Yukon First Nations and Yukon Government Delegates Heading to Ottawa

by NationTalk on February 9, 2008885 Views

WHITEHORSE, Feb. 8 – Premier Dennis Fentie and Yukon First Nations Chiefs are leading a delegation to Ottawa to meet with federal ministers, politicians and senior government officials on the need to develop a timely and inclusive process for responding to issues identified in the report on the nine year review of the implementation of the Yukon treaties.

“We are going to Ottawa to discuss issues brought up at earlier tripartite meetings and to profile our desire to work collaboratively on governance and land claims implementation objectives,” Fentie said. The review of the Yukon First Nation Final and Self Government Agreements, which have been in place for over 10 years, was completed last year. “This was the first extensive review of these agreements and it highlights the need for the federal government to resolve inconsistencies in federal policies and to increase funding to ensure the spirit and intent of the agreements are fulfilled.”

Delegation members joining Premier Dennis Fentie include: Tourism Minister Elaine Taylor, Justice Minister Marian C. Horne, Education Minister Patrick Rouble and Economic Development Minister Jim Kenyon. The Yukon Chiefs delegation includes Vuntut Gwitchin Chief Joe Linklater, Champagne and Aishihik Chief Dianne Strand, Tr’ondek Hwech’in Chief Darren Taylor, Ta’an Kwach’an Chief Ruth Massie and Carcross/Tagish Khà Shâde Héni Mark Wedge.

“Yukon First Nations look forward to this unique opportunity,” Chief Linklater, speaking on behalf of Yukon’s Self Governing First Nations, said. “It’s to advance our intergovernmental discussions beyond simply dialogue and to where we establish clear measures to further our trilateral commitments.”

The Premier and Yukon ministers will also engage in bilateral discussions with federal ministers and senior officials about issues specifically affecting Yukon and the North such as sovereignty, security and sustainable development; climate change adaptation; economic development and diversification; education and training; women’s issues and northern infrastructure.

“An important ingredient in the evolving political and sustainable economic development in Yukon is successful implementation of Yukon First Nations’ Final and Self-Government Agreements,” Fentie added. “This will be the consistent message in both our bilateral and trilateral meetings with federal ministers.”

The Premier will be hosting a reception on Feb. 11 that will include Sundog wood carvers and a display by the Yukon Convention Bureau. This reception will enable the Yukon delegation to network with ministers and senior officials from Ottawa. Yukon ministers will be meeting with their federal counterparts and will attend trilateral meetings with First Nations Chiefs and federal officials Feb. 11 and 12.

For further information: Roxanne Vallevand, Cabinet Communications, Government of Yukon, (867) 633-7949, roxanne.vallevand@gov.yk.ca; Shirley McLean, Communications, Yukon FN Self Government Secretariat, (867) 335-1015, shirley.mclean@ctfn.ca

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