Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)/Cree Nation Government Engages in New Alliance with Val d'Or in a Fight Against Racism and Discrimination

VAL D'OR, QC, Dec. 15, 2015 /CNW/ - Following a series of shocking revelations by three Aboriginal women of sexual and physical abuses suffered at the hands of Val d'Or Sûreté du Québec officers broadcast on Radio-Canada October 22nd, 2015, Grand Chief Matthew Coon Come of the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)/Cree Nation Government publicly announced that he would "stand shoulder-to-shoulder with anyone denouncing racism and discrimination". 

On Monday, December 7th, 2015, Val d'Or Mayor Pierre Corbeil and his Council unanimously adopted two motions that proved their willingness to bring a much needed wind of change to the region.  The first motion adheres Val d'Or to the Canadian Coalition of Municipalities Against Racism and Discrimination. 

The second motion, also adopted unanimously, calls on the Government of Quebec to establish a provincial Commission of Inquiry to examine in an effective way discrimination and racism in the public security forces and administration of justice in Quebec.  This call is immediately echoed by the Assembly of First Nations of Quebec and Labrador (AFNQL), the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), and fully supported by the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)/Cree Nation Government. 

Today, Grand Chief Matthew Coon Come stands with Val d'Or Mayor Pierre Corbeil as he inaugurates a new alliance to fight against racism and discrimination.  New initiatives within the municipality's structure will be implemented; liaison committees, policy reviews, diversity campaigns, and cultural awareness sessions are all examples of Val d'Or taking the lead in bringing a much-needed change.

Although these many efforts by Val d'Or are acknowledged and encouraged, the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)/Cree Nation Government does not underestimate the magnitude of this crisis. 

"Make no mistake, we do not pretend to have solved the matter and that it is now over.  The revelations began with three women bravely coming forward.  As of today, more than a dozen women have come forward.  Reports of abuse continue to come in from other regions, including Cree territory.  This is not just a Val d'Or problem.  It does not belong only to Val d'Or. This is systemic.  This belongs to everyone.  Quebec must take position on these matters of public security." – Grand Chief Dr. Matthew Coon Come

 

SOURCE Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee)

For further information: Bill Namagoose, Executive Director - Tel. (613) 761-1655; Melissa Saganash, Director of Cree - Quebec Relations, Tel. (514) 249-8598

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