Naawi-Ooden Treaty 1 to 11 Gathering
- Darla Ponace | August 23, 2023
Indigenous people gathered in Naawi-Oodena Treaty One Nations joint reserve in Winnipeg, Man. for the Treaty 1-11 Gathering.
The four-day began on July 23.
Leaders from the 11 Treaty territories discussed the youth, legal and political issues as well as international issues and communication strategies.
Other important topics included the Treaty framework and structure, land rights, access to healthcare and education. Reconciliation and the path towards healing was also discussed.
One of the speakers Robert Maytwayashing shared what an elder told him during a ceremony.
“Right from the beginning of time when we were first placed here as a people, we have always been very loved. Loved by our great Creator, and all our relations. And in turn we too as a people have been very loving…when we talk about these treaties and our partners that we got into these sacred agreements with…We openly and willingly offered to share our lands with them, because we are the true and original keepers of our land and we must always remember that.”
Elder Lawrence Henry, a former sundance Chief served on council for Roseau River Anishinaabe First Nation for 24 years, is an advocate of the old clan government system. He said it was the original way of governing long before the treaties were signed.
“I’ve been involved in bringing back the clan system form of government for our people for our people,” said Henry. “And I am telling you, I am having the hardest time to convince our own people about going back to their own system which is the clan system. All the instructions are there for each clan to do all the work that is needed to be done in each of our communities. So we need to pursue that as much as possible.”
He knows there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done to fully transition back the original ways before the treaties were signed.
Loretta Belrose Chief Administrative Officer for Treaty 8 Urban Child and Family Services spoke about Bill C92. She said it is an agreement to sign away the right to be sovereign and to have jurisdiction over First Nation children.
“How can we trust a government system?,” said Belrose. “Residential schools turned into Child Welfare. We’re not done, we’re still in Residential schools still today, We’re not done, we’re still in it,” said Belrose.
Discussions about Camp Morgan at the Brady Landfill, and Camp Mercedes at the Human Rights Museum in Winnipeg, were also discussed at the gathering. A blanket ceremony was performed to help raise some donations for both families.