Last week we watched Justin Trudeau’s speech which he held for the assembly of first nations in 2015. In this speech, he recognizes the systematic oppression which the first nations have experienced since the colonial times. In addition, he recognized how there is still a long way to go.
Throughout the speech he proudly explains how they are going to fix the relationship between the Canadian government and the first nations by taking action and make their situation better. Some of the things he mentioned was building better schools, better protection of first nation women and girls in addition to bigger funding.
Missing and murdered women from the first nation has been a huge issue in Canada. Trudeau especially emphasised this in his speech and promised there would be better protection. Moreover, he promised to start an inquiry where they would investigate the circumstances surrounding the disappearances and murderers. This inquiry was started soon after the speech.
However, a lot of the first nations are not happy. They mean Trudeau is all talk and no action. “There’s been a lot of public platitudes and eloquent statements about the need to move forward – but aside from the sizzle, there’s not a great degree of substance,” said Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.
I think it is about time that the Canadian government issued an apology, and recognized the inhumane treatment the first natives in Canada have gone through. The issue now however, three years later, is that most of the first nations are still being treated this way. Things are not getting better yet, and there must come more concrete measures.
More about the situation for first nation women and girls:
More about the investigation into missing and murdered indigenous women:
More about Trudeau’s speech: