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September 20th, 2016

Reality Check: Liberal promises to indigenous peoples burst a major leak

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised a new era of reconciliation and nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples.

So when BC’s Grand Chief Stewart Phillip said the need for true consultation on the Site C Dam was the test of reconciliation, you might have expected the Liberals to pay attention.

After all, two prominent Liberal Cabinet Ministers had strongly criticized the lack of consultation on the proposed megadam:

“This is a great example of a project that there wasn’t the level of consultation and engagement that should have been had.”

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna (2016-05-12 Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs)

“The country’ reputation is at stake with approval of these projects like Site C…And running roughshod over Aboriginal title and rights, including treaty rights is not the way to improve that reputation.”

Justice Minister Jody Wilson Raybould (2012. Then BC Regional Chief of the Assembly of First Nations)

And the head of the BC panel that reviewed the project said the power isn’t needed for decades, so there was no cause to rush

So why, on a Friday afternoon in the middle of the summer, did the Liberals approved all outstanding permits for Site C?

And why have the prominent cabinet critics suddenly gone silent?