Confederacy of Nations La Confédération des Nations
REPORT OF THE ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS’CONFEDERACY OF NATIONS TO THE FIRST-NATIONS-IN -ASSEMBLY
May 27, 2014It has not been even one month since many of you heard about something called the “Confederacyof Nations” for the very first time. Others who have been around for a bit remembered it, but hadnot thought about it for many years. We must begin, therefore, by explaining why for the first time in ten years, this Assembly of FirstNations is hearing a report from the Confederacy of Nations. Forty-five years ago, 1969, the Government of Canada tabled a “White Paper” which said it wasgoing to do away with Indian s. There would be no more Indian reserves. There would be no more Indian rights. There would beno more treaties. And there would be no more Indians in Canada. The word “Indian” would beerased out of Canadian law. It was like legal genocide.Our grandfathers reacted immediately and decisively. With the strong leadership of GeorgeManuel from British Columbia, they organized provincial and territorial organizations, theyunited those organizations into a “National Indian Brotherhood”, they gained the support ofchurches, labour unions, university students. They held rallies, protests, marches. And three years later, the government admitted defeat and said it would bury the White Paper. In 1978, the Government of Canada announced it was patriating the Constitution. It was cuttingitself free from Britain. Again the Chiefs – our grandfathers – mobilized – who would beresponsible for the treaty promises and guarantees? What would happen to our title to our landsand resources – the lands we had agreed to share for immigration and settlement?
The Formation of the Assembly of First Nations