The Grassy Narrows community members are descendents of this Nation and are therefore entitled to exercise the rights established in this treaty, including the “right to pursue their avocations (of hunting and fishing) throughout the tract.” This is commonly understood to include the right to trap animals for food, and to exercise these rights both for sustenance and commercial purposes. It calls for an order setting aside the tribunal's decision and dismissing the claim for monetary compensation. Singh reacted to the news on Saturday while he was campaigning in Grassy Narrows, an Indigenous community in northern Ontario that has been dealing with mercury poisoning in its water supply for years, and has been under a water advisory since 2013. A variety of newsletters you'll love, delivered straight to you. Box 500 Station A Toronto, ON Canada, M5W 1E6. He says he will do 'whatever it takes. Fishing is central to their culture, traditions and economy. The mercury poisoning of Grassy Narrows—also known as Asubpeeschoseewagong First Nation—dates back to the 1960s, when the pulp and paper mill in Dryden, Ontario, owned by the Dryden Chemical Company dumped 9,000 kg of mercury into the Wabigoon and English River systems. By Elizabeth McSheffrey, Community Journalism Trainer In Ojibway, the word […] This week the Liberal government announced it would challenge a landmark human rights ruling to compensate apprehended First Nations children harmed by the on-reserve child welfare system and under-funded child and family services. The Canadian Press . "Grassy Narrows continues to call for compensation for all community members for the impacts of the ongoing mercury crisis and for all support required to restore their health, way of life, livelihood, self-determination, lands and waters," the press release said. she said.Â. the Canadian Government is also in violation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Chrissy Isaacs said. "It feels like forever. On Monday, a team of local reporters in Grassy Narrows published four news stories within two hours, using shared laptops in a classroom with intermittent Internet access. Treaty 3 has also been largely violated by the governments of Canada and Ontario. Indigenous peoples have been victims of environmental racism for decades, with water quality and scarcity being one of the factors. "Â, With files from Olivia Stefanovich and Jorge Barrera. The Indigenous community of Grassy Narrows, Canada, has been devastated by mercury poisoning. Clean, drinkable water is a human right, that many Indigenous communities across Canada … Water crisis in Indigenous Communities Across Canada . In 2012, Kathleen Wynne visited Grassy Narrows saying she wanted to rebuild Grassy Narrows relationship with the province and 'get it right', but instead unilaterally decided to move ahead with the industrial clear cut logging plan without consent from the community. Closed Captioning and Described Video is available for many CBC shows offered on CBC Gem. Learn more about specific Supreme Court of Canada rulings regarding indigenous rights. Baskut Tuncak, the UN’s special rapporteur on human rights and hazardous substances and wastes, said he has heard during a two-week tour with various stops that members of Grassy Narrows … As an adult, her legs are starting to go numb, and she's unable to swallow easily. The decision could leave the federal government on the hook for billions of dollars in compensation. The centre, once completed, would provide frontline care for those afflicted with mercury poisoning, as well as provide further study on its impact on the human body. Browse more videos. Research and Investigation. The young people of Grassy Narrows have the right to grow up in a healthy environment and a thriving community. For the community it was devastating: fishing was a vital part of their way of life. But that's not what his government's application says. The Ontario Government currently grants multinational corporations like Weyerhaeuser the rights to clear-cut log Grassy Narrows' area, stripping intact forest regions of Grassy Narrows Territory into chunks of 20,000 barren acres or more. "We remain steadfast in our commitment to meeting the specific health needs of Grassy Narrows," Indigenous Services Minister Seamus O'Regan said in a statement Saturday. "Grassy Narrows members remain concerned about the impact of forestry on their land." Through a long process of deception and force by the Canadian Government the community has been dispossessed of their lands by Provincial legislation. They migrated northward and westward during the late 17th and early 18th centuries in search of animals to supply the fur trade. The severe mercury contamination of the rivers and lakes. Infectbatter. On October 3rd, 1873 Treaty 3 was signed between the Crown and the Chiefs of the Salteaux Tribe of the Ojibway Indians. Last week I walked with those in support of Grassy Narrows and the River Run Walk. The fur trade economy transformed Ojibwe social organization and resource use. More, We Have Never Experienced Such Concern: Transnational Bonds of Solidarity from Minamata to Grassy Narrows and Whitedog First Nations, Grassy members remain vigilant about logging, Grassy Narrows First Nation fears further mercury poisoning as Ford government ends assessments for clear-cut logging, Mercury levels higher in Grassy Narrows residents who died young, new study finds, Grassy Narrows signs deal with Ottawa to build mercury care home, Grassy Narrows reminds Canada of unkept promises as AFN sets its priority agenda, Grassy Narrows chief calls on Ottawa to end delays on mercury treatment centre. ", Catherine McKenna, a Liberal candidate in Ottawa who serves as environment minister under Trudeau, acknowledged Saturday that there's "still a lot more work to do. The Grassy Narrows people have a special relationship to the river. We say that clean water is a Human Right. More . After 50 years of devastating contamination of their waters, the people of Grassy Narrows are owed a debt of justice. - Judy DaSilva, Grassy Narrows "We have struggled for many years to save our way of life in the face of clear-cut logging, which has contaminated our waters and destroyed our lands. On Friday, the Attorney General of Canada filed an application for a judicial review and for a stay of the ruling with the Federal Court — just over two weeks before the federal election and days before the Oct. 7 deadline for filing an appeal. Our culture around water shows we are entering a spiritual drought. We cannot go back to the old way of business where decisions were imposed on our people and our land with devastating consequences … With members of the Grassy Narrows First Nation protesting outside the Toronto fundraiser on Wednesday, two non-members advocating on their behalf attended the … Urge the federal government to help restore what mercury has taken. "Yesterday, all eight Northern NDP MPPs released a letter to Doug Ford calling on him to respond to the concerns of First Nations who have contacted him after he failed to respect treaty rights and rushed changes in Bill 197 that impacts treaty territories without consulting them." An Indigenous guide to the 2019 federal election, Trudeau government seeks judicial review of tribunal decision to compensate First Nations kids, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is asked how much money he would spend to ensure all communities have safe drinking water. Well, some say. 5 years ago | 1 view. In order to absolve themselves of any responsibility for their actions, the federal government and Reed Paper Company (which had bought out the Dryden Chemical Company) ended up paying a settlement to Grassy Narrows, … Ontario's Progessive Conservative government made it a campaign promise to clean up, or remediate, the Wabigoon River … The Canadian governments’ refusal to respect its treaty with Grassy Narrows and its decision to continue to allow provincially mandated corporations, such as Weyerhaeuser, to decimate Grassy Narrows’ land without the community’s consent is in direct violation of basic human rights as articulated by the Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in its interpretation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination – an established and binding human rights treaty: The Committee especially calls upon States parties to recognize and protect the rights of Indigenous peoples to own, develop, control and use their communal lands, territories and resources and, where they have been deprived of their lands and territories traditionally owned or otherwise inhabited or used without their free and informed consent, to take steps to return those lands and territories. 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