National Chief Shawn Atleo Congratulates Lennox Island First Nation

OTTAWA, Dec. 2 /CNW Telbec/ - Assembly of First Nations National Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo congratulated Chief Darlene Bernard and the Lennox Island First Nation, on today's announcement of the establishment of Minigoo Fisheries Inc., a lobster processing facility which will be completely owned and operated by the First Nation.

"First Nations have the potential to build strong, resilient economies and improve our people's quality of life by exercising their treaty rights. The treaty relationship has always been about respect, recognition and moving forward. With the recognition of Mikmaq treaty rights, First Nation communities in the Atlantic region can rightfully participate governing and managing the fishery," said National Chief Shawn Atleo.

National Chief Atleo noted that prior to the landmark Marshall decision, most of the Atlantic First Nation communities suffered from high unemployment rates and a lack of economic opportunities.

Minigoo Fisheries Inc. will result in increased access to the commercial fishery for First Nations in this region. The initiative will provide for long term employment, stable incomes, and spin off economic opportunities for Lennox Island First Nation and adjacent communities.

Minigoo Fisheries Inc is an example of a First Nation and the private sector working together to lay the groundwork for long-term economic growth in our communities, without any assistance from the federal or provincial levels of government.

"Aboriginal and treaty rights to fish are affirmed and constitutionally protected," said New Brunswick/PEI Regional Chief Roger Augustine commenting on First Nations asserting an increasing share of the commercial fishery through treaties and investment. "When First Nations exercise their treaty rights it improves the social, cultural, and economic well-being of First Nation communities."

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nations in Canada.

SOURCE Assembly of First Nations

For further information: For further information: Karyn Pugliese, Acting Director of Communications, (613) 241-6789 ext 210 or (613) 292-1877 or kpugliese@afn.ca


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