JUNE 19, 2023
(xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C.) Chiefs of Ontario and First Nations in what is now known as Ontario have rejected the Government of Canada’s proposed Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Self-Government Recognition and Implementation legislation, expressing serious and legitimate concerns about the impact the legislation may have on the exercise of their inherent and constitutionally protected rights, as well as concerns regarding the legitimacy of certain communities the MNO claims to represent.
We understand that, to date, the Government of Canada has failed to engage with the Chiefs of Ontario and impacted First Nations in what is now known as Ontario on this issue for their consent, despite the United Nations Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act which affirms the application of the United Nations Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Canadian law, requires the laws of Canada to be consistent with the UN Declaration, and affirms the UN Declaration as the framework for reconciliation. The First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) stands in solidarity with the Chiefs of Ontario and those First Nations as they act to protect and defend their inherent, constitutional, and human rights, and exercise their laws, legal systems, systems of governance, and jurisdictions within their territories.