Chief Frank Solomon of Cape Croker Reserve, be printed as an appendix to this day’s Minutes of Proceedings and Evidence. (See Appendix “SEND-16”).
Chief Rogers made a statemen and, with Chief Miskoko- mon, answered questions.
Chief Miskokomon made a statement.
Chief Mason recited a prayer.
At 8:50 o’clock p.m., the Committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.
Clerk of the Committee
(Recorded by Electronic Apparatus)
Monday, March 28, 1983
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I will call to order our meeting here at Kettle Point, for the Special Subcommittee on Indian Self-Government; and might I say, on behalf of the committee, that we are very pleased to be here at Kettle Point. For me personally it is an added pleasure, because I have had the opportunity over the years of spending many a good summer day here at Kettle Point, as Chief Bud George knows full well. So it is good to be back in the area. I just wish the sun were shining and it were a little warmer. We could all go for a swim on the beautiful beach here.
Be that as it may, I am sure that most of you know that this committee has been in existence for quite some time. If I may, I will just take one or two minutes to give you a brief background of the formation of this Special Subcommittee on Indian Self-Government.
In Parliament we have a Standing Committee of Indian and Northern Affairs. The members of that committee, for some time, have been very concerned about this question of Indian self-government and as a result last year, through our committee meetings, it was established by Parliament that two special subcommittees would be set up to study this overall question.
The first subcommittee began its hearings at the end of August and into September of last year and we dealt with the question of Indian women and the Indian Act. The report of that subcommittee was presented to the Standing Committee on Indian Affairs last September and was accepted by the standing committee. That will eventually get before Parliament, of course. Whether it actually becomes legislation or not remains to be seen at this time, but there were many recommendations on the part of that special subcommittee dealing with that very contentious question.
The second subcommittee, which we are members of and meeting here today, is looking at the overall question of Indian self-government. As we look at the entire Indian Act I think most people would agree that it is much out of date in many areas; that we are into a new era. We have new thinking; we have fresh ideas, both from the Native people of Canada and certainly, I would have to say, from members of this committee. And while we have three political parties represented on this committee, I am sure you will see, as the day’s proceedings go, that we are all out for one common interest and that.is to try to better the relationships with Native people and to try to improve lives and situations in that area.
So we are here today at Kettle Point to meet with representatives of Indian bands and chiefs here in this area. Tomorrow we will move on to the City of London, to do likewise with a number of other interested bands. So far this committee has travelled quite extensively across Canada. The committee has visited areas of British Columbia, of Saskatche- wan, Alberta, of southern Manitoba and also northwest Ontario. Now we are in the southern part and future meetings will be concentrated, I am sure, in eastern Canada as well.
At this point I would like to introduce members of the committee to you. For the benefit of our audience here today, I want to say personal thanks to those responsible for arranging this agenda for us. As I understand from other members of the committee, this perhaps is the best organized session, at least we are looking forward to that, the committee members have had. So I congratulate those responsible for putting this agenda together and the various briefs which we are going to hear later on.
Let me introduce the committee to you. On my right is Mr. Frank Oberle. who is a Conservative member of Parliament from the riding of Prince George—Peace River, in British Columbia. Mr. Oberle has been a long-time member of this committee and, as you will see, has quite a bit to say as we go along in the hearings. On my left is Mr. Jim Manly, who is a member of Parliament of the New Democratic Party. Mr. Manly is from Cowichan-Malahat—The Islands, also from British Columbia. So we are bringing the west to the east here today and I know that we easterncrs will show these westerners good eastern hospitality as we go along here today.
Also, representing the Liberal party on my left is, the Honourable Warren Allmand, from Notre-Dame-de-Grâce- Lachine East, in Quebec. As you well know, Mr. Allmand is a former Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. My name is Jack Burghardt. I am the chairman of this committee for the two-day sessions—a Liberal member from London West.
In the first subcommittee we had, we saw really a breakthrough in committee operations by having non-members of Parliament as part of our committee, with full rights to ask questions and to offer advice and to take part in any debate that might go on. I would like to introduce to you now, Ms Roberta Jamieson, who is an ex-officio member of this committee. She is sitting on my right representing the Assembly of First Nations. Also at our table, representing the Native Women’s Association of Canada, is a liaison member, Ms Sandra Isaac. There is also a seat available for the Native Council of Canada, but it is not filled today.
I think, Mr. Clerk, I have introduced everyone at the present time. We have our researchers and other support staff with us, on the left, as well. So without any further ado, it is a pleasure again, as I say, to be here, and I am now going to now direct my attention, I guess, to our host chief, Milton (Bud) George, who is Chief-Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point Reserve. Chief George.
Chief Milton (Bud) George (Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to take this time. here to welcome our chiefs and our councillors and this special subcommittee, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, to Kettle Point. To us it is a special land. It is something that we feel that there is no one that can take it away from us. Ijust welcome you here and hope that we have a good meeting here because it is all for the better of our people. I would like to turn this over to Jim Mason, who is our elder; he will say a blessing before we get going.
Chief James Mason (Chief Saugeen Reserve): Join me in a prayer to the great spirit.
Dear Father, we ask you today for guidance. You have created all things. We are thankful for the things that you have provided for us. We ask you, Father, to open our eyes, open our hearts, give us guidance in our delivering of our different programs as we have this committee to look at. We ask also, Father, that you have these people have their eyes open, their hearts open, so that they be receptive to our questions.
Dear Father, we forever need your guidance; today more than ever, and in the future. This Father we ask forever.
Chief Ether Deleary (Chief, Chippewas of the Thames Reserve): Mr. Chairman, members of the special committee, we welcome the opportunity to appear before the special committee. I would like to introduce the witnesses who will be making presentations today. On my left is Chief Rod Monague from Christian Island; you have met Chief Milton (Bud) George from Kettle Point; Grand Chief Joe Miskokomon of the Anishinabek Nation; Chief Ray Rogers from the Sarnia Band; Chief Jim Mason from Saugeen; and myself, Chief Ether Deleary, from the Chippewas of the Thames Band.
The special reference that was given to the special committee, marks a very important time that will have an impact on determining the future of all Native people forever. We had, over the last few days, prepared briefs, but because of the time-frame that we are only going to be meeting for this one day, and the special committee is moving on to London tomorrow, we have shortened up some of our briefs. We were hoping that we could have met for the two days. There are many items that face us, I think, and we would really appreciate tabling some of the items later on today for the consideration of the committee. It is also our understanding, if there is other information, we would have the opportunity to present that to the chairman for consideration by the committee.
So with that, I would like to again welcome you. Our next speaker on the agenda is Grand Chief of the Anishinabek Nation, Joe Miskokomon.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Just before Joe gets under way, I would like to inform you that you could also mail any presentations you might have even following today’s hearings. If there is something else you would like to give, you could mail it to the clerk of the committee. We can give you that information.
Chief Joe Miskokomon (Grand Council Chief of the Anishinabek Nation, Union of Ontario Indians): Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
We are the Anishinabek. The Creator placed us and all things on this island. We have been called Ojibways, Chippewas, Ottawas, Delawares, Potowatomis, Algonquins. We are nations whose languages are similar, whose cultures are close, whose lands are often shared.
Today, we number over 40,000 people on this land from the south and around the Great Lakes. We have our own laws, language and form of government. All our lands are known to us. Though we have shared our lands through treaties, we have never separated our people and our lands in our minds.
Our communities and the governments of our nation are tribal in nature. Our governments are and have been as much a government as the people wanted and needed, and no more.
Our chiefs also meet together in what is called the Grand Councils of the nations. We have said we have been confederated for years beyond memory, and that is so. The purpose of the Grand Councils was to discuss decision matters which concern all our communities. These things remain so today, and our Chiefs in Council continue to meet in council in the same manner.
With that, Mr. Chairman, I would like to point out that the Anishinabek Nation has been here since time immemorial and will continue in its form.
Elders, Chiefs in Council, members of the committee, ladies and gentlemen, I am appearing on behalf of those bands which are from the Union of Ontario Indians and were not able to appear before you. We firmly support and are signatories to the Declaration of First Nations and the treaty and aboriginal rights principles. We are not interested in powers that devolve from the federal minister to us, or in concept, put forward in proposed Indian government bills.
We began our relationship with the Crown on an equal basis, as evidenced in the Royal Proclamation of 1763 and in the signing of treaties both before and after confederation. We want to continue our relationship in the same government-to- government fashion, only this time we want to have legislation work for us.
Although colonial government legislation came to dominate us, we did not give up our right to govern ourselves. We intend now to reserve this legislative domination with your assistance. The intent of having legislation exclusively designed for
Indians recognizes our uniqueness as a people. Our demand for self-government is consistent with the trust responsibility of the federal government. We will fulfil our portion of responsi- bility when Parliament can turn our words into action.
If this committee recommends new legislation, it will recognize our right to govern ourselves and determine our own form of government, provide a land base on which to situate our people and institutions; and you will have helped to end the colonial era. Once these things are in place, we can legislate and implement our own laws in respect to our own domestic affairs and in the area of traditional customary law. We would like to have our own ‘court system to interpret thme laws consistent with our values and traditions. Overall, we would like to establish a research and development agency to assist our bands in developing sound Indian government. We want to end the dependency of federal hand-outs and the list of dismal socio-economic statistics that demonstrate the very depen- dency.
We are not seeking redress for past injustices or a reawaken- mg of collective guilt. We want justice within Canada and practical solutions to emanate from the parliamentary process.
Before I go any further, let me say to you, Mr. Chairman, we will not allow any unilateral disposition of legislation. Instead, we recommend that this legislation go through a process of review and negotiations prior to becoming law. As the federal government has exclusive authority to legislate for Indians and lands reserved for Indians, our preference is that the federal government not implement recommendations without giving us a chance to approve them in a defined forum. We must be able to give our consent to legislation that directly affects us.
Presently, Indian governments exist in various stages of development. Many exhibit forms that you as parliamentarians may not be accustomed to. At this time, the law limits us to begin for the most part quasi-governments or extensions of the Department of Indian Affairs administration. The present Indian Act has repressed our expression of self—determination through strict adherence to rules and regulations.
We do not require legislation to create but rather to recognize Indian governments as a form of government in Canada. We are not looking merely to replace this anachronis- tic act, but to put in place legislation that will complement the way we wish to establish our own place within confederation. If it does not reflect our lifestyle or the manner in which we perceive our place, then it will be as limiting as the present act is. It must realize the full potential for Indian government. This means Indian government must be more than an adminis- trator of our people’s policy or programs.
Indian government does not need to be authorized or legitimized by non-Indian systems. Our system would set out guidelines or milestones for groups of bands or individual bands to assume full control of their affairs. We will not have others judge our competency. Those days are over. We now want to resume a government-to-government relationship.
Further legislation must be flexible. We are not all the same. Our customs and traditions vary from nation to nation, and in some cases, from band to band. We must not be made to wear the same uniform. We must be able to make adjust- ments to suit our needs.
At this point, I would like to address jurisdiction and the exercise of jurisdiction by Indian governments. Today, I would say the field of jurisdiction is still open to us as the first nations. We are willing to be responsible for all things that affect our lives.
How can we do this? Very simply. Indian governments may wish to take on as much responsibility as possible; or they could contract out certain portions of the jurisdiction such as health, education and economic development and still exercise control that is required. Indian governments can also join together and establish agencies that they would control; for example, in jurisdictional areas like economic development or child welfare.
When conflicts of jurisdiction arise, these can ,be settled through an agreed-upon method of arbitration or negotiation. Some area of jurisdiction can be shared. In other areas, Indian governments may not wish to be involved until a later date.
As a member of the Ontario Confederacy of Nations, I have had opportunity to review with representatives of other Indian nations the concept of a clearer financial relationship with the Crown. As it exists, it is entirely unsatisfactory. We as Indian governments cannot develop or change our present economic situation if this relationship does not change and change drastically.
I will mention flexibility once again as the key element. Contributions similar to those made through equalization payments would enable Indian governments to meet the social and economic needs of our community. These payments should be made directly to Indian governments, eliminating the need for the middleman or bureaucracy at the national, regional or district level. Indian governments require a sound financial and economic base on which to build towards non-dependency and self-sufficiency.
Indian governments must have full access to the funds held in trust for them by the Department of Indian Affairs. Not only do these funds receive below-average interest, but Indian governments have not been able to secure a full statement of
their accounts or the full use of these funds for investment purposes. We will be accountable, but to the people and not to bureaucrats.
We,will account for the use of our funds we receive from Canada on the same basis and to the same standards as provincial governments account for the use of moneys they receive from transfer payments from Canada.
Let me now give you evidence on how present federal government restrictions are limiting our growth and develop- ment. By reviewing these situations, you will readily discern our willingness and preparedness to not only be more respon- sible as governments but also accountable to the people we represent.
Within our 46 communities, more than half the Anishinabek communities are involved in health care delivery, ranging from community health representatives, or CHRs, direct contracts to hire band employed nurses and dental hygienists, health care administrators and support staff, to build and operate a health centre, contract to train health board planning for implementation and funding for the running of senior citizens’ residences and nursing homes. With the exception of the community health representatives and transportation, all these contracts are classified as pilot. These pilot classifications do not allow for a continuous development or an assumed flow of dollars once a program is initiated. Proposals by band councils that the Department of National Health and Welfare identi- fied as a high priority two years ago have not yet been implemented. This has resulted in an absolute freeze on all contribution arrangements to bands in health for the past two budgets. Health and Welfare personnel have increased, but only new health programs within the bureaucracy of headquar- ters have been implemented. Health care is a basic necessity. We are ready to implement health care services on reserves, but the federal government is not. New federal legislation should enable us to take control of this area.
Let me stress my point. The people of these communities have expressed their priorities. These priorities deal directly with the well-being of the community members. The lack of flexibility and the inability of the federal government to assure long-term funding for communities also creates a frustration to the people on a day-to-day basis. Approximately 20 bands are ready to extend health care. In the interim, until health care comes under our jurisdiction, person-year funds should be converted into contribution agreements to facilitate the transfer of control to band councils. I can envisage our steering committee delegates from many of our reserves underwriting a health policy that could supercede the policies of Health and Welfare in the future.
Indian governments were enthusiastic about the 1979 federal government commitment to Indian control of Indian health, but certain restrictive policy guidelines have serious negative implications on the transfer of control to Indian government. Transfer of control is subject to, number one, the availability of money for band council contracts, two, training health personnel available to bands, three, band infrastructure for administration and management, four, band designed systems capable of being demonstrated to federal government, with appropriate standards of health delivery, and five, Indian government training and recruiting programs which have acceptable federal and provincial standards and can be demonstrated to funding agencies beforehand.
The attitude reflected in the policy is typical of many others. If a band had fulfilled all of these requirements, contributions would not be required. Development cannot proceed in this manner. In 1983, no federal grant person—years or building capital is available for the implementation of this policy. Band councils cannot hire their own health personnel, build their own health centres or implement training programs. Federal government civil service jobs cannot be cancelled or transferred to tribal councils, Indian associations or band councils. In short, without a clear government-to-government relationship, progress will be a long time in coming, and the money will continue to be wasted on the bureaucracy.
Although the constitutional conference of last week on aboriginal peoples has not produced substantial progress in the area of self-government, we as Indian nations are confident and we have not lost sight of our objective.
As a parliamentary committee, no doubt your findings will be relied on as a primary document on Indian/Canada relationships. Therefore, I urge you, recognize our demands and recommend legislation that is reflective of and complementary to what we see as Indian self-government.
I urge you to recommend that Indian-controlled institutions begin plans for development and that these are federally funded. These agencies and institutions could begin a comprehensive study.
In summary, we are seeking no more than recognition that we should control what happens to our people in our territory, and we will accept no less.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you very much, Chief Miskokomon. I understand, before we begin questioning of our witnesses at this first stage, that you want to make a presentation on Indian policing, and that we will hear
from Winston Williams, who is president of the Ontario Indian Policing Association. Am I correct in that understanding? Or would you like us to question you on your brief now?
Chief Miskokomon: Mr. Chairman, I was hoping that this committee could start on time, but obviously we are running into Indian time by being late. Seeing the lack of time, and the number of topics we have to go through, I would like to put forward and table for your committee’s perusal and implemen- tation a submission by Mr. Winston Williams, president of the Ontario Indian Police Association. Within that document there are a number ofchanges that Indian policing in Ontario will require in order to have control, and if I may go to the back of his letter to you, the three recommendations put forward by the Ontario Indian Police Association are as follows: one, an amended agreement identifying full jurisdic- tion of Indian police officers; two, a police commission legislatively established totally responsible to the Indian nations and the federal and provincial governments; three, the establishment of an Indian court system.
So with that, Mr. Chairman, I would table the rest of the document.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you very much, Chief Miskokomon, and we will certainly take that presentation into consideration. So you are available for questioning now, and Mr. Oberle, would you like to begin with a few comments?
Mr. Oberle: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Let me first say how pleased we are to be here. We will not waste too much time with pleasantries, but I want to congratulate you on this fine facility here. It is a real credit to you, Chief George, and I know how proud you are and you are justified in your pride of your achievement.
Just a couple of comments or questions regarding your brief. You tie self-government to the trust relationship, and I read in your brief that you make the connection between aboriginal right and self-government; in other words, you consider self- government to be one of the main components of the concept of aboriginal right. But you also say in your brief that it is the government’s responsibility, under the trust they hold on your behalf, to permit you to develop self-government. This whole question is one with which the committee must come to terms when we write our report. As you achieve full control of your affairs, self-government and full control over your resources, your social affairs, how do you see the trust relationship between yourself and the government changing? In other words, will there be a requirement for a federal trustee once you have full control of your affairs?
A lot of people are saying you cannot have both: you cannot have a federal trustee responsible for all your actions and responsible to your children if he turns all the control over to you. I would like to hear from you to what extent you would be prepared to relieve the minister of his trust responsibility once he has turned control over to you.
Chief Miskokomon: I am certain that within a number of associations and presentations from across Canada you have run into diverse opinions on where trust lies with the federal government, some saying that perhaps if all trust were turned over to the Indian people, then trust would be there, and we would not need an avenue with the federal government. However, I think what we are saying is that when we negotiated treaties and understandings with the federal government, it became a government-to-government relationship; and through that relationship we have not had—since that time, we have been undermined, to a large extent.
There is a trust in terms of establishing or re-establishing that Indian government, and the federal government does have a responsibility in facilitating that growth so that in time there will be a transition period. Perhaps in time there may not be a requirement to have a trust responsibility with the federal government. Perhaps in time the entire trust will be turned over to Indian government. But until that is ensured, I think it has to be up to the Indian governments to what degree they want that trust responsibility, or to what degree’ the trust responsibility lies with the federal government.
That is in the evolving of Indian government and how that is established. I do not think you can say that within five years’ time, or two years’ time, or ten years’ time, we are going to eliminate the Department of Indian Affairs and have total trust within Indian governments. I think that has to be the subject of understanding and debate for each of those Indian governments; and to what degree they want that facilitated by the federal government and to what degree they are prepared to accept that trust back in their home communities.
Mr. Oberle: We break down this question of trust; and that is going to be a key component in our report. The minister is very anxious to learn from us what we hear in the country about this business of trust, because the government itself is very confused about that.
There is first of all the trust relationship that has to do with lands and with moneys that are kept in trust for your children and future generations. Like a trust company, they are managing your fiscal assets for you. That is one area of trust. The other area of trust would be related to what I call a social contract: the fulfilment of the responsibility that a government has to assure adequate health care and education and other social services. There is that trust. And then, of course, in your
case there would have to be a certain trust that has to do with unspecified rights, hunting and fishing. I suppose once you have achieved self-government and tribal nationhood, there would be a certain trust responsibility that simply relates to the relationship between a stronger dominant society and a smaller—in numbers, at least—weaker society.
Of the three—I do not want to put words in your mouth, but this is crucially important—I suppose you would be prepared, if the government turned over—and you say this in your brief. . . all the moneys it holds in trust for you. If it gave to your control all the lands and the resources it holds in trust for you, would you be prepared to relieve the minister of his responsibility inherent in the Indian Act, which requires him to assure that the value of these lands and moneys is maintained constant and that in fact they are enhanced? Would you relieve the minister of this responsibility if you were given all your resources?
Chief Miskokomon: Resources are only one area of trust. The revenue account is only one area that we are looking for. I do not know if you are trying to pre—empt the ongoing discussions with the Constitution on what trust may or may not come out of that, but I think what we are looking for is a true recognition of Indian government within another order of government in Canada. It would maintain the same trust responsibility, if we can use the analogy, as between the provinces and the federal government—or maybe there is a lack of trust among those levels of government. Certainly there is a lack of trust within our levels of government as they look at Indian Affairs; and vice versa.
In other words, what we are looking for is, until there is a true recognition of that Indian government that is placed constitutionally, that is placed within a number of other forums, it becomes a negotiable thing. Trust in terms of resources, certainly. I think we have the capability—I know we have the capability . . . to administer and put those things into effect.
In terms of land, or in terms of constitutional consent, that has been categorically denied to us across this country, not only by the provinces but also by your federal government. That raises the issue of consent and what type of legislative capability we would have and what type of other legislative capability the provinces and the federal government would have. I think they will always maintain some sort of trust responsibility until that is constitutionally entrenched. There is a legal responsibility, there is a moral responsibility, political responsibility, financial responsibility.
For this subcommittee to look at that and say that we turn over everything by the year 2000 to Indian people, in order of trust in all of those areas—first of all we have to go through
the constitutional debate. I think it is going to weigh heavily on that. Until both levels of government come to that decision, that yes, Indian government is another order of government and we have to recognize that and it has to be placed within the Constitution, where there will be equalization payments, transfer payments, resource sharing, extension of our boundaries, then we cannot deal with it only in an isolated case of financing. Financing is one step towards; but then the other questions surface.
Mr. Oberle: Chief, one of the problems we are facing, one of the problems the minister will be facing, the government will be facing, is not just what we might think to be right and just in terms of establishing a new relationship between Indian nations and the federal government, but it has to do very much with what Canadians generally will accept. There requires to be, of course, a change of attitude, as we all know, among all Canadians before major decisions can be made. But I am looking at it from your point of view, mainly.
You see, trust means paternalism. I am the Minister of Indian Affairs—I am not, but Mr. Allmand used to be and Mr. Munro is now. I do not trust you to manage the welfare of your children. That is why I keep a trust account in Ottawa: so when your children grow up there is some money there for them. You see, this is incredible. It is paternalism. And of course paternalism means dependency. If you want to become independent, then you have to assume some of the responsibility.
You are saying that in your brief: that you feel fully responsible to manage your own affairs. I happen to think so. But you see, the average Canadian will say, well, you cannot have your cake and eat it too. If you want to be totally independent, if you want to have powers that are equal to provincial powers, then you have to accept some of the responsibilities that go with them. That is why I have broken this trust area into three areas: trust relating to physical assets, to moneys and so on; and then, of course, the trust relating to a social contract—and I would never relieve the federal government of that, of course—and also the trust that is inherent in the relationship between sovereign peoples.
But I do not think in your brief your statement is strong enough. That is why I wanted to raise these questions. That is crucially important. If you want to have powers similar to those of the provinces, the provinces own all their land and the federal government does not keep in trust certain moneys that belong to the provinces. The federal government collects money and transfers it back to the province immediately; and that is the kind of relationship I think you want. But the federal government is not responsible—well, in a sense in Confederation we are responsible to retain our sovereignty in terms of geography; the provincial governments do not have an
army. The federal government does that. So there is a certain trust relationship there.
But certainly I would think, once you have been granted certain ‘powers of self-government, you would want to relieve the minister of this trust responsibility, in terms of making sure that your land always retains a certain value, that the money that is really yours that he has in general revenue, not paying you enough interest, always retains a certain value. Incidentally, the greatest breach of trust, as I see it, has been in the area of the capital accounts, where he permits you to spend revenue money an’d, because of inflation, your capital accounts are no longer of the same value that they were 10, 15 years ago. So he has breached his trust by not doing what is known as inflation accounting. If he pays you 12% or 15% interest, your trust account is worth less and less all the time, so he is in breach of his trust right there. In any case, I think I know what your objectives are and I agree with them.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle. Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Allmand: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It is a very good brief and I do not have too many questions, but I have a few.
Do you believe it is possible to have any amendments to the Indian Act before you complete the constitutional process with the federal and provincial governments? In other words, are there some amendments you think we could proceed with . . . we, the Parliament of Canada, the Government of Canada— before the constitutional process is completed? Or would you prefer that no amendments whatsoever be made to the Indian Act until the constitutional process is completed?
Chief Miskokomon: The constitutional process is going to take. as outlined now, up until 1987. I do not think we can live with this intolerable situation we have at hand within the act. I think there are some interim steps that have to be taken in order to move along… not totally independent of constitutional advancement, but certainly to facilitate band growth, Indian governnment growth, on reserves. certain steps can be taken. I do not think they are isolated from one another, that they are totally apart from one another. I do not think the constitutional amendment will be in place by 1987. I think it will go on much longer than that.
But moving towards things such as direct transfer payments to bands without having a whole bureaucracy in the middle slowing it down until finally, when it eventually ends up at band level, it is only a very small fraction of what was appropriated by Parliament. . . I think a lot of Indian governments can replace that now. I think recognition can take place that administratively—and I do not want to fall into kind of standing committee procedural things . . . a lot of things can be directly related to bands through, perhaps, a Crown corporation. That may be an avenue in terms of economic develop- ment, rather than having the archaic IEDF branch that is in place now.
Mr. Allmand: I just wanted to make that clear, because before the constitutional conference, which took place several weeks ago, when we were having our hearings prior to Christmas, last fall, and even in January, some bands, not knowing what was going to take place at the constitutional conference, said they did not want to see any change. But if I understand you correctly, now that a process has been entrenched for continuing constitutional conferences, it looks as though there is movement. You see certain amendments that could be made in the interim period to the Indian Act, which would move in the same direction and have the same compatability in principle, and would be worthwhile.
What you might want to do, as one of you said earlier, is that, if you do not have it ready today, some time before we complete our hearings the Union of Ontario Indians might want to send us copies of the amendments to the Indian Act that they think could be proceeded with right away—well, right away . . . within the next year or so. We would be pleased to have that. If we make changes to the Indian Act, we want to make sure that they are amendments that the Indian people want, not ones that the bureaucrats want. That is very important to us.
Another question: Over the years a lot of Indians lost their status, through no fault of their own, through provisions of the Indian Act. I am not talking about the Metis people, I am talking about non-status Indians, some of whom lost their status voting in elections, and all kinds of things. Do you look forward to some process whereby these people, who would like to be considered once again as status Indians—or their parents were status Indians . .. can be brought back into the entire Indian status community? I am not talking now of Section 12.(1)(b), I am talking about other items in the Indian Act that might have led to the loss of status. There has been a lot of discussion on Section 12.(1)(b). I am thinking of other areas where Indians have lost their status and feel cheated by the provisions of the Indian Act.
Chief Miskokomon: It is our feeling . . . We are talking of a number of different areas. One area we talk about is equality and the AFN has tabled what they feel about women’s equality. That is in the constitutional forum. The membership section, Section 12.(1)(b), the previous subcommittee dealt with and came out with some recommendations.
I think what we are getting down to now is talking about the acceptability of citizenship within the Anishinabek nation. Not to pre-empt any discussion that is going to take place today on membership, I would like to say that it is our feeling that the citizenry has to be acceptable to us—not to the federal legislation. We have a proposed mechanism to put in place to determine our citizens of the Anishinabek. We do. .. want those imposed by the previous subcommittee on us. That is not to say that we want to exercise discrimination; it is to say, what do we want within our own nation and how is that going to be compatible between communities? So, I would like to hold that question, if you will, for a while until Chief James Mason can deal with it in terms of membership.
Mr. Allmand: That is acceptable. My final question on this round, Mr. Chairman, is with respect to the large number of status Indians in Canada, and within your own nation, who are living off reserve, and how the Indian governments might take care of_them and provide them with services while they are in the cities, whether Toronto or London or wherever it might be. I guess no matter what type of Indian government might evolve in this country, you will always have people from your nations who will be going off reserve to work, or to go to university, or whatever. I presume there will be fewer than there are now, because if you have good economic development more will stay, but there will always be a certain number, and we see all over the country status Indians in large urban centres without proper services and support, and so on. The Indian bands now do not have enough resources to help them the way they would like to, and the federal government does not give them the help because they say they are off the reserve. The provincial governments do not, in many cases, and you see in some cities large groups of Indians without the proper support services.
In your concept of developing Indian self-government, do you see some way in which you can have more jurisdiction, or a closer relationship, with your own people who are living off the reserve in the cities?
Chief Miskokomon: First of all, I think we have to get out of the mentality of being on-reserve or off-reserve Indians. I do not think our status or our citizenship changes at all, in relation to where we move to. I will give you an example: This week on my rflerve there was a by-election held for a councillor. That by-election was held under the regulations set forth by the Department of Indian Affairs, and it is based on residency—principal residency. With this new job of being the Grand Council Chief of the Anishinabek Nation and President of the Union of Ontario Indians, my principal residency has been almost at Holiday Inns—outside of coming home to the reserve for weekends. Yet when I went to the band office to vote, I was denied the very thing of Indian government and that was the capability of voting for a member that I wanted placed on the council, and it was based on an old, archaic regulation set forth by Indian Affairs. Here I am today trying to talk about Indian nations and I was denied the right to vote on Saturday.
Mr. Allmand: Excuse me, on a point: I thought each band could decide whether they would let their non-resident members of their hands vote in their band elections. We were out somewhere, in the west, I believe, where they said in some casm it could be done and in some cases it could not be done. But you said that in your particular case, even though the band might have wanted it, a regulation of the department prevented it. It is interesting.
Chief Miskokomon: Okay. In that case, I certainly was denied the right to vote, but I think when we get to your question on the number of Indians being off reserve and the services . . .
Mr. Allmand: Plus the state it is in.
Chief Miskokomon: Certainly. We have gone through in Ontario very recently, and it is yet to be ratified by the federal government, a long term of negotiations over what is called the fishing agreement, and it was through the tripartite structure. Now that took a number of years—it took five years to get to the negotiating forum but we have ended up with an agree- ment, and it applies to all Indians in Ontario. So I think if we sat down and negotiated directly, without having such things as a 1965 welfare agreement, where we have been since that point consistently trying to gain some avenues in order to extend services from provincial governments and through legislation to our own people, if that were placed directly in the hands of Indian government, where we could negotiate services through agencies or through the provincial government, then I believe we could take care of, to a large degree, the status Indians who are off reserve.
I do not think it is realistic to say that we can open up our own agency, such as in the City of Toronto, where there are a number of status Indians residing. But I think if we have overall negotiated agreements, then we can deal directly with the provincial governments on a government-to-government relationship. Then we will not be just the recipients of a service but also can write in things that are going to benefit our own people who are off reserve.
Mr. Allmand: Thank you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand. Mr. Manly.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and I would like to express appreciation to the chiefs of the Anishinabek Nation for their presentation and for the welcome to Kettle Point.
I would like to ask Chief Miskokomon some questions relating to the whole concept of tribal government and perhaps I could begin with your comment that you felt that you wanted only as much government as people needed. Two hundred years ago, Thomas Jefferson in the United States said that that government governs best which governs least, and yet in increasingly complex times we in our society have found a need for more government and. of course, there is a debate among the different parties as to exactly how much government we do need. That is a fundamental question that all of us are having to wrestle with.
I wonder if you could give some comments as to how you see tribal government evolving in an increasingly complex society.
Chief Miskokomon: Again, I go back to references that I made earlier, that if there were a direct relationship, on a government-to-government basis, that the evolution of those governments would come forward as fast as the people are prepared to accept them. There will be a wide range, wherever
this committee travels, from the opinion of whether or not someone does want to have a relationship with the federal government at all—there will also be ranges that deal directly with one another in terms of transfer of payments and equalization. I think that whole question though has to stay with the band level. I do not see a representative association saying yes, we are prepared to accept everything and then what do we do, put a red bureaucracy in place to impose it back on the Indian governments on the band? I do not think that is a logical way of approaching the problem. I think we have to deal in terms of how fast each of those tribal governments is prepared to move forward, and not be hindered by circulars that continuously come down from the government every time Indian government makes another advancement, in terms of taking over their own programming and how it relates to their citizenry.
Every time we seem to take something over, the administration dollars fall off, the program dollars fall off, and when we go back to it they say, well, that is your problem. You have taken the program over. It is up to you now to provide that service for the amount of money that we give. It is unrealistic. The carrot goes out first and then it is a gradual cutback, cutback, cutback.
There have been very few instances where tribal governments have actually taken over programs and personnel within the department have gone down. Yet when we take them over, we have to pay below standard of what department personnel are being paid to operate and to handle the very same program. So until a number of things go forward . . .
If Indian governments take over programming, as it reverts to tribal government, then the personnel years should diminish accordingly and be supportive of Indian government, not maintain the status quo. When cutbacks come down . . . There is very little direct involvement for funding of those programs, so that when we find the term of a cutback, someone within regional office or in Ottawa says, oh, Ontario, we have 22.4% of the population yet we only receive 10% of the funding. We do not receive the correct amount of person-years within the department and, as we look across the program areas in general, we are nowhere close to what our national average should be. All we are saying is that what is rightfully ours, we would like. We do not want any more but we have a hard time living with anything less.
Mr. Manly: You talked about a system of Indian law and Indian courts. Do you think indian people should have any apppeal from the decision of Indian courts? For example, we have a system of provincial courts but people are able to appeal beyond those courts to the Supreme Court. Do you feel that kind of appeal beyond Indian jurisdictions should be available to individual Indian people?
Chief Miskokomon: No question about it, appeal mechanisms must be in place in any court system. I think what we are looking at from the outset though is the codification of
Indian law and the development of Indian courts, supported by a sound policing program. We have now a very difficult problem in Ontario where the Ontario Indian Police Association is developing itself and we have an agreement again with the province and the federal government where there is to be an establishment of a commission. The commission wants to maintain some sort of independence yet have a tie with Indian government. The whole court system and the law is just now starting to come about.
I think within the appeal mechanism—obviously, there are not going to be places where we can build our own structure such as the Supreme Court of Canada. However, what is preventing us from using that structure, with having some of our own apppointed judges within that type of structure? There would be no need for us to develop a penal institution, because they are already there.
But looking at parole boards, and the representation on parole boards, it is a fact that through the high number of Indian people incarcerated, well out of proportion with the rest of the Canadian society, a very small amount of those people are actually parolled, because, at least what is told to us, there is not an adequate system in place when it comes to fines of that nature that go to the province. But nothing in turn is given back to us to support the institution, the policing program, that would be adequate for prevention; not to lock people up, but prevention of crime. So we find ourselves on a losing end. We lose the people; we lose the finances in order to implement the type of program that we require.
Mr. Manly: I find your comments on the parole system very interesting, and I would like to have some amplification of those, either today or in some subsequent material.
On page 8, you indicate something that you were just talking about, where you said:
Federal government civil servant jobs cannot be cancelled or transferred to tribal councils, Indian associations or band councils.
Now, the one area where it has been done to some extent, I think, is in terms of teachers where federal schools have been phased out in favour of Indian-controlled schools. But are you saying here that there is some legislative impossibility for that kind of phasing out, apart from teachers, or is that just the way it is; that they never seem to do away with any federal jobs or to transfer them?
Chief Miskokomon: First of all, we cannot transfer federal jobs to the reserve. Second, if there is a reduction in staff, the reduction usually goes into the programs. The salary dollars convert into program dollars, and then next year, when program is cut, you lose your salary dollars. There is no mechanism to continue on in that. Although the person-year may go down within, we will say, Indian Affairs and is transferred into the contribution arrangement to support the program in turn taken out for the man-year, when the program
dollars go down, you suffer on both ends: you lose a man-year and you also lose the program dollar.
Mr. Manly: So theoretically it is possible, but in practical application you are at the mercy of the continual cutbacks that take place.
Chief Miskokomon: Exactly.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, very much. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly. Before I hear from Ms Jamieson, may I ask a supplementary question regarding the court system, Chief Miskokomon? I wonder if you could briefly just amplify for us what you have in mind there, because, I think, to get back to what Mr. Oberle earlier said, a lot of white people, when they look at the problems we are dealing with with Indian and native people, sometimes feel that you want your cake and to eat it, too, and I wonder if this is not an area here in the court system that this is what you are asking for. Are you asking for a separate court system to interpret your own laws, whatever they may be, or are you asking for representation on the present court system, as such? You mentioned something about judges being appointed, and this type of thing, from Indian people.
Chief Miskokomon: Concerning the application of law, we find, again, there is not very much within the penal institution we can look forward to. To a large extent we are saying that we want to develop and have within our own system a judicial system, a court system—a judicial system in its entiretywhere we can then contract certain things out to other systems that are already in place, such as the provincial system.
But what we find is that when governments make the representation on how much money actually goes to Indian governments, they have a tendency of putting in how much the court system costs and running it off on a per capita basis and ending up with a dollar figure that applies to Indian people times the number of people that have been incarcerated, and they come back and tell us: This is the benefit that you received from our court system.
I fail to see where that benefit comes into play. I think we could do much more if we designed a system that has a core system in place, a judicial system in place, yet weighed a lot on prevention and a very small amount given for preventive services.
As a matter of fact, within the evaluation that took place just recently within the Ontario Indian Police, through the tripartite structure of Ontario, it states in there that very little time has been spent on prevention, because there has not been manpower, equipment, training programs, etc., to complement that. So, although we want the type of court system that would recognize our values and culture in it, and have a force to complement that, there is a great need to look towards prevention, and we have not looked at that at all.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): For the record, how is the Indian policing now being financed? How do you carry that out?
Chief Miskokomon: Well, first of all, before we get into that, I guess what we are talking about is jurisdiction. What we are saying we want in terms of jurisdiction, the province is already saying that that is within our area. So the Province of Ontario looks at that whole agreement as nothing more than an administrative procedure: how to get money from the federal government and turn it over into their treasury. So that is the way they approach it.
We approach it that we want some jurisdiction; that it is written in there that there should be a commission established and that we want to put that into effect; that we would have the same degree of authority; that we have to clarify within the whole agreement exactly where the direction for policing comes from. Does it stem from the band council, or does it stem from the Ontario Provincial Police Commission? There is confusion within that, to say the least, of actually where the constables stand themselves and who they take direction from. Those things can be worked out by contractual arrangements from Indian government to provincial government.
To get to your question, the funding comes, I believe it is, 52% from the federal government and 48% from the provincial government on that agreement.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Miskokomon. Ms Jamieson from the Assembly of First Nations.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you for the presentation to Chief Joe Miskokomon from the Anishinabek Nation and to Chief George for the welcome.
I just wanted to pick up first of all on a question that our chairman has put and make one comment, and then go into three or four questions that I do have on the presentation. One thing that I think is misunderstood by non-Indian Canadians generally, when they say things like “Indians want their cake and eat it too”, is that this is not an unreasonable request when it comes from people who have always been here. In fact, non-Indian Europeans who came here, came here not to become citizens of Indian nations, they came here to do something separate, set—up their own system from which Indian people were excluded—political, economic, all systems—and which did not appreciate Indian values. So now when they hear Indians asking for a court system that is responsive to their needs, they say that they are asking for something separate and something more. What is being asked for in most of these cases is recognition of something that is already there in the Indian communities, and so I do not think it is an unreasonable request.
I am not sure if that is a helpful clarification, but if anything, the First Nations have demonstrated that they are the most willing people to share in this country, and they have not looked for separate institutions, other than to meet their needs, which is, after all, what every nation in the world wants.
Having said that, I do have a couple of questions. One is, on page 4 of the brief you talk, in the third paragraph, about conflicts in jurisdiction and wanting. to settle these conflicts
through arbitration or negotiation; an acceptable process. You have touched upon two agreements that have been signed in Ontario, fishing and policing, this morning. This is one of the few provinces where Indian people have—I think there are 27 cost—sharing agreements, federal-provincial, covering Indian matters—a history of dealing with the provincial government, however recent.
A lot of the members around the table—we have travelled throughout the country and have met with differing viewpoints on this, and we have often wondered amongst ourselves how Indian nations are going to relate to provinces in the future. I wonder if you can share with us any lessons you have learned; any problems you have encountered in those kinds of arrangements; how you feel about—just generally that: what have you learned, where are the problem arms, and if methods like this are going to be set up, arbitration or negotiation, what character should they have to make them work? I agree with you that these conflicts are going to have to be dealt with in the future if Indian governments are going to exercise their rightful place.
Would you comment on that, please?
Chief Miskokomon: Let us take, for example, the fishing agreement that on February ll, 1982 we entered into discussions on, about coming to some type of conclusions on how Indians fish in Ontario and what does that mean in terms of the regulations that are in place and so on. What we found is that through a tripartite forum, the federal and provincial governments and ourselves, when the governments do not want to respond, they just sit. They sit on our submissions; they sit on our proposals; and they never give us any feedback at all.
We have handed in . . . We have to take the continuous lead role of putting things forward, rewriting things. We have gone through about 15 drafts now on the fishing agreement alone. I asked our negotiator to stop negotiating at number 5 back in November or October of last year. We went to SA. We went to 5B, we went to SC. Now we are up to about the 13th draft of that, and we are still—the province, as you are probably well aware, and Indian people signed that agreement on December 17, and yet we are continually brought back to the negotiating table because the federal government is not prepared to ratify it.
And that is what is going to kill the agreement. It is not through lack of negotiations. My God, that is all we do: sit around and negotiate. Every time there is another question, we have to strike another working committee, because it helps delay the whole deeision—making process.
We have very little leverage in the area, because of the population that we have in Ontario: 1.75% of Ontario is Indians. That is not a very good negotiating position to be in when you come to sit down with Ontario; or the federal government. Our biggest problem is that until we have a true arbitrator that will be written into orders in council, where there are powers there to pull the people together and force
them to sit down in a room and negotiate, we are at the whim of government.
We are still saying to the federal government, to Mr. De Bané and Mr. Munro, that spring is coming and we are going to fish. What we are going to run into is the same type of problems that we have experienced in the past. There has to be a ratification of any regulations by Fisheries and Oceans that the province would send forward. We are not into that area, so the fishing regulations of Ontario will hold. We have never accepted those regulations. We have never accepted the power of the province to be on our reserve to regulate us. We are not accepting that now. And when spring comes, we are going to go out and fish. And it is going to be, again, in violation of a provincial law.
What have we had to do? We have been at the bargaining table now for 14 months. We cannot even get them to sit down with us any more. We found out we were bargaining between the province and the federal government. The federal government would not respond, so we set it up as a bilateral negotiation directly with the province. We came to an agreement, then we had to sit down again and we had to start bilateral negotiations with the federal government. Then we found ourselves in a position where we were mediating between the federal government and the provincial government, because the federal government being Liberal and the provincial government being Conservative, they could not get their own act together to come and talk with us.
The same thing with the policing agreement. It will expire in a very short time; within the period of a month, I believe. The policing agreement is going to expire. Prior to this policing agreement, we went two years without an agreement, where our constables did not know where they stood. On the one hand the provincial government is saying, we are the boss. On the other hand we are saying we are negotiating that. So where does that leave those men and women?
Again we come to it: well, we do not know enough of what you are saying; let us do an evaluation. We do an evaluation. We have 50 some recommendations come out. They are sitting there; we cannot get meetings. I am sorry, it does not meet with my timeframe from the federal government. I am sorry, it does not meet with my appointment book from the provincial government. And we are saying to the Ontario Indian Police Commission, come on, let us get something going here, this agreement is running out; we are out of time. We get responses back from the provincial government: just sign again; sign the same thing again and we will go another two years and over those two years we will negotiate the evaluation.
How in the world do you negotiate evaluation? Evaluation: the recommendations come forward, the observations come out. How do you negotiate that? That is the fact; that is the truth. We want to talk about implementation; and yet we find ourselves tied.
The leverage that we have is very little, because the mechanism that we sought to work through . . . neither the
province nor the federal government want to give it any power, any true power; power to come and negotiate, power to sit down and resolve these problems. And it continues: maintain the status quo. Well, you cannot maintain the status quo. If you are going to recognize Indian government, then you have to sit down and you have to talk to us.
We are not going to go away. We are going to continue to fish. We are going to continue to police our own reserves. We do not want the OPP in there. We have our own people. Until you come to some kind of recognition of that, we are spinning wheels in the sand.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you.
I think we saw some further examples of those dynamics a week or two ago, those of us who were watching TV or who were in Ottawa at the time, and I think those comments are helpful.
I am not sure what this committee is going to recommend in terms of implementing Indian government, but undoubtedly we will have to come to terms with some way of sorting out the jurisdiction, or come to terms with the overlapping jurisdiction. in areas where provinces, the federal government, and Indian governments come together.
I would like to ask you a question in the trust area. I think I understood the dialogue between Mr. Oberle and you. This is what I got from it, and I have a question at the end of it. What you said in the trust arm is, as I understand it, that it is an element of the total relationship to be negotiated with the federal government, government to government. You cited the constitutional process as being one area for doing that. Your brief talks about Indian people wanting to have access to trust funds. My question is this: What can this committee do now or in the short term, while those constitutional discussions are going on, in the area of trust? Can we, in fact, recommend the movement of trust assets money lent out of the minister’s hands and into Indian hands? Is that something you think we can do? Or are you asking this committee to hang on, to wait and see what comes out of the constitutional discussions?
Chief Miskokomon: No. I certainly do not want to wait for the constitutional conference. I think our children whom we talk about and are trying to take care of, may have their own children by that point, if we wait for that process.
The trust responsibility we talk about is in a number of areas. I think it has to be viewed in the light of the divergence of the country. We talk about trust in terms of financial obligations, where we would like to deal directly on a bilateral level with the federal government, minimizing a lot of duplication which exists within Indian Affairs and the federal government as a whole as it pertains to Indians.
I think what we are looking for could take a number of forms, I do not think there is one pat answer as a way to deal with it. I think in terms of economic development there can be
a number of ways and means on how funds can be accessed to strengthen the economy within band government. Also, I think funds currently being held within the department perhaps could go into a trust agency owned and controlled by Indians, so that investments can be used, or loans can be placed. Here we have this large amount of money that we do not know even how much there is, since we have never been able to get an audit statement on it in Ottawa, yet it is being held there resulting in our getting paid a lower interest rate than we could receive normally through any other lending institution. We cannot access the funds and, as a matter of fact, we are losing money on the moneys there, as was pointed out by Mr. Oberle. Yet, when it comes down to economic development guarantees… well, we have witnessed in the paper not so many months ago where the department is very reluctant to get into that now. But when we have our own money there, why can we not access it? Why can we not use our own trust relationship? Why can we not be able to finance, and access into lending institutions from our own moneys there? That is only one example.
Other people have been talking about where they want treaties removed. They may be a little more advanced in some areas than in others. I do not think what we are really looking for is the removal of our treaty. First of all, we have some treaties pre-dating 1867. Look at the comprehensive claims which ‘have been published through the department; first, the process violates the whole constitutional procedure which went forward in London. Promoted by Canada, it said, We will take care of the treaties; treaty obligations will be maintained with Canada. Then right after the Constitution was patriated, we came up with a comprehensive claims policy which eliminates all pre-Confederation treaties. I mean, how can Canada possibly go into the international forum and say, Yes, we will honour all treaties made with the first nations of Canada; yet no sooner has it come back and put the Constitution on a table, before it comes up with a policy which says, We are not going to recognize 1867 treaties. How can we possibly do that? We have to change that. If there is going to be trust, my God, does it not stem from the land and what we have been saying! Where does the trust come from? When we were in London all that time going through the court cases, lobbying the M.P.s, and all the time more propaganda was being shovelled out from Canada House in London saying, Do not worry about it; we will take care of it; that is a domestic situation. We took over part of the responsibility in 1867 and, in 1931, Statute of Westminister; that is a domestic problem.
Those are international treaties which you cannot take over. You just cannot take over. And I think this is what this committee is about. You just cannot take over any longer. We are not going to go away. Our belief is still on the land. Our belief is still on the people. We are looking for that responsibility. We want that back.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. I have one other question. In your brief, you talk about the need for consent to come from Indian people on any legislative change. My questions are these: First,, do you see us recommending legislation or legislative change beyond amendment to the Indian Act? Second; how do you see that consent being given to legislative change, and by whom?
Chief Miskokomon: Again, this forum is not isolated in terms of what types of change have to take place. I think we have to continue, as I believe is stated in the terms of reference, the view of the constitution. There is a lot that can be done within the Indian Act but, again, we get back to saying that it cannot be done unilaterally. Any change that takes place has to ccrne with the First Nations consent. How that is going to be ratified could depend on a number of areas. If it is going to be a national policy, perhaps it could be done at the AFN, Assembly of First Nations, level. But there are also other contractual arrangements which could be developed and do not require the AFM’s involvement. There could be direct bilateral agreements by tribal groupings or by a nation directly with the federal government, in terms of accessing programs and in bilateral discussions with the provincial governments in terms of contracting services back to us. Or we could establish our own institutions wherever feasible.
In terms of consent, I believe it was suggested last week in Sudbury by someone who put forward a national Indian education act. I do not think that is out of the realm of possibility; however, I think before the nation could consent to a global act with direct impact on us, then we certainly have to be involved in the development of it. Especially, within the area of education! If it is to deal directly with hands, it has to come directly from that band. If it is to deal with a tribal grouping, it must come directly from that tribal grouping; if it is going to affect the entire nation, directly from that nation; perliaps at the fourth step, at the AFN level, the assembly level.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman, I have many other questions, but I do not want to pre-empt the other presentations, thank you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you Ms Jamiuon. We will hear now from Ms Isaac, who is a liaison member of the Native Women’s Association of Canada.
Ms S. Isaac (Liaison Member of the Committee, Native Women’s Association of Canada): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I have a specific question on housing. I understand that the latest form of paternalistic policy that has been imposed on band governments is the J circular, which outlines the housing policy or program and which becomes effective in April of this year, I think. Could you tell us to what extent the circular will
impose on the standards and technical training of workers that you have already established for yourselves, through your own initiatives, to improve the already existing housing problems? Can you tell us to what extent it imposes on that?
Chief Miskokomon: I do not really want to get that involved with housing, because it is on the agenda and Chief Ether Deleary will deal with that. In terms of the overall program, we started the Ontario Indian Housing Council, made up of four associations, back in 1977 or so—in the late 1970s. It was our initiative to: One, develop qualified Indian housing inspectors so that we could improve the quality of housing on reserves; and, two, to justify the requirement for additional housing funds.
What we ended up with was a training program that facilitated the first objective, which was to train Indian inspectors and be able to build better quality homes. What we failed miserably in was number two, and was to be able to access additional housing dollars. So we find ourselves now in a program in which a number of our reserves are directly involved, with the capability of building better homes in terms of training, but, again, falling short in the access to funding.
So the J circulars have been rejected by the land district chiefs, they have been rejected by the Sudbury area, they have been rejected at the Confederacy of First Nations level, yet we find ourselves in the position that, in two weeks’ time, the J circulars will be coming into effect; regardless of whether we say they are workable or non—workable, they will be in effect.
When I have asked the regional office, and again at headquarters, what is plan B, and what do you fall back on when there is going to be a surplus of housing dollars— because there is no identification of shortfall money to build housing . . . there is no plan of attack, there is no plan B in that area.
Ms Isaac: Will this be imposed, and the bands will have to adhere to it? I guess the reason why they developed that circular was to have more control. Right? It is another . . . Did you say that it would be dealt with later?
Chief Miskokomon: Yes.
Ms Isaac: All right. Perhaps I will wait then. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Ms Isaac. Chief Miskokomon, later we are going to be talking about the membership to which you referred, and I do have a copy of the membership code of the Anishinabek nation. Would you have extra copies of this that we could hand out to the committee members?
Chief Miskokomon: Yes.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Good. Thank you very much.
Thank you very much, Chief Miskokomon for that presentation. Do you WlSl’I to say anything further before we move on to the next item?
Chief Miskokomon: Yes, before we move on, Mr. Chairman, I would like to notify the committee members that in the back of this kit that has been given to you there is a table of contents that deals with the framework and process of revising the Indian Act. That is the yellow paper. That was developed in January, 1980. You will note that in some areas it will be redundant, because ofthe Constitution, that refers directly . . . This has been put into your kit for information purposes: One, to show the committee that we have been thinking not only about the Indian Act change for quite some time, but we have also been thinking about the ramifications and the impacts that the Constitution may have in that area. That is the reason for this. Perhaps it will give you a better insight into our progress. Two, I understand that you have contracted some services to look at management improvement, and the consultants have not been able to access this information through the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. Therefore, what we will do is table these documents for your consultants so that they will be able to give a better view of the management improvement project that is under way within the Department of Indian Affairs. I also request, when turning these over to you, Mr. Chairman, that they be returned to us, because we have a very difficult time accessing information, and I think your consultants can attest to that on the basis of their endeavours.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you very much, Chief Miskokomon. I understand, from one of our research assistants, that they were able to get a copy of the smaller document from the department, but certainly not the large one. They are working on the big one. We appreciate that very much, and you can rest assured that they will be returned in good shape.
Mr. Manly: On a point of order, Mr. Chairman: Could the witness identify the documents for the record, please?
Chief Miskokomon: Certainly. They are: Management Improvement Project Task 6.2; Band Service Profile Volume 1; Volume 2 table 1.1; Volume 3, table 2.1.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you. Ms Jamieson.
Ms Jamieson: On a point of order, Mr. Chairman. How will they be included? Will they be included as exhibits, or how will they be listed in our proceedings?
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): The clerk informs me that the titles are in the record. If you want to submit them, you have actually to give them to the committee. But surely we can accept them on the understanding that we are
going to return them in good shape? Can we do that? We can borrow them? This is a technicality.
Chief Miskokomon: This is a demonstration of trust.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): A demonstration of
trust—I trust you Joe. You know where I am, and I know where you are. That is fine.
Again, thank you, Chief Miskokomon.
We will hear, now, from Chief George, who is Chief of the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point Reserve, on the subject of aboriginal and treaty rights. Chief George.
Chief George: I look at all the pictures in the book that we have sent out and there are a few changes, but we are not surprised. I have a presentation on aboriginal and treaty rights. 1 will endeavour to read it. There may changes in a few of the words, because of the way I see it.
I would like to take this opportunity to discuss our views on aboriginal and treaty rights. We hope that through these statements that we can assist the committee, Parliament and the federal government to understand the just nature of our position.
At this time, when we are all involved in the effort to clarify, reaffirm or redefine our relationships, it is crucial that we approach the task with clear and open minds. The task is too important to all of us and to our children for us to, close our minds to what may appear to be new and challenging concepts and systems.
Aboriginal rights are those rights which we possess as the original peoples of this land. They are rights which derive from our traditional, spiritual, cultural and economic relationships with the land. They are our rights as an independent and sovereign people. Aboriginal rights include:
One, the right to self-determination;
Two, the right to choose our own form of government;
Three, the right to control our lands, waters and resources;
Four, the right to use our languages and to practise our religions, and to maintain and defend all aspects of our culture;
Five, the right to determine who our citizens are.
In the territory of the Anishinabek there are a great number and variety of treaties. We made treaties with other Indian nations and with several European nations. Our treaties were real estate contracts, which gave to the Europeans the right to settle and use the land, which until that time was exclusively Indian land. We made treaties in the Indian manner and according to Indian ways, with wampum belts as well as written documents.
There are substantial variations in the terms of various treaties. Because of all of this, it is not possible to establish one rule that would apply to all situations.
The treaties recognized the sovereign status of our people. They were made to protect our way of life, our aboriginal rights and to guide our reationships with you. They are the manner in which you came into possession of much of the land you now hold.
The treaties and the Royal Proclamation of 1763 did not grant rights or give rights, they only recognized existing aboriginal rights. The treaties also make provision for certain specific services, such as annuities, education and health, which are a part of the basis of our relationship today.
We are now in a situation where our rights are being violated and our treaties dishonoured. The present problem can be classed as confusion caused by inconsistencies in the history of our relationship and the reasoning for our laws and policies and politics which make up the framework of our present relationship with Canadian Society.
The situation is so confusing that many of our people have stopped trying to understand. They either ignore the laws and policies and continue using the lands and resources as they believe they should or they give up completely and stay home. The law is made more confusing because government policy sometimes suggests that it is all right to break the law.
On top of all this confusion, your government at the same time insists that they are respecting the promises made in the treaties, and that the treaty rights can no longer be exercised. No one has looked carefully at the history of our relationships challenge the non-Indian theory upon which the history books, laws, court decisions and your present perception of rules in Canadian society are based.
Mr. Chairman, If I were to point out one problem in the existing system which undermines any opportunity for us to exercise any form of self-government, I would have to re-emphasize what Grand Council Chief Miskokomon said about jurisdiction, or more specifically the lack of recognition within the Canadian legal political system of the jurisdiction of Indian government.
In order to help the situation, I will draw on examples from the areas of land use. I would like to explain to the committee that when we talk about the land, it includes everything, the land use, the resources . . . animals, vegetables, minerals- which exist there. By the same principle hunting grounds or hunting and fishing means the right to fish, trap and gather on all those lands. In the present system there is no recognition of our governments’ rights to control its own lands, waters and resources. Your government and the provincial government have established land-use plans and policies on our hunting grounds.
In relation to water, the province, with federal approval, has guaranteed to itself the right to develop any river which has the potential to generate more than 500 hp of hydro-electric energy.
Regarding resources, the federal and provincial governments have collaborated so that the province has the right to regulate subsurface resources while the federal government receives half of the benefits.
In terms of harvesting rights, hunting, fishing, trapping and gathering, there has not been any recognition of our conservation and management guidelines. Also in the case to date, your court system has maintained that we have no tribal or Indian rights to our land. In most cases aboriginal and treaty rights have not offered our people the protection to exercise their rights.
Further, your government has initiated a system of individual possession of land. Under the Indian Act, no Indian has lawful possession of land in a reserve without the minister’s permission; nor can he transfer that land without the minister’s permission; nor can he cut wood, sell grain or mine minerals or do any number of other things without the minister’s consent. Yet the minister and the Governor in Council have the power to allow non-Indians to use the land without permission from the people, or to transfer that land without even the protection of normal expropriation laws. The minister even has the power to rent reserve lands out to farmers without our consent.
We also see that the present Indian Act surrender rules have been changed since the first rules were set out in the Royal Proclamation. Now, to take a majority of the electors of a band, they surrender land on the first ballot, and the electors are usually not even the majority of the band itself. On the second ballot, the minister can deem a minority to be a majority, and the Governor in Council can accept a surrender approved by a small minority. Indeed, we have seen a surrender accepted by the Governor in Council. That was approved by only 30 out of 3,000 voters.
There are over 30 million acres of land in Ontario which we can prove have never been surrendered by the people who use those lands. Those lands, according to your laws, remain lands reserved for Indians. The provincial government has taken control and management of those lands. with the agreement of the Government of Canada. We feel that it is the Parliament of Canada, not the province, that is competent to make laws for those lands. We feel that Canada’s law-making for those lands is always subject to our aboriginal rights and title in the lands.
We also know that our aboriginal rights cannot simply be surrendered by law. There has been no explicit law made by Canada denying those rights or destroying them, and we do not agree that the rights can be taken indirectly. There is no process today that we consider fair for clearing up the outstanding business of the claims. Courts are not appropriate.
Direct negotiations, the process preferred, used by the federal government, are unfair and the final decisions are in the hands of the lawyers hired to defend that government, and the standards used to determine the validity of the claims are geared to protect Canada against liability.
Our treaties were often based on assumptions that our economy and our community structures and cultures would in the future remain based on hunting, fishing and gathering. The reservations that were made were located with those activities in mind, near fishing grounds, sugar bushes and other sources of our food in those days. Because of your government’s inability to properly manage these resources there exists a situation of scarcity today.
If you feel that the obligations of the Crown are obsolete, we are prepared to agree that both sides of the agreement we made are outdated, although we are not prepared to do anything which would contribute to the end of our communities or our existence as people. We are prepared to seek alternatives. We are prepared to renegotiate the treaties.
We would like to see an agreement that would provide for a real land base, one large enough to support the kind of economy and communities we need to survive and develop and to establish our role in the Canadian reality.
Mr. Chairman, we are aware that there is a grave concern as to how we would manage the resources. Or, if I may be more blunt, there is a grave concern that we are not capable and that we will mismanage the resources. Certainly our approach to resources is different. We concentrate on the total knowledge of our resources on a year-round basis, with each person being responsible for management. This is not to say that we promote or believe in any kind of unrestricted use. On the contrary, our people have always recognized the basic principle of maintaining stable environments.
Our people have been discussing these issues and we recognize that it would be necessary to write down the principles, the guidelines we see our communities implementing. As examples, attached to the submission are drafts of guidelines on harvesting rights which have been developed over the years. These will give the committees a future indication of our objectives.
In conclusion Mr. Chairman, I would like to say that the consideration and resolution of this situation, and of the issues outlined above, are inseparable from the ability of Indian governments to regain a proper base for the particular type of government we might choose. Indeed, Mr. Chairman, we cannot see how we can talk about rights to self-government without including recognition of rights and access to resources.
At this time we have here five recommendations to the committee:
1. We recommend that legislation which would recognize Indian control of their lands and resources be implemented.
2. We recommend this legislation include some mechanism whereby Indian access and management of Indian lands, such as reserve lands, unoccupied Crown lands, royal proclamation lands, is recognized. A temporary solution could be, transferring the authority of section 73(1) of the Indian Act to band councils.
3. We recommend the laws that you consider should have enough flexibility to recognize forms of ownership other than the individual, and other priorities than the enrichment of the individual and protection of his property.
4. The present Indian Act makes provincial laws a general application applying to Indians in the provinces, unless those laws are inconsistent with the Indian Act or with the terms of any treaties. It is not clear that the federal laws are subject to promise made in the treaties. The way the courts have interpreted our rights in the past makes us aware that, even with the recent changes in the Constitution, our rights may not have enough protection. We would recommend that federal laws, as well as the laws of the province, should be subject to both legislation dealings with our rights, or to the terms of the treaties.
5. We recommend that provincial legislation for enforcement on resource use and management through federal legislation must stop. We recommend the federal government amend its land claim policies, in particular, as they relate to pre-1867 responsibility and recognition of aboriginal treaty rights. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief George. I am sure the committee members and everyone present will agree that this section of the presentations, which we are hearing today, is extremely important, certainly in light of the constitutional conference of a couple of weeks ago. This is one area that certainly will have to be addressed very seriously. We will begin our questioning, again with Mr. Oberle.
Mr. Oberle: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I want to echo your remarks. I am very impressed with this statement. It is a very clear, concise and important document for us to take with us. It is an excellent definiton of the term “aboriginal rights” and it leaves very little open to question.
One of the areas we have to make a decision on is the whole question of your interpretation of the term “self-determination, self-government”. A question arises, does self-government mean self-administration of the white man’s government, or self—determination? If you go for self-determination, which I
know is your objective, then, of course, you have to not only have your own court system but you have to have your own laws, you have to have your own criminal code. That, again, raises all kinds of questions; just how far do you go? We have some examples, having travelled to the United States, of how far some nations have gone, even codifying their own criminal law. To me it is quite obvious. As difficult as it is going to be to arrive at a code that you can live with, it is obvious that you have to have your own laws in order to achieve a degree- whatever degree—of self~determination, because laws are really the reflection of a society’s cultural and spiritual values. Since the spiritual values and the culture of the white man is incompatible with yours, if for no other reason than in the area of land ownership, a common ownership and individual ownership, which is the basis of the Christian-Judean back ground, in order for you to have cultural sovereignty and self-determination you require your own laws. That is not clearly stated in your statement, but it gom back to your earlier submission on policing. Are your reserve constables administering provincial laws, or do you have some bylaws within the bands that they are responsible for enforcing?
This is more a statement, but I want to point out to you what some of the questions are that we have to come to grips with. The whole question of land is another problem. Certainly, without exception, all of the submissions we have received date back to the treaties and the land. You say in your statement it was perceived by you that land was to be set aside in sufficient quantity to permit you to pursue your traditional industry and lifestyle—hunting, fishing, trapping and so on.
I guess my first question would be, since you are saying you are prepared to renegotiate the treaties and look at alternatives, what about the alternative of, and I want to preface that by saying that I understand the spiritual relationship of Indian people to the land, but what about the question of industry and earning of livelihood? Are you prepared to adjust to modern types of economy, where land is no longer as important? You know, the white man evolved from an agrarian culture to an industrial society as well. Are you prepared to lead your people into a different kind of economy, a more modern type of industrial economy, where land is no longer as important as it once was?
Are you prepared to lead your people into a different kind of economy, a more modern type of industrial economy, where land is no longer as important as it once was? That is the first question, Chief George.
Chief George: Maybe I should give you my concept of Indian self-government in the way that I believe it and I know it to be in operation, or it is going to be because there is no other way it can work. It is upside down from the way we have been taught and shown that leadership and government and everything are supposed to be.
My concept is my people are up here, my council is here, and I am down at the bottom; and beyond all that the Great Spirit is my leader. He is the one who tells me; and knowing that, there has to be honesty. That has to be the basis of the whole thing: that I have to trust you and you have to trust me. That is where it came from, that is where it was, and that is where it still is; and if we do not have that, then we have nothing. I can trust you and what you tell me, because at the end of my life I am going to be faced with my Creator there— and when I say “Creator”, I only mean God; because your God and my God are the same. He is going to be there; and my honesty with you is going to be always to that thing; and my relation to my people, that relation to fishing and hunting, that relation to land use, are always in total honesty. I know that we are going to grow on that.
Mr. Oberle: That is where some of the confusion came in even at the constitutional conference, because you heard the Prime Minister say, your God told you that you should hunt and fish all the time—I am paraphrasing it. I was in fact very offended by his flippant attitude towards the Spirit and Creator. I believe myself to be a Christian and I do not like my Prime Minister treating those kinds of sacred values in the manner he did. Nevertheless, he was quite right. He says, my God told me to get over there to Canada and build fences and subdue the earth and conquer it; which is the Christian-Judaean principle. Your God tells you to live in harmony with nature.
You say we all have the same God. That is where the confusion comes in. How you reconcile the difference is a serious problem.
Chief George: Right away, when I talk to anyone, they have an attitude; and I know them by their attitude. If they are trying to look for something within me to argue with, it is not going to be there, because I know them at that time and I am not going to respond to that because I do not want to fight with anyone. We ought to be in harmony; and we are going to be in harmony; there is no doubt about it. Your God, my God—whatever way you want to argue with that, that is entirely up to you.
Mr. Oberle: But in the meantime we have to make laws which permit both of us to live in harmony; and that is where the difficulty comes in.
Chief George: Yes, but they have to be in total honesty. When they are that way, you do not have to worry about your police, because we are all going to be coming to that end. I do not care what elevation of life we are in, we are all going to come down and go six feet under that ground; and when we do, that is where we are going to be and that is when we are going to know what we did in life and what we are accountable for. I know my accountability. I know what I have to do, and I am going to do it.
Mr. Oberle: You have not answered the other part of my question, and that is whether you are prepared or willing to lead your people into the new types of industries, away from trapping, hunting and fishing, if one accepts the idea that the
white man has really destroyed the resource and diminished it to a point where it is no longer sufficient. That is a reality we are faced with. Where do we go from here?
Chief George: That has to come from our people. I have to take all that direction from my people, as to what they feel is important. for Kettle Point. Then, when I get this all together, when we decide that, yes, that is good for Kettle Point, whether it be in the way of industry or whatever, that has to come from our community. I do not think I could go to the department or anybody else and get this idea and bring it back to my people. It has to be something that our people come to grips with. If they want to do it, they will support it.
I do not know whether I answered your question or not there.
Mr. Oberle: What treaty are you operating under? Do you have a treaty, or is the 1924 land agreement basically . . .
Chief George: Yes, it is the 1924 land agreement.
Mr. Oberle: It is the only treaty that you are operating under.
Chief George: Yes.
Mr. Oberle: It does not give you a very strong land base, does it?
Chief George: That depends. We are aboriginal people. We know that. I realize and I know where the authority is going to come from. The government feels it has authority, but I think in the proper time and in the proper place, there is going to be that—I think I have heard “transitional period”, or whatever. But there is going to be a time when that will be demonstrated; and at that time, then we will have to know, and we will know what side of the fence we are on.
Mr. Oberle: Were you part of negotiating this 1924 act, or was that an agreement between the federal and the provincial governments?
Chief George: That was a federal-provincial agreement.
Mr. Oberle: So you had no input into that and you did not consent to this particular thing?
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle.
Just before I move on to Mr. Allmand, on that point of treaty and perhaps land claim—and I am well aware that the local and area media are represented here today. Perhaps to clarify the situation for people here in southwestern Ontario, I wonder, Chief George, if you could tell us what the situation was or is with your land claim regarding the Ipperwash Canadian Armed Forces Base; whether that was completed to your satisfaction. What is the situation with that?
Chief George: No, it has not been completed to our satisfaction, because we do not feel that it is settled in any way.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I believe some payment was given a few years ago. Am I correct in that?
Chief George: Yes, you are correct on that.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): But you are still working on that and feel that that has not been sufficient.
Chief George: Yes, that is right, because we do not look at that as a surrender at any time… the process that went through there.
The Actig Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): But a payment was made for use of the lands for the Ipperwash Armed Forces Base?
Chief George: Yes.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you.
We will hear from Mr. Allmand now.
Mr. Allmand: Mr. Chairman, I have no questions at this time.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Chief George, I would like to thank you for your statement. There is a lot of helpful material in here.
When you talk about renegotiating the treaties to include a larger land base, do you have any suggested formula in mind? For example, in Saskatchewan this is not so much a renegotiation of treaties as it is a land entitlement program. They take a date in the 1970s and the population at that time and they have a certain number of acres for every person involved. As you look towards renegotiation, do you have any kind of formula in mind, or do you want to get the renegotiation established first and then begin with what might be a negotiating position?
Chief George: No, we do not have a formula, but we are trying to get one in place on that basis.
Mr. Manly: Thank you for that.
When we look at the whole question of aboriginal rights, in the past these have often been very narrowly defined in terms of usufructuary rights: gathering, hunting, fishing, trapping and so on. I notice you are setting forth a much more comprehensive picture of aboriginal rights, including such things as resources; and by that, I presume you include mineral resources among other things. When we look at the way in which mineral resources are placed, they are placed rather unevenly so that some areas have them and others do not; and this could be of extreme benefit to some bands and not much help to others.
Do you see negotiation for aboriginal rights taking place on a band-by-band level, or do you see something taking place for the whole Anishinabek Nation?
Chief George: I think it has to be with the Anishinabek Nation. I cannot perceive it to be individual bands, because we have to be unified in our decisions and in our process. But as band people, we have a responsibility in talking with the associations and the Anishinabek Nation and the way we are dealing with things.
Mr. Manly: Right. Again, I would presume you would want to have some commitment for renegotiation before you introduced any kind of specific formula to deal with.
Chief George: I would. yes.
Mr. Manly: Yes, thank you very much.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
This is an excellent presentation. The part that sticks in my head—and I hope it will stick in all our heads until we write this report—is the closing paragraph, where we are told it is not good enough to consider only administrative changes and money when we think about Indian self-government; but we have to go beyond that. I take that very seriously because I think, at the end of the process, it would be easy to recommend some administrative rearrangement and some new fiscal relations and to leave the thornier issues. I think we have a responsibility as a committee to deal with all those issues in some manner, so I appreciate the comments very much.
I have one question to follow up on what Mr. Manly was exploring, and that is on the renegotiation of the treaties. I wonder if you would see that being supervised by some group, either a special committee. . . In the past, government has just dispatched commissioners to go out and negotiate with Indians. Do you see a special committee set up to oversee that process? Would Indians be involved? How do you see that proceeding in the ideal sense?
Chief George: I think there would have to be some sort of Indian commission, where the Indian people are involved, yes.
Ms Jainieson: So it would be a joint venture. Maybe you can elaborate on that a little bit more. Would you see Indian people and representatives of government sitting on it? Would it be national or would it be international?
Chief George: It would more likely be international.
Ms Jamieson: And you see an Indian involvement.
Chief George: Definitely.
Ms Jamieson: This idea has come before the committee on other occasions. The latest one was recommending the set-up ofa Canada treaty commission, and I just wondered what your views were.
Chief George: Yes, I think we would agree with that.
Ms Jamieson: Incidentally, whenever they talk about renegotiation of treaties, a real condition has been put on witnesses that there be a guaranteed equal negotiating participation. I am not quite sure how we would do that, but that has come across.
The other area I would like to question is in the codification of laws. I was flipping to the back here, and I see you have really taken some of the thornier issues. In your principles and guidelines on conservation and hunting, one of the paragraphs there says you have had your own laws. In recent years, you have had problems with some of your people who have lost respect for some of the laws; and one of the reasons, of course, is government intervention and imposition of laws. To clear that up, you now want to make your own laws clear.
Could I ask you how you would do that? Would the Anishinabek Nation have a legislature, or would each band do that? How do you see that proceeding?
Chief George:That is within the band council. I would definitely think that would come from the band council, within policing and within our resources; and all the rest of that responsibility would be with our council. Again, it is a trust. It has to be a trust thing with our people.
Ms Jamieson: Just to further clarify that a little bit, maybe you could. tell us what kinds of decisions are now. made by Grand Council Anishinabek. What kinds of decisions do you make jointly; and then, what kinds of decisions do you make as individual bands or first nations?
Chief George: I guess the answer would be that it is within the Anishinabek Nation. It is big enough that we would be coming, and we would be doing this within the bands in the district. I do not know if that answers your question or not.
Ms Jamieson: I personally have knowledge of where the difference is. Ijust want it to be explained for the record.
Is this right? Decisions affecting, for instance, constitutional process or constitutional change are made at the Grand Council level. Now, there are other decisions that will affect each band government, and that is made at that level. But there are some overriding principles that are adopted by the Grand Council as a whole. Is that right? Is that an accurate reflection of how it operates at the moment?
Chief George: My perception of that is: Any time we get something from the Anishinabek Nation which is concerning our community, then I think it is our responsibility to take this through our community and get an understanding from them as to our position on that. Then we should take it back to the association and say: This is our stand; we, the Kettle Point, do feel this way on that specific issue. Until now, that has not been really happening; but I feel that is the way it will have to be, so we would have stands on different issues that we go by at Kettle Point here. That would be our position on the issue.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Those are all my questions.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Ms Jamieson. Do you have any questions? All right.
Again, on behalf of the committee, Chief George, we appreciate this very clear and well—defined presentation on aboriginal and treaty rights.
And if I may be permitted a personal observation, I personally appreciated your comments regarding the spiritual relationship, not only that you have with your God but also your perhaps admonition to the rest of us to have that same type of relationship and thus develop the basis for a working relationship and of harmony one to another. I, for one, personally appreciated what you had to say, and respect your beliefs in that area.
Chief George: Can I say in closing, talking with you all, that we all do have a real decision to make, because I think you, as the committee, are faced with everything you have heard and everything you are going to hear, and I can only suggest that I hope you do it in total honesty for the betterment of the people of Canada.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief George.
We will continue. We are moving along, I think very nicely now, as far as our time schedule is concerned, and I would suggest that we continue until our lunch break. So we will hear next from Chief James Mason of the Saugeen Reserve on the question of chiefs salaries, and then I guess we will get into the membership question as well.
Chief Mason. Yes. . . ?
Chief Deleary: Mr. Chairman, I would like to make a couple of points with regard to the last presentation.
You talked somewhat about the formula for settling land claims, and stuff of this nature. Now, the present system is not working. We know of specific bands that have claims that have been in process for something like 15 or 20 years, and our band is one of those bands. The real concern on my part is that within the headquarters of the Department of Indian Affairs the Justice department is also housed, I believe something like 11 Justice lawyers there.
Now, my concern, when we submit a land claim to the Minister of Indian Affairs for his perusal, is that I suspect there is an opinion requested from the Justice department there. So if the Justice department, we feel, says that this is a very good claim and it involves a large settlement, then the prerogative of the minister could be that they sit on that claim and it is not settled. Now, that is a real concern that we have. Going back to what our national Grand Chief, David Ahena- kew, proposes, a national protective office, part of the responsibilities would come to that office, I would imagine. That would be one consideration that we would be looking for.
So for the record, I believe that should be one that is recorded; that we certainly are opposed to the present system of the registration of land claims. If we look back on the record of settling land claims, we find that very, very few are settled. With the new policies, again, the document that came out from the minister, in all fairness, in the area of new business, I am unsure really of the consultation that went into the formulation of either one of those documents by the native people.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Deleary. I believe Ms Jamieson has a question to ask of you.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I am thankful that Chief Deleary has raised this issue, because it was on my list of questions to ask. I do not know if I cannot read my own writing, or what happened here, but I am glad you raised it.
The issue of land claims settlement has come before this committee on several occasions, and always in this way: you cannot have Indian government if you do not have a decent socio-economic base; you cannot have a base without land; we cannot have land without land claims settlement. So it has come like that. Do you think it is appropriate for this committee to make some recommendations on the land claims process?
Chief Deleary: Yes, I feel it is necessary that there is some direction from this special committee in regard to that. When you talk about membership, land acquisition becomes a principal part of that. So there must be some recommendations. But, again, I understand that the recommendations must be subject to the approval of the Assembly of the First Nations, so that we have adequate input also in the mechanisms of settling those. To sit back and accept something from the minister and his policies on the settling of land claims on our behalf is not acceptable to us.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you.
One other request, really. I know that you and other organizations in Ontario have done some work on the land claims process. You have some documentation on suggested improvements. I wonder if you would be willing to share those with the committee, either today, or send them to us at some later stage, so that we can consider the matter further.
Chief Deleary: We have, again as the Anishinabek Nation, a number of policies; but again when we speak of the Anishinabek Nation and policy sharing between the nations, these things go to the Grand Council for ratification and approval by members of that nation. So at a later date, possibly, the Anishinabek Nation from the Grand Council, once these are ratified . . . We are talking about such things as the member-
ship code that was developed. Now, those are policies that will go before the Assembly of the Grand Council for ratification.
Changes to the act, we now have in the process a task force within the Anishinabek Nation that is sitting down and developing a constitutional act for the Anishinabek Nation. Also in regard to that is the Indian Act. Into that is also the aspect of Indian band custom elections. Now, Grand Chief Joe Miskokomon made reference to that earlier in his presentation; that that is totally unacceptable to the Indian communities, the election regulations now as they stand under the act. So there is movement within our Anishinabek Nation to develop a ionstitutional act that will eventually do away with the Indian Act.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you. Mr. Manly, do you have a question?
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would simply like to ask Chief Deleary if the Anishinabek Nation could forward to the committee a list with some details, not extensive details, but just kind of skeletal details, about some of these outstanding land claims. Every year when the Office of Native Claims appears before the committee, they table a report and they kind of give their point of view, and it would be good if we had some direct firsthand information from people like yourself, if you would be able to get that material together and table it with the committee.
Chief Deleary: Certainly, I think we will be able to do that. I mentioned earlier this morning that we had planned to submit such documents here, but because of the timeframe, the one day, these will have to come later, I think, from the association itself. But we are prepared to give documents on policy that have been looked at by the association.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you for that intervention, Chief Deleary. Are there any other comments from the witnesses on this particular subject before we move on? If not, then we will move on to hear from Chief Jamm Mason.
Chief Mason: Thank you. The topics on which I will speak are at the core of the issue our committee was mandated to investigate.
Chief salaries and adequate salaries for Indian government personnel are essential to the operation of good Indian government. Indian government must be strong and reliant if Indian communities are to improve and prosper. Strong and stable Indian governments will lead the way to ending the many problems besetting our reserves, but our governments cannot become strong if the people responsible for them cannot devote enough time to perform the necessary tasks because they have to work elsewhere or because their work will not be paid for.
Indian government must be seen for what it is; the key to the future of Indian people and its personnel must be paid aocordingly. It is long past time that Indian governments were seen as just Indian affairs administrators. Indian governments are as important as any other government in the world. Other nations, other governments, pay their chief executives, officers, and other personnel large salaries to do their important work. The work of our chiefs and counsellors is no less important. Once the Indian government officers begin to be paid for their important work, then the results will be an incentive for more qualified people to fill these positions. This can only improve Indian governments.
Employment standards and criteria for Indian government officers, chiefs, and counsellors must be developed to ensure a high quality of government operation. For chiefs and counsellors to be reimbursed for their work, new moneys will need to be identified and appropriated. This is a key point; the money must be new so that current programs will not be affected.
In the past we have been told by the department to priorize our activities and to move money from one program to another. We cannot do this because vital needs of our people would be adversely affected. All the money that is on reserves in programs is vitally necessary and cannot be touched.
We find it very hard to understand why we are told chiefs and councillors cannot be paid when the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs personnel make excessive salaries. We have a few ideas of how the money could be appropriated; we could either expand the social development envelope or create a new vote for these moneys. The important thing is that these moneys are obtained soon. We believe that once the commitment is made to find the moneys, the ways and means can be developed to get bands involved.
I have tabled with you people a list of the duties that are performed now by the chief and counsellors at my reserve. I am speaking specifically for my reserve—the duties we have to do there—but I think this is about the same procedure all across the country. We vitally need the moneys that would ensure that we get adequate, proper people in the offices of our administration. We would like to see an incentive for our people who are educated to come back to the band level, to lead us, to take up these important positions to make our lives better in the future.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Mason, for that initial presentation. Are there any comments from the committee before we move on to the next section of Chief Mason’s . . . Any one at all? All right, we will move on to hear your presentation regarding membership.
Chief Mason: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
On behalf of the Anishinabek, I would like to commend Canada in its decision to once again seek an understanding of the Indian nations and her relationship with those nations. I would further like to commend Canada on its decision to correct her discriminatory legislation, the Indian Act. In once again seeking to understand the “status, development and responsibilities” of Indian government, Canada will be dealing with issues that lay at the base of her relationship with the Indian nations.
It has been the fundamental lack of understanding of the history and status of Indian governments and Canada’s relationship to our governments that remains the major block in correcting the problems facing Indian people today. Over the past two years we have spent a great deal of energy attempting to educate members of the legislature, the Canadian public, the United Kingdom Parliament, and the international community as to the nature of our status and relationship to the Crown in Canada. We have been saying that we do have a relationship with Canada, but it is through the Crown; it is one of equals, one of nation to nation and not “minority ethnic” citizens in the Canadian mosaic.
Canadian government’s jurisdiction to pass legislation in respect of Indians and Indian lands came about as a result of the 1867 British North America Act, but this exclusive legislative jurisdiction in dealing with Indians was only in respect to other governments in Canada, consistent with the 1763 Royal Proclamation. Canada could pass laws in respect of Indians, but only for its citizens and certainly not for the Indian nations. Britain, in setting up its colonial government in Canada in 1867, could only have vested Canada with those powers and authorities that it had. This did not include a right to pass laws applying to the citizens of Indian nations In the absence of such evidence, Indian sovereignty still remains. Therefore, Canada has no right to pass legislation for Indian people, but it can well pass legislation for Canadian citizens which is consistent and would thus ratify the treaties signed with the Crown in right of Canada.
The next point I would like to make is that the Act in itself is racially discriminatory, since it purports to apply to a race of people called “Indians”. It also purports to give them special rights on the basis of this racial difference, and thus would be very quickly ruled unconstitutional under Canada’s new constitution. In fact, a recent Department of Justice opinion confirms this.
The fact is that Canada can legitimately pass legislation in respect of Indians to recognize their special rights if this legislation is consistent with historical fact; that is, Indian nations and Canada do have a special relationship as equal nations, which Canada would be justified in confirming by way
of legislation consistent with international and United Nations norms such as the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.
The Crown signed many treaties with many Indian nations, and these nations are as diverse and distinct as any in the world. There are also many Indian nations which the Crown, now Canada, has no treaties with, and consequently needs to establish a relationship with them. Clearly, where those nations did not agree to surrender or share their lands and resources, then Canada can make no claims of jurisdiction over that territory. This includes vast parts of Quebec, British Columbia, and the north.
We would be prepared to work with Canada to clarify our mutual relationship. Once this is done, laws can be made by both parties to recognize and protect this special relationship and rights. We could help Canada pass an Indian Act or other legislation that would recognize and respect our rights as peoples and nations.
Our rights exist as a result of our original sovereignty. We only ask for the same right to continue to exist and develop as most other peoples in the world are accorded. Canada has signed national covenants agreeing with this principle of self-determination.
Canada is presently using an international standard and ruling to justify the change in its discriminatory legislation. The United Nations Human Rights Committee ruled that Canada’s Indian Act legislation membership sections violated international covenants and should be corrected. We would like to suggest that these same international standards on human, civil, social, and political rights be applied in Canada’s dealings with Indian people. In doing so, over time most of the problems confronting Indian people would be resolved.
The social-economic statistics are appalling, and can only be cleared up when Canada allows the Indian people to be self-determining. Indians, compared to Canadians, are in a much poorer socio—economic situation. Indians, comparatively, have the lowest education levels, the highest level of unemployment, the greatest number of welfare cases, the highest level of alcoholism, the highest level of representation in penal institutions in alcohol-related crimes, the lowest life expectancy, the highest infant mortality. The list goes on and on, and I suggest these conditions can only improve when the international standards are applied in Canada’s dealings with them.
The principles of self-determination and the equality of all peoples is a principle recognized in the United Nations Charter. Inherent in this principle is the right to determine their own citizenship and nationality. This is one reason Canada has no business in determining the membership of the Indian nations.
Other United Nations standards, once applied, would help to correct problems in our present relationship. For example, in the area of treaties, the chiefs of the Indian Nations in many casm stressed that hunting and fishing rights be guaranteed for all time. Today, we find Canada violates these treaties by passing legislation overruling these rights. If the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties were applied, Canada would not be allowed to do this. The Vienna convention, among other things, states that a party to a treaty must fulfil in good faith the terms of the treaty; also, that a party cannot use its own domestic laws to alter or adversely affect the terms of a treaty, nor can it unilaterally change the terms of the treaty.
We see our treatiu to be, in every sense of the word, international treaties. They were signed by political entities who dealt with each other as nations. The relationships between Indian nations were the same as they exist today; friendship and alliance, military, socio-cultural and economics. To state that Indians were not nations would be a denial of historical facts.
Canada’s present policy is not to recognize treaties entered into with the Crown prior to 1867, unless it can be shown that Canada assumed liability for those treaties. This is clearly a violation of international law and standards, and in fact, by announcing this policy after patriation, is an act of bad faith and betrayal to the Indian nations. In taking this position, Canada has also misled Her Majesty and the Government of the United Kingdom. If you recall, it was the United Kingdom’s courts which ruled that “all” treaty obligations had been transferred to Canada.
With the Crown denying responsibility for these treaties and Canada denying responsibility for pre-1867 treaties, you can well understand our desire to have international standards applied and enforced in respect of our rights.
For the record, I would like to point out that the Indian Act discriminatory membership sections came about as a result of trying to protect Indian lands from encroachment by devious individuals and as a result of a paternalistic, racist Indian policy.
The colonial government at the time wanted to eliminate any chance for non-Indians to acquire title to Indian land; and since Canada’s inheritance customs were patrilineal, they made it so that non~Indian males could never again gain ownership and thus be able to pass title of the land down to their descendants. Thus, non-Indian men received no status
and Indian women lost theirs, thereby denying the non-Indian any chance of gaining any interest in the Indian land.
The second reason for the loss of Indian status by Indian women upon marriage to non—Indians was because of a racist and sexist attitude that the women had “elevated” themselves in society by marrying a non-Indian. In essence, she no longer had to be handicapped and uncivilized by being an Indian because she now had a non-Indian citizen who could take care of her. She was thus enfranchised into Canadian society.
As a final point, any consideration of a membership criteria change must be initiated and controlled by Indian people. We can and are developing fair and equitable standards for membership, which will not be discriminatory on any basis.
We further understand that a change in the membership criteria cannot be considered without taking into account the resource implications of such a change. Membership criteria changes will, in almost all cases, lead to a marked increase in the number of citizens of our nations. This change in number will have an effect on the land and resource base by creating a demand on those resources as well as creating a greater demand for the basic needs in the communities. These factors, along with many others, must be taken into account.
We have a Part II of this presentation, and it reads as follows.
You have been told, by treaty and by the law of nations, you have no right to tell the Anishinabek who their people are.
You have also been told you must not separate the question of who belongs to a band from the other questions that must be considered with it.
I now want to ask you to look at the way your Indian Act operates today, and tell you you cannot consider the question of discrimination against women on its own and think you have remedied the unfairness in the act itself.
What I am about to say should not be understood as a statement that, if you improved the act, it would become acceptable.
Do not think for a moment that the Indian Act discriminates against women alone, or that women are the only ones treated unfairly by the act. The Indian Act discriminates against men; and much more severely, the Indian Act discriminates against children. Some parts are so lacking in justice that, while they treat all they touch equally, they treat everybody with equal injustice.
The Indian Act as it is today discriminates against men. For example, an Indian woman can enfranchise, take her share of the band’s money and then regain her status under the Indian Act by marrying an Indian. An Indian man in the same position would not only lose his own status, but strip his wife of her status upon their marriage.
Section 68 of the Indian Act provides that the minister may order an Indian man’s money to be used to support his wife and children. An Indian woman’s money in the same circum- stance, it seems, could only go to the children, not her husband.
The Indian Act discriminates against children. Imagine that an Indian brother and sister had children with a non-Indian brother and sister. If both sets of parents were married, the child whose father is an Indian would be an Indian. The child whose mother is an Indian would not be an Indian. If both sets of parents were not married, the child whose father is an Indian would not be an Indian; the child whose mother is an Indian would be an Indian. Through the Indian Act, the illegitimate child of an Indian woman is an Indian. The illegitimate child of an Indian man is not.
This also affects inheritance. Section 48.(12) provides for rights for a woman’s illegitimate children, but not for those of a man. You should also be aware that the child of an Indian man, who is an illegitimate child of an Indian woman, is not an Indian.
You should look at the concept of enfranchisement. Is it not obsolete, since the right to vote was unilaterally extended to Indians in 1960? Is it not unfair, since a person who abandons his rights also by that act affects the rights of his children, born and unborn?
Imagine that an Indian woman had a child with an Indian man before she married a non-Indian man. We know of a number of cases where such children have been enfranchised upon that marriage, even where the children have grown up on reserves and have been raised by their grandparents, to find 20 years later that the Government of Canada took their rights away.
Some of these Indian children have been enfranchised over the objections of their parents. Some have been enfranchised as a result of false information. We are told that enfranchisement, even where it is unfair, is final. There is no right of appeal. There is no right to a hearing for these children. Their rights are not protected.
The minister who announced he would follow a band’s wishes, if it wanted Sections 12.(1)(b) and 12.(1)(a)(iv) of the act removed from application to the band, has refused to consider declaring that, where a band wishes to have children enfranchised without their consent as members, that Section 12.(1)(a)(iii) should not apply to those people.
Look, too, at Section 12.(1)(a)(iv), which has been called the “double mother clause”. It provides that a person born of a marriage entered into after September 1951, whose mother and father’s mother are not Indians under the act, loses his status at the age of 21.
Its intention was that a person who was 25% Indian or less should have the opportunity to grow up on the reserve with his family, and then leave at the age of majority. The effect, though, has been different from the intent. As soon as one of
the three grandparents who is classed as non-Indian was either an Indian woman who enfranchised upon marriage, an Indian from the United States side of the imaginary line you have drawn through Indian lands, or a non-status Indian, the child who is being excluded is more than 25% Indian. There are cases of people who are 100% Indian by blood being removed from band lists through the operation of this clause. Potentially, by skipping generations, it is possible for people with almost no Indian blood to remain on the lists at the same time.
The double-mother clause was a time bomb. It could be enforced at the earliest in 1973, and in fact the Department of Indian Affairs, as a matter of discretion and in defiance of the law, did not implement it in most of Canada until the past year.
There are other ways that the department violates the laws in its administration of Indian status. The band lists contain numerous violations of the new Privacy Act. On the other hand, the band list provided to the bands contain neither the real names nor the original names of children who have been adopted out of the band. This is a violation of the act.
Investigations and inquiries by the the registrar are conducted in secret, without regard to the rules of natural justice, and the discretion of the registrar is not limited by time.
There are actually three ways to be an Indian: to be registered and entitled to be; to be entitled but not registered; and to be registered but not entitled. The lists contain many names of people who are registered but are not entitled. For those who are entitled but not registered, it is an exercise in frustration and patience to deal with the obstacles and trials the department places in their way.
That is the conclusion of our presentation, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you very much, Chief Mason. As we all know, the members of this committee, the membership issue is one that is quite contentious and certainly needs to be dealt with in a very deep and sincere and serious way. I am sure that members of the oommittee will have a number of comments on your presentation, and questions to ask.
I would suggest that because of the time we now recess for lunch. We will resume with comments and questions to Chief Mason following our return in approximately an hour’s time. So we will recess for an hour.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): We will resume our hearings this afternoon, following that very delicious meal
provided by the ladies here at Kettle Point. I am sure we all appreciate it very much.
We just heard from Chief James Mason on membership, and we Will open this session with comments and questions to Chief Mason. Mr. Oberle, would you like to begin?
Chief Mason: Excuse me. I would like to make a correction in my presentation this morning. The case where a child whose father is a Indian would not be an Indian, etc., I think that has been removed now because of a court case. That would also deal with an illegitimate child of an Indian man. So that has been taken care of by justice. I do not know where he got his information from, but he has just advised me that this is not the situation any longer.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I believe you are referring to page 3, first paragraph, near the end where it says:
If both sets of parents were not married, the child whose father is an Indian would not be an Indian.
That section and then in the following paragraph, the last sentence which says “the illegitimate child of an Indian man is not”, I believe those are the two sections to which you are referring.
Chief Mason: That is right.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): You are saying that when this was written, of course that court case or that court decision had not been rendered and the decision has since been rendered which could change that.
Chief Mason: That is correct.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): All right. That is now noted. We will hear from Mr. Oberle now.
Mr. Oberle: Chief Mason, I do not have any particular question. I appreciate very much what you are saying. It is no secret to any of the members in this committee; I think all of us sat on the committee dealing with the sections of the Indian Act which discriminate against men and women and, as you pointed out, children.
I had an opportunity to briefly go through Part 1 of the rest of the documents that you provided us with, the membership code. I really think this is very, very helpful to us and want to compliment you and commend you on the work that has gone into it. It is straightforward. It does not provide for anyone losing their membership for reason of marriage, or gaining membership for reason of marriage. It is certainly something that we would want to look at in terms of further recommendations we might make on this subject.
Just simply, Chief Mason, has this code been adopted by any of the bands, and has the membership court been established and set up; have they begun their work?
Chief Mason: No, it has not yet been adopted by the membership, but we expect that we will be presenting it at the All Chiefs meeting this June. It is to be one of the items on the agenda.
Further to the general provisions there, I would like to make some correction—I think this was a typographical error. On number 4 in the general provisions it states:
If a Band has not adopted a membership code, the provisions of the Indian Act of Canada shall . . .
I think “shall” is a dictatorial phrase that should be omitted so put “may” there instead: “may determine who are the members of that Band”.
Chief Mason: Then point 5 in the second paragraph, where it also states “the Indian Act of Canada shall apply”—that also should be changed to “may apply to determine a membership”.
Mr. Oberle: Okay. You suggest a the membership court. Would that be a tribal institution?
Chief Mason: It would be a tribal institution, that is right.
Mr. Oberle: And any disputes would be referred to that court, and a final ruling would be made there.
Chief Mason: That is correct.
Mr. Oberle: Then as an end result, membership is determined by referendum of the band members, is that right?
Chief Mason: That is correct.
Mr. Oberle: One final question. You place a different definition on a majority of members than what is traditional in the white man’s existing rules. You require a majority of all members, not just those who show up at the referendum. Is that right?
Chief Mason: Again that is correct. I do not believe that 50% plus one is an adequate amount to determine. I think a membership situation has to be practically unanimous by the band, and the majority should not be the ruler. I do not know whether I am saying that right or not, but a small majority should not be the ruling factor; there should be a larger portion of the people Concerned—75%.
Mr. Oberle: But it is 75% of all the band members not just those. . . How do you conduct the referendum? Would it be obligatory or compulsory for each person to make a decision to cast a ballot?
Chief Mason: No, again, it would not be compulsory, it is up to the persons themselves to make that decision if they want to participate in that vote.
Mr. Oberle: But suppose a large percentage of band members do not participate in the referendum, how do you then establish the majority?
Chief Mason: We would have to have another referendum until we get that majority we want.
Mr. Oberle: I see, so if you decide on a 75% majority and a referendum does not produce that, then you would have to do it over again.
Chief Mason: That is correct.
Mr. Oberle: I see. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle. Mr. Allmand, do you have any questions or comments to make?
Mr. Allmand: It is a comment because it does not deal directly. with membership, but it deals with the brief on msmbershtp. It is on a point that has been mentioned twice today.
On page 6 of your brief, you have mentioned that: “Canada’s present policy is not to recognize treaties entered into with the Crown prior to 1867 . . . ” I think the Grand Chief mentioned that earlier this morning too. It is an act of bad faith after patriation. The comment I wanted to make is, it is true that the government has adopted that policy with respect to land claims but, in my opinion, it has no legal effect, for two reasons. In the body of your brief you point out that the courts in England stated that they had transferred all treaty obligations to Canada. They did not make the distinction between those that came after 1867 and those that came before. In addition, Section 35 of our Constitution, which was adopted last year, says that:
(1) The existing aboriginal and treaty rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada are hereby recognized and affirmed.
It does not say that they only recognize those after 1867. It says “treaty rights,” but no date is mentioned.
I personally believe that policy position, which is in one of those little booklets on the land claims, if it was contested in . . . That is not the best way of doing it, of course. The best way is to get them to change it through political action and lobbying, but if they refuse, it is my opinion that position has no strength in law because of the Constitution and because of the judgment of the court in England last year, or the year before—I forget the exact date. That is just a comment.
I also wanted to ask you a question about the code which is not clear in my mind. Mr. Oberle was just asking about it as well. In point 3 of the general provisions, it says:
The membership code may be adopted by a referendum of the majority of the members of the band according to band custom.
What I wanted to ask, are referendums part of band custom or is that not an imported mechanism taken from white man’s law? Or was the referendum found in the original ways of Indians doing things?
Chief Mason: I will admit that it was an adopted procedure and the way the Indian people did it was by consensus.
Mr. Allmand: By consensus.
Chief Mason: By consensus, ym. This is something else that is new to us, and something that we would like to go back to is deciding by consensus.
Mr. Allmand: However, in the code you have got the referendum.
Chief Mason: Yes, but this can be changed.
Mr. Allmand: The reason I raise that, there is a band in Quebec that I know of where the referendum mechanism was used and the traditional people in the band contested even the use of the referendum as a method of deciding what the custom was. It can be very tricky. They have gone to court on that very point.
Thank you very much. I just wanted to know if the referen- dum was part of the custom.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand. Mr. Manly.
Mr. Manly: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. I would like to thank Chief Mason for his presentation, and especially for the proposed code. I think that this is a very helpful document for us to have. I agree with you in your presentation about the historical causes for Section 12.(1)(b), the two basic ideas. On the one hand, the protection against non-Indian males coming in and getting control of the land. And secondly, that that whole section reflects a patriarchal, sexist and racist attitude on the part of our legislators. I respect your position that decisions about membership should be made by the band, but as a legislator, I am also committed to the reinstatement of women who once had status and had it taken away from them, and I would like to just very briefly explain why I think that is a reasonable position.
I believe the Canadian government has obligations, not only to Indian nations but also to individual Indian people. Individual Indian people, as individuals, have aboriginal rights. One of those rights is the right to belong to their own people, and through the application of Section 12.(1)(b), we took that right away from people who were born with it. I think that was wrong. I do not think that we are really doing any violence to Indian band membership when we simply have a program of reinstating people who were once band members to begin with. I do not see how that violates the basic criteria.
I would be interested in having your comment on that.
Chief Mason: We have done a lot of research. We have had a lot of meetings. We have been meeting for a number of years, not just in the last two years since this Constitution problem has arisen. We have been dealing with this for a number—shall I say, a decade or more. In talking about the membership, we feel it is our duty to our people to make those decisions ourselves. We can approach them in a democratic way. We can put it to the people by referendum or by any means that can go to the general public of the reserve, but we must bring this to our people for them to decide. It is not for
the band council to do this, it must be the membership themselves to decide who is a member and who cannot be a member.
Mr. Manly: I notice that in the code you have adopted—if persons marry out they do not lose their status, and that is encouraging. In Section 17 of the code, you have the provision for appeal if the band membership code “is discriminatory on the basis of sex, creed or religion . . . “, or ” . . . in violation of the rules of natural justice,” and then you say, “the Court may issue an order striking out the sections of the Bands membership code. . . ” Can I ask the reason why it says “may” here instead of “shall”?
Chief Mason: As I said at the beginning, where the word “shall” appeared I think it was a typographical error, and now I think now where they have put “may”, it is the proper place for this section.
Mr. Manly: It would seem to me that if we were talking about my rights, which we are not doing here, but if it were a code which was dealing with my rights and I felt that my rights were being violated and I went and appealed to a court and established before it that my rights had been violated on the question of natural justice or on the basis of my sex, my religion or creed in that way, I would want the court to be obligated to make those changes and not just leave it to the goodwill of the court.
Chief Mason: I think what we are saying there is, Can we dictate to the court? I do not think we can. When you say we should use the word there “shall”, then you are dictating to the court. If you say “may”, then it is up to the court to make its decision one way or another. It is not a directive; it is a request.
Mr. Manly: I would still think we are entitled to dictate to a court and would ask you to consider that matter further.
This morning, I asked about appeals from Indian courts to other courts, and I notice in Section 22 that
. . . the decisions of the Membership Court in any case are final and there is no right of appeal from the decisions of the Membership Court to any other court.
So there is no appeal provision in that situation.
Chief Mason: That is correct.
Mr. Manly: There is one other area where I would like some clarification of the position is that, as I mentioned earlier, I noticed that a person does not lose his or her membership if they marry out. Sections 28, 29 and 30 would provide for the reinstatement of anyone who had lost status through marriage if their parents were still living. I am not sure whether or not this also provides for reinstatement if the parents are dead.
Section 25 says that people do not have their names removed from a membership list when they die. Is that a retroactive sort of thing so that, if someone had lost membership and their parents were dead, would they still be able to reapply for membership?
Chief Mason: I think it is quite clear in those sections that, if a person has lost their status, they could regain status if they had been a member prior to losing it. This has been our problem because people who have lost their status could never regain status, especially the men. The only way a woman could regain status is to marry back onto the man. So this would eliminate that. We know that away from the reserves, there is a lot of people whose parents were enfranchised, yet who are Indian people of. . . I do not like to use this term-“full blood”; where 100% of their ancestry was native. These people have lost their status; they are not Indians any more. But we feel that these people should be reinstated as Indian people and be members of the respective bands where they came from.
Mr. Manly: So even if a persons parents were dead, they could still regain status?
Chief Mason: That is right.
Mr. Manly: Thank you very much. I find this a very interesting and helpful code. I am sure other Indian nations across Canada will want to look at this very closely as a possible standard. Thank you very much for tabling this. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly. Chief Mason, has this code been officially adopted by the Anishinabek nation?
Chief Mason: Not yet. We plan to present it to the nation in the general assembly in June. It has been sent out to the members for their perusal and when we meet in June, we will have it finalized.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you. We will hear from Ms Jamieson now, please.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I am familiar with the contents of the Membership Code, I will not question in that area. I know a lot of work has gone into it, and I compliment the Anishinabek nation for the amount of work and thought that has gone into the code.
I would however like to direct a question to Chief Mason on the presentation he made on chiefs’ salaries, if that is appropriate, Mr. Chairman. I know that for some time many Indian governments have been seeking political funding, and my question has to do with this closing paragraph on page 2. There you suggest you have a few ideas on how the money could be appropriated. One is the social development envelope or creation of a new vote for these moneys.
Now under a vote as I understand it, there is no guaranteed level. and no way of guaranteeing any level that would be
voted each year under the current system; thus, you are subject to possible change every year in that it could be less, it could be more. My question is: Was the chief aware of this? Is he really seeking a guaranteed level of political funding each year? Maybe you meant mechanism or method or did you, in fact, mean vote?
Chief Mason: I did not mean vote in that sense. I used that term because it is the one currently being used by the Department of Indian Affairs now. But what I would like to have there is an ongoing funding situation where there would be an annual amount not dependent upon a vote. So the vote situation would not apply here.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. My other question is this: How do you see that funding coming from government to Indian governments and, then, from the Indian government to the chief and however? I mean, would this be part of bloc funding which would come directly to the Indian government for them to disburse as they saw fit and determine the salary of the chief? Or do you see it coming directly from government to the chief?
Chief Mason: Coming directly from governments to the chiefs—to the band administration, not to the political associations.
Ms Jamieson: Would it be part of these transfer payments that Mr. Miskokomon was talking about?
Chief Mason: Yes; I believe that would a part.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I understand HOW.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Ms Jamieson. Ms Isaac, please.
Ms Isaac: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I do have one question and would like to refer to Section 4 of the General Provisions of the Membership Code. It states that
If a Band has not adopted a membership code, the provisions of the Indian Act of Canada shall determine who are the members of that Band.
Do you mean here the one which may be revised in the future? Or do you mean the present discriminatory Indian Act?
Chief Mason: No. I mean a new act which would be developed in the future.
Ms Isaac: If part of the revision that does take place to correct the discriminatory parts of the Indian Act—if reinstatement is also part of it, would the hands be willing to accept that, or what provisions will they make for that?
Chief Mason: Before we could accept any provisions to anything, we would have to review it. So it is pretty hard to
answer that question today. After review. we could answer it, but not today.
Ms Isaac: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghnrdt): Thank you.
Are there any further questions or comments to Chief Mason?
Chief Mason, do you wish to say anything in conclusion to your presentation?
Chief Mason: No, that is quite sufficient…unless my colleagues would like to.
Chief Deleary: Yes, I think the membership code itself—the first 28 sections of the membership code deal with the development of a membership code for the bands. Our thinking behind this is that the membership code of the band, in relation to referendums and that sort of thing—l think that is the prerogative of the band: how they determine a referendum. If there is a second round on the referendum, does a majority of the votes cast constitute legality to put a member on the membership of the band?
I think we have devised this as a working paper, as Jim has pointed out here, to develop a membership code for the bands; and how bands go about that. again, is within their own framework. I see in bands where there may be a band membership committee, to sit down and develop a band membership code for that band, that would ultimately go to the band membership for ratification of that membership code. Then it would become the law of that band. But when it says there is a section within the membership code that says that it shall not violate the rights, it is binding with the nation.
How we set up membership lists, and general lists, again is something that is spelled out in the latter sections of the membership code. So developing a band membership code is along the lines, I would say, of the overall national or Anishinahec membership code. It is consistent with that.
The ratification of the membership code at the grand council meeting in June will determine how the nation will perceive the membership. Hopefully we can agree to a code for the nation.
The right of appeal through a court mechanism, which we spell out here—I think it has to be spelled out clearly that we see a judicial system set up by the membership where we have proposed that judges from each of the four regions of the Anishinahec nation be appointed. The concept might be there be two judges from each region. Therefore if a member from my band, which is in the southwest region, went before that tribunal, then judges would be judging that case from the other three respective regions; so there is no prejudice, you may say, or the case is heard fairly.
The section in there that also pertains to the jurisdiction of that body is that we feel that nobody else should determine the membership of the nation. So the right of appeal to the
Supreme Court of Canada has no bearing on the decisions of membership for the Anishinahec nation.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Perhaps. Chief Deleary, just to clarify further, for myself at least—you are saying that for example your band in southwestern Ontario would arrive at a certain decision regarding band membership. Are you saying that if it is not in compliance with the entire nation, you would still want the right to control your own membership, regardless of what the entire nation said; or are you saying that you would hope that the entire nation would be the same?
Chief Deleary: The membership code of the nation—any laws pertaining to a nation… the nation must have the right—and we as a nation… to develop laws that are consistent, just as the laws of Canada: how consistent they are with the provinces. So we must develop laws for the nation, and the laws are applicable to the bands.
But again, there is also the fact that membership criteria from one band to the other in areas such as referendums may be different on some reserves. Provisions for that—I think we would discuss this at great length and make provisions for those sorts of things. We agreed upon that.
I think when we talk about Indian self-government we must secure the right to determine the ways in which our people will govern themselves. Your constitutional arrangements must simply provide a mechanism through which you can recognize democratic constitutional governments of our own. We must also say you must recognize that our position on member- ship—we must ensure that our land base is ample enough for future generations. I think our arrangements will have to be, when we work out the arrangements on membership—and the recommendations of this committee should also recommend that before implementation of anything on membership, the issue of land acquisition must be taken care of. We will experience, over the next three years—after the adoption of legislation legislating how—in membership, something upwards of a 25% increase in population on the reserve. The reserve land base does not support, cannot support, that. So when we get into the presentation that I will be making later on on economic development, I think those things will be brought out again.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Ms Jamieson.
Ms Jamieson: I thought I was getting confused. Now I think it is getting clear for me again, and I see some other puzzled looks. Maybe I can help a little bit.
My understanding is that this code sets down general principles that will apply throughout the Anishinahec nation, if accepted by the grand council. But in the code there are certain sections—for example, section 44 says a band may set its own standards for the probationary members of the band; section 45, a band may make rules and regulations for
probationary membership; and so on. There are three or four—well, more than that—sections that come to my view right away, whereby a referendum, as determined by the band—so that allows the flexibility for each band in those areas, although the code and the general principles would be adopted by the nation as a whole. Is that a correct understanding, Chief Deleary?
Chief Deleary: Yes, that is correct.
Ms Jamieson: Okay.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Mr. Oberle.
Mr. Oberle: Could I ask Chief Mason another related question, and it has come up before. Has it been envisaged to establish a type of membership, a dual type of membership, one that would permit the member to share—since the question of land has come up—as a prerequisite before the code could be adopted; a type of membership where the member does not share in the common held lands, but is entitled to all other benefits and privileges of citizenship? And the other type of member that does share fully in the ownership and privileges that come with the commonly held lands.
Chief Mason: No, this has not been established yet. We expect that one of the issues we will be talking about at the grand council is that part of the membership where … I know in Canada, the citizens of Canada do not all own real estate, but there are a lot of Indian people who are members of bands who share in the real estate of that land. So, this is something we are going to have to resolve at our meeting in June, that is, if a member can be a member without enjoying the side benefits, so to speak, like leased land, and such as that.
Mr. Oberle: You are saying in your code that a person of another race marrying into the band cannot become a member. Some nations are playing with the idea of permitting membership on a limited basis; not sharing in the resources of the band, but permitting them to participate in the cultural and social affairs of the band. You have not given any thought to that?
Chief Mason: No.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): If there are no further comments or questions then, again, Chief Mason, we thank you very much for your presentation, certainly as it deals especially with the membership, and as important as well, the chiefs’ salaries situation, and certainly the membership code will help us as we further develop this question.
We will move on then, now, and hear from Chief Rod Monague of the Christian Island Reserve on the DIAND financial system and the role and operations of the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development.
Chief Rod Monague (Chief, Christian Island Reserve): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. My presentation is in two parts. In the first part, I would like to present the band point of view, and there are a couple of recommendations following that. Then, further to that, I would like to present the viewpoint of the Anishinabek, and also some recommendations from that. There may be some repetition at some point, but it is very minor.
This presentation is directed to the managerial and the executive functions of the department, and presenting an Indian band point of view to the commission. The commission has been given many. reports on issues that are general in nature throughout their exercise, and it is our hope that a more detailed and comprehensive report be filed. The report does not attempt to cover the many programs in their entirety. However, it will try to reply to some fundamental practices within the Department of Indian Affairs.
The most recent development has been the Management Improvement Project, by James J. Ovens, commonly referred to as MIP. This was in response to a poor audit conducted by the Auditor General and the lack of implementation of a transfer policy on the part of the department. This document was tabled this morning by Mr. Miskokomon, and I understand it is now in the hands of the researchers.
The Auditor General’s report to the House of Commons was in part:
In our opinion, the department has not adequately planned the implementation of this policy.
The transfer policy:
Without an implementation plan, no clear objectives or schedules can be set out against which managers can judge progress.
It goes on to say:
We also concluded that the department was not adequately managing the implementation of the policy.
It appears to me that the first part of that statement, where they talk about the department not planning to implement, means exactly that. In the second part, it simply means that they were not willing to do it.
The report is very detailed and lengthy and shows primarily the departmental point of view. The contract for the project was tendered by the department and the project team was made up of Indian Affairs personnel, without any input from Indians. The report, really, is just a profile or a snapshot of where the department is in terms of transferring programs to bands and is phased into five stages. Basically, it is to disprove the Auditor General’s report.
During the second stage, clear instructions were given within the contract that “Indian bands and organizations will not be interviewed”. This was on the detailed task plan. My opinion
of that is that they were explicitly excluding any Indian participation.
The department prides itself on its corporate structure but fails to practice corporate ethics. They refer to Indians as clients but fail to communicate in matters of importance.
Bands in general are not aware of these developments until they are wrapped up, which in turn leads to the assumption on our part that collusion is taking place in the highest levels, to minimize active Indian participation in the overall administration.
A few years ago, certain ideas were brought forward that did not meet approval from both sides; these concepts were joint management, partnership concepts, and so on. These ideas were not pursued, because of mistrust, and both parties did not clearly define interests against each other. They were not very safe.
Not until Indians are given the chance or the choice of active intervention in departmental policy, will any positive change occur. It would seem that the Indians were the scapegoat for the poor audit by the Auditor General, and it would seem that it was politically expedient to implicitly blame the Indian administrations. The cure for this, at that time, was the contribution arrangement format that we live with today, that legally relegated Indian bands to sub-contractors.
Basic budget practices that are common practice in normal business were not allowed, severely handicapping bands in normal cashflow. The very thing contribution arrangements were to correct, such as cashflow problems, became local transfer problems. A case in point would be local deficits and surpluses. If a band were to practice a very conservative program for the year and create a surplus, the department would merely move that resource to the following year, keeping that particular program static, thus eliminating incentive for the band to save money.for other programs. Conversely, the same procedure applies for deficits and emergencies. A deficit is usually taken from future years, forcing bands to obtain advances or borrow from the department. This is usually done through capital advances, or else through the Indian Economic Development Loan Fund.
The best approach would be to blend programs that are received by the bands, to create autonomy, good management practices, responsibility and the choice to priorize for the community.
Many bands are in this predicament and the normal response from the department is that the rules are laid out in the Financial Administration Act and nothing can be done about it. It would appear that the Financial Administration Act is the Bible for the department and can be viewed as one
piece of legislation that will guarantee the continued dominant operation of the department.
The department still takes an ad hoc approach to management and its problems, and deals with the issues only when they reach the crisis point. This results in a highly politicized method of distribution within a given region or district. Let us compare this month, March, to the two operations, the department and the band. The department is coming into a period that is known as the thirteenth month. A high priority is given to deferring as much resources to the following year. These surpluses are created by slippage in large projects, usually due to late starts, and also from districts that did not distribute what was intended. At this point, it becomes old money and a flurry of activity takes place. The common practice is that the regional office has first crack and recalls district allocations or surpluses.
On the other hand, the bands at this time are usually minus resources in some programs and are in the process of reconciliation, and are usually too late to request additional funds, or are informed by the district that the region has taken it back. The whole system is in a Catch-22 situation and it is not conducive to good management practices at the band level.
That is the end of the first presentation.
The two recommendations that would be attached to that would be, first of all, that—what I am recommending here are really just interim recommendations. They would apply in phases and would be known as more or less short-term proposals to take care of the transition period in case other developments take place within the Canada Act.
The first recommendation would that the Financial Administration Act be amended to give Indian bands access to the act. At the present time, the act only applies to government departments.
The second one would be that programs that have been and are currently transferred to Indian bands receive administrative overhead equal to what the department obtains, which is usually in the 25% bracket. At present bands receive 7%.
The second part of the report is a general viewpoint of the Anishinabek.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Excuse me, Chief Monague. Did you want to mention that second phase—for the record—in your recommendations?
Chief Monague: The second phase?
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghnrdt): Did you mention that or did I miss it?
Chief Monague: The second recommendation, yes: That programs that have been and are currently transferred to Indian bands receive administrative overhead equal to what the department obtains.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): But following that there is a second phase: That a financial reporting handbook or guide . . .
Chief Monague: Oh, I see. Yes, I did have that. The second phase would be: That a financial reporting handbook or guide be developed for Indian bands to deal with deficits, surplus, investments, long- and short-term loans and audit.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): That is fine. I might just mention here, before you go into the second part of your presentation, that the committee, Chief Monague, has made provisions for a comprehensive research study to be made for the committee on the transfer programs. I believe that report is to be ready in May. It will, of course, deal with the transferring of programs from the Department of Indian Affairs to the bands, and the committee obviously is well aware of this concern and the reason for this project’s being commissioned.
We will go on and hear the second part of the presentation, then I think we will comment and have some questions.
Chief Monague: Recently, much has been made of the improvement in the systems of accountability that the department has instituted. We all realize that this is a direct result of criticisms made of the department by the Auditor General of Canada. Each year, however, concern grows at the band level over how this change is directly affecting them and how it works.
In November of 1982, indications came to regional headquarters concerning expected levels of funding available for the fiscal year 1983-1984. A month later, in December of 1982, the Executive Planning Committee of the department met to present their annual budget submissions. A month after that, in January of 1983, the bands in Ontario began submitting their budgets based on community needs. Obviously, their submissions had no bearing upon the financial considerations and planning . . .
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Excuse me, Chief Monague. I apologize for interrupting but, for the benefit of the committee, we do not seem to have a transcript of that presentation. Is that something new? Do you have that, Mr. Oberle?
Mr. Oberle: No.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): No. Are you reading under “G” right now?
Chief Monague: No. It is all part of this. .. I think there was a bit of a mix-up.
Mr. Oberle: It is not in our book.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): We do not have it in our book.
Chief Monague: We could probably get them made available. They are available.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Are they? But this is something . . .
Chief Monague: Are these available?
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): This is something in addition to what is in our book under the role and operations section.
Chief Monague: Yes.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Just so that we clarify; are you going to go into that as well, in addition to this?
All right, fine. We will hear what you have to say. I wanted to clarify it, because the committee members were wondering just where you were coming from.
Chief Monague: All right. Perhaps I will read this through and then . . .
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): We can have copies of that.
Chief Monague:—I could have the staff make it available.
The history of the departmental financial management successes and failures is easily obtainable through the public accounts and main estimates. The history is a woeful one. Through 1978, there shows an increasing inability to spend the money they were allocated. This culminates in 1978 with over $25 million uncxpended. A comparison of the main estimates with expenditures listed in the public accounts indicates an increasing inability to project costs based on actual need. However, this situation changes drastically in 1979. Suddenly, the ability to spend their allomted funds improves. In the space of one year, little more than $1 million remains unexpended, as compared to $25 million the previous year. Certainly this is worthy of note. It is further worthy of note that there is no such improvement in their cost projections. What happened is very simple. By effectively eliminating the need for accurate cost projections, they have been able to concentrate on systems that enable them to account for their expenditures.
Each year the department gets a step further away from band participation in the budgeting process. When all components of their data base system are fully in place, there may be no need for band participation at all—punch the numbers in and the budgets come running out. Of course, this is not the purpose of administrative systems. All administrative systems are supposed to exist as a support to real productive activity. The perception that bands hold is that their needs are subordinate to those of the administrative system. That perception is correct. What is missing in the system is accountability to the bands. It is not only the concern of the Treasury Board of Canada that dollar value be obtained for dollars spent, it is a very real concern in the communities.
At present, bands have an insignificant amount of control over how much money is used in their communities. Huge amounts are cast about in the public media, but nothing is said of the 30% plus that the department retains for their administrative expense. When mandatory programs, such as welfare and others, are removed from budget figures, less than 10% remains to be used at the discretion of the bands. The barrier that bands face is the barrier of access to information. It is the barrier of playing a limited role in the financial planning process. It is the barriers that exist in the minds of civil servants that priorize accountability to the government to the exclusion of their service group.
Several things can be done to change the situation. Financial planning must relate to the expressed needs of the bands and bands must be allowed to advocate their submissions at all stages in the process. Bands must have full access to all financial information contained in the financial data base. There must be a realization within the department that their successes, most importantly, are measured in human development as well as fiscal.
The recommendations following this are:
One: the evolution of the Department of Indian Affairs into a body similar to a Crown corporation for the express purpose of transfer of dollars to band governments/Indian institutions for service delivery in all areas;
Two: that the Department of Indian Affairs institute an immediate mechanism of financial and program accountability to Indian governments;
Three: that the Department of Indian Affairs implement an umbrella policy encouraging the development of Indian institutions for delivery of federal programs.
This final presentation is really an add-on, without recommendations.
Dollar value for dollars spent: that is a great concern of the federal bureaucrats. It is also a great concern to us. Certainly, when government and politicians bandy about figures on how much of the taxpayer’s dollar goes to Indians, it gives me some concern. It means that a stream of letters will appear in a local newspaper and a number of people will get upset on both sides of the issue. But I also carry a concern about those dollars that Indians never see; those dollars that go to support a bureaucracy that does not seem to be achieving success; a bureaucracy that gobbles up in excess of 30% of dollars allocated to Indians across Canada. Dollar value for dollars spent. There is a basic contradiction in the Department of Indian Affairs. On one hand, they are to develop the north. One one hand they are to develop the north; on the other to protect the interest of northern natives. Even on a more basic level they have an explicit role as trustee to all Indian interests, but are much more responsive and accountable to the Government of
Canada. You might say that our mediator is caught in a conflict of interest.
The Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Develop- ment’s mission is enormous. They bear responsibility for more than 60 tribal groups—each with a separate and distinct historical, cultural, and linguistic background—that have been divided into 573 political entities comprising more than 350,000 people scattered across Canada. It is certainly not an easy job to provide service to these people. In fact, it is impossible given the framework in which the Government of Canada operates. It is difficult for anyone to admit that they cannot do a job they are given. I am guilty of that myself sometimes. There comes a time, however, when that admission must be made if the job is to be done.
Paternalism is an overworked word. I have nothing against fathers, being one myself. Our situation more closely resembles foster children than children.
In its inability to solve the problem of its children, who have been farmed out by the department to other federal departments and agencies, provincial governments and their myriad of departments, consulting firms, our fathers have been too long on the road and we have grown up without their noticing. Of course, we were never children except in your eyes, but even by our standards, we grew up a long time ago. There is nothing new under the sun. Long before settlers came here, we operated our own educational system. The same is true about our economic system and all other elements of community living. The biggest change we faced was a loss of responsibility; maybe even a theft of responsibility. We have no sense of control over our lives. Obviously, much of what has to be done to regain control we must do ourselves, but governments must support and not fight our attempts to do that. Each day we face and fight policies that are not developed by ourselves, and which are discussed with us only after the fact. Each day we must deal with a single-minded point of view that sees us as a singular racial unit and not the cultural pastiche that we are and that the Prime Minister likes to use in describing Canada. Each day we must deal with dictatorial management practices in which the stream of accountability runs only one way. When we talk of Indian control, we are talking about those elements that would allow us to exercise our responsibility to our people. It is a job at which the Department of Indian Affairs is not succeeding and cannot succeed. Thank you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you Chief Monague. I am wondering just to change the pace a bit, whether we might begin with Miss Jamieson, on this round of comments and questioning—if you are prepared Miss Jamieson.
Ms. Jamieson: Thank you Mr. Chairman. I am not sure I can change the pace but I will try.
An hon. Member: Set the pace.
Ms. Jamieson: Set the pace. I wonder if you could explain to us either through example or however, how you think. Somebody made reference to circulars this morning and what happens to bands if they will not follow circulars. Could you take us through an example to demonstrate how the band’s ability to function as a government is pre-empted by the department—either circulars or year—end or both, just so we have some feel for the situation that you are in? Either Chief Monague or whomever you direct.
Chief Monague: Who are you talking to?
Ms. Jamieson: You have given the presentation, so I assume it is up to you to direct the question.
Chief Monague: Well in the area of circulars I think there are some misconceptions about circulars. We tend to treat them as law and yet they are similar to office memos… basically a guideline from the Treasury Board—and we are controlled to quite an extent by circulars.
On the question of year end and so forth, the system and how it works. I. First of all, there is a delay in delivery of resources because of the many conditions that are set forth in the current contribution arrangements. 1 think there is a delay right through the whole delivery system because of the size. What was intended to be a very simple method or system has turned out to be really caught up in a lot of red tape. I do not know if anyone else here might want to comment on circulars. I think, Ether, you mentioned circulars yesterday.
Chief Deleary: Well when we get to the issue of the housing presentation, I think, in respect to the J circulars or something like that, I will elaborate on those, if that is okay.
Ms. Jamieson: My question was really how does the way that you react to circulars affect your funding, or does it? If you will cover that when we get to housing, that is fine. We are now into financial dealings and dealings with the Department of Indian Affairs and I wonder if under this topic you might have something to contribute?
Chief Deleary: Well, in regards to funding with any set of circulars—I guess circulars have been around for a long time—the E circulars, the D circulars and whatever circulars they are, every circular that is developed is developed by the department without any consultation with the bands. Generally, that is the rule. When a circular comes down—for example, the J circulars were designed by Mr. Goodwin; then when the circulars get down to the regional level, there is additonal policy developed in regard to the circulars which distorts the intention of the circular, the direction from headquarters, in a lot of cases. Right now in respect to the J circulars, a policy was developed by the region, that if bands do not accept the J housing circulars, they will not receive capital housing dollars this year. We have started a movement I think, from the London district that these are totally
unacceptable to the bands for a number of reasons. It curtails the housing program as we see it. I think a lot of the circulars also are devised because bands in another area have had some difficulty with different programs, so the department sees that as something to develop a circular that will be used unilater- ally across Canada for all of the bands. So in the case of the J circulars, we feel penalized by those circulars because the housing program in southwestern Ontario is a housing program that should be looked on with pride by the department or anybody as far as we are concerned.
The circulars specifically set out policy. What we are saying, the bottom line is that before any policy is developed, regardless what area it is in, there must be consultation with the bands, with the native people, whom those policies affect. This has never happened and it continues not to happen, so we are opposed to those. Proper consultation with the bands in formulating policies in regard to legislative matters would suffice and would be in the best interests of everyone.
Ms. Jamieson: Thank you. If I understand the current situation you are in, these circulars are like administrative memos that try to set out policy, and if you do not comply with them, you do not get your money. At year end, if you have a surplus, you are penalized. Is that right? Is my understanding right? Okay.
When we look at your recommendations, the second one here, the big type recommendations, is that the Department of Indian Affairs institute an immediate mechanism of financial and program accountability to Indian governments. What kind of a system? What do you want them to account for and who do you want them to account to? Do you want individual bands to table an annual report? Do you want to see the estimates, what kind of accountability are you looking for?
Chief Monague: First of all, before I answer your question, I would like to go back and give an example of the circulars. My perception of circulars is that they are designed by the policy research and evaluation unit of the department. They are to come out every five years, but it seems that whenever there is a problem new ones come out. For instance, a couple of years ago we had a problem with money—a lack of money for post- secondary education—and E-12, I believe it was, really greatly affected post-secondary education. There has been a tendency on the part of bands to get involved with CMHC, along with the department; the J circulars appeared because there seemed to be a problem. The district or tribal council started to emerge, and the D circulars arrived. So it seems that every time there is a problem, circulars are issued.
Going to your question on the second recommendation, I guess what we want is participation in the planning process of the financial administration. The planning process within the department is broken down into many, many facets throughout
the year. You begin to plan in the spring; you have a pretty firm idea of what is needed by fail; you can make changes in the winter, and it flies in February. We have never had input into that process, and we would like to have that input. We would like to know what the annual budget of the department is and how much of it is going in certain areas so that we, at the community level, can plan along with the department.
As you know, the whole system, any system, more or less only reflects what is on top. There is a very good example within the department; if you have the regional office with 12 functions, you always see the district office on the receiving end with 12 functions actually named the same thing. Eventually you will see the community level trying to develop the same functions to receive. It is like the computer language they use today; if a computer cannot capture data, that computer is obsolete. So as we go along, if the department changes at the top level, it has to change throughout the whole pipe or the whole channel. If you cannot change and receive, then you are out of some programs. This is why we have to have participation, to know what changes are coming through and what is being planned for our future.
Ms Jamieson: At the same time that you are looking for participation in the current structure, you are looking for the evolution of Indian affairs into a Crown corporation. Do you not think one sort of defeats the other? What are your views on that? We have had a lot of bands come before this committee and say just dump the department totally; give us the money and let us just . . . We do not need it anymore.
Chief Monague: I guess the idea of a Crown corporation is probably better than none. If you look at the Post Office and the Department of Indian Affairs, they are probably the oldest departments in North America. As you know, the Post Office changed; I am hoping the Department of Indian Affairs will change.
Ms Jamieson: In the evolution of the department into a Crown corporation, should that occur, who do you see guiding that evolution? Do you see some kind of supervisory body with Indians on it? People have suggested to us that maybe we need an American Indian policy review commission type of task force of Indians, or maybe we need a joint committee to oversee the evolution. How do you feel about that?
Chief Monague: Given the nature of our people and the fact that they like to rule by consensus and agreement, it would more than likely be a group of people selected or appointed by the people at large to build or create something that would be used for the benefit of everyone.
Ms Jamieson: So you are saying some kind of national task force, is that the idea?
Chief Monague: Possibly some form of controlling entity; perhaps a native-controlled entity.
Ms Jamieson: I have one last question, Mr. Chairman. I wonder if Chief Monague or any of the other chiefs at the table have given any thought to an Indian fiscal arrangement commission, or the need for one? It has been suggested to us that in order to get these funds that are now used by the Department of Indian Affairs transferred to Indian governments, we are going to need some kind of formula. If we do not come up with a formula ourselves as a committee, one way of dealing with that beyond the life of this committee is to set up an Indian fiscal arrangements commission. I wonder if any of the chiefs have given any thought to that idea. Do they agree with it, disagree with it, or do they have any other suggestions?
Chief Monague: Ether, did you have any ideas on that?
Chief Deleary: Just a couple of points that bother us, I think, that were not mentioned in our presentation are about the department itself. We know we have 350,000 status Indians. The departmental bureaucracy of the Department of Indian Affairs is something like 5,000 departmental staff. So given the ratio there, figuring that out, for every 60 Indian people we have one departmental employee. Out of that 5,000 there are about 1,200 Indian employees of the department. Looking at the statistics, most of those are janitors in schools, and that sort of thing, so that is something that bothers us also along the lines of the department.
But getting back to the question about how we would set up finances, I think transfer payments and stuff like that have to be handled by regional institutions. We have in the northern district the Arise Corporation, which would handle economic development, funding, and possibly go into other expansion as a financial corporation. So I believe that the concept of setting up lending institutions, such as banks and credit unions, becomes a concern of the nation. Those institutions have to be put in place.
The bottom line is that we are saying that as Indian people we must get a share of the resources of the country that we own. We are entitled to that—our entitlement. So if we go along that line and that concept, if funding is made available and we set up a financial institution and financial mechanism for that band government such as block funding to bands—and I think that is the route we have been advocating—then a band must make decisions on the financial arrangements of the band and what they see as priorities. Under the prment system we cannot do that. When we talk about allocations under the CORE funding, operation maintenance is under different votes to bands. We do not have any decision-making power there. If we are exercising Indian self-government, Indian band chiefs and councils must be accountable to the membership; the chiefs and councils must make those decisions on what are priorities. Financial decisions have to be made. So I guess, again, this is taking something away from the presentation on economic development and education and how we see that.
Ms Jamieson: Without going into the disciplines of educa- tion or economic development, let us take the $1 billion that currently is used by the Department of Indian Affairs. Now, there are 40,000 status Indians—so-called status—40,000 Indians recognized as in the Anishinabek Nation, according to the opening statement by Grand Chief Miskokomon.
Now, would you see somehow dividing that $1 billion per capita and deciding how much then goes to the Anishinabek area, and then the Anishinabek Nation deciding itself what to do with that funding; or would you see a need for each first nation, each Indian government at the band level, defining its own needs and negotiating with some body in Ottawa for its share? Those are two different ways the money could come down. I am sure the needs are well beyond and you would look for other funding that other departments have for Indian matters, but just take the $1 billion Indian Affairs has right now.
Chief Deleary: A considerable amount of work is being done at the present time in that area; and at this point, I do not think we are really in a position to say one way or the other; for instance, right now. Rod just mentioned beginning the thirteenth month of the operation of Indian Affairs. We find, through information we got in the last couple of days, thath there is a considerable amount of capital dollars within the region. These moneys will be deferred to support other programs. We find the decision on band planning, which used to have a budget of $3.7 million in 1982-1983 . . . The budget has been cut back now to $600,000 this year.
Now, what rationale does the department have in that respect, when planning is the foundation for everything we do: education, economic development, housing, whatever? There has to be planning, yet they cut the budget.
The economic development envelope, which is part of implementation . . . Before you have implementation, you must have a plan. Now, that direction from Indian Affairs’ standpoint for this coming fiscal year is outrageous and deplorable to the hands. If you do not have a plan, what are you going to implement?
Those are some of the things we could possibly have the answers to. But at the present time, I do not think we can specifically say, if the Anishinabek Nation had a share of the resources, that share would go there. and then a member band of the Anishinabek Nation would make application to that. I think there is consideration there. There is the same consideration in the district right now where, with a limited amount of funds appropriated for the bands in a certain district, district chiefs must sit down and priorize who gets a piece of the pie and how much, Again, this is a policy that really drives wedges into the political structure of the regional bands.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Chief Deleary. This is an issue the committee has been troubled by, and I think we will continue to be troubled by it until we do some kind of report.
We are going to have to recommend some continuing commission, such as an Indian fiscal arrangements commission, to work out those kinds of details. Otherwise, how do we recommend what to do? We would say, get rid of the department or get rid of most of it, take the majority of its budget and put it where? Those are the kinds of answers we are going to have to come to.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you. I think you not only change the pace; you set the pace, Ms Jamieson. Thank you.
We will hear from Mr. Manly now.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to ask Chief Monague a couple of questions.
First of all, in your first-phase recommendations for short- term proposals, recommendation (B) says:
that programs that have been and are currently transferred to Indian Bands receive administration overhead equal to what the Department obtains.
You indicated that was currently about 25%; and at other times, the figure of 30% has been used.
One of the concerns raised here, which I think all of us share, is that as increasingly Indian government is recognized, you do not want to develop an Indian bureaucracy that is just put in place of the department bureaucracy. My concern is, if this much administrative money, this percentage, is transferred under the present guidelines, you will not have any real alternative except to put them into the development of the bureaucracy. Do you have any way around that?
Chief Monague: First of all, at the present time bands are receiving approximately 7% average; but as they take on larger programs like education, any time you go over the $500,000 mark, I believe it is, you are automatically down to 3% or 5%. I do not really know the actual percentage.
But the problem today with our local administrations is that we are given very little administrative funds, and that results in a sort of stealing from Peter to pay Paul. If we have telephone expenses and utility expenses that are much higher than what we are allotted, we normally have to take directly from programs to keep the administrative office going; and it is a common problem throughout the bands.
One of the suggestions we are making here is, if the department can operate at . . . It varies from section to section. I believe economic development last year operated at 23.5%. But each section operates on a certain percentage for administration; and also on top of that, they get housing from DPW, and they get tax-free travel and so forth. There are lots of other breaks involved; and they expect the bands, who are
usually in remote rural areas with higher utility costs, to subsist on 7%.
All we are saying is that perhaps there should be a slightly higher price tag attached to the transfer of programs in order that we could administer them equally as well, because for instance, if you need expertise in a given program, that cost is normally quite high.
Mr. Manly: Do you feel 25% for administration is too high a figure? As you look towards Indian self-government, do you anticipate that 25% would be the administrative cost for administering programs?
Chief Monague: I do not think so. Years ago they said that a good percentage would be at the very most 5%. My own feeling on it is that perhaps around the 10% area would probably be sufficient for administrative purposes. But if the department at the present time are receiving over 20%, then I cannot see why the bands cannot get an increase.
Mr. Manly: I would agree with you that you should get that money. Ijust have heard so much about how the bands have been strangled by too much bureaucracy that I think it is really important that it be identified as something other than administrative moneys over and above a reasonable figure. But I agree with you that when the programs are being transferred to bands, the administrative moneys should be transferred as well, but perhaps they should not have to be used for administration. I think perhaps there has to be more flexible guidelines.
The other thing I would like some elaboration on was that you said that the department is getting further away each year from band participation in the budgetary process. Could you elaborate on that and illustrate the kind of participation that there used to be and how that has been successively diminished?
Chief Monague: First of all, some of the districts were pulled back and were more or less amalgamated. Where there used to be 14 districts in Ontario, I believe there are only 10 now. Also, the various role changes that take place within region and district, they have a lot of consultation in region and also some consultation at district, but very little takes place any more at the band level where the departmental staff would come in and discuss a given program and go back with solid recommendations. I think today, more or less, you have to pretty well rely on bulletins or what you read and so forth. Perhaps this is due in part to the fact that Indian bands are wanting to be more autonomous. This could be one of the things. On one hand, when you look at the bands wanting autonomy, having that non-flexibile structure there, there has to be a breakdown in communications, because I do not think you can have total autonomy and decision-making and still run back every two days to this funding source. I think that is where it is breaking down.
Mr. Manly: You are saying that there is more consultation at the regional level and less at the district and band level. Is that fair to say?
Chief Monague: Well, overall, I guess, districts do have authority or the power to make suggestions or recommendations, but the final authority, I suppose, would be the region. If it is in line with the regional plan, then of course it will fly; but if it is not, it will not. A lot of time is taken up on perhaps some suggestion coming up from the community level to the district and then over the region, and in having it turned down you may lose a lot of time, energy and so forth in the process.
It is a little bit off the subject, but when they talked about devolution, there were three different interpretations of it. I think the dictionary defines it as transferring authority from one agency to another. The Indians of course were very happy; they thought the department was finally going to transfer authority to them. But in practice, what is happening, in this region at least, is that authority is being transferred from region to district office, and it is more or less just another phase of decentralization that was started maybe eight years ago or so.
Mr. Manly: I think you indicated that one of the reasons why there is less band participation in the budgetary process was because of the computerization of the whole process. Is there anything in that technology that makes this necessary? For example, would it be possible to have increased band participation in the budgetary process using the computer process?
Chief Monague: Yes, there could be. If you are the type to sit around and read print-outs, I guess you could in fact, if they were available. I do not think that half of them are available. In most cases they are breaking down also. The computer systems that are coming into the department are relatively new, and there is a whole retraining process going on. Last year all of the cheques were delayed to the bands in Ontario because of a breakdown, and I think they were delayed up to about two months.
Mr. Manly: Do you think that it is important for band offices to be on—stream with computers in this way, or do you feel that it would be more advantageous to try to deal in a more personal and direct way?
Chief Monague: I think it would be better to deal probably directly to a given funding source, because, for one thing, it would be unrealistic to try to even imagine at this point in time of bands having terminals. It is discouraged also by the department; they like to keep the upper hand.
Mr. Manly: Thank you very much. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly.
Just a supplementary. When we hear about some of the regions being dissolved, or certainly the number, I believe you said, has been reduced in Ontario, could this not be a sign that the department, rather than withdrawing from the bands, is
really withdrawing from the total process to try to give the bands more autonomy?
Chief Monague: If I go back, I guess back to about 1968 or something, maybe a year or so before that, every community in Ontario had an Indian agent. When the bands were allowed to practise self—government under Section 68, I think the department had a problem, and the problem was what to do with a hell of a lot of Indian agents. So they created a lot of districts.
During that time or shortly after, London district evolved into what they called then a super-district. In other words, by consensus, the chiefs and the bands of this area decided to make a large district as opposed to having a lot of small sub- offices. At that time the regional director—I do not know if that was during Mr. Allmand’s time—liked what he saw evolving in London, so therefore he decreed that there be a super-district in Peterborough and Sudbury, and he was going on and on until he got sacked. But I do not think it was a natural evolution of the bands; I think it was, again, an executive decision by a regional director general. And we were not happy with the amalgamation of our districts at that time.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I believe, Chief Monague, that there are some areas in the country, I do not know exactly if Ontario, but certainly some areas of the country, where the Department of Indian Affairs personnel has been reduced drastically because bands have played a greater role in assuming authority over their own affairs.
Chief Monague: Are you thinking of Manitoba?
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Biirghardt): I think perhaps Manitoba, and 1 think some areas of Quebec as well, too.
Chief Monague: Yes. If you take the difference between Manitoba . . . and I think the management improvement project papers will show you the difference, Manitoba has centralized totally. They have taken the associations which have converted to tribal units and have become fieldworkers. The nerve centre and the resource centres are still in Winnipeg. It does not really matter where the headquarters is or where the head of operations is. It still means that the Manitoba regional office controls all the purse strings, possibly more than they do in Ontario. So you do have fieldworkers out there, but they have no financial responsibilities.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Monague. Mr. Oberle, can we hear from you.
Mr. Oberle: Mr. Chairman, I do not have any questions, just a comment. I looked at your recommendation, and I agree with you on the need for change and different structures. I, like Ms Jamieson, am worried. I know you are trying to be responsible, but I am worried about seeing that change evolving through the Indian Affairs department. It would appear to me that what would happen if that recommendation were accepted—in other words, the Indian agent who became the district manager simply would become the physical transfer agent. You would just be giving him another name.
The problem that you are really facing, judging from other testimony that we have received and my own experience over the last 10 years, is that you are in competition with the Indian Affairs department. They are competing with you for their survival. If you take over more of their programs, their jobs will become redundant. So they invent all kinds of… not deliberately, it is just human nature. They are all well-meaning people. I do not know how they sleep at night sometimes, but everybody has the right to worry about his own job. But you are really in competition with them for their own survival. So I do not see, personally, the Indian Affairs department evolving into these institutions that you require. They are really in a conflict of interest.
Recommendation No. 3 says:
That the Department of Indians Affairs and Northern Development, implement an umbrella policy encouraging the development of Indian institutions for delivery of programs.
That is their job. and if they organize an umbrella entity and transfer it to you, they are out of a job. So you are not going to find them too co—operative.
That is just a comment, a word of advice. I agree that these things have to be put in place, but I do not see the Indian Affairs department doing it for you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghnrdt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle. Mr. Allmand, do you have any comments or questions?
Mr. Allmand: A few minor ones. You have rightly criticized the manner in which consultation is carried on with respect to circulars and budget and so on. I see in the long run there would be no need for circulars; that the Indian people would be running their own affairs in the long run, and the quicker the better.
However, in the interim period, if we were to make improvements right away to improve the consultation process with respect to budgeting and circulars on housing and so on, how would you see this consultation being carried on? Do you think it would be satisfactory if the Assembly of First Nations, through their confederacy, appointed a committee at the national level to deal with the Minister and his senior officials; or, to develop circulars on housing and auditing, and controls, and budgets, and how much—everything, done at the national level between the AFN and the Department. Or do you see its being done through the regional directors general and a committee of your chiefs in Ontario, for example, or right at the district level?
The problem that I see, having gone through that system before, is that because there is so much bureaucracy there, not only within the Department but without the Department—I think somebody today was talking about the Treasury Board and its directives, and then you get the Department of Finance, and you get all these other departments sticking their noses
into it as well—the Justice department. How do you see this improved consultative process being carried on as long as there still is a department?
Chief Monague: I think, first of all, if block funding were to be put in place that most bands, the majority of bands, are in a position to be able to decide on what they want at the committee level. Today, they are dealing with a lot of agencies. They are dealing with housing agencies, Manpower, DREE—they are dealing with these other agencies probably more effectively than with their own department. All these dealings that are going on at the present time carry with them perhaps band equity. There is always a small condition set aside for the band share. What is your contribution to this program? The bands are doing it and they are doing it successfully. So if you were to go into block funding, as was suggested a couple of years earlier, you could take a total budgeted program for the year, make a five-year forecast and go to Treasury Board on a year- to-year basis directly with the community. This would do away with a lot of delay and, I suppose, interference, and so forth. Then the band would be rmponsible for that given program. Therefore, that in itself would improve the accountability and so forth at the community level.
In 1968, when self-government first came in, that was a big fear on the part of government. What happens when you give these Indians all this money and authority? Nothing happened. The whole program worked. It just evolved, and it evolved rather well. They had to take a gamble at that point to make it work. Otherwise, we still would have been stuck with the Indian agent.
Mr. Allmand: Well. I am personally convinced that the block funding system is the best system. I was wondering, however, whether you had some suggestions for an interim period before we got to a real block funding system. Maybe we should not think about that and just move to the block funding system as quickly as possible.
However, let us say we had the block funding system, where the moneys were transferred to the bands, and they decided their priorities and did not have to go through all the hurdles and the hoops that the department can put there. How would you decide. .. Let us say, the government decided that the entire budget for the Indian Affairs department was so much—x dollars—what sort of consultation process would be carried on, even to decide how much in block funding would go to the Ontario region, as opposed to the Manitoba region and, then, within those regions, how much to band A and to band B and to band C?
This morning, somebody—I cannot remember which chief it was—in speaking to us said that he did not think that Ontario was getting their proper share of the national budget for Indian Affairs. Now, if you judge that on a per capita basis, that is probably correct, but some Indians would argue that you cannot do it just on a per capita basis because some bands are richer than other bands, and you have to take into account other things in addition to per capita.
What this signifies to me is that, even if you had block funding and you were going to be fair about it and you
believed in Indian self-government, some way or other the Government of Canada before transferring the block funds to the Indian people of Canada would have to consult with the Indian people, to determine how much they would give to each region, and how much within the region would go to the various bands. For example, how much would go to the band way up north near James Bay compared to one that might be at Brantford or someplace.
If you have not worked this out yet, I do not insist on an answer. But if you have thought about it, I would like your views. Do you think those kinds of things as well should be on the basis of consultation with your national body, or your regional bodies, so that it is not just the department, the bureaucrats, who decide Ontario gets this much, Manitoba, B.C.; we will give this much to Band A, that much to Band B; but that should also be your decision and your own discussion among yourselves in some way or other?
Chief Monague: I think I agree you have to have more or less representation at every level. For instance, when you talk of formulas that are already in place, there are some pretty good ones. In local government we do have darn good formulas regarding remote and rural areas and so forth. We also have again that discrepancy where we constitute 22% of the Canadian population and receive 10% of the resources.
Mr. Allmand: You mean the Indians of Ontario?
Chief Monague: Ontario.
I think if anything like this were to take place, total block funding for Indian people, we would have to create a body similar to, say, the Treasury Board, which would have below it a certain number of analysts, and then you would have to have the same thing in the different regions. You would have to have analysts working out formulae and something acceptable IO everyone.
Mr. Allmand: So you are saying that the Indian people would have to have institutions like treasury boards on a regional and national basis to develop their own formulae for distributing the money among themselves.
Chief Monague: Yes. I think they would pretty well have to have it, much as—again, we are drifting into another area; but much as in their development of economic development institutions such as Indian banks and so forth: they are not very much different from the normal bank or the normal cooperative; the only difference is that they are controlled and owned by Indian people.
Mr. Allmand: Mr. Chairman, this suggests to me one further question, and it goes along with some of the recommendations that have been made. For example, it is pointed out to us in the brief that the department gets 25% for overhead and bands only get 7%. I think I marked that down. What we found out was that some of the bands in other provinces complained to us and pointed out that whereas department officials are continually being sent on management upgrading programs—as a matter of fact, they have full-time
schools in Ottawa and elsewhere in the country where they send their civil servants from Indian Affairs and Treasury Board to learn new management techniques, new accounting techniques, new personnel techniques, labour relations—you name it, everything—yet they expect, in handing over programs to the Indian people to run, that they should run those without this same training that they are giving to the bureaucrats. In these various places they had tried to get funding for management training so that bands could go out to a university or send people to the States or wherever so they could upgrade and train their own staff, and they could not get this.
I was just wondering if here in Ontario, under the union, you have tried to get the same type of management training, funding, and resources for your people that the department gives to its people.
Chief Monague: Very little, if any. In the budget it states “staff training”, which normally means Indian Affairs staff. If they do have any band training, it usually involves again Indian Affairs staff and band. As a result of that, very little training funds are going to individual bands or organizations to use as they please.
There are ways of working to get training funds, but it is always with the Indian Affairs involvement. In other words, if you wanted to train land administrators, you would request that specific course. They would probably provide it, providing that they were the ones teaching it, and so forth. But for us, say, to take computerized training—most bands are getting into computers, and tribal councils and so on are linked in with AFN and so forth—for us to spend $100 a day to take an individual, a programmer, out somewhere to learn how to program computers, no, we cannot get that.
Mr. Allmand: That confirms what I believe. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand.
If there are no further comments or questions for Chief Monague, I would like to thank him very much for, again, an excellent presentation, and him response to comments and questions directed to him.
Chief Deleary, do you have a comment?
Chief Deleary: Yes, just one last comment.
This is another basis for needed change in the Department of Indian Affairs’ control of funding. Under the present system now, political blackmail can be practised. Now we find that bands, or a district, or chiefs within a district, are very outspoken about departmental policy, such as the J Circulars or directions such as that. Under the present system, the Department of Indian Affairs, since it controls the funding, can also control the elections of the band; have an impact on that. So if Chief Rogers or someone else strongly is opposed to the implementation of user fees or the J Circulars—this has come down now… by withholding funds to the band, he would see that Chief Rogers would not be around after the next election, because the band membership would say, well,
we do not have any capital housing this year under your administration; although it is policy, it must be in regard to a policy of implementation of user fees.
This is just something that came down from our regional office in Toronto: that user fees in regard to sanitation, garbage collection and sanitation on the reserveAthat chief and council must levy a user fee on every household on the reserve to the amount of $6 per household. Now, if we do not comply with that, we are told, then the Department of Indian Affairs will not fund that program. So by controlling of the funds in the present system, there is also the possibility of political blackmail of the bands.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you. Ms Isaac.
Ms Isaac: By user fees, do you mean service fees that municipalities have to pay out?
Chief Deleary: User fees are to me—it is the same word as taxation. There is no difference in the meaning. If this directive that we have . . . if we are to comply with levying user fees for such things as garbage collection on the reserves, the next thing when we turn around, there would be another directive coming down that we must implement road use tax, possibly, land use tax, you name it. It is a form of taxation. So these user fees are directives from the department that put the band councils in a real dilemma. If you are to accept that, then you are accepting policy change.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): All right. Thank you very much.
I think before moving on to the next section we are probably ready for a 10-minute stretch, so I would suggest we recess just for 10 minutes and then we will be rcady to come back.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I think we will get back to business after that recess. We will hear next from Chief Deleary, Chief of the Chippewas of the Thames Reserve, who is going to cover the subjects of economic development and housing in this particular segment.
Chief Ether Deleary (Thames Reserve): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Welfare, unemployment insurance and temporary make-work projects today comprise the overwhelming bulk of economic activity on indian reserves. The development concept certainly is not a high priority with the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development.
I will not quote the unemployment rate or welfare figures because your committee has undoubtedly heard them many times before. These are more than numbers to us; we see these people every day. They are our brothers and sisters, our children, our parents, and we have little hope to offer them.
As Indian governments, we are responsible for our people but we face many severe problems in development our economic systems. We lack or have insufficient investment dollars for new initiatives. We face the same high interest rates as other Canadians, and we lack a regularized way of generating consistent income that would allow for long-term planning.
Much has been made of the $345 million development fund announced more than a year ago. It has been dangled in front of us and pulled back so often it seems more like a carrot on a stick. If it were forthcoming, what would be the impact? Past experience tells us that we would see very little of it, and to receive our portion would be more like pulling teeth.
The multi-agency approach has not helped us. Some projects require as many as six contribution agencies, each with its own monitoring and accountability process. Not only does this lead to confusion on everyone’s part, but also unnecessary delays that can have a serious effect. on a project’s success. There are barriers that we face which others normally do not have to live with. One is the hesitancy of government personnel in all stages of a project, from feasibility to implementation. They are hesitant for three reasons. First, they worry about government funds. It could be a real fear that one day they would be dragged before some of your committee members to be called to account for their actions. It is a real hesitancy that leads to under-capitalization of projects and an inability to provide assistance in the timely ways that business requires.
The second reason they hesitate is that they themselves lack the personal and business expertise necessary. It would be unreasonable to expect that a few people in the London district would have the expert knowledge necessary for projects ranging from marinas and trailer parks to automobile factories.
The third reason is a lack of confidence in the capability of Indians. This is the more irrational of their concerns. We have the ability. We have worked hard to develop institutions such as the ARISE corporation in southwestern Ontario. Our record speaks for itself.
This lack of positive attitude and aggressive business apporach is hard to overcome, but let me suggest this: if the same attitudes existed in other departments, or in Cabinet itself, Petro-Canada, Sun Oil, Air Canada, VIA Rail and Chrysler of Canada would not exist today.
The greatest barrier to development today, is a blind spot that suggests that reserve communities are not viable economic units. They are! In purely economic terms, consider a band as a country. Consider what would be termed the balance of payments for that community. We have money coming in forms of wages earned outside the community, terms of government grants and contributions, and yes, even in terms of welfare dollars. The balance of monetary trade is overwhelming, tipped in our favour. What we lack are the institutions and
service units necessary to recycle those dollars over and over for the full benefit of everyone.
This is far from an impossible job and here is how we can start. There must be some recognition that we are entitled to our fair share of the wealth of Canada. This can be manifest in a number of ways. Block funding for economic development based upon revenue from natural resources and more so, revenue from revenue of Crown corporations and Crown land. Canadian policy specifically denies the responsibility for pre- Confederation treaties, but certainly they want all the fruit and benefits those treaties have provided them. Make no mistake, we did not receive any treaty rights. You did! Further capital could be derived from dollars normally dispersed to provinces under equalization payment formulas. When provinces seek money from the federal level, our population is certainly included. We are not included, however, when these moneys are distributed for the public good. These types of funding sources could free us from the constricting and sometimes unreasonable guidelines, procedures, circulars and whimsy in which so many bureaucracies take delight.
Where government assistance is needed, band governments and Indian institutions must play a lead role through the entire process through implementation. Too often, once a project feasibility study is done that it is the last a band sees of a project until hearing of its approval or disapproval. Those dollars for planning should be transferred to bands or the institutions they indicate. Normally, this work is contracted out to consultants anyway. Bands or their institutions must be allowed to advocate their project throughout the approval process and eliminate the excuses that some nameless committee does not approve of the project.
The most important change in attitude necessary is for someone to recognize that reserves are not going away. We have to strive to improve their chances for economic survival. We must develop institutions such as banks, credit unions, that will circulate community dollars for community improvement. It is not a hopeless situation. Changes con1e from an attitude and from good ideas that are pursued unflinchingly. We will not turn down the magic millions that are not really there. We cannot afford to. The real change will come, however, when the mental barriers in the minds of the public and governments disappear.
That leads us to our recommendations. We have four recommendations.
1. Indian governments and institutions must play a lead role in the economic development process from planning through implementation.
2. Immediate transfer of planning dollars to bands or economic institutions they indicate.
3. Development of Indian banks, credit unions, and lending institutions to promote circulation of community dollars and access to development dollars.
4. Identification of new revenue sources to limit the constricting bureaucratic guidelines now in place, through block funding based upon a share of resource revenue denied from Crown corporations and Crown land and access to the Indian share of moneys normally dispersed to provinces under the equalization payment formula.
Those are the recommendations on economic development.
The presentation we have in regards to housing. The Ontario Regional Department of Indian Affairs estimates that over the next seven years, more than 3,000 new housing units need to be built and 2,600 houses renovated as a supplement to the existing housing construction and renovation plan, in order to bring current housing shortages to acceptable levels. In Ontario, more than 15% of existing houses on reserves are single-family dwellings that serve as multiple-family homes. More than 50% of all housing units still lack some basic facilities such as electricity and running water.
Every two years, the housing situation is studied and periodically a major study is done to look at a problem in depth. Each time, the results look the same. But, bi-annual studies deploring the situation do not help anyone. Quality housing has long been the highest priority of Indian people in Ontario. We have studies on that too. Good housing is a question of basic dignity. Economic realities, we are told, are preventing an expansion of the housing program or an increase of available housing subsidies. We all know about economic realities. We face those words from government every time. The people of Canada are now receiving slight hints about what economic reality is. They still have not received their first taste of reality. We have been swallowing this for years. In 1980, in providing briefing notes to the deputy minister and the assistant deputy minister, Ontario Region, Department of Indian Affairs. stated:
An increase in the housing subsidy with no changes in policy would only provide short-term benefits with no solution.
That solution asked for seems to be the J Circulars that are to be imposed on bands this year. There are some comments on the J Circulars:
That the policy as developed by headquarters . . . will create a situation where bands . . . who have been achieving completion rates of 98—100% of planned housing will not be able to deliver the program effectively nor will they be able to complete as many units. This will aggravate the housing
shortage problem and incrmse the housing requirement backlog.
That quote is taken from a letter from the London District to the Regional Director General of Ontario. In a letter to the Assistant Deputy Minister, Mr. Goodwin, Mr. Harrigan states:
Another real factor to be considered is the large number of bands in isolated areas where it would be very expensive to construct houses to Central Mortgage and Housing standards.
The estimate is $140,000 per unit.
Even when using full subsidy, the loan would be too large to make the project viable.
In the Ontario Region representation, input to the National Program Operational Plan, November 1982, those statements made by Ontario Region stand out:
It will be extremely difficult to implement the J Circulars as a program, as well as the technical aspect involved in this activity; with the implementation of the J Circulars, it will be very difficult for the department to construct homes under Vote 10 as the department does not have access to social assistance savings and CEIC programs;
The funding for additional units to eliminate the backlog is required. The region, however, could not deliver the human resources required to administer the construction of these additional units even if the financial resources were made available.
This does not paint a pretty picture.
Why do things like this happen? It happens when control of programs to improve human conditions is left to a bureaucracy whose bottom line is dollars and accountability. At the end of this coming fiscal year, the bureaucrats will be able to stand in front of the Auditor General and the standing committee and explain to you where every dollar went. What they will not be able to explain is how the living conditions in Indian communities have improved. Not one more house will be built, serviced or heated because of these policies.
We have our own comments on these circulars. First, circulars are an apt name for those policies because they lead us in circles. Secondly, the Department of Indian Affairs has successfully taken the initiative away from Indian people again. In Ontario, we have for the past several years been sponsoring a large number of technical workshops to improve construction methods to make our houses last and to provide jobs. We have developed our own housing construction standards, which have been adopted in principle and are being reviewed on a band by band basis for local appropriateness.
Thirdly, we have reviewed the guidelines and uniformly rejected them across Ontario.
What is wrong with the housing program itself? 1. Lack of ability to build equity in a house. Property values on a reserve vary greatly from the concept of other Canadian communities. There is a collective interest in the land that clouds ownership of property. Nothing exists that could ensure that equity is retrievable. This is a disincentive to enhancement and maintenance of the property. This could be addressed by the establishment of an equity fund administered by the bands as a distinct part of a new housing program. 2. The lack of access to suitable housing. The largest problem connected with this is the lack of employment and economic opportunities available to band members. The need is for an expansion of job training and economic development dollars to provide long term employment. It was illustrated by the Department of Indian Affairs region in 1980 to the DM and the ADM:
If you are fortunate enough to be on welfare (because of shelter allowances) you can live in a $30,000 house and if you are unfortunate and have work, you live in a $12,000 house.
Until this cycle is broken, the housing program will not succeed. 3. Dollars currently available are insufficient to meet growing needs. Availability and quality of housing on reserves must be improved. Money must be made available to subsidize expressed needs. Ten years from now, we can be reading more reports on housing conditions and finding ourselves in the same situation as today. There must be an overall commitment to the principle of improving the human condition.
We have four recommendations on housing:
1. That the existing housing program be expanded to reduce the existing backlog of housing units necessary, both new and substandard.
2. Continue to fund Indian initiatives on technical training of workers and the development of housing standards.
3. Development of Indian housing authorities for administration of new initiatives in the housing programs.
4. Development of an Indian equity fund to be operated by band councils or an Indian institution so indicated.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Deleary. for those two presentations. We will give you a chance to catch your breath after all that reading, and then be available for some comments and questions on both subjects, economic development and housing. Perhaps, Mr. Oberle, you would like to begin.
Mr. Oberle: Just a couple of brief questions. Mr. Chairman, I do not consider anything more critical than the deplorable and chronic problem of the housing situation on reserves in Indian communities. There is no doubt that any expert will tell you that many of the horrendous statistics relating to infant mortality and child health is directly related to the deplorable housing conditions, and I thank you for including this particu- lar problem in your brief.
I would appreciate it were you to elaborate a bit on this idea of the development of an Indian equity fund to be operated by the band councils. There is no question that one of the difficulties of putting decent houses on the reserves is that there is no resale value for them; you cannot put them on any resale market, that there is no equity built in. Since land is held in common, it is very difficult to mortgage a house. I assume that is what you are addressing with the idea of an Indian equity fund. Could you elaborate on that, Chief?
Chief Deleary: Until such time as there is bloc funding or whatever you call it, that mechanism is put in place where there is a share of the natural resources and an equity fund. I think we go back to the same thing—the concept of treaty obligations to Indian people. And under treaty obligations you are responsible for the education, the welfare, of the Indian people. That is in the form of historical treaties which have been signed.
As for an equity fund which has been set up for housing, we have done studies over years and years that I have been involved in the council, which is something like the last 10 years. We have seen a number of national studies; yet, this year there is supposed to be another study, a national housing study. From those figures, there must be the responsibility of the federal government at this point to see that those deplorable conditions are reduced. So taking the information from the national housing study, dollar value should be put on that. Then, over the next few years, this problem could be alleviated. And as for the establishment of a housing fund and how we would set it up, I mentioned before before an economic development presentation and the formation of financial institutions. It is not good enough to say it is in regard to the J Circulars; it is not good enough to say you use a Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation program. We all under- stand a J-4 and J-5 Circular where it states that ministerial approval must be given for loans from CMHC. Bands are reluctant to get into that situation because of the possibilities of the land itself. That is, if we got into a ministerial guarantee of loans and the band could not pay moneys back to Central
Mortgage and Housing Corporation, at that point there could be repossession by the minister.
Mr. Oberle: Have you considered the idea of, say, a leasehold certificate or an equity certificate, the homeowner would get and on which you could borrow money with the band as guarantor in case of default?
Chief Deleary: At the present time that sort of mechanism is in place with some of the bands. The housing program is on a loan and contribution arrangement with the band itself to establish a capital housing program. So when we say that the bands are utilizing the money to their best ability, $18,000 right now is not near enough to build a house. It is an incentive. But with the economic development situation on reserves, where you have 60% unemployment, who can afford to build a house? I think houses must be built also since they establish pride in ownership.
The concept of the Department of Indian Affairs of building substandard housing or a bloc type of housing is not what we want. Our culture in many of our communities is not to go into subdivision-type housing. Now our own housing council, if ou like, would set programs in place for this. I do not think we have any problem with the J Circulars themselves; most bands have been complying with those for years. That is the policy that we have. It is the directive from regions of additional regulations concerning the housing program that we have problems with. The J Circular does not specifically mention that you may receive 75% of the funds at the beginning of the fiscal year for your capital housing program. That is a policy which is levelled from the regional level.
Bands get into arrangements with suppliers where it is very important that the bands buy the material at this time of the year instead of waiting until July and August; whereas, past experience tells us that material costs could go up something like 13% between now and July. So we have set up programs with the bands whereunder, if we receive all of the funding for our capital housing program at the beginning of the year, it enhances the program. Under the J Circulars, there is a deteriorating effect on the program.
Mr. Oberle: Mr. Chairman, for the record, I happen to think there are all kinds of interesting proposals which would provide even private capital with innovative tax expenditure programs for housing on reserves in Indian communities. For the record, I would like to think we ought to include a section in our report because housing is so critical to many other social factors. Such a section in our report should deal with that critical issue.
Chief Stinson, could I ask you just one more question to do with the economic development brief? The department tells us that you are getting in your band the sum of 81 1,400 this year for an economic development officer; $6,700 for an economic development administrator; $9,000 for an economic development committee. Then in addition to that, $41,000 in economic development money. Can you tell me what you expect in
terms of economic development from this innovative contribution.
Chief Stinson: Those figures are most likely true, but they represent five-twelfths of the economic development funding needs for the band. If we are to take a look in comparison with the economic development staff of the Department of Indian Affairs in relationship to a whole district—let us compare that. Where you have economic development staff from the regional office of Indian Affairs down to the district office which costs something like $4,000 per week—I think that is a round figure or in near proximity anyway—the amount of $11,000 for an economic development officer which supposedly reduces the unemployment and develop the economy of the reserve, plus another $6,700 for an administrator in a committee which will meet on an average of three times a month to put together an economic base for the band is certainly peanuts. You cannot operate on that.
The planning aspect, the implementation. I made reference before to capital dollars, that I believe there was a substantial amount in the region now, through our sources, that is being transferred. Yet after we had done the planning, and are now into the implementation, and we asked for capital dollars for implementation, we were told there are none. So somewhere along the line we were given false information. I must add that in our own district, in the London district, the chiefs now require a printout of the submissions to regional office, and we are trying to find out if those submissions from regional office are going to headquarters. That is the system we have had to develop. But again, there is a reluctancy on the part of the department to supply us with those figures, and that also holds true for the education program.
Mr. Oberle: So the short answer is that despite all this money that is being spent, there is very little economic development.
Chief Deleary: Yes. Right now, as a matter of fact within the next couple of weeks, we have set up a meeting to sit down with the bands of the London district to look at it, because we know that we have been cut. Although we have five-twelfths of the funding for economic development last year, we also are informed that there is a 15% cut this year. Bands had to lay off staff in January. All of the plans we have had sitting on the shelf for over the last five years, commercial malls and development on the reserves, which we have seen to create employment and a sound economic base for the reserves, are not being implemented. They are sitting on the shelf there, and they never will be implemented under this present system.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle. Mr. Manly, if you would care to comment.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to thank Chief Deleary for his presentation.
I have one area of questioning regarding economic development, the magic millions you referred to. It is a fact that there is a need for economic development funding right across
Canada, in practically every single individual Indian band, and it is impossible to do everything all at once. So I would like to ask if you have any suggestions as to the best mechanism to put in place for allocating economic development moneys across Canada and within regions, recognizing that there are some projects which will have very large capital costs, large start-up costs and then ongoing operating costs that will require substantial funds for a number of years, and that it would be a false kind of development to give these developments just enough money to get started and fail. So if we are going to fund projects, we have to fund them adequately. But when you fund one project in one area, it means that another project in another area might not get money. Do you have some suggestion as to what would be a fair way of allocating funds across Canada and within regions?
Chief Deleary: If the Ontario region was to get their fair share of funding, I think that would alleviate some of the problems. Also, in the policy of distributing of funds to constituencies, for programs such as the NEED program, in reference to that we know that we have on our reserves across Ontario in excess of 30% unemployment. But when we read the paper and find out that Windsor, Chatham, Brantford have unemployment in the areas of 18%, but that is where the bulk of program dollars are going, it does not seem fair to the Indian community.
Mr. Manly: The NEED program is supposed to provide short-term job creation, but I think that you also want to look at long-term projects. You were mentioning shopping malls and so on. I think this is what a lot of Indian bands, Indian nations across the country would like to get involved in, not just kind of make-work band-aids but long-term economic programs so that there would be self-sustaining revenue and ongoing employment.
Now I want to push you a little bit on this question. Supposing Ontario did get its fair share of funding, the economic development pie, and supposing that the amount was increased substantially, you still have the problem within Ontario of dividing up that funding. I would like to know whether or not you have any suggestions as to how the different Indian nations in Ontario would want to see the fund divided and allocated.
Chief Deleary: Our main policy of development in Ontario is taking that sort of initiative where we have the four status organizations. The executive of those associations would naturally sit down and develop policy on the distribution of funds.
When it likewise becomes a solution or a formula developed, in regard to the Anishinabek nation, again where we have four different regions, then we would look at an institution regionally, like, as I mentioned, the Arise Corporation. So we have
that mechanism set in place and we would have to priorize. We have to do this on a level right now with the district bands.
I know that we cannot all have shopping malls in year one, so priorities have to be set, again by bands, by regions and by Ontario, the status organization. I believe that would be one formula. Again, I do not believe there is a policy is in place yet, but I believe this is something that we are considering.
Mr. Manly: Could you put some information on the record on the way in which your Arise Corporation works, and how the different parts of the Anishinabek nation are part of it?
Chief Deleary: The Arise Corporation is a loaning institution which was set up by a grant from the province and also from the federal government. It is a loaning institution with a board of directors and membership from the bands within the London district. I think it is expanding to bands in southwestern Ontario.
It was set up with very limited funding, but it is to enhance economic development within that southwestern Ontario region, primarily for agriculture because we are in an agricultural belt. Business opportunities: where small loans for individuals can be gotten, with lower interest rates. So that is primarily how the Arise Corporation was set up. It is a chartered corporation; it is accountable to the bands. All bands are members of the corporation and have members on the board of directors. I think that it was one of the first in Ontario; as a matter of fact, maybe the first such organization.
Mr. Manly: Would you feel that this would be the preferable way to fund economic development and to allocate funds, to a corporation like this rather than to individual bands?
Chief Deleary: I believe that is a consideration that we have considered quite extensively, and we want to include that into sectorial programs. It has a wide range of possibilities. It is what we want to do with it, and how fast the bands want to move with it.
Mr. Manly: Thank you very much. That is helpful. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly.
Just on that point, I am well aware of the Arise Corporation, of which Chief Deleary speaks, and I am aware of its record in the London area.
There is another situation. I wonder . . . again, just for the record, on the subject of economic development—if you could describe for us the woodworking shop that was opened last fall on the Oneida reserve. It was funded by the department and also through a special funding situation under the Canada Employment. . . Could comment on that, just for the record, Chief Deleary?
Chief Deleary: The only comment I would like to make on that is that it certainly is a very viable venture. I am sort of reluctant to go into any detail about it, because you will be meeting with representatives from the Oneida band tomorrow. All I can say is that those sorts of ventures are something that we would look forward to. I have nothing but praise for the Oneida band in implementing something like that, because it employs a number of people. It has established pride within that community that they have something that belongs to them. Those are the sorts of economic ventures that we would like to see, but those are few and far between now. There has to be much more of that.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Deleary, I appreciate those comments.
Ms Jamieson, would you like to comment now, please?
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I would like to make a comment and I do have two questions.
My comment will not be new to some members on this committee, because every time we hear from Indian witnesses, on economic development in particular, I always think about what Canada says abroad and what aid Canada provides abroad.
I know that Chief Deleary has taken the position that first nations, as a matter of right or as a matter of justice’, ought to share in Canada’s wealth, and everyone in Canada seems to be sharing except first nations, in any real manner, although admittedly there are some meagre funds going to some reserves. But even if we were to look at first nations as needy communities—and we know that many Indian reserves experience so-called Third World conditions—Canada’s record is still not very good. They make progressive statements about north-south relations. We hear this on the TV every day. We have a parliamentary committee that recently reported, and I quote:
Investment, not charity, in the well—being of the poor is frequently the best economic investment a country can make.
It also notes what the first nations learned a long time ago, and that is that economic growth has not benefited the first nations generally and that development assistance has not reached those who need it the most.
I think it is useful also to let you know that the report concludes exactly what the first nations have been saying, and that is that we need a new definition of justice in the equitable sharing of benefits. I find it very difficult to understand how Canada can tell the world that economic growth elsewhere must be for the primary purpose of improvement in the lives of the poorest people, when Canada’s economic growth has been at the expense of the first nations. In fact, Canada says:
Our moral sense compels us to help those who need help.
So even if we look at the needy aspect and avoid, for a moment, the obligations and the rights owing to first nations, we see that Canada is not living up to the standards it sets for itself and other countries internationally in its domestic policy.
For instance, in 1983-1984, I know that it is estimated that Canada will spend $1.125 billion overseas in Third World countries, while Third World conditions continue here in Canada. We have heard today—Mr. Oberle cited some figures—how much money in economic development is actually getting to reserves. We heard in Saskatchewan of a band that got $13,500 for its total economic development- that is staff, that is everything, that is it for that band for the year for economic development, to create jobs and do everything else that one must do to develop a community. That level of funds is so low it is almost non-existent.
With that comment, I have two areas that I would like to question. One is related to your recommendations on economic development, Chief Deleary. In the third recommendation you suggest the development of Indian banks, credit unions and lending institutions, and you have explored the equity fund in the area of housing. You have also commented on the problems that have been experienced with the so-called ministerial guarantee over the years. I wonder what you would think of an independent agency that would be set up and given one block fund and would operate as an agency outside of government. Its sole responsibility would be to operate as a kind of guarantee mechanism for economic development on Indian reserves. What would you think? Is that the kind of lending institution, or the kind of mechanism you are looking at?
Chief Deleary: I think that is a consideration. But, again, where do we get back to accountability? If it means that we would have to be accountable to somebody under arrangements, I believe the bottom line probably is that the bureaucracy must realize that there are competent people within our society who could certainly develop those financial institutions. But that certainly would be a consideration, to set up that kind of institution along the lines of a national protective office.
They would naturally have to be accountable to the Indian people themselves, not accountable to the Minister of Indian Affairs.
I think what 1 am saying is that we get right back to the equalization payments, what we want there: We want a share of the resources and the revenues, the Crown corporation— which we are entitled to. Under that we would be able to set up financial institutions to enhance economic development in every aspect of the Indian people—their lifestyle.
Ms Jamieson: So you see the development of these Indian institutions following the equalization payments, or do you think we could . . . ‘.7 For instance, this oommittee went down and had a look at the American Indian National Bank. Frankly, the only thing I could see that was advantageous in that kind of setup was that it employed a number of Indian people. As an institution, it did not operate all that differently from the Commerce down in Forest, or a comparable bank in the U.S. When you talk about an Indian bank, are you talking about a banking institution like the banks in Canada, only run by Indians under an Indian board of directors? Or are you talking about a totally different institution? Where would you see them? On reserves? What is your thinking?
Chief Deleary: The outside, I guess, where we said before in Grand Chief Joe Miskokomon’s presentation of our concept of nationhood. Under the concept of nationhood it would have to be an Indian bank controlled by Indians. Any nation must have financial resources, so it would have to be a bank that was run by Indians. We would not want to see a bank that had a board of directors and 90% of them were non—Indians. It would have to be run by Indians for Indian people.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. I think I will leave that area of questioning and go into housing a bit more. I think I understand the other recommendations you have here on economic development.
I still have a continuing difficulty with the time line, and I guess I have to learn how to see some of these recommendations as immediate, intermediate and long term, because, again, in housing some recommendations are with respect to the current housing program and I know your general thrust is to move towards Indian government, so I will try to keep that in my mind as I read them.
This is a question that is specific to Chief Deleary and your band, Chippewas of the Thames. Indian Affairs has told us— we know that they often underestimate the amount, but let us take their figures for a moment… that on your particular reserve, which is about—what? 20 kilometres from London, so it is just 20 kilometres from quite a prosperous city in south- western 0ntario—the current statistics are that, in the area of housing, 25 homes need replacement, 59 homes need repair, 51 homes are in fair condition, 29% of the homes have no running water and 20% have no electricity. I dare say we would not see these conditions in London. I wonder if you could tell us, just so that we could put this in perspective, how many new homes you got this fiscal year. Indian Affairs says that $176,000 was budgeted, by the way.
Chief Deleary: We do not have any yet, because we do not comply with the J circulars. But our budget, our capital forecast and management plan, is that we would build 11 new
homes this year. As to the figures you have quoted there, I would have to say that they are nowhere near actual fact.
Ms Jamieson: Are they lower?
Chief Deleary: They are certainly lower. We have a backlog of housing something like this fiscal year, where we could have 50 new homes; and there are continuous family formations. There are homes that are substandard, that need extensive repairs, and I think this holds true for all the bands.
Renovation-wise, we have not done a housing update study for two years. With all respect to that, I would say our housing renovation needs would be in excess of $2 million.
So these are the kinds of conditions we talk about. Where Indian Affairs got those figures I could not perceive, because I do not see anybody out on a reserve going to any of the houses to inspect them; and you certainly cannot inspect the houses by riding by on the road.
Ms Jamieson: What do you look forward to in the coming years, since you refuse to comply with the J circulars? I assume from previous evidence that means you are not going to get any money.
Chief Deleary: At the present time, the bands have rejected the J circulars. But hopefully, with political pressure, we can sit down and have these people realize that the circulars and the programs they have put onto the bands will not work, and therefore, there will be a change in attitude there.
We certainly look at some of the recommendations, and they are very good. To build a house to standards is acceptable; everything is acceptable. But a lot of it uses other programs, such as the NEED program, where there is a three-month turnaround time. If you apply for a NEED program now under the federal or community stream, it takes three months for approval of that program; so we would not start until July. Under the federal stream and the community stream, there is a disparity there, where they are telling us we must apply under the federal stream. That was the initial information we got. We find out that is discriminatory, because under the federal stream, we are only allowed to pay our semi-skilled and skilled carpenters a maximum of $208 per week; but under the community stream that is applicable off the reserves, they are allowed to pay up to $400 per week. So that is outright discrimination against Indian people on the reserves.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Chief Deleary. I raise that example because something the non-Indian public does not hear about is the real conditions in real terms, and sometimes using examples gets the message across.
Chief Rogers, did you want to add something?
Chief Ray Rogers (Chief, Chippewas of Sarnia): Perhaps I am not supposed to; the mike does not seem to want to work.
Yes, I would like to add something with regard to the J circular and the position the London district has taken. It is not totally rejecting the J circular. We would like such protections within our reserves; but we want to have the input to ensure these programs, such as the J circular, are laid out so they could be suitable to both the bands and the federal government.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Chief Mason.
Chief Mason: Yes, I want to also let the group know the Saugeen Indian Reserve is . . .
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Excuse me, Chief Mason, I wonder if you could just move your microphone a little closer. Thank you.
Chief Maso: I want to let the group know the Saugeen Reserve also has rejected the J treaties. I do not know whether or not this forum has the ability to change this program before October, when you make your presentation. That is going to be a little late for us.
An hon Member: You said you rejected the J treaties.
Chief Mason: You have to excuse me; it has been a long day. I meant J circulars. Well, they are the same thing.
The Joint Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Chief Monague, I understand you want to make a comment.
Chief Monague: Yes, I just wanted to make a quick comment regarding the NEED Program, as I understand it.
There are two streams—the federal stream and the community stream—being offered to the bands. My understanding of it is that if we went the community stream and offered our own equity, such as capital from housing and so forth, we would be entitled to a maximun of $200 for other costs, such as administration, equipment costs, and so forth. The department had a scheme whereby they would handle the NEED program; in other words, there would be a transfer from CEIC to the Department of Indian Affairs. But what they offered us was $125; in other words, they would take the $75, and then we would have to comply with the SAS Program, which is a Social Assistance Saving Program. In other words, we would have to employ the welfare recipient first before anyone else.
We thought it was quite negative, because first of all you need fairly skilled people to build houses, and you need to pay them a decent wage. So in our area, we rejected the federal stream for that reason. At last count, I understand the Ontario region has lost something like $10 million that they had counted on through the rejection of that scheme.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Mr. Allmand, would you care to comment on these two subjects?
Mr. Allmand: I would like to ask if you could describe in a little more detail how you feel the equity fund for housing
would help in the enhancement and maintenance of property. I recognize that is a real problem, but I do not understand exactly what this equity fund would do and how it would meet the problem.
Chief Deleary: If there were the establishment of an equity fund for housing, I would imagine people would be able to borrow from that. It may enhance the value of property. Right now on the reserve, there is no resale value on a house. If you were to put $30,000 into a house, you would never be able to sell that, because nobody has $30,000 to buy the house. Economic development policy there, too, is that there is not that market value for it.
Mr. Allmand: I see that. But are you suggesting the equity fund would be able to buy the house? I can appreciate the need for the equity fund to lend money to improve the house and buy the house, but I do not see how that deals with the resale of the house.
By the way, you may want to comment on this. On Decem- ber 15 we had a group before us known as the National Indian Businessmen’s Association. In a way it was a bit of a radical proposal, but they were dealing with this same problem, and they recommended that the Indian Act be amended to provide for free disposition of Indian land by individual title. They felt that was the only way that finally you are going to overcome this problem of enhancement and maintenance and also investing in businesses on the reserves. These were status Indians who proposed this. I can see how that would deal with the problem. But we questioned the people that day, and asked if they would not lose control of Indian land?
I would like you to comment on that proposal by the National Indian Businessmen’s Association, and also maybe you could go a bit further and tell me, would this equity fund provide for re-purchase? Is that how you would stimulate maintenance and enhancement?
Chief Deleary: About the business men, there is no use in discussing that, because it is totally unacceptable—their recommendation or whatever. But the area of development of that sort of policy on housing is where some housing analysis must be done to establish how it would work and the mech- anism and who would be able to use that. Undoubtedly, again going back to the responsibility of the federal government in welfare, housing, education, and that sort of thing, we see that we have not established policy on that.
If we go back to the membership issue, it would have to be considered that if our band population is to increase a substan- tial amount. then we have to look again at some sort of mechanism. I do not think we can really say that… and I would not be prepared to make any comment on how I see it going, because it would simply be something that I would
visualize, but it might not be acceptable—and I think it probably would not be—to some of the other bands.
Mr. Allmand: I do not know whether you would have the statistics or not, or even a ballpark figure, but how common is it in the bands you are familiar with for Indians to sell their homes to other Indians from the same band? I am speaking of resale within the band community, within the Indian commu- nity. Is that a very uncommon thing?
Chief Deleary: I think it is very rare that houses are sold. Our program is set out that we allot houses for the people who need it. Therefore there is not that much selling and resale of houses.
Mr. Allmand: In some communities, the municipalities in certain areas of certain communities have established awards, financial awards and incentive programs for people to maintain and enhance their homes in all aspects: the keeping of the gardens, the painting of the home, the landscaping, and all sorts of things. Could you see your equity fund using part of its money to provide those kinds of incentives for people to keep the home in good repair and to enhance its value and so on, even though they may never sell it? That may be a way of doing that. Would that be a possibility?
Chief Deleary: I suppose it would be a possibility where it is needed, but I think right now that is not a major problem on the reserve. There is every effort to maintain one’s property and the pride in the community itself.
Mr. Allmand: The reason I raised that was that I was looking at the words you had in your brief where you say the fact that you will not be able to resell is a disincentive to enhancement and maintenance of the property. When you are not on a reserve you always have in the back of your mind whether you are going to resell this or have to move, so you have to keep it up; consequently, the resale possibility deals with that. I was only zeroing in on those comments.
Thank you very much.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand.
Miss Isaac? No questions. All right.
Chief Deleary, on page four of your economic development presentation, you say:
When Provinces seek money from the Federal level, our population is certainly included. We are not included, however, when those monies are distributed for the public good.
Is that a general statement taking the provinces to task? Is that what you have in mind with that statement?
Chief Deleary: The statement is simply the way it is. When provinces apply for equalization payments, they include the Indian population in that, the same as constituencies do when they are allocated program dollars for make-work programs or what not. But those funds never are allocated to the Indian communities.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Do you think the provinces should be more responsible to Indian communities in this regard?
Chief Deleary: I think they should be more responsible to the Indian communities, but I am not saying we advocate a move to the province—the obligation of the federal govern- ment to the province. I am not advocating that. But I think for any government or any reserve, there are responsibilities of the province to the bands at this point, right now.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Deleary.
We will move on to Chief Miskokomon.
Chief Miskokomon: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I would like to comment on just one of the matters brought up by Mr. Allmand, about the National Indian Businessmen’s Association. From their presentation, which I heard, it most disturbed me that they would present a proposal on our land base when, first of all, that organization has never placed that proposal forward to the Assembly of First Nations and has never had any discussions with the Assembly of First Nations or the Confederacy of First Nations for ratification, or even discussion. I think to place any weight on those types of statements by so-called business men is not in the best interests of Indian people at all. I can only severely criticize that organization for coming forward and misrepresenting the Indian wishes. I think what we have here today are the chiefs sitting at the table, who are best able to articulate those wishes that they feel are best for their people. I place no weight on that type of statement at all.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Allmand: Well, we appreciate your comments. We realized the day when the brief was being presented that this was a rather radical proposal. The witnesses concerned, despite their being very well known in the Indian community, were pretty agressively cross-examined on it, especially with respect to what it would do to Indian land base—it could erode the whole Indian land base, that type of proposal.
So I think the proper way has been given to us. We have not, in travelling across the country, found very many supporters of it. On the other hand, they were, I guess, trying to find some answers to encouraging investment in Indian businesses and we sympathize with that. It is the same thing: How do you get money to do things that has not had much support?
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Chief Monague, do you have a comment to make?
Chief Monague: Yes. I had a comment regarding the equity question.
More and more we are being steered into NHA standards— the J circulars actually are built around that. The NHA standards call for very heavily insulated homes and so forth-
very costly homes. And as we move into the area of CMHC programs, as a band, we take on the responsibility of an agency of CMHC. Therefore, if we were to go into municipal housing, we would take on that responsibility of building a block of homes for the needy and we would then put in place a guaranteed repayment plan taken from shelter allowances and so forth.
There was a statement made in here that a welfare recipient can in fact live in a $30,000 house, but a working man could not. I think basically that was the reasoning behind that statement. Now, if a working man were to apply for a home under the current regulations . . . They also have a scale as to how much a person can receive in terms of contribution, and sometimes these people have difficulty in obtaining equity up front to be able to qualify, not only for financing from a local institution, but also from CMHC. So if the bands are taking on the role of agent for CMHC, it would stand to reason that they could also build in that agency some form of equity fund for the people who want to deal with them.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): All right, if there are no further comments on those two subjects, we will move on to education and hear again from Chief Deleary.
Chief Deleary, I do not want to rush you at all, but do you intend to read the entire brief or just the recommendations on education? Whatever you wish; we are here, but I do not know whether you are getting—you have been going for a while, that is the only reason I suggest it to you.
Chief Deleary: I think a lot of the people who came out as observers are here to know the policies that we put forward. So again, I like your suggestion, but I believe we should read the presentation because education is a major priority with us.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Please go ahead then.
Chief Deleary: In 1973, the Department of Indian Affairs adopted the policy paper Indian Control of Indian Education. We assumed that some substantial attempt would be made at this implementation. Instead, the Indian affairs department has followed a policy of devolution of authority to provincial governments while transferring only administrative responsi- bility for federal schools to Indian governments.
Two key changes were suggested by Indian control of Indian education and ignored. The first called for authoritative control of education to be transferred to Indians. The second called for establishment of Indian institutions for higher learning and the development of more appropriate curriculum at all learning levels.
Devolution of authority to the province has made many disturbing side-effects. Under the provincial legislative umbrella, we are allowed minimum participation at school boards that are decision-makers for our children. We have minimal representation as parties to tuition agreements
between the Indian affairs department and local boards. Their reliance on provincial institutions in curriculum development by both local boards and the Indian affairs department in federal schools has superseded any attempt that may be made to approach the goal of Indian institutions fulfilling their role.
Both levels of government have taken initiatives in the area of native studies in an attempt to improve student retention and attaining levels. The statistics tell us that these attempts have not succeeded. Unfortunately, these programs have not been fully integrated into the larger system itself. Instead they have been treated as activity outside normal curriculum, treated as an extra curriculum activity and priorized in the same manner.
Our children continue to be funnelled away from the path of higher education to technical training. Technical education is not bad in itself, but the goal must be for all students to have the opportunity to fulfil all the capabilities they possess.
Our post-secondary students continue to face an uncertain future. The phrase “you cannot go home again” has a very real connotation to Indian people who have worked hard through the system and developed skills that have little or no applica- tion to the community setting. The best and brightest of our people are forced to cities and away from people to whom they could provide the greatest good. This is an important point. It is difficult for me to speak of education as an end to itself. Until the quality of life in our community is improved and until opportunities for growth are present, then these people will continue to be people without a home.
The current system of federal schools does not provide a rosy alternative to the provincial system. School facilities are substandard; books and materials are out of date or insuffi- cient. The learning evironment that this creatm is not one that cases the learning process or that attracts the quality of professional personnel with abilities to turn this system around.
Our adults are neglected when it comes to education. For the third consecutive year, there has been no allotment made for the community adult education program in this province. This has been a program that encouraged community partici- pation in our local schools. Financial considerations, every- thing comes down to financial considerations.
In Saskatchewan this year the policy interpretation was applied that effectively limited the number of students eligible for post—secondary assistance. The interpretation was made that if a student were taking courses that would be identified as an upgrading of skills to reach normal enrolment require- ments, then that student would be covered under occupational skills funding rather than post—secondary. Such changes lowered student allowances by more than 50% per per student. Unfortunately, it could have a similar impact on student enrolment.
The same interpretation could affect all but 200 students in Ontario next year. This year. the Department of a Affairs and Northern Development formally abolished aid to students whose parents and guardians are not normally resident on Indian reserves. And, as I mentioned previously, the Commu- nity Adult Education Program is non-existent for the third consecutive year. These initiatives are designed only for the purpose of saving money, but the cost in financial terms of welfare and in human terms is not measurable.
These are only some of the problems that must be addressed if we are to have a system that works. Not all the blame for the current situation lies with other levels of government. We share the responsiblity. In its simplest form, education is the voice of one generation speaking to the next, the voice of experience that will somehow make life a little easier and more meaningful for those to come.
On our part, our voice has been far too silent. I have mentioned that some avenues for our voice, our control, have been stifled by federal and provincial governments. Yet we can and should be more involved, as parents, in encouraging our children to be the best persons they can possibly be, in spite of all the barriers that present themselves. These barriers exist in provincial legislation; they exist in the federal bureaucracy that does not trust the ability of a people to know what is best for them and carry it out; they exist in federal departments that see only dollar signs when they should be seeing human potential; they exist in the minds of the people themselves.
I do not see the situation as hopeless. I will not speak about generations yet unborn, but about things we can do here and now to put ourselves on the right path. These things are as real as the table we are sitting at.
We have talked about the school system from three points of view. First, we have talked about accessibility to the system. We have explained the reluctance of the department to transfer substantive control of federal schools to Indians as a failure of trust. We have explained provincial legislative barriers to Indian control or even substantive participation. We have described our lack of participation in negotiating tuition agreements directly affecting our children. We have mentioned barriers to access through adult education and future pressures to be brought upon our post—secondary students.
The Province of Ontario, now, through its education act, has recognized the ability of Indian bands to be responsible parties to tuition agreements. Similar recognition must come from the federal government, but further, we must have a negotiable position. When provincial education is the only alternative, there can be little negotiation. The federal government must be prepared to expand the existing federal school system where
the province is unwilling to provide a service adequate to community needs.
We must re-awaken community interest and concern through expanded community education programs for young adults and seniors. The Department of Indian Affairs must begin implementing Indian control of Indian education by transfer of substantive control of federal schools to Indian governments. The Department of Indian Affairs must commit itself to the establishment of Indian centers of higher learning that can provide curriculum development services to all educational levels.
The second point of view from which we spoke concerns the sufficiency of the existing system. It is more than sufficient to meet the existing state of affairs in our communities. If we are to be beset with unemployment, poverty, sickness, and the poorest standard of living in the country, it is preparing us very’ well for that. But if we want a better life, then current facilities must be upgraded to an acceptable community standard. The lack of supplies and materials in federal schools should be addressed immediately. Programs must encourage a full realization of human potential, whether of the young or the aged.
The third point of view concerns the appropriateness of the existing system. This is most difficult, because it looks at education as a community process. For any educational system to be effective it must have some correlation to the reality of community life, and many realities of that life are not pleasant. Education cannot be dealt with as an issue in isolation from the quality of life and the economic realities of the community. All initiatives court failure when they are not part of a full system of community improvement. Our children and our schools must become central in our own thoughts, and I hope they shall provide us with the determination necessary to achieve those goals that are so easily spoken but so difficult to reach.
The recommendations on education:
1. That education be part of a general thrust to include increased economic activity and opportunity in our communi- ties.
2. A federal commitment to expand the existing federal school system to areas where provincial governments are unable or unwilling to provide a service adequate to community needs.
3. Recognition of the authority of band governments and institutions to negotiate service agreements with local school boards for provision of services.
4. Implementation of Indian control of Indian education by transfer of substantive control of federal schools to Indian government and institutions.
5. Commitment to the establishment of Indian centres of higher learning and institutions that shall also have the capability of providing curriculum development services.
Also there was some concern about the development of a national Indian education act.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Your last state- ment, Chief Deleary, was concern about a national Indian education what? I am sorry.
Chief Deleary: There was some discussion on the develop- ment of a national Indian education act.
Also we might mention that daycare centres should be included in the brief under learning institutions.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Deleary.
Perhaps we can begin with Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Allmand: Chief, would you tell us if there are any high schools on Indian reserves in southwestern Ontario, or do all the Indian young people go off the reserve for secondary school?
Chief Deleary:I do not know of any.
Mr. Allmand: So for secondary school, your young people have to go off the reserve to the general high schools?
Chief Deleary: On my reserve, after grade six they are bussed into London.
Mr. Allmand: The Indian centres for higher learning that you referred to—would they help establish Indian secondary schools, or are you referring to university-type studies and community colleges, as well?
Chief Deleary: Yes.
Mr. Allmand: In the same question, do you foresee the day when you would like to have secondary schools on the reserves, or two or three reserves having them together, or are you satisfied with having your young people go to the general school system after grade six?
Chief Deleary: Right now we are in the process of doing some studies to determine that. Again, we have to determine that through band member participation. I am not sure whether we could say the total band membership would want that, but I think if we had schools that could have the facilities that would enhance the education program on the reserves, and have facilities that would also take into account extra curriculum activities, people would want this. I think there is the move to the cultural aspect into the learning institutions.
Mr. Allmand: Okay. Now, with respect to those secondary schools where your young people go off the reserve after grade
six, are any people guaranteed any places on the school board so they will have input into what happens in those schools? Are you guaranteed certain other positions in the school, counsel- ling positions and other positions that will help Indian young people when they go to those schools?
Chief Deleary: Well, in our own area—and I speak for the three bands, Oneida, Muncey, and Chippewa—we do have tuition agreements with the Middlesex board and also with the London board. We have participation on the board dealing with issues that pertain to the Indian students there.
I refer back to something I read one time, when one of the MPs made a comment in the House that they have tried everything to integrate Indian students into taking advantage of programs offered at the schools with which we have agreements with the school board, but still there is no funding for it. In our case, where we transport the children there after grade six, there is no money by the department for extra busing, so you cannot take advantage of extra curricular activities that go on within the school because of no funds for transportation. In a healthy environment, I think, in a learning environment, if you play together you learn to work together, so those things we are not allowed, we cannot do.
Mr. Allmand: And that is strictly a budgetary problem? If you had the budget you would be able to have the extra buses and the wider range of activities?
Chief Deleary: Yes; that is speaking from our own problem on our reserves.
Mr. Allmand: At the beginning of your brief you spoke about programs and native studies; you say that statistics tell us that these attempts have not succeeded. Just recently I had the opportunity to visit the Centre for Indian Studies at Trent University at Peterborough. I was only there for a morning, but I had also visited in the past the communications program for Indian people at Western University. Are those the types of native studies programs in your area that you are talking about?
I noticed at Trent University there were quite a large number of young Indian people there studying, and they seemed to be benefiting from the program. When you say these programs are not succeeding, are you referring to the type of thing they have at Trent and at Western? Could you be more specific about what you think is not really going right?
Chief Deleary: Well, they are not succeeding for a number of reasons, because of the situation where we recommended the institution of higher learning be established on the reserves. If you have to displace your students to Trent University, or something like that, naturally I think you experience a higher drop-out rate. If you talk about the native journalism course at Western University, I think what we are talking about is the establishment of institutions of higher learning. Again, we are talking about these sorts of things on the reserves, where we want to have what content or cur-
riculum we build into that institution. That comes back down to Indian control of Indian education.
Mr. Allmand: All right, that is understandable. Could you tell us, inform the committee as well, as to how things are improving, or if they are improving at all with respect to training more Indian teachers for your primary schools and secondary schools in your area? That seems to be always a starting point. The more teachers you can train of your own people, the greater chance you have of running and controlling more of your own institutions. Is that on the way to improve ment, or is it standing still, or going backward?
Chief Deleary: The system of training teachers, or having teachers in the federal system, is that once you have teachers in the federal schools, if you take a look at the wage parities between the provincial schools and the federal schools, you will find that in the federal schools the wage parity is way lower than in the provincial schools.
Mr. Allmand: Is that just here in Ontario, or all across the country?
Chief Deleary: Everywhere.
Mr. Allmand: But what about young Indian people going into teaching, is that increasing?
Chief Deleary: I do not have any statistics on that.
Mr. Allmand: Okay. I would also like to ask you . . . You know, they just passed a new National Training Act in Parliament, approximately a year ago, and under that training act is provision for funding training institutions, the capital costs, the teaching and the materials for teaching in them. Have you found you have been able to take advantage of the provisions in that new training act, or are there still too many road blocks or too many difficulties? Does it provide some hope?
Chief Deleary: I do not believe that will benefit us. Until these institutions are constructed, more or less, if we want the concept of Indian control of education, we say that we must have these facilities on the reserve. With that concept, you have to have the institutions first. On all the reserves, with the exception of a few, those facilities are far outdated. Now, on our reserve, we had a school constructed some 20 years ago. The way it was constructed, the same as the housing the Department of Indian Affairs was responsible for, the school was outdated before it was completed. The facilities are deplorable; there are no facilities for recreation. There are no funds for such things as physical education, or home economics, or anything like that. All of those things are just not there.
Mr. Allmand: So there will not be any misunderstanding, under the National Training Act the provision for adult education and training in skills is not general education. I understand, because I participated quite heavily in developing that act, that Indian bands could enter into agreements with the provinces and with the federal government to construct the institutions, to build these training institutions and get
funding. But it is a very new thing and it has not, as I say, even been quite a year yet; I think it was passed last May or June. I just wanted to know if you were able to take advantage of it yet. It is worthwhile looking into.
My final question relates to the comments you have made about the brightest of your people going into the cities and away from the people for whom they could provide the greatest good. Well, we have one member of this committee who still lives on a reserve . . .
Ms Jamieson: When I get home.
Mr. Allmand: —when she gets home, and who is very highly trained. What do you think of. . . ‘2 Would you be agreeable to, or do you find that unacceptable? What they used to do in the armed forces was to completely make it a condition of training Canadians in engineering, law, accounting, in medicine, dentistry, but they had to serve for three years—I think it was three years—after they qualified. In return for that higher education, they had to go back and serve in the forces.
Now in some parts of the world they attach that to that kind of training. In other words, if you are going to get trained as a doctor or a dentist, or a teacher or an engineer, you have to go back and serve three years for your band or for your nation, your group of people, before you can go to the city. I think in Quebec now they are trying to do that even for doctors in the remote parts of the province; if you are going to get any kind of bursary or scholarship, you have to agree to serve in the small towns and in the north before you can . . . And if you do not want that, then they say go get the money somewhere else. Do you think that would be a workable system for your young Indians getting higher education to get them back and helping their own people?
Chief Deleary: There certainly would have to be a lot of work done on it, because I would not visualize sending somebody and cutting off their opportunity to go elsewhere and get higher pay.
If we get back to the submission before on economic development, those things are not readily available at the band level, and if they are they are grossly underpaid. I do not know what sort of mechanism you would have to put in place to say: I am going to send you to school, but you have to come back and be the band administrator for three or four years.
Mr. Allmand: Oh, it would have to be related to their training. If they were in business administration that could be a condition, but if they were in dentistry they would have to serve as a dentist on the reserve or . . .
Chief Deleary: What penalty should I apply if they did not go along with that?
Mr. Allmand: Well, that was the problem; you hit on a very good point. In the armed forces, as I say, they did have those conditions, and when people broke the agreements they could not enforce it; but they still had very high compliance. I must
tell you that most of the people that entered into those agreements and got their full education covered, plus living expenses, honoured the commitment and did serve for the three years; then they were free. Actually many of them would tell you after—and I knew some of them who did it—that they appreciated the fact that they had to do that; it helped them later on in developing their careers.
Anyway, that is all, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Manly: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I have just a couple of quick questions. First of all, when you are talking about institutions of higher learning on reserve, in British Columbia—and I think in Saskatchewan, although I am not positive in my memory of this—we heard of Indian teacher training programs that took place right on reserve so that the teachers were trained in their own community or in a neigh- bouring community. Has anything like that been tried in Ontario that you are aware of?
Chief Deleary: I am not. Maybe Joe could respond.
Chief Miskokomon: Would you repeat that again, please? I am sorry.
Mr. Manly: In British Columbia, and I think in Saskatche- wan, there is at least one native Indian teacher training program that takes place on reserve, where people are trained for teaching on a reserve setting. I am wondering if there is anything like this that has been tried in Ontario.
Chief Miskokomon: An experimental project was started in 1973, I believe it was, through the Minister of Education of the province and in conjunction with the Department of Indian Affairs. It was recognized that there were a number of educational institutions on reserves that were not staffed by Indian people. So there was an endeavour through McMaster University to provide—now research may have to check me up on this—a year-long course that qualified Indian people as primary school teachers. It went, I believe, for three consecu- tive summers. That was highly successful and effective in turning out Indian teachers who went back. The philosophy was to go back to their home communities and teach.
The problem was that after the Ontario Teachers’ Federa- tion and the Ontario Women Teachers’ Federation and the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Association got wind of this, there was a strong lobby put on to cancel that program. The Province of Ontario bowed to the political pressures of their own teachers. Those teachers never actually received, or at least were never accepted to receive, provincial certification. So what happened was a lot of the teachers went back to school, but some still remained in the school system and on reserve.
Again, there was the lure of the higher dollar by the Department of Indian Affairs, and there was also the lure of some stability and benefit programs that were better than what reserves could offer that eventually took those people out of the school system they were teaching in on-reserve, working for bands; they then became the employees of Indian affairs. From that those people have progressed into other fields.
So as far as the universities were concerned, they said that the retention rate within the native teacher program was a failure, because we did not keep those Indian teachers in the schools. However, when you look at it from an objective point of view, from what the teachers actually got out of it in terms of their success and livelihood, advancement through careers, et cetera, the program was highly successful. However, it was only a one-shot deal, and because of the pressures that were placed on the Province of Ontario it was never opened up again.
What we have now is like the dog chasing its tail; we cannot get students through the secondary school level to be admitted into university. If they do, that success rate is very limited, and then when they get through not everyone is pushing to become teachers; they are moving into different fields. If they do not acquire the B.A. in order to get into the education field, then they are not admissible into that. I will give you a very practical example, if I may.
A lady from this reserve, under the guidelines of Indian affairs, which have so many student months allocated out for education, went back to university and advanced through those student months. They classify a B.A. in a category where there are only so many allocation student months for that. Halfway through the term, between September and December, through the wisdom of Indian affairs, they decided not to approve her education assistance to continue on to get a Bachelor of Education, because they felt there was a duplication between a B.A. and a Bachelor of Education. However, Althouse College at the University of Western Ontario requires the student to have a BA. before they can get into the school. So we have this direct conflict. It had to be taken right to the minister before the decision was reversed. The person comes from this reserve.
So in terms of the overall policy, if left to lie within Indian affairs, there is that contradiction. If it is allowed to operate within an Indian government structure, where those institu- tions are accessible either through contractual basis or accessible on reserve at their home reserve, then we could eliminate a lot of the confusion. It would also make a lot more sense, seeing that the pendulum has swung the other way with teachers and there is an excess of teachers, and if we could get capital dollars to build institutions we could get teachers to come here. Why bus all our kids out—a round trip of 100 miles a day or whatever—when in fact if we built a structure here we could contract those services in?
Mr. Manly: Right. So if you had local control of Indian education, you would not be kind of hostage to that kind of action that you mentioned earlier by the Ontario Teachers’ Federation . . .
Chief Miskokomon: Exactly.
Mr. Manly: —where they see Indian children as being consumers of education and you can only shop at the one store.
That brings me to a second question. I would like some explanation of your second recommendation for a federal commitment to expand the existing federal school system to areas where provincial governments are unable or unwilling to provide a service adequate to community needs. Why do you talk about a federal system instead of an Indian-controlled system, or is that what you mean? Could you explain the use of the words “federal system”?
Chief Deleary: I guess what we are talking about there is right at the present time, the way the system is. On the reserve we have a federal school. We have to have an education system for reserves where there are no federal schools.
We understand there is a backlog in education facilities on the reserves. I know on our own reserve we have one, which I mentioned before, that is 20 years old and cost $350,000 for repairs last year. But we need an education facility there, at this present time. Our ultimate goal is to take over control of our education system on the reserve, but we need facilities.
On behalf of the other bands, where there is that sort of a problem, where provincial schools are unable or unwilling to provide service. we must expand the federal school system now. It is an immediate thing.
Mr. Manly: So that is an interim measure.
I think Chief Miskokomon mentioned children being bussed up to 100 miles a day. Is that the sort of thing that happens to children on a number of reserves?
Chief Miskokomon: In terms of the total school run, from the point the earliest child is picked up in the morning until the drop—off point at night, going through the route, it could pile up to that much.
Mr. Manly: What time does that mean children have to leave home, and when do they get back home at night?
Chief Deleary: I guess the first pick-up is somewhere around 7.00 a.m., and when they get home it is around 5.00 p.m. at the last drop—off. That means a very long day, 10 hours or something like that.
Mr. Manly: Sounds very discouraging.
Chief Deleary: It is. The other point that should be raised is that Indian people on the reserves, if there is a federal school on the reserve, are compelled to send their children there. It is our recommendation that Indian people on the reserve should have the opportunity to send their children to a learning institution of their choice and that tuition for that child should be provided by, at this point, the Department of Indian Affairs, which is not the case.
Mr. Manly: Would you feel that way if the band were operating the school and the band needed the per capita payment for each child?
Chief Deleary: If the band were operating the education facility. But then again, the band would have to ensure that quality of education was in place there.
Mr. Manly: But if a parent felt that his or her children were not getting the kind of education they wanted, would you still feel that they should have the right to opt out of a band- operated school and have that tuition money sent to another institution?
Chief Deleary: Personally, I would.
Mr. Manly: I would be very careful about any proposal like that. It could undermine the possibility of a good community school very quickly, but that is a decision that you will have to make.
I have just one final question. You pointed out that many Indian young people are almost automatically put into the technical stream, and this is a complaint I have heard else- where. You point out there is nothing wrong with that, but sometimes it completely ignores where a child’s aptitudes are. Now I would like to ask about that strearri itself. Do you feel that the kind of technical education the children get when they are in the technical stream is relevant to their lives on an Indian reserve and meets the needs of an Indian reserve? Is that the kind of technical education that is desirable for Indian children?
Chief Deleary: Again, there is the need for an option there on behalf of the students themselves in areas of technical training. There are pros and cons, which we have discussed. In some areas there is the option of having a student after . .. well, under the act, up to age 16, I think, responsibility lies with the Department of Indian Affairs. But beyond that is there an incentive in the way it is now for a student to leave school and go into technical training, where they may be paid, I guess, for attending school. We do not have any statistics on that. We have not really carried that through and discussed it.
Mr. Manly: You see, I think it is a worthwhile question to ask as to whether or not the schools are helping to prepare young people to be good carpenters or plumbers or electricians, and to provide the kinds of basic trades services needed in every community. That is an extremely important area of education. Thank you very much.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly.
If I may I will just briefly underline the concern expressed by Chief Deleary regarding the transportation of Indian students to secondary schools. For example, in this case and in his own experience in the City of London, I think it is a matter
which really has to be looked at very seriously. It not only prevents Indian students from becoming involved in extra- curricular activities, sports activities, drama, theatre, what- ever, but it also affects their entire school life. I have seen it personally through two of my children who attend secondary school in an area in London where Indian students come in, and they tell me repeatedly that they cannot get to know one another because of this. They must be bussed home immedi- ately after school. In fact, I guess the teachers cannot even give them a detention when it gets right down to it, because they have to catch the bus. Nor can they get back in the evening for any extra-curricular activites.
I had the opportunity last fall of speaking at the graduation ceremonies at Saunders Secondary School in London, where, as you well know, many Indian students attend. Many of those who were graduating were not able to be present because they were not able to get back from the reserve to the evening presentation. I think this committee should really keep this in mind. It is a very serious concern—as far as I am concerned, at least.
Now having gotten my two cents worth in here, I am informed by the women that they are ready to serve us dinner. We have not heard from the remaining members of the committee regarding education. I will leave it in the commit- tee’s hands should you like to make some comments on this subject of education, and then we will eat. But we should not keep the women waiting too long. That is my only concern.
Mr. Oberle: I have just a very short comment. Whenever we talk about education, I ask this question, and I ask it of you because you have obviously given a lot of thought to the subject. The question always comes up of how far do you go with an education policy which would produce a complete system on the reserve. Naturally, it would have to be an overall objective to ensure that your culture is reflected in the school that your language is taught; there is no question about that. But how far do you want to go before you isolate your children from the mainstream of the rest of society? What I am asking you is this: When you speak of your ultimate goal, does it include a general statement of objectives permitting young people, when they are finished with the process that you would have planned for them, to operate in both cultures, in both societies, for those who choose to go out and get a job some- place? Would it be possible for them to do so, or would the education system have isolated them so much from the rest of the community that it would be difficult? That is always a serious concern. What I am asking is: Do you have a general statement of objectives that addresses itself to that problem?
Chief Deleary: Our answer to that, I guess, is that the education system we would put in place would ultimately turn out the best possible citizens we could in order to to achieve that. There is no end to education; I think we continually learn. We cannot really say that we are going to educate our children to a standard and then cut off at a point.
I think we again must have agreements on education as we see it—Indian control of it, to what extent and how far along we go with that. I know that on each of our reserves we cannot have universities or high schools. But the thing is that we have to go to a certain level and have control of that. I think if we look back at the learning and the education system, our system of values and stuff are taught very young in our schools, and when you get to teaching that, as we have been told through workshops and things like this and through information we gather, that most of the child’s learning takes place below the age of eight years. We can determine where we want to go to high school—maybe it is grade 12 or 13 on the reserve—but the values in the curriculum and the control of that education, the control of the whole system, that is what we look for. After that, we may be looking to agreements and a further educa- tional system and institution. We may look to an institution for higher learning on one of the reserves. That is all we can answer now.
Mr. Oberle: The question really relates more to curriculum. Would you be seeking to establish a complete separate curriculum from that of, say, the provincial school system, or would on seek to use the provincial curriculum as a basis and comp] ment it with your own input in terms of culture, language, and so on, to give young people who graduate out of this system an opportunity to compete equally outside as well as on the reserve?
Chief Deleary: I believe that would depend on our educators and what we saw as the need. Under the present system we might say that most of our people have lost their Indian-ness, their heritage, their culture. If we want to preserve that, I think that is the push of Indian people to recognize their culture, and around that aspect you develop your curriculum.
Mr. Oberle: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I have only one question, and I do not think anyone has addressed this as yet.
For the information of the committee, what is the Ontario Indian Education Council? How does it fit into your recom- mendations and into Indian control of Indian education?
Chief Miskokomon: The Ontario Indian Education Council was formed some four or five years ago with the view to begin implementation of Indian control of Indian education and the development of materials for the PONA. Also, as a number of the members heard last week in Sudbury, although there is a developmental curriculum guideline, there was no material to put into it through PONA, so that was a concern.
Another concern was to develop policies as they relate from the provincial point and also from the federal point of view, as they directly impact on reserves. Another aspect of the Ontario Indian Education Council was to gain some insight into tuition agreements and the expansion of tuition agreements, and perhaps, if appropriate, come to some collective type of agreement where we would be placed in a better bargaining position on tuition agreements and capital agreements as they relate to schools.
We have examples of school boards where, with the influx of Indian children into that school board, the Department of Indian Affairs has financed such things as gymnasiums, locker facilities, swimming pools, et cetera, because of the increased population within the school system. Yet there has been no real impact in terms of the type of curriculum that is being taught there. It is a lack of material generally within the education system in Ontario.
The Ontario Indian Education Council was developed in order to organize our local communities, to begin to develop the aspirations and needs that our communities have, and to bring them forward on a collective basis. Primarily that was the objective of the forming of the Indian Education Council.
Ms Jamieson: Do you have anything written, either with you or that you would be willing to foward to the committee, on the work of that council? How is it doing? What are the obstacles? What are the problems? It is just so we could have a look at that kind of initiative.
Chief Deleary: We have boxes of information that we can send to you.
Ms Jamieson: I think our researchers would enjoy that.
Chief Miskokomon: I am sure they would. Yes, we will table that.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. I think that is a useful initiative. I am not sure it has been all that successful, but whether it has or not, I think there is something that can be learned.
Chief Miskokomon: If I may address that problem, again we find ourselves in the position where we feel that education of Indian children is as much our responsibility as anyone’s. We find ourselves at loggerheads with the Ministry of Education from the province, which says yes, we will consider your proposals. To put such things as the first native studies course that ever happened in Ontario at an incredible level, it was back in 1972 that it was implemented into Saunders Second- ary School in London. It took a considerable amount of political pressure in order just to budge that, and now it is
being offered in their regular curriculum outline. However, it is not an integral part of the history program within the secondary school education program throughout Ontario. I do not know how many in the City of London, but the Saunders Secondary School does continue that program.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. Those comments are helpful.
The last point that I thought important to explore was agreements. Is it not a fact that in agreements signed—and I have heard this is the case in Bruce County and other places, but Bruce County comes to my mind; maybe one of the chiefs could help me with that—what is being paid on your behalf for educational services for your students far exceeds the amount being paid by other municipalities or other people for the education of their students? Is that a fact in any of the areas we are talking about, areas of the chiefs who are here today?
Chief Mason: Yes, it is a fact that in Bruce County the Indian children have been charged more than the white children are charged.
Ms Jamieson: Do you know what the figures are?
Chief Mason: No, I do not. I wish I had brought them. If I had known there was going to be a question I certainly would have brought them. I can send them to you.
Ms Jamieson: I would appreciate that. That kind of data is very useful to us in the preparation of our report and our recommendations, to show the kind of unequal situation that is going on at the moment. We often hear people who do not understand the facts saying: These Indian people want all kinds of things, it is going to cost us a fortune for them to control their own education. I think that simply is not so. Some of these facts would be most useful in trying to prove that point.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman, that is all.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Ms Jamieson.
Just before we adjourn for some food—not that we need it, but anyway we are getting signs from the kitchen that we had better move it—Chief Monague would just like you to hold your places. He would like to take a picture or two of the committee here at work.
Thank you very much. We will come back as soon as we have finished eating to hear from Chief Ray Rogers, who has been a very patient man today, waiting for us. We will come back as quickly as possible.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): We will continue with our session, if everyone will take their places.
We have two more sections from which to hear . . . one on health and one on social services. I am going to call on Chief Miskokomon to make a few remarks about the recommendations on health. in place of Chief Frank Solomon. Chief Miskokomon.
Chief Miskokomon: Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Unfortunately, Chief Solomon was unable to make this committee hearing today. However, I would like to table the main text of the document on health and read into the record the recommendations:
One, within the future Canada Health Act there should be a clear statement of federal responsibility for Indian health services and these services will not be transferred to provincial health services;
Two, Canada should recognize in the Indian health policy that Indian government is already planning their own health standards based on planning in the communities and will not be expected to adopt provincial standards for Indian health delivery systems;
Three, within the transition time, National Health and Welfare will have to budget extensively for Indian communities to do health planning and health systems designed as special budget categories in the regular annual budgetary cycle of National Health and Welfare;
Four, contribution agreements to bands for health service delivery contracts must be made more available to Indian communities, so that they can gain experience in administration and policy implementation.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Miskokomon.
We will move on to the social services section. As I earlier said, Chief Ray Rogers has been a very patient man, but I can say last but not least, like the pie at the feast—and we have had good pie here tonight, so we are looking forward to your presentation.
I should also mention that Chief Rogers is chief of the Chippewas of Sarnia—if you would like to correct that on your list of those who are appearing. He is the Chief of the Chippewas of Sarnia. We will hear from Chief Ray Rogers.
Chief Ray Rogers (Chippewas of Sarnia): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Sometimes it is of advantage to be last. In regard to
the presentation, the items in welfare and economics have been mentioned a number of times, so I will read through here as quickly as possible.
Nothing about Indians so easily grabs the attention of the media and the general public as their social problems. Single- parent families, welfare and adoption of Indian children are only symptoms of an approach we all have taken in attempting to address basic social inequalities. Debtor’s prisons no longer exist, but attitudes do. It is not only a question of race, because the problems exist within races. When we think of social services, we think of the drain on the public purse. That is not the question. The question is: How do we take care of each other when we are in need?
It has become very impersonal. Welfare satisfies a basic need to put food on the table, but it does nothing to satisfy the need for accomplishment. Adoption to families outside the community satisfies the basic needs, even love in some cases, but does not provide any answer to the question we all ask: Who am I?
We create a legislative umbrella and provide dollars and an administrative system, then it is no longer our problem—no worries, it is being taken care of. But it is a circular system wherever it is applied. Welfare breeds welfare, not only among Indians. The dependency cycle is difficult to break.
The legislative umbrella that covers Indians in Ontario is the 1965 federal-provincial welfare agreement. What barriers does this present to solving current problems? One, band members are not eligible for some social programs and services not covered in the agreement, for example, the Child Welfare Act. Two, Indians were not a party to the agreement and play no significant role in the development of appropriate service models for their communities.
The federal government does have authority to act as a support to Indian initiatives in this area. Section 91.24 of the British North America Act allows the federal government authority to reaffirm their legal responsibility through the federal social service legislation.
Such an initiative could allow for Indian people to develop services reflecting the customs, values and traditions of Indian life. It could allow for utilization of general welfare moneys for the economic benefit of the community. It could prevent Indian communities from losing their children to outside agencies through adoptions. It could support the current development and direction of Indian government and it would not prevent bands from contracting specific services available from provincial governments.
The federal government has transferred this responsibility to the provincial government out of convenience. But it is not so convenient for us. Across the country in all communities, people are saying the system does not work. But the responsibility and authority to change this lies between us, the Indian people and the federal government. Let us change what is happening. Neither of us is happy with the situation. Put the control in the hands of the people with the most at stake— back in community hands. Let us create a system of social services where the prime interest is taking care of each other in times of need.
Under the heading of recommendations there are three,. to add a few words to them.little to the recommendations.
1. Enabling legislation under Section 91.24 of the British North America Act is a step to recognize Indian control and development of appropriate services models. Just adding to No.1, this comment: and developing those by recognizing that the powers of the Indian government through development of specific child welfare legislation to prevent the removal of Indian children from their communities.
2. Legislation would recognize the right for Indian governments to contract for services through provincial and private agencies.
3. Development of the Indian administrative institutes using existing professional expertise under Indian social services council, native welfare administrators associations.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Chief Rogers. We will have some comments and questions now. Mr. Oberle, would you like to begin?
Mr. Oberle: Yes. I have not much to comment on except to say that maybe this would be a good time to go back to the beginning and requote Mr. Manley’s reference to Thomas Jefferson, when he said that the best government is the least government. And this is one area where this is so true. I am pleased that you made the reference in your report, because this is an area where we have philosophical and ideological differences.
You are depriving a society of a very important need and a very important want, if they are deprived of the responsibility, the right and the privilege to look after one’s own neighbour and one’s extended family. I agree with you very much when you say that the more we pass on to the government and take for granted that the problems are solved, the greater the problems are going to get. While governments have a very important role to play in assuring an adequate standard in health and social services, the real standard is administered in the community and in the family. If we neglect this responsibility, our society will decay and die. It is something you have always recognized within the extended family concept and this is one area, likely, where we can learn a lot from you. I have no questions Mr. Chairman. I had only that brief comment.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Oberle. Perhaps we can hear from Mr. Manly next, if you want to make some comments on Mr. Oberle’s remarks.
Mr. Manly: Thank you. Just apropos, my caucus has a great deal of regard for Thomas Jefferson, and we believe that he had the answers for the 18th century. We do not believe that they automatically transfer to the 20th century, There is a legitimate debate as to the proper role of governments. But I would simply like to underline the importance and I agree with Mr. Oberle certainly, that the role of the extended family and the community in child support has to be recognized. I would see the role of government in under-girding that support so that the role of government should be to help communities and help families to do their jobs. On that basis I would support the recommendations that you make in your report, and thank you very much, Chief Rogers.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Manly’ Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Allmand: In the brief you refer to the 1965 Federal- Provincial Welfare Agreement and point out that it is inadequate in certain respects. First of all, you were not a party to the agreement, and then it does not provide for some of the services that you think you should cover. Would the union like to see that agreement amended with your participation? Or would you rather get rid of it altogether? Would the federal government just take over full jurisdiction of your social service programs on a phasing~in basis at a speed the bands in Ontario would like?
Chief Rogers: The Indian people in Ontario would like to prepare a social services package that they themselves already have done a great deal of work on. There have been some discussions with the ‘tri’ type of parties operation. Also, they have the Ontario Social Services Rreview, Phase II, where they have worked with the tri-type system. I think the Indian people themselves in Ontario, would prefer to prepare their own social services packaging.
Mr. Allmand: Would that mean that with this package that the Indians of Ontario would prepare, it would involve once more entering—excuse me. I should not say “once more”, because you did not enter the agreement last time—but would it involve an agreement with Ontario and the federal government? Or would you like to have it just with the federal government?
Chief Rogers: I think as long as the federal government is going to be working in conjunction with the province, that it should be a three-way agreement.
Mr. Allmand: Thank you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Mr. Allmand. Ms Jamieson.
Ms Jamieson: Mr. Allmand has asked the question I was going to raise. so I will not ask a question. Instead, I will offer one comment which is that two of my colleagues have men-
tioned Thomas Jefferson. This is my little plug for the Iroquois people: Thomas Jefferson took a lot of his ideas from the Iroquois confederacy and from Indian people in this area as well. It is interesting to see that he ended up promoting, what I would call, a capitalist system, and Marx and Engles took ideas from the Iroquois oonfederacy as well, and they ended up with a socialist system. So I am not sure what that proves except that maybe they ought to have worked in conjunction with the Indian people to apply their ideas and we would not be in such a mess as we are today.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): I do not know how we can top that comment. Very excellent, indeed, Ms Jamieson.
Chief Rogers, I would hope you would not think that we are thinking anything less of this presentation by the lack of questions or the comments that have been made. Far from it. Obviously, the committee in listening to your presentation agrees with the sentiments that have been expressed.
Mr. Allmand: Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Yes, Mr. Allmand.
Mr. Allmand: I am glad you made that comment. I think it is because we have had quite a bit of evidence throughout the country on some of these points, and we even in Manitoba visited some of the projects of child welfare centres, and so on. It seems there is overwhelming opinion in the country among Indians on the points you raised. We do take it very, very seriously, but most of us,I guess, are convinced, and now it is up to us to convince a lot of other people.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Ms Jamieson.
Ms Jamieson: I do have one thing I wonder if Chief Rogers would clarify for me.
As I understand the 1965 welfare agreement, it is a federal- provincial agreement that provides for a number of services to be made available to Indian people. Am I right when I say there are supposed to be 17 service areas provided, and how many are actually being provided at the moment?
Chief Rogers: I understand you are correct with regard to the 17. I also understand that there are only five areas that are being covered.
Ms Jamieson: Now, why is it there are only five being provided at the moment?
Chief Miskokomon: In the 1965 welfare agreement that was originally designed, only social assistance was to be placed into it. However, as the years evolved the social system within Ontario extended to day care centres, nursing homes, etc. Those were never part of the agreement, and from my understanding of what took place, the department was only interested in social assistance and later extended itself into
areas such as day care centres. However, within very recent tImes—I am not sure of the date, so within three to five years—the department has ceased funding for day care centres throughout Ontario. Although the Ontario government does provide the service and is prepared to fund on a 50-50 basis, the Department of Indian Affairs does not have the capital, or at least claims not to have the capital, in order to meet the program. So although it had extended itself to five areas, day care centres being one, it is now down to, I would think, four.
Ms Jamieson: Thank you. I also happen to know that there 15 one word that is the subject of much controversy between the two governments, and that word is “available”—”the province undertakes to make services available”. They do not undertake to make them accessible, just available. And while you might have a reserve 50 miles from the nearest day care, it is available, but it is not accessible.
The Indian reserves will argue that you are supposed to make it available and accessible to the Indian community, and the federal government will argue that, and the province says, no, we are living up to our agreement, because it is there; you can take advantage of it. Is that accurate? That is my understanding of another area of major controversy.
This agreement is really a fascinating agreement. This committee really should have a look at it, as a matter of fact. Maybe our research staff can get us a copy.
Chief Miskokomon: Yes, there is a considerable amount of discussion in areas, but right now it is a Mexican stand-off between the federal government and the provincial government, and they are playing on words now. It now becomes a word game, and it all turns out to be the exact thing that you are talking about. Programs are available. They are covered. What more do you want, when they look at us? Where are they? How do they exist on the reserve? We have not seen any. They are not there; they are non-existent. The federal government says, well, day care may not be accessible right on your reserve, but it is available, say, in a nearby town if you want to use that to go to work—although the nearby town might be in the opposite direction of work, but it is still “available”.
Ms Jamieson: The final thing I would like to raise, Mr. Chairman, is perhaps to invite the Anishinabek Nation to table with us a copy of the document that Chief Rogers referred to, Phase 2 I think it is called, towards Indian control of Indian social services. That, as I recall, has a phased-in approach right from today—the 1965 welfare agreement right towards Indian government—and it takes you the steps, as I recall, through amending provincial Iegislation, through the federal government exercising its responsibility under Section 91.24 for specific legislation right through to Indian government. It is the only document I am aware of that lays out that phased approach and sets out the transitional steps, and I wonder if you would agree to forward that to us at some stage.
Chief Rogers: I can give you the copy I have here with me at this time.
Ms Jamieson: Fine. Maybe you could table it with us, then.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you, Ms Jamieson. Ms Isaac.
Ms Isaac: No, I do not have a question now. It has been answered. Thank you.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Thank you very much.
Well, just before we bring this day’s session to a conclusion, I would just ask the chiefs before us if they have any final comments to make at this time. I would welcome them. Chief Miskokomon.
Chief Miskokomon: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
On behalf of the chief and council of the southwest region of the Anishinabek Nation, I would like to thank you and the committee members for coming to Kettle Point and giving us the opportunity to express what we feel is the role of Indian government within our nation.
You have no doubt been told in certain regions that that is the home of Indian government. You have no doubt been told in certain regions that they have the best initiatives for Indian government; and in the future you will no doubt be told these phrases time and time again. However, Mr. Chairman and committee members, you have heard from the Anishinabek Nation in terms of Indian government as we see it. Perhaps not the first; perhaps not the last. But being in competition with our brothers and sisters is not important to us. What is important to us is that a sound Indian government evolves at the rate that is acceptable to the Anishinabek Nation and its members.
So what do we expect from you? We expect this committee to take our submission seriously. We expect this committee to weigh the evidence with great care. We have shown confidence in this committee by your invitation, by materials presented, and we expect this committee to show confidence in us.
Also, Mr. Chairman, I would like to thank your staff for making themselves available. And I would also like to thank the chief for giving us the opportunity to come to Kettle Point. And lastly, Mr. Chairman, I would like to thank the ladies of Kettle Point for providing us with the excellent meals we have had today. Thank you.
Some hon. Members: Hear, hear.
The Acting Chairan (Mr. Burghardt): Chief Miskokomon, I was going to say some of those thank you’s myself, so I certainly echo your sentiments.
On behalf of the committee, I would like to thank the chiefs who have appeared before us today, beginning with Chief James Mason, Chief Ether Deleary, Chief Ray Rogers, Chief Rod Monague who, I guess, has left at this point, and certainly
last but not least, Chief Bud George of the Kettle Point Reserve for providing the facilities, and, of course, for arranging the hospitality which has been so graciously provided for the committee here today.
I should as well mention the organization of Chief Joe Miskokomon and the Union of Ontario Indians in putting this day together. The briefs that we have received I am sure the committee members will agree have been well thought out and well presented and have made it very easy indeed to understand your concerns. And so, on behalf of the committee, Joe, I thank you very much, and your brother chiefs at the table, for these presentations today.
Are there any more comments?
Chief Miskoltoman: Before we close, I would like to call on Chief Jim Mason for a closing prayer.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): We will have that now.
Chief Mason: Father, we thank you for this day. Once again we have enjoyed your blessings. We ask you, Father, to see that our colleagues arrive safely at their destinations from this meeting hall.
Father, we are looking foward to meeting these people again. We are looking forward to having your help in coming to a decision that so avidly expresses our feelings and our future, which is dependent on that. For this, Father, we thank you, in your name.
The Acting Chairman (Mr. Burghardt): Just before we adjourn, I would like to inform the committee that we will reconvene tomorrow; that is, Tuesday, March 29, in London at the N’amerind Friendship Centre at 10.00 a.m.. We will hear from the Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians, and also representations from the Walpole Island Band, the Native Women’s Association of Canada and the Native Council of Canada.
So this committee stands adjourned until 10.00 a.m., Tuesday, March 29.
PRESENTATION ON POLICING BY THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE ASSOCIATION
I AM AN INDIAN PEACE OFFICER. I HAVE SERVED FOR MANY YEARS. IT Is MY GOAL TO BECOME RECOGNIZED AS A PROFESSIONAL POLICE OFFICER SERVING AS A MORAL LEADER IN MY INDIAN COMMUNITY. THAT Is MY IDENTITY AND THIS IS MY DESTINY.
IT IS NOT AN EASY IDENTITY TO ENJOY WHEN THE ONTARIO POLICING AUTHORITIES INSIST THAT I DO NOT EXIST AS A PEACE OFFICER. MY DESTINY IS IMPERILED WHEN I AM TOLD I WILL NOT EXIST IF THE DOMINION-PROVINCIAL-INDIAN-POLICING AGREEMENT Is NOT EXTENDED IN ITS PRESENT MISCREANT FORM. MY EXISTENCE IS Now RESTRICTED TO BEING A LEGALLY HANDICAPPED APPENDAGE OF THE ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICE.
AT PRESENT WE CANNOT INCORPORATE AS A PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION UNDER ONTARIO LAW BECAUSE WE ARE NOT ONTARIO POLICE OFFICERS. NO DOMINION IDENTITY IS OPEN TO US BECAUSE WE ARE LACKING DOMINION IDENTITY TO DO SO.
WE SERVE TO PROTECT THE INDIAN COMMUNITY BUT NO LEGISLATION SAYS SO. THE DOMINION—PROVINCIAL-INDIAN FINANCIAL AGREEMENT THAT FORMS OUR ECONOMIC LIFELINE GIVES US NO IDENTITY.
TO DEVELOP OUR COMPETENCE WE HAVE FORMED OURSELVES INTO A VOLUNTARY PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION. WE SERVE THE PUBLIC EACH DAY. NE KEEP PEACE IN OUR RESPECTIVE COMMUNITIES. WE ENFORCE THE LAW. WE BRING OFFENDERS To COURT. OUR EVIDENCE Is ACCEPTED. OUR REPUTATION IS ESTABLISHED. IN FACT, WE ARE POLICE OFFICERS, BUT IN LAW WE ARE MISCREANTS. WE SYMBOLIZE THE IDENTITY CRISIS OF THE INDIAN COMMUNITIES WE SERVE. WE ARE TOLD To DEVELOP OURSELVES BUT WE ARE NOT TRUSTED TO DO SO. IT IS OUR SUBMISSION THAT THE TIME HAS COME TO ENTRUST US FULLY WITH THE TASK OF POLICING OUR COMMUNITIES.
FOR US TO DO SO THE PRESENT POLICING AGREEMENT MUST BE AMENDED AND THE AMENDED AGREEMENT MUST BE MANIFESTED IN DOMINION AND PROVINCIAL LEGISLATION THAT INCORPORATES THE FOLLOWING DEVELOPMENTS. WE MUST BECOME IN LAW, PEACE OFFICERS INVESTED WITH THE GENERAL POWERS AND DUTIES OF PEACE OFFICERS IN CANADA. ONLY WHEN SUCH FULL POWER AND RESPONSIBILITY IS CONFERRED UPON US WILL WE BE UNFETTERED IN OUR FIGHT AGAINST CRIME IN OUR COMMUNITIES.
WE MUST BE RESPONSIBLE TO A GOVERNING BODY THAT HAS FULL POWER TO ADMINISTER Us AS INDIAN POLICE OFFICERS. THAT GOVERNING BODY SHOULD BE THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE COMMISSION. THAT COMMISSION SHOULD BE COMPOSED OF COMMISSIONERS REPRE- SENTING EACH OF THE SIGNATORIES To THE POLICING AGREEMENT.
THEN AND ONLY THEN EACH OF THE PARTIES TO THE AGREEMENT WOULD HAVE FULL REPRESENTATION AND THUS FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE POLICING FUNCTION. BY THIS MEANS THE COMMISSIONERS WOULD FULLY REPRESENT THE DOMINION OF CANADA AND THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO AND EACH OF THE INDIAN NATIONS IN THE AGREEMENT. THAT COMMISSION SHOULD BE ENTRUSTED WITH THE DOMINION AND PROVINCIAL FUNDS GENERATED BY THE AGREEMENT. THE COMMISSION WOULD BE FULLY ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE USE OF THE FUNDS.
THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE COMMISSION COULD BE DESIGNED TO FUNCTION SUBSTANTIALLY IN THE FORM OF THE ONTARIO POLICE COMMISSION. IT SHOULD HAVE FULL POWERS To ADMINISTER INDIAN POLICING. IT SHOULD HAVE FULL POWERS OF INVESTIGATION AND FULL POWERS TO CONTROL THE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF THE INDIAN POLICE FORCE.
THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE ASSOCIATION NOW EXISTS ONLY BY AGREEMENT OF ITS MEMBERS. IT SHOULD BE INCORPORATED IN THE POLICING AGREEMENT AND ENABLING LEGISLATION AS THE OFFICIAL ASSOCIATION OF THE INDIAN POLICE OFFICERS. AMENDMENTS COULD BE IN FORM SIMILAR TO THOSE GOVERNING THE ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICE ASSOCIATION AND MUNICIPAL POLICE ASSOCIATION.
BY DOING SO, THE AGREEMENT AND LEGISLATION COULD EMBODY THE TIME PROVEN POLICING MECHANISMS OF ASSOCIATION MEETING WITH COMMISSION THROUGH THE PROCESSES OF BARGAININC AND CONCILIATION
AND IF NECESSARY ARBITRATION TO DEVELOP WORKING CONDITIONS AND TO SOLVE POLICING PROBLEMS. ONLY BY DEVELOPING THE ASSOCIATION AND THE COMMISSION TO THEIR FULL POTENTIAL CAN THE ALREADY EXISTING BLEND OF AGREEMENT FOR WORKING CONDITIONS AND ADMINISTRATIVE DIRECTION FOR POLICING FUNCTIONS BE BLENDED. THIS HAS BEEN PROVEN IN THE FIELD OF THE ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICE. THE BEST MODEL OF THIS SYSTEM WORKING IS CLOSE TO US TODAY IN THE LONDON ONTARIO POLICE FORCE.
ONLY WITH A PROPER FUNCTIONING POLICE COMMISSION AND POLICE ASSOCIATION IS THE OUESTION OF STRIKING PUT To REST. ONLY BY CREATING THIS SYSTEM IS JOB SECURITY ESTABLISHED. THE COMMISSION AND THE ASSOCIATION COULD MUTUALLY DEVELOP PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS OF THE OFFICERS. CAREER PLANNING COULD BECOME A REALITY. TRAINING PROGRAMS IN THE CANADIAN POLICE COLLEGE AND THE ONTARIO POLICE COLLEGE COULD BE ESTABLISHED.
THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA WOULD HAVE DIRECT REPRESENTATION ON THE COMMISSION AS WOULD THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO. ACCORDINGLY, ALL POLICING CONCERNS OF THE RESPECTIVE GOVERNMENTS WOULD BE PROTECTED. CHARGING THE COMMISSION AND THE ASSOCIATION wITH THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES As PUBLIC BODIES WOULD ENSURE A MONITORING BY THE PUBLIC OF THEIR PROPER FUNCTION.
THE COMMISSION WOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVIDING POLICING IN EACH OF THE INDIAN COMMUNITIES. THE OFFICERS WOULD BE RESPONSIBLE TO THAT COMMISSION. THIS IS DIRECTLY ANALOGOUS TO ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICING IN VARIOUS SMALL ONTARIO COMMUNITIES. THE POLICE OFFICERS WOULD NOT BE COMPROMISED IN THEIR INTEGRITY BY LOCAL INFLUENCE. THEIR DUTIES WOULD BE TO THE PUBLIC IN GENERAL AND TO THE COMMISSION IN PARTICULAR.
EACH INDIAN COMMUNITY SHOULD BE EMPOWERED To CREATE POLICE COMMITTEES. THESE COMMITTEES WOULD NOT HAVE DIRECT CONTROL OVER THE LOCAL INDIAN POLICE OFFICERS. THEY WOULD BE ADVISORY AND WOULD HAVE DIRECT INPUT TO THE OFFICERS OF POLICING NEEDS IN THE COMMUNITY. THEY WOULD HAVE DIRECT COMMUNICATION TO THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE COMMISSION T0 EXPRESS THE COMMUNI- TY’S NEEDS AND CONCERNS IN THE FIELD OF POLICING. BY THIS MEANS THE COMMUNITY WOULD HAVE DIRECT AND CHANNELLED REPRESENTATION TO THE LOCAL OFFICERS AND DIRECT COMMUNICATION TO THE COMMISSION. FULL POLICING AUTHORITY WOULD REMAIN CENTRALIZED IN THE COMMISSION AND ASSOCIATION RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT PROFESSION.
THE MAIN BENEFIT OF THIS PROPOSED POLICING PROGRAM WOULD BE ITS VERY STABILITY. THE PROBLEMS OF INDIAN POLICING WOULD BE CLEARLY IDENTIFIED AND THOSE SOLVING THE PROBLEM WOULD GAIN IDENTITY AND DEFINITION OF THEIR DUTY. UNLY BY ENTRUSTING US WITH THE POWER TO DO THIS TASK WILL WE BE ABLE TO DO IT COMPETENTLY.
WE SEE THIS INDIAN POLICING PROBLEM AND ITS SOLUTION AS SYMBOLIC OF THE DILEMMA OF THE WHOLE INDIAN COMMUNITY. AS LONG AS THE INDIAN PEOPLE ARE DEPRIVED OF THE RESPONSIBILITY AND THE POWER TO DEVELOP THEIR DESTINY THEY WILL FAIL TO FIND IT.
THE FULL TASK OF PROTECTING THE INDIAN PUBLIC SHOULD BE ENTRUSTED TO THE INDIAN PEOPLE. OUR HERITAGE HAS BEEN BUILT ON A FOUNDATION OF MORAL POLICY MANIFESTED IN COMMUNITY LAWS ADAPTED TO OUR PARTICULAR NEEDS. WE SHOULD CULTIVATE AN INDIAN COURT SYSTEM THAT WOULD STRENGTHEN THESE MORAL FOUNDATIONS BY ENFORCING THE INDIAN AND THE CANADIAN LAW FOR OUR PEOPLE. PROPER INDIAN POLICING NEEDS FULL SUPPORT FROM SUCH A COURT.
THROUGH HISTORY OUR COMMUNITIES HAVE DEVELOPED STRONG INTERESTS IN CORRECTING OUR OFFENDERS. MOST DEVIANT BEHAVIOUR BY INDIAN OFFENDERS LINKS BACK TO THE CRISIS THEY FEEL IN PERCEIVING THEIR IDENTITY. IT IS OUR HOPE THAT WE CAN ACCEPT THE TASK OF CORRECTING OUR OFFENDERS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DIRECTION OF THE COURT SYSTEM.
IT IS SIGNIFICANT TO NOTE THE DEVELOPMENTS IN THIS FIELD NOW TAKING PLACE THROUGHOUT CANADA. THE THRUST OF THE YOUTHFUL OFFENDER ACT IS TO CREATE MORE COMMUNITY REHABILITATION OF YOUNG OFFENDERS. THAT APPROACH IS ALREADY SUCCEEDING ACROSS CANADA. PROBATION PROGRAMS. GROUP HOMES AND COMMUNITY
RESOURCE CENTRES ARE MUCH MORE SUCCESSFUL IN DEFINED AREAS OF DEVIANT BEHAVIOUR THAN OUR PRISONS.
THE YOUTHFUL OFFENDER LEGISLATION WILL IMPROVE THAT PROGRAM IMMENSELY. WE MUST BE EMPOWERED TO REHABILITATE OUR OFFENDERS IN OUR COMMUNITIES THROUGH THE HELP OF OUR COMMUNITY LEADERS.
WE FULLY RESPECT THAT YOUR COMMUNITIES AND OUR COMMUNITIES WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE DANGEROUS OFFENDERS WHO MUST BE IMPRISONED. WE MUST WORK TOGETHER TO SHARE YOUR RESOURCES TO INCARCERATE SUCH OFFENDERS. WE SPEAK OF THE MAJORITY OF MINOR OFFENDERS WHO CAN BE BETTER REHABILITATED BY SERVING THEIR COMMUNITIES IN MEANINGFUL PROJECTS.
THE THRUST OF THESE SUBMISSIONS HAS BEEN TO SEEK YOUR HELP TO VEST OUR PEOPLE WITH MORE RESPONSIBILITY TO DEVELOP OUR COMMUNITY RESOURCES. PERHAPS THE MOST SIGNIFICANT RECOMMEN- DATION HAS BEEN TO FORM THE ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE COMMISSION AND ASSOCIATION. IT IS SIGNIFICANT BECAUSE WE ARE NOT SIMPLY SAYING GIVE US MONEY TO POLICE OURSELVES AS WE SEE FIT. WE ARE RECOMMENDING A HIGHLY FLEXIBLE ADMINISTRATIVE VEHICLE THROUGH WHICH THE DOMINION GOVERNMENT AND THE ONTARIO GOVERNMENT AND THE INDIAN PEOPLE CAN ADMINISTRATIVELY TAKE FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR POLICING.
IT IS OUR SUBMISSION THAT IN ALL FIELDS WHERE THE PROVISION OF PUBLIC SERVICES TO THE INDIAN PEOPLE ARE CONCERNED THAT
THE VEHICLE SHOULD BE THROUGH AGREEMENT AS IN POLICING TO ENABLING LEGISLATION TO THE CREATING OF ADMINISTRATIVE BOARDS THAT CAN BE RESPONSIVE AND ADAPTIVE TO THE DEVELOPING AND CHANGING NEEDS OF THE COMMUNITIES THEY SERVE.
BY THIS MEANS OF SUPPORT WE CAN PROVE THE TRUST YOU WOULD GIVE US. BY THIS MEANS OF SUPPORT WE CAN FIND OUR IDENTITY AND OUR DESTINY.
RECOMMENDATIONS TO POLICING
1) AN AMENDED AGREEMENT IDENTIFYING FULL JURISDICTION FOR INDIAN POLICE OFFICERS.
2) A POLICE COMMISSION LEGISLATIVELY ESTABLISHED TOTALLY RESPONSIBLE TO THE INDIAN NATIONS AND THE FEDERAL AND PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENTS.
3) THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN INDIAN COURT SYSTEM.
RESPECTFULLY SUBMITTED BY
WINSTON WILLIAMS. PRESIDENT ONTARIO INDIAN POLICE ASSOCIATION
THE CANADIAN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAS ALWAYS HAD THE OBLIGATION OF DELIVERING PRIMARY HEALTH CARE T0 NATIVE PEOPLE, FIRST THROUGH THE DEPARTMENT OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, AND THEN AFTER 1945, THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND WELFARE OF CANADA.
IN SOME PROVINOES, THE INSURED HEALTH COSTS ARE PAID THROUGH PROVINCIAL HEALTH PLANS AND AGENCIES AND NATIVE PEOPLE USE PROVINCIAL HOSPITALS, PRIVATE DOCTORS AND CLINICS. HEALTH DELIVERY IS THEREFORE A COMPLEX AND VERY DIVERSE SYSTEM INVOLVING MANY DIFFERENT AGENCIES WITH MANY DIFFERENT POLICIES DEPENDING ON THE REGION OF CANADA, AND THE NATIVE COMMUNITIES INVOLVED. IN 1979, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FORMALLY DECLARED AN ATTITUDE OF INDIAN GOVERNMENT cONTROL FOR HEALTH SERVICES WHICH WOULD BE FACILIATED IN THEIR HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADIAN INDIAN HEALTH POLICY. IN 1983, HEALTH AND WELFARE OF CANADA Is SAYING THAT THE APPLICATION OF THAT POLICY HAS CERTAIN CONSIDERATIONS OF LIMITATION:
1) AVAILABILITY OF MONEY FOR BAND COUNCIL cONTRAcTs
2) TRAINED HEALTH PERSONNEL AVAILABLE TO BANDS
3) BAND INFRA-STRUCTURE FOR ADMINISTRATION AND MANAGEMENT
4) BAND DESIGNED SYSTEMS cAPABLE OF BEING DEMONSTRATED TO FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WITH APPROPRIATE STANDARDS FOR HEALTH DELIVERY
5) INDIAN GOVERNMENT HEALTH TRAINING AND RECRUITMENT PROGRAMS WHICH HAVE ACCEPTABLE FEDERAL AND PROVINCIAL STANDARDS AND CAN BE DEMONSTRATED T0 FUNDING AGENCIES BEFOREHAND.
ALL OF THESE CONSIDERATIONS HAVE SERIOUS NEGATIVE IMPLICATIONS ON THE TRANSFER OF CONTROL TO INDIAN GOVERNMENT. IN 1983 NO FEDERAL GRANTS FOR PERSON—YEARS OR BUILDING CAPITALS IS AVAIL- ABLE FOR THIS POLICY IMPLEMENTATION. BAND COUNCILS CANNOT HIRE THEIR OwN HEALTH PERSONNEL, BUILD THEIR OwN HEALTH CENTRES OR IMPLEMENT TRAINING PROGRAMS. FEDERAL GOVERNMENT CIVIL SERVANT JOBS CANNOT BE CANCELLED OR TRANSFERRED TO TRIBAL COUNCILS, INDIAN ASSOCIATIONS OR BAND COUNCILS. LARGE AMOUNTS OF MONEY ARE COMMITTED FOR EXTENSIVE NURSE TRAVEL TO NATIVE COMMUNITIES AND OPERATING FEDERAL HOSPITALS IN THE NORTH. IN SHORT, THERE ARE FUNDING FREEZES AND BUDGET CUTBACKS.
IN 1983, THE FEDERAL INDIAN HEALTH DELIVERY SERVICES CANNOT KEEP CIVIL SERVANT NURSES AT FULL STAFFING LEVELS IN THE ISOLATED COMMUNITIES, CANNOT DELIVER A COMPREHENSIVE PUBLIC HEALTH INFOR- MATION PROGRAM AND CANNOT DO COMPREHENSIVE DIAGNOSTIC AND PRE— VENTATIVE HEALTH PROGRAMS IN NATIVE COMMUNITIES. THEY ARE JUST HOPING TO MAINIAIN PRIMARY HEALTH SERVICES.
IT IS RECOGNIZED THAT CIVIL SERVANT ATTITUDES ON HEALTH DELIVERY ARE VERY DIFFERENT FROM THOSE ATTITUDES OF HEALTH PERCEPTIONS BY THEIR NATIVE CLIENTS. MANY PROBLEMS ARISE FROM THIS CLASH
OF ATTITUDES REFLECTED IN POLICY AND THE IDEAL POLICY OF TURNING OVER CONTROL TO INDIAN GOVERNMENT IS VIEWED AS AN IDEALISTIC – NOT NECESSARILY REALISTIC SOLUTION FOR HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA.
THERE ARE SITUATIONS IN CANADA AND HERE IN ONTARIO wHERE INDIAN GOVERNMENT HAS DESIGNED AND OPERATED THEIR OwN HEALTH DELIVERY USING THEIR OWN NATIVE EMPLOYEES. SOME INDIAN NATIONS ARE COMMITTED TO DOING NEEDS ASSESSMENTS WITH HEALTH CLIENT (BAND MEMBERS) INPUT, RESOURCE INVENTORIES AND GENERAL PLANNING PUBLIC PARTICIPATION EXERCISES wHICH NOT ONLY INVOLVE BAND MEMBERS BUT TRAIN THESE PEOPLE TO BECOME PLANNERS, MANAGERS/ADMINISTRA- TIONS AND INFORMATION/EDUCATION OFFICERS. THE PLANNING EXERCISES HAVE PROMOTED HEALTH CAREERS AND LED TO NATIVE TEAM/STAFF APPROACHES TO HEALTH DELIVERY ON RESERVES AND HAVE RESULTED IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT.
– ALBERTA INDIAN HEALTH COMMISSION FOR COMMUNITY MANAGEMENT TRAINING
– BLUE OUILL INDIAN NURSING TRAINING CENTRE
– RAMA HEALTH CENTRE
– GEORGIAN BAY NORTH SHORE INDIAN HEALTH BOARD AND HEALTH CENTRE
– WIKI NURSING HOME FOR SENIORS
– JAMES BAY CREE INDIAN HOSPITAL IN FORT GEORGE
THERE IS ONE FEDERAL PROGRAM ACROSS CANADA WHERE BAND COUNCILS HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY OF ENTERING INTO A CONTRACT WITH MEDICAL
SERVICES TO HIRE THEIR OWN HEALTH WORKER (CHR) FOR THE COMMUNITY. IN ONTARIO NEARLY 1/2 THE BANDS HAVE SUCH wORKERS AND THE PROGRAM HAS DEMONSTRATED SOME LOCAL CONTROL. THERE ARE SOME PROBLEMS:
– CHR’S ARE TRAINED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND THE COMMUNITIES DON’T HAVE APPROPRIATE INPUT INTO THE TRAINING CURRICULUM.
– CHR’S ARE ALONE AND ON DUTY LONG HOURS AND SEVEN DAYS A WEEK wHICH RESULTS IN BURNOUT.
– INDIAN GOVERNMENT HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO TRAIN BAND MEMBERS T0 DESIGN THE TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR THIS CHR’S POSITION.
INDIAN GOVERNMENT HAS STARTED TO ORGANIZE COMMUNITY HEALTH COMMITTEES TO OVERCOME THESE PROBLEMS IN THIS PROGRAM AND SUPPORT THE CHR. HOWEVER, AGAIN THERE HAS BEEN FREEZES ON TRAINING MONEY IN HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA, INDIAN AFFAIRS AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, AND TRAINING ON RESERVES FOR THESE HEALTH PROGRAMS HAS HAD NO FINANCIAL SUPPORT OR HUMAN RESOURCE SUPPORT FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. THERE ARE SOME SPECIFIC EXAMPLES OF INDIAN GOVERNMENT READY TO ASSUME CONTROL OF DELIVERY OF HEALTH SERVICES IN THEIR OwN COMMUNITIES. MORE THAN HALF OF THE ANISHINABEK COMMUNITIES AROUND THE GREAT LAKES HAVE SOME INDIAN GOVERNMENT INVOLVEMENT IN HEALTH DELIVERY BY THE FOLLOWING TYPES OF PROGRAMS:
– COMMUNITY HEALTH REPRESENTATIVE (CHR) IS HIRED BY BANDS TO DO PUBLIC HEALTH INFORMATION OF RESERVES, AND DOES SOME PRIMARY HEALTH CARE BECAUSE NURSES ARE ABSENT.
– CONTRACT WITH HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA TO PAY ANY PRESCRIPTION DRUGS NEEDED BY BAND MEMBERS.
– CONTRACT WITH HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA TO PROVIDE NECESSARY MEDICAL TRANSPORTATION TO HEALTH CENTRES OR PRIVATE DOCTORS.
– CONTRACT TO HIRE BAND EMPLOYED NURSES.
– CONTRACT TO BUILD AND OPERATE HEALTH CENTRE/CLINIC ON RESERVE.
– CONTRACT TO HIRE DENTAL HYGIENISTS AS BAND EMPLOYEES.
– CONTRACT TO TRAIN AND SUPPORT HEALTH BOARD SUPERVISING A TEAM APPROACH TO HEALTH ON MORE THAN ONE RESERVE.
– CONTRACT TO HIRE HEALTH CENTRE ADMINISTRATORS AND MEDICAL SECRETARY.
– FUNDING TO FACILIATE TRADITIONAL MEDICINE PRACTICE.
– CONTRACT wITH TREATY ORGANIZATIONS TO TRAIN BAND MEMBERS IN HEALTH PLANNING FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF HEALTH PROJECT AND UNDERWRITING HEALTH POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS.
– FUNDING TO RUN SENIOR CITIZEN’S RESIDENCE AND NURSING HOMES.
WITHIN OUR 45 COMMUNITIES, ALMOST 1/2 HAVE A CHR AND TRANSPORT- ATION CONTRACT. HOWEVER, ALL THE OTHER CONTRACTS LISTED ARE ALMOST IN THE PILOT CLASSIFICATION WITH ONLY ONE OR TWO BAND COUNCILS HAVING SUCH CONTRACTS. HOWEVER, THERE ARE SEVERAL BAND COUNCILS NOW WHO HAVE DONE COMMUNITY HEALTH PLANNING, NEEDS ASSESSMENT, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT WORK AND SOME POLICY WRITING wHO ARE READY TO IMPLEMENT EXAMPLES OF THESE CONTRACTURAL ARRANGEMENTS FOR LOCAL HEALTH DELIVERY.
IN MANY CASES BAND COUNCILS HAVE PUT FORMAL PROJECT PROPOSALS INTO THE REGULAR BUDGET FORECAST CYCLE OF HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA AND THOSE PROPOSALS HAVE BEEN TARGETTED AS HIGHEST PRIORITY TWO YEARS AGO. HOWEVER, THESE HAD BEEN AN ABSOLUTE FREEZE ON ALL NEW CONTRIBUTION ARRANGEMENTS TO BAND COUNCILS IN HEALTH FOR THE LAST TWO BUDGET FORECASTS. ONLY HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA CIVIL SERVANT STAFFS HAVE INCREASED AND THE ONLY NEW HEALTH PROGRAMS IMPLEMENTED HAVE BEEN WITHIN THE BUREAUCRACY OF HEALTH QUARTERS MEDICAL SERVICES, OTTAWA.
CASE STUDIES OF BANDS WHO HAVE BEEN READY TO ASSUME CONTROL, NIPISSING
THEIR CHR IS A LICENSED OUALIFIED NURSE wHO IS A BAND MEMBER WILLING TO WORK As A BAND EMPLOYEE AS A NURSE IN A BAND OPERATED HEALTH CENTRE, WHICH wOULD SERVE BEAR ISLAND AND DOKIS RESERVES AS HELL. POPULATION SERVES – 1200. AT PRESENT A FEDERAL NURSE TRAVELS TO THESE RESERVES AND WASTES MUCH TIME TRAVELLING AND THE NURSE IS NOT SUITED TO COMMUNITY WORK. THERE IS AN OPERATING HEALTH COMMITTEE AT NIPISSING wHO COULD SUPPORT NURSE, CHR AND A HEALTH CENTRE CONCEPT. THAT HEALTH COMMITTEE SENDS A DELEGATE TO THE UNION OF ONTARIO INDIANS’ HEALTH STEERING COMMITTEE POLICY wRITING GROUP AND THEREBY HAS RECEIVED SOME TRAINING IN HEALTH PLANNING. ALL ACTION ON THIS PROPOSAL HAS BEEN STOPPED BY A FREEZE ON CONTRIBUTION AGREEMENTS.
SERPENT RIVER, SPANISH RIVER AND HISSISSAUGA RESERVES. EACH RESERVE HAS A CHR AND A HEALTH COMMITTEE. IN ADDITION THERE ARE ALCOHOL wORKERS ON EACH RESERVE. THERE Is ONE BAND EMPLOYEE NURSE IN A HEALTH CENTRE AT SPANISH RIVER SERVING ALL THREE BANDS. A VOLUNTEER HEALTH BOARD ACCOUNTABLE TO THE BAND COUNCILS TRIES TO DEVELOP HEALTH DIRECTIONAL PLANS, TERMS OF REFERENCE OF THE WORKERS AND ORGANIZATIONAL WORK CHARTS. 1200 BAND MEMBERS SERVED. THESE BANDS HAVE APPLIED FOR FUNDING TO TRAIN AND FACILITATE THE BOARDS’ OPERATIONS. THE FREEZE ON CONTRIBUTION AGREEMENTS HAS SLOWED THIS CO-ORDINATION AND STOPPED TRAINING FOR MEMBERS OF THE HEALTH BOARD.
THERE ARE TWO CHR’S AND A CONTRACT FOR TRANSPORTATION ON THIS VERY LARGE RESERVE WITH A LARGE POPULATION. A HIGH PERCENTAGE OF THE POPULATION ARE SENIOR CITIZENS OR PEOPLE UNDER CHRONIC CARE. THE CHR’S wORK IN THIS PROBLEM AREA AND THE BAND PROVIDES A HOME MAKER PROGRAM FOR THE ELDERS. THE BAND COUNCIL HAS DONE EXTENSIVE PLANNING FOR A SENIOR CITIZENS NURSING HOME. THE BAND HAS APPLIED FOR A BAND EMPLOYEED NURSE (BAND MEMBERS ARE LICENSED NURSES). THE BAND HAS IMPLEMENTED MANY TRAINING PROGRAMS ON RESERVE. BECAUSE OF THE FREEZE ON CONTRIBUTION AGREEMENTS BY THE HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA; ALL ACTION HAS STOPPED ON THESE PROJECTS AND PLANS.
THIS CENTRE HAS A BAND EMPLOYEED NURSE, CHR, MEDICAL SECRETARY AND HEALTH BOARD SUPERVISING THE CENTRE. THIS CENTRE AND JOB DESCRIPTIONS wERE PLANNED BY THE HEALTH COMMITTEE BY USING CLASSIFIED HEALTH PLANNING EXERCISES. THE CENTRE HAS MOBILIZED THE SERVICES OF ONE TOWN DOCTOR ONE DAY A wEEK AND THE SERVICES OF A DOCTOR/PLANNER ONE DAY A WEEK ON VOLUNTEER BASIS. THE CENTRE HAS EXPANDED ITS OPERATION TO INCLUDE A COMPREHENSIVE FILE ON ALL RESIDENTS OF RAMA RESERVE (320) AND PROVIDES SERVICE TO NON—NATIVES IN THIS TOURISM AREA DURING THE SUMMER. THE BAND TRAINED THE MEDICAL SECRETARY. FUNDING FOR THE MEDICAL SECRETARY, TRAINING MONEY FOR THE BOARD AND EQUIPMENT EXPENSES HAVE NOT BEEN AVAILABLE BECAUSE OF THE GOVERNMENT FREEZE.
THE LARGE RESERVE wITH A LARGE POPULATION (1200) HAS A CHR PART TIME INDIAN NURSE, HOMEMAKER PROGRAM AND A TRANSPORTATION CONTRACT. A NEW HEALTH CENTRE IS BEING PRESENTLY BUILT. THE BAND HAS APPLIED TO HEALTH AND wELFARE CANADA T0 STAFF THE HEALTH CENTRE WITH A FULL TIME BAND NURSE ADMINISTRATOR AND THIS NURSE WOULD SERVE ANOTHER RESERVE IN THE AREA. THE GOVERNMENT FREEZE HAS PREVENTED THE FULL TIME BAND EMPLOYEED NURSE CONTRACT AND STAFFING OF THE HEALTH CENTRE.
THE BAND HAS JUST DESIGNED AND BUILT A HEALTH COMPLEX OF SENIOR CITIZEN RESIDENCE, HEALTH CENTRE AND RECREATION CENTRE. THEY HAVE A CHR AND TRANSPORTATION CONTRACT. THEY HAVE BEEN READY TO TAKE ON ALL AVAILABLE CONTRACTS AND CAN RENT PARTS OF THE HEALTH CENTRE FOR HEALTH SERVICE DELIVERY. THE GOVERNMENT FREEZE HAS BLOCKED ALL EXPANSION AND THERE IS NO MONEY FOR TRAINING. MANY OTHER RESERVES HAVE STARTED HEALTH COMMITTEES AND SELECTED CANDIDATES FOR NEw CHR POSITIONS. SOME LARGER RESERVES NEED SECOND AND THIRD CHR POSITIONS. IN MANY OF THESE RESERVES THE BAND WILL TRAIN ASSOCIATED HEALTH PERSONNEL T0 COMPLEMENT THE CHR WORKER. ABOUT 20 OR MORE RESERVES ARE READY TO EXPAND.
ALL NEW PROPOSALS ARE BLOCKED BECAUSE OF THE GOVERNMENT FREEZE OR LACK OF FUNDS. THE ATTITUDE OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HEALTH PERSONNEL MUST CHANGE TO FACILITATE THEM PASSING ON SKILLS IN TRAINING SESSIONS TO BAND COUNCIL STAFF. PERSON YEAR FUNDS MUST BE CONVERTED T0 CONTRIBUTION AGREEMENT MONEY TO FACILITATE THE POLICY OF TRANSFER OF CONTROL TO BAND COUNCILS.
THE UNION OF ONTARIO INDIANS, THROUGH OUR STEERING COMMITTEE DELEGATES FROM MANY OF OUR RESERVES, HAS UNDERWRITTEN A HEALTH POLICY THAT COULD SUPERCEDE THE POLICIES OF HEALTH AND WELFARE CANADA IN THE FUTURE.
From the Anishinabek Nation:
Chief R.K. (Joe) Miskokomon, Grand Council Chief.
From the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point Reserve:
Chief Milton (Bud) George.
From the Saugeen Reserve:
Chief James Mason.
From the Chippewas of the Thames Reserve:
Chief Ether Deleary.
From the Christian Island Reserve:
Chief Rod Monague.
From the Chippewas of Sarnia:
Chief Ray Rogers.