amiskwaciwâskahikan (Edmonton) – Canadians voted in the 43rd federal election on October 21, 2019. Assembly of First Nations Alberta Regional Chief Marlene Poitras issued the following statement on the results:
“I congratulate all parties, candidates and leaders on their efforts during this election campaign and, more importantly, everyone who made their voices heard at the ballot box, especially Indigenous voters. Voting allows us to elect individuals who we feel will best support honouring historic and recent promises made to First Nations.
“As Alberta Regional Chief, I am committed to working with all levels of government in promoting better partnership between them and First Nations. First Nations have a relationship with Canada’s Crown – its government – not with an individual politician or party. This is why I will continue to work with whoever is in power to advance the priorities of Treaty Six, Seven, and Eight Chiefs in my region, at their direction, and advocate on issues that matter to them.
“When this election started, we asked First Nations in Alberta what they would like to see a government focus on in the next four years. Those that responded told us they, like many across the country, want to see a government take bold steps in reversing the path toward the climate disaster we’re headed for. They also want to see Canada uphold, honour, and implement the Treaties they signed with sovereign First Nations; take meaningful action on closing the gap between First Nations and Canadians; support nation-building and First Nations’ economic sovereignty; implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; realize the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action; and compensate First Nations children discriminated against in the child welfare system. I will work hard with my colleagues at the Assembly of First Nations to ensure these remain top government priorities.
“I am hopeful that the election of a hung parliament will encourage more dialogue and collaboration across party lines. As I often say, we are stronger when we work together to address the issues we all collectively face. In a world that continues to be plagued by division and polarization, I hope newly elected and re-elected Members of Parliament can work on fostering a more unified and collaborative approach to politics.
“To all Indigenous candidates that ran in this campaign, I commend you for your courage and dedication to pursue a better future for our people, and for Canadians. When democracy better reflects the voices and perspectives of society, we can succeed in creating a brighter and more inclusive tomorrow.”