Home Page Election 2019 News Opinion Foreign Policy Politics Policy Legislation Lobbying Hill Life & People Hill Climbers Heard On The Hill Calendar Archives Classifieds
Hill Times Events Inside Ottawa Directory Hill Times Store Hill Times Careers The Wire Report The Lobby Monitor Parliament Now
Subscribe Free Trial Reuse & Permissions Advertising
Log In

Indigenous vote should have big influence in next election

Share a story
The story link will be added automatically.

A few weeks ago, AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde, who said the AFN influenced the 2015 parties’ policies, publicly  called on members to once again lobby all political parties to influence campaign platforms before the October federal election. “With the federal election coming, I want to say now the importance of voting and the importance of influencing all party platforms,” Mr. Bellegarde declared in his speech at the AFN’s 40th annual general assembly in Fredericton on July 23.

Mr. Bellegarde said some 61.5 per cent of the eligible First Nations vote did vote in the 2015 election and he said he hopes that number will increase in 2019, according to media reports. He also said the AFN doesn’t tell people who to vote for, but said First Nations should look at the platforms of all the parties and particularly at which has the most progressive one. “If you want to become prime minister or a Member of Parliament, you better listen to our people and our concerns, because we vote now and have impact. That’s what’s going to happen in October. We’re not going to be pushed to the side anymore,” Mr. Bellegarde said.

Mr. Bellegarde said the AFN’s top priority is climate change, which he called “climate destruction,” followed by restorative justice. “Why are there so many First Nations people in jail?” he asked. “There’s not only common law and civil law recognized in Canada. There’s got to be room for First Nations’ law and natural law—Creator’s law.”

“If you want to become prime minister or Member of Parliament, you better listen to our people and our concerns, because we vote now and have impact. That’s what’s happening in October. We’re not going to be pushed to the side anymore,” he said.

Natan Obed, president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, meanwhile, also said last week that climate change is a top issue and said he hopes the political parties stop fighting about the carbon tax, and look at the real-life “drastic” effects of climate change on the North.

“People should be very concerned about the reality of the Canadian Arctic and the fact that it is a part of Canada. Just because somebody might not see massive changes in their backyard today doesn’t necessarily mean that there shouldn’t be urgent concern from all Canadians about the Arctic and the Inuit port of the climate discussion,” he told The Canadian Press.

We’re at a critical point in our history, as a country and in the world, and the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis are absolutely right to pressure political parties on these key public policy issues. We need bold leadership on climate change, but we also need bold leadership on restorative justice, on acting on the recommendations from the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls, and on finally changing the relationship between the Crown and First Nations, Inuit and Métis.

The Hill Times

Explore, analyze, understand
The Federal Response to the Opioid Crisis
This e-book summarizes the work on the opioid crisis that is going on at the federal level: what the House of Commons and the Senate have been listening to and acting on to help stop and mitigate this tragedy.

Get the book
2018 Guide to Lobbyist Gifting Rules
The 2018 Guide to Lobbyist Gifting Rules is the essential resource for your work on federal issues.

Get the book
Rural Broadband: The challenges and potential solutions
A guide to the problems, work done so far, the key players, and what needs to be done to get all Canadians access to broadband.

Get the book

Politics This Morning

Get the latest news from The Hill Times

Politics This Morning

Your email has been added. An email has been sent to your address, please click the link inside of it to confirm your subscription.

McKenna wins re-election in Ottawa Centre, trumpets voters’ support for climate fight

News|By Neil Moss
'I’m so relieved,' Catherine McKenna said, about continuing with the Liberal climate change plan.

Election 2019 was a ‘campaign of fear,’ say pollsters

'There may well be a message to this to the main parties, that slagging each other will only take you so far,' says Greg Lyle.

Election 2019 campaign one of the most ‘uninspiring, disheartening, and dirtiest’ in 40 years, says Savoie

News|By Abbas Rana
Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says she has never seen an election where mudslinging overwhelmingly dominated the campaign, leaving little or no time for policy discussion.

Strategic voting to determine if Liberals will form government, say political players

News|By Abbas Rana
As many as nine per cent of progressive voters could vote strategically in this close election potentially affecting the outcome in more than 100 ridings, says Innovative Research president Greg Lyle.

Turkish offensive should pressure feds to act on repatriation of Canadian citizens in Kurdish-controlled ISIS detention camps, says expert

News|By Neil Moss
The issue of repatriation will be less politically fraught after the election, says expert.

Business tops experience among 2019 candidates, one-third have run for office before

Here’s an analysis of the record 1,700-plus candidates running for the six major parties this election.

Pod save us all: the growing role of political podcasts in election 2019

News|By Mike Lapointe
The Hill Times spoke with some podcast hosts taking a deeper dive into the political nitty-gritty, within a medium that only continues to grow in popularity.

No-shows from Conservative candidate could hurt party’s chances in tight Kanata-Carleton race, say politicos

News|By Palak Mangat
The Conservative's candidate, Justin McCaffrey, has skipped two events, including a debate on the environment, intended to feature all candidates.

For whom will the bell toll in Peterborough-Kawartha?

In a riding where voters are deeply engaged in the political process, candidates avoid the low-hanging fruit and stay out of the mud as they grapple with who to send to the House of Commons.
Your group subscription includes premium access to Politics This Morning briefing.