WINNIPEG, MB, April 5, 2019 /CNW/ - Since its first budget in 2016, the Government of Canada has taken significant action to improve the quality of life for Indigenous Peoples across Canada. Working in partnership with First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples has improved the way Indigenous people access services in their own communities.
Today, the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, was in Winnipeg to highlight the Government's proposed Indigenous-related investments in Budget 2019, Investing in the Middle Class. These important investments represent the next step in the ongoing path toward reconciliation and a better future for Indigenous Peoples and all Canadians.
Speaking at an event at the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, Minister Carolyn Bennett, discussed how the Government is building on its historic investments in areas of critical need for Indigenous communities, including education, mental wellness and housing. Budget 2019 also builds on previous work and to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action, and proposes new investments to continue this work.
Through Budget 2019, the Government proposes to:
- Ensure that First Nations children continue to have access to the services that they need through Jordan's Principle.
- Forgive all outstanding comprehensive claim negotiation loans and reimburse Indigenous governments that have already repaid these loans, to address rights and self-determination in communities.
- Improve access to clean drinking water, supporting ongoing efforts to eliminate and prevent long-term drinking water advisories.
- Support the revitalization of Indigenous languages by implementing the proposed Indigenous Languages Act, supporting Indigenous-led language projects and creating the Office of the Commissioner of Indigenous Languages.
- Help First Nations communities prepare for emergencies and adapt to the threats of climate change by supporting increased resiliency and emergency management services on-reserve, as well as investing in on-reserve infrastructure.
- Ensure that First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples are able to fully contribute to and share in Canada's economic success by supporting more Indigenous entrepreneurs and revitalizing Indigenous-led businesses, and institutions.
- Enable First Nations, Inuit and Métis students to have better access to post-secondary education, and provide more support to ensure that they can succeed during their studies.
- Provide $126.5 million in 2020–21 to establish a National Council for Reconciliation. The Council will involve Canadians in creating a better understanding of reconciliation, and will serve as a permanent reminder of the importance of reconciliation and the Calls to Action.
- Provide $15.2 million over three years to help ensure that the voices of First Nation, Inuit and Métis youth are heard and to support Indigenous youth reconciliation initiatives, through an Indigenous youth pilot program delivered by Canadian Roots Exchange, responding to Call to Action 66.
With these investments, the Government is taking concrete action to advance reconciliation and make a better future for Indigenous Peoples and all Canadians.
"Implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action is a critical step in Canada's journey of reconciliation. Reconciliation is not just an Indigenous issue, it's a Canadian imperative, and it will take genuine collaboration at all levels to advance this journey. Our government is working across all departments to realize the vision of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Budget 2019 has made significant investments to further this important work."
The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
- With Budget 2019, the total federal government investments in Indigenous programs are more than $17 billion in 2021–22, an increase of 50 per cent compared to the year the Government was elected.
- Since 2015, the Government has invested nearly $2 billion to build, repair and upgrade public water systems in First Nations communities, resulting in more than 80 long-term drinking water advisories being lifted, with the final goal of having all advisories lifted by 2021.
- To help First Nations children access important health and social services, Budget 2019 proposes to provide $1.2 billion over three years, beginning in 2019–20.
- To address the immediate needs of Inuit children who face a number of challenges accessing health and social services, Budget 2019 proposes to invest $220 million over five years, beginning in 2019–20.
- Forgiving and reimbursing loans will allow more than 200 Indigenous communities to reinvest in their priorities like governance, infrastructure and economic development that will increase health and well-being for all community members.
- Budget Plan
- Budget Speech
- Backgrounder: The Canada Training Benefit
- Backgrounder: An Affordable Place to Call Home
- Backgrounder: Moving Forward on Implementing National Pharmacare
- Backgrounder: A Secure and Dignified Retirement for Canadians
- Backgrounder: Advancing Reconciliation With Indigenous Peoples
- Backgrounder: Building a Better Canada: Universal High-Speed Internet
- Backgrounder: Strong Communities, Affordable Electricity and a Clean Economy
- Gender Report
- Investing in Young Canadians
- The Fiscal Monitor (Financial Results for January 2019)
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SOURCE Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC)
For further information: Matthew Dillon-Leitch, Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, 819-997-0002; Media Relations, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, 819-934-2302, [email protected]