August 11, 2010Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs CanadaHouse of CommonsOttawa, Ontario K1A 0A6
SENT VIA FAX: 819-953-4941613-996-3306
Attention: Minister John DuncanDear Sir:Union of BC Indian Chiefs support Algonquins of Barriere Lake/Mitchikanibikok Inik We would like to take a moment to congratulate you on your recent appointment as Minister of Indian andNorthern Affairs Canada. We look forward to working with you as we jointly undertake the myriad of challenges that confront First Nations of this country.We are writing to convey our strong and unwavering support for the Algonquins of Barriere Lake in theirongoing struggle to protect and defend the integrity of their customary leadership selection code known asthe Barriere Lake Governance Code (BLGC) . As you may or may not be aware, the BLGC was adoptedby the community in 1997.We are shocked, alarmed and deeply angered to hear that the Government of Canada, through Indian andNorthern Affairs Canada, and the Government of Quebec, through the Surete du Quebec, are openlycollaborating to forcefully impose the Section 74 Election provisions of the Indian Act on the Algonquinsof Barriere Lake. We understand that Surete du Quebec police officers shall be deployed into Algonquinterritory for the purposes of overseeing the establishment of polling stations and have been ordered toarrest anyone who opposes the imposition of the Indian Act Election system.Needless to say, this flies-in-the-face of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, theCanadian Constitution and most importantly, the Inherent Indigenous and Treaty Rights of the AlgonquinPeoples.