MNC Expresses Disappointment with Federal Budget

Ottawa, ON, March 28, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Following the announcement and review of Federal Budget 2023, the MĂ©tis National Council is disappointed with the overall lack of funding that would support MĂ©tis citizens.  

“The MĂ©tis National Council put forward a strong budget proposal to support MĂ©tis citizens on issues of health, economic development, education, and languages. This budget fails to invest in these areas. While federal investments made in the MĂ©tis Nation’s self-determined priorities since 2015 have tangibly supported and created positive changes in the lives of MĂ©tis citizens, the 2023 budget delivered today lacks critical investments in the MĂ©tis Nation’s priorities. This is extremely disappointing. As we move forward, we remain committed to working with the Government of Canada to ensure that the MĂ©tis Nation’s priorities receive the attention and resources they deserve,” shared President Caron. 

Recognizing the dismal picture that Canada is facing with its economy, the MNC recognizes the weaker economic outlook presented in this budget. However, this government has spoken highly of its nation-to-nation, government-to-government approach on reconciliation, and this budget fails to recognize the significant investments needed to close socio-economic gaps between MĂ©tis Citizens and non-Indigenous Canadians.

A lack of critically needed investment to support MĂ©tis businesses weather the economic storm; no new funding for MĂ©tis-led health initiatives; and another missed opportunity on providing funding to ensure MĂ©tis language revitalization demonstrates that MĂ©tis citizens continue to be left behind by Canada. 

Further to the lack of new funding in this budget specific to the MĂ©tis Nation, announcements that were made for Indigenous Peoples broadly were not made with MĂ©tis citizens in mind. For example, the $810.6 million announced for health will be administered through the FNIHB program, which MĂ©tis citizens cannot access. On MMIWG, many of the announcements are for existing programs that the MĂ©tis Nation is not involved in. 

The MĂ©tis National Council will continue to advocate for distinctions-based programming to ensure that MĂ©tis voices lead the development of programs for MĂ©tis citizens across the Homeland.

Since 1983, the Métis National Council has been the national and international voice of the Métis Nation within Canada. Through the Canada-Métis Nation Accord, the MNC advocates on behalf of its Governing Members—the democratically elected Métis Governments of Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia—to advance Métis rights and interests within their respective jurisdictions, including the implementation of the Métis Nation’s inherent right to self-determination and self-government. The MNC is committed to accountability and transparency within its operations, and to its relationships with MNC Governing Members. Cassidy Caron is the President of the Métis National Council.

CBJ Newsmakers