Treaty First Nations Gather to “Honour Our Ancestors”
September 22, 2009, Traditional territory of Treaty No.6…Over 800 Treaty First Nations members have gathered on the Enoch Cree Nation to discuss common concerns regarding Treaty agreements signed with the Crown.Chief Ovide Mercredi is the National Spokesperson for the First Nations movement, Treaties 1-11 and in his opening statements today he said, “Five years ago the Chiefs gathered in Edmonton at that time the Chiefs were concerned about the neglect of the Treaties by the crown. Since that day, we have done a lot to make people aware of the Treaties and the survival of First Nations people. It’s not fair for people in this country to benefit from the Treaties while our people suffer, stated Chief Ovide Mercredi.
During the gathering, Spokespeople from each Treaty territory had an opportunity to speak and the common theme was to take the message of “Honour our Treaties” to the international stage and meet with the Queen of England.
“Many years ago, my father (the late Harold Cardinal) use to bring me to these meetings. I’ve known a lot of elders and in my time, I’ve seen that we have become complacent. We haven’t been listening to our elders, they’ve told us to be united with respect to our Treaties. We need to accept responsibility and move forward. Our Treaties can never be broken because there was ceremonies that went with the Treaties, “said Grand Chief of Treaty 8 First Nations of Alberta, Jaret Cardinal.
The fifth annual National Treaties 1-11 Gathering, “Honouring Our Ancestors”, is taking place from September 21-24, 2009 at the Marriott River Cree Resort & Casino on the Enoch Cree Nation.
Treaty No.6, Treaty No.7 & Treaty No.8 represents 48 First Nations/Bands and over 100, 000 First Nation members within the Province of Alberta.
Nicole Robertson, Communications Advisor
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