October 18th, 2021
LETTER: Trudeau Liberals still won't support searches of Residential School sites
Dear Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations,
I'm writing to you today about the reports that Manitoba First Nations won't be receiving funding for searches for remains at former Residential Schools due to delays by the federal government. Provincial officials have stated they are looking to the federal government for guidance on the dispersal of funds, but your government has failed to show leadership on how to provide this funding to communities.
This is a repeated pattern with this government. In 2019, the government promised $32 million to support these searches. Almost none of it was spent.
Following the discovery of 215 bodies at Kamloops Residential School, your government cynically tried recycling that unused spending commitment, but it didn’t fool anyone. Your government then blocked my motion to get the searches started and on the eve of the election, your government cynically reproduced it.
First Nations are still waiting, having told the Winnipeg Free Press “they’re frustrated about the lack of urgency to hand out federal funding” (October 17th, 2021). It’s always the same with this government; pretty words but ultimately broken promises.
This past election maintained the status quo in Parliament. Here’s hoping that your record of delays, broken promises & disrespect isn’t maintained too.
MP Niki Ashton (Churchill—Keewatinook Aski)