WENDAKE, QC, June 28, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - With the announcement by the Couillard Government of a government Action Plan for the social and cultural development of First Nations and Inuit People, the AFNQL welcomes the efforts made by the provincial government in the program and service delivery to Inuit People and members of First Nations. This is the first major initiative undertaken by the Provincial Government towards First Nations since the Socioeconomic Forum of Mashteuiatsh, some ten years ago.
The AFNQL also recognizes that the increase of appropriations for these programs and services will contribute to the collective effort that needs to be undertaken to improve the unacceptable socioeconomic conditions that still affect a vast majority of First Nations members.
The AFNQL nevertheless wishes to insist of the fact that the government's action deserves to be put in a clearly defined context. "The action plan proposed today shall ensure that all the interventions, by the provincial and federal governments are truly consistent with the best interest of First Nations and Inuit Peoples", stated Ghislain Picard, Chief of the AFNQL.
The AFNQL intends to pay great attention to the implementation of this plan. It intends to call for the immediate establishment of a Monitoring Committee for the action plan, involving, at every stage, representatives appointed by First Nations.
In addition, Chief Picard wishes to remind the Couillard Government that, in order to reach lasting results in social and cultural development, the access to the territories and resources is paramount.
"All the good intentions of the Provincial Government towards the social development of our First Nations will never prevent it from having to recognize and respect the Aboriginal and Treaty Rights and Titles over the territories they never ceded. The primary and fundamental condition of the socioeconomic development of people is, above all, the access to its territory and its resources. There cannot be a real reconciliation without this unavoidable recognition", concluded Chief Picard.
About the AFNQL
The Assembly of First Nations of Quebec-Labrador is the political organization regrouping the 43 Chiefs of the First Nations in Quebec and in Labrador. www.apnql-afnql.com.
SOURCE Assembly of First Nations of Quebec and Labrador
For further information: Mélanie Vincent: [email protected], Cell.: 418-580-4442