Assembly of First Nations convenes at first in series of Urban Outreach Forums

EDMONTON, Sept. 8, 2016 /CNW/ – The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) is holding its first Urban Outreach Forum today in Edmonton, Alberta, which will serve to shed light on the unique challenges and experiences faced by urban First Nations citizens. Today’s Forum is the first in a series of gatherings held as part of the AFN’s broader urban strategy to advance the rights and priorities of First Nations living in urban settings.

“The AFN always ensures the urban dimension is reflected in our plans and priorities. The Urban Outreach Forums are part of our effort to meet the needs of First Nations wherever they choose to reside,” said Regional Chief Makinaw. “Today we are fortunate enough to listen and learn from a number of urban First Nations people, leaders and representatives from urban organizations. This will help ensure the rights of all our citizens are upheld and that we’re working towards a better quality of life for all our people.”

Today’s forum will explore topics such as First Nations’ evolving needs and priorities in the urban landscape, portability of rights, the intersections of issues and services, and how services can better address urban realities. Remarks will be given by the AFN Alberta Regional Chief, Craig Makinaw, municipal leadership from the City of Edmonton, and others. This event will also inform the AFN’s work surrounding the federal Urban Aboriginal Strategy (UAS).

“The AFN’s Urban Forums are an important step towards supporting urban First Nations citizens, and ensuring they have a voice and a role in all of our work,” said AFN National Chief Bellegarde. “We know that many of our people walk in both worlds and that is why we remain steadfast in ensuring that urban First Nations citizens are heard and represented.”

The AFN’s second Urban Forum will be held on September 23rd in Montreal, QC, led by AFN’s portfolio holder for urban issues, Quebec-Labrador Regional Chief Ghislain Picard.

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nation citizens in Canada.  Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Updates

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