AFN National Chief Acknowledges Federal Party Responses to Questionnaire

    OTTAWA, Oct. 3 /CNW Telbec/ - The Assembly of First Nations has received
4 out of 5 responses from the various parties to a questionnaire sent to all
leaders on September 17th regarding the upcoming election and the party
platforms related to First Nation issues.
    "We had asked to hear back from all the parties by October 1st and I am
really pleased with the responses we have received to date from the Bloc
Quebecois, Green, Liberal and New Democratic parties. They have provided First
Nations with solid responses and outlined their party platforms in a clear and
concise manner. This support from 4 out of 5 parties demonstrates and
reinforces our view that a majority of Canadians are supportive of First
Nation issues." the National Chief Phil Fontaine noted. "The integrity of the
four parties' responses certainly demonstrates a much needed shift towards
reconciliation as anticipated in light of the June 11th Apology in the House
of Commons," the National Chief further added.
    "But the lack of profile of First Nations issues in the political debates
last night also concerns me, as I believe it does all Canadians. In a recent
poll conducted by Nanos, almost half of Canadians strongly or very strongly
believe the federal government should make First Nations poverty a priority.
We know strong First Nations make a stronger Canada and that until we address
the issues of poverty and quality of life for First Nations children, Canada
can not reach its full potential as a fair and just society," the National
Chief concluded.

    The Assembly of First Nations is the national political organization
representing First Nations citizens in Canada and has been working with
Elections Canada to ensure that First Nation citizens exercise their right to
vote in the upcoming federal election. For more information on First Nations
issues and the election and the various party responses check out the
elections page on the AFN website at

For further information:

For further information: Joan McEwen, Director of Communications, (613)
241-6789 ext. 242, cell (613) 324-3329,

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