NDP Aboriginal Affairs critic, Jean Crowder wishes to mark today’s sixth anniversary of the historic adoption of the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) by the UN General Assembly. This Declaration is the product of almost 25 years of deliberation by U.N. member states and Indigenous groups and enshrines Indigenous peoples’ individual and collective rights. November 12th will mark the third anniversary of Canada’s endorsement to this milestone document, unfortunately the federal government has yet to commit to the UNDRIP by establishing a respectful nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples.
“The provisions of the UNDRIP provide the necessary framework for governments to interpret and apply international and national laws as well as human rights obligations according to Indigenous peoples’ rights,” said Crowder. She continued by stating that, “The Declaration is a fundamental tool that recognizes the inherent rights of Indigenous peoples in Canada and around the world. Sadly the prime minister still hasn’t honoured these commitments; it is imperative to restore a respectful dialogue with First Nations, Inuit and Métis”.
The Harper government officially supported the UN Declaration on Indigenous Rights in November 2010 but failed to respect its principles. The NDP however, was proactive in getting support for the Declaration in the House of Commons in 2008 by introducing a motion on the issue sponsored by MP Irene Mathyssen. In addition, earlier this year, MP Romeo Saganash tabled a private member’s bill, C-469, that would harmonize Canadian laws with the international declaration.
Once the House resumes in October, Saganash will continue to push this bill forward.
On this day, the NDP wishes to remind the Harper government that the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples provides a framework and context necessary to ensure justice and dignity, safety and well-being of Indigenous peoples, in a true spirit of reconciliation and cooperation.