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"The Feds founded the first three federal residential schools in 1883 in Alberta and Saskatchewan. First Nations people formed the majority of the population and were power brokers in that area and one of the ways to deal with them was treaties, the other way to deal with them was to take their children hostages." John Milloy's award winning book, …
 
***The subject matter and content of this episode may not be suitable for all listeners*** "We did hear of children's bones being found in the foundations of buildings when (Residential) schools were dismantled. We heard of children being thrown into furnaces. These were children. The little ones who have woken up in Kamloops this week, these are c…
 
**** Encore Presentation **** Bill C-15 - the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People Act - is now moving to the Canadian Senate, after passing successfully through the House of Commons, a last crucial step before becoming law. In honour of this important step, we are re-running one of our most popular interviews in the past year, with Ch…
 
Conner Roulette won Gold this month, playing for Team Canada at the Under 18 World Hockey Championships in Texas, helping defeat Russia in the championship game. A forward with the WHL's Seattle Thunderbirds and a proud member of the Misipawistik Cree Nation in Treaty 5 territory in Manitoba, Roulette had a strong tournament, with five points in se…
 
"The Mi'kmaq are not leaving. We've told the associations, we told the DFO, we told anyone who would listen. The Government has to do something, and that is to help make space in the waters for us, because we are going there, because we have a right to be in those waters." Chief Terry Paul, of the Membertou First Nation in Cape Breton joins the Akh…
 
"We've been working really hard with the government of Canada on meeting their 5% target of procurement from Indigenous business. We did some work with them to look at where they spent their money and compared that to Indigenous businesses in Canada and found that Indigenous businesses could actually serve 24% of the government spend. So 5% is a mi…
 
"The rule of thumb, "Nothing about us, without us," also applies to the United Nations and we (First Nations people) should always be in the room, participating in conversations, when there are global decisions being made that will come back and impact us." Sheryl Lightfoot is the first First Nations woman from Canada to be appointed as the North A…
 
On this special Earth Day episode of the Ahkameyimok Podcast, Catherine McKenna, the Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and a former Environment Minister, joins National Chief Bellegarde to discuss the $6 billion in funding for First Nations specific infrastructure projects in the latest Federal budget, why she instructed the Canadi…
 
"It's very complex, our language, and it's filled with spirituality and land and psychology and it's directly related to where we come from. We are a composition of all these minerals because we are the Big Bang, we come from the stars. That's where we are from." In February, Louise Bernice Halfe - Sky Dancer, was appointed to a two year term as Ca…
 
Mark Podlasly says the trend towards investors using Environmental, Social and Governance investment standards, or ESG, is overall a positive trend except for one large problem, they almost completely ignore the input of First Nations. This, he says, makes it much more likely that there will continue to be conflicts over large projects developed on…
 
For the latest news on the COVID-19 pandemic among First Nations, National Chief Perry Bellegarde talks with Dr. Evan Adams, Deputy Chief Medical Officer at Indigenous Services Canada. The two discuss the reasons for Dr. Adams sense of optimism due to a successful ongoing vaccine roll-out among First Nations, why the rate of vaccination is four tim…
 
"When I went to school and started hearing stories about Roman and Greek mythology and the stars of Orion and Ursa Major, Ursa Minor, I assumed that it was only the Romans and Greeks that looked up at the sky. But that didn't sit right in my head, because I looked at the sky." As a young man Wilfred Buck was curious about the stars, and began to as…
 
"The fact that DRIPA was passed unanimously needs to be underscored. This isn't an agenda of the NDP government, it's something that was embraced by all representatives of the people of British Columbia, and I can't overemphasize how important that is." As BC's Minister of Indigenous Relations, it's Murray Rankins job to implement and meet the comm…
 
"The part of becoming the first indigenous President of the Canadian Medical Association that resonates most with me is knowing that youth out there are going to see someone who is like them and know that they will have the same opportunities that I'm going to have in the coming years." Our guest today is Dr. Alika Lafontaine, who was recently elec…
 
Jagmeet Singh, leader of the federal New Democratic Party, joins us on this episode of the Ahkameyimok Podcast. Singh and National Chief Bellegarde discuss the pandemic, what drew him into politics, overcoming systemic racism, the upcoming election, the importance of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and why the related Bill, C…
 
Former NDP Member of Parliament Romeo Saganash visits the Ahkameyimok Podcast to discuss how Bill C-15, which works to ensure Canadian laws live up to the requirements set out in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, builds on his own efforts with Bill C-262. He and National Chief Bellegarde also discus what improvements the bill …
 
"If you see the message coming from someone who is from my age or younger, that's when you know you are doing something wrong and something has to be done. Because the youth shouldn't have to be using their voices, we shouldn't have to be speaking up on political issues." In 2019, fourteen year-old Autumn Peltier addressed the United Nations in New…
 
"It's not just to say that we're doing the right thing because we have a certain number of First Nations people involved. It's to learn and have the knowledge of the First Nations people, because we'll be better for it. It will enrich our sport." Former National Hockey League player Andrew Ference is now the NHL Director of Social Impact, Growth an…
 
Chief Willie Littlechild knows a thing or two about the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. He helped write the first draft of the UN Declaration back in 1977. Chief Littlechild then spent 30 years working to get the UN to adopt the Declaration, in face of opposition from the Canadian government at the time, and is now l…
 
On #BellLetsTalk Day, as part of the AFN effort to help support mental health all across Canada, National Chief Perry Bellegarde is joined by Dr Carol Hopkins to talk mental health and First Nations. They discuss why traditional First Nations healing and knowledge are a key component to helping people and communities overcome mental health challeng…
 
"I document one case, and it really hit me, in this report, where a First Nations mom and she's in the hospital, the obstetrician is attending to her and she's about to have her baby by C-Section. It's kind of a high risk pregnancy, she's been sick. And the anesthesiologist is really manhandling her and yelling at her. And she's like 'Hey, what are…
 
What is the state of First Nations languages in Canada? One of the leading experts on the promotion and restoration of Indigenous culture and language, Dr Lorna Wanosts’a7 Williams of the University of Victoria, joins the Ahkameyimok Podcast to discuss that ahead of the Symposium on Indigenous Languages hosted by Canadian Heritage on January 25th. …
 
Sheldon Kennedy is one of Canada's leading campaigners in the fight against child abuse. The retired NHL veteran and founder of the Calgary Child Advocacy Centre joins National Chief Bellegarde to discuss ways in which the pandemic has made child abuse worse, what can be done to improve that, his own history of abuse by his hockey coach as a teenag…
 
With First Nations COVID cases spiking, Dr Evan Adams, Deputy-Chief Medical Officer at Indigenous Services Canada, joins National Chief Perry Bellegarde to discuss the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to First Nations. They talk about why the vaccine is safe and necessary, the different brands of vaccine, when they will become widely available, and why…
 
Tom Jackson took a break from his annual Huron Carole concert series, fundraising for homeless shelters, to join National Chief Perry Bellegarde in a special holiday edition of Ahkameyimok. The award winning actor, musician and social activist talks about how he turned his life around by helping others, why compassion and kindness are so important,…
 
"If you have a child that is loved and has opportunities and is in their family, you're not going to have child abuse. In fact we have very little real child abuse in the indigenous sector to begin with, what we have is the debilitating impacts of poverty." Indigenous Child Welfare advocate Kenn Richard joins National Chief Perry Bellegarde to disc…
 
"That divide is there between cultural and Christian First Nations people. I love that there's still respect between the two and that they can co-exist. It's not that I'm unaware of the two realms, (Gospel First Nation) is my attempt at amalgamation." William Prince. Peguis First Nation. Treaty 1 Territory, Manitoba. Country music star William Prin…
 
"The fastest growing prison population is not just indigenous people, but particularly indigenous women and even more so, those who experienced the greatest disadvantages." Senator Kim Pate points out that almost half of the women in Canada's prisons are indigenous, despite indigenous people making up less than five percent of the total population.…
 
“It’s very dehumanizing what we are going through. Water is a basic human right.” Neskantaga First Nation has the longest standing boil water advisory in Canada, twenty-five years and counting. And now the northern Ontario Ojibwe Nation has been evacuated to Thunder Bay for the second time in two years because of serious problems with the water sup…
 
To mark Remembrance Day, Major General Joe Paul, the highest ranking First Nations officer in the Canadian Armed Forces, joins National Chief Perry Bellegarde on the podcast. They discuss; the significance of the unveiling of the portrait of First Nations D-Day hero Philip Favel at the Canadian War Museum, the historic role of First Nations in the …
 
First Nations people are 4 percent of the Canadian population but make up about one quarter of the prison population. This is just one more example of systemic racism. Now a new groundbreaking investigation by the Globe and Mail crime and justice reporter Tom Cardoso takes a hard look at years worth of government data to reveal the impact of that s…
 
"The vast percentage of the world's intact biodiversity is on lands that belong to First Nations. These are not just the metaphorical guardians of nature. These are the literal guardians." Wade Davis joins National Chief Perry Bellegarde to discuss the important role First Nations have to play in reversing the dramatic loss of biodiversity on our p…
 
Racially motivated attacks on the Mi'kmaq lobster fishers in Nova Scotia have cost them over $1 million in lost catch and damaged equipment and boats. Despite only taking in about 1% of the lobster catch in Nova Scotia, and working within their treaty rights to fish in their territory outside the commercial season, rights that have been upheld by t…
 
Almost the first words in new Green Party leader Annamie Paul's victory speech, spoke of solidarity with Canada's First Nations: "As the descendant of the black diaspora who has suffered its own history of oppression and colonialism, I will always stand with indigenous peoples and their calls to action, and their calls to justice and their fight fo…
 
**This episode was originally published on July 10, 2020*** The Indigenous Theatre program at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa was just wrapping up it's very successful first season when COVID-19 hit. It's artistic director Kevin Loring talks with National Chief Perry Bellegarde about the challenges he faces in overcoming the COVID shutdown, what…
 
Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler of Nishnawbe Aski Nation, Treaty 9 territory in Northern Ontario is National Chief Perry Bellegarde's guest. A veteran leader in the fight for a better system of justice for First Nations people, Grand Chief Fiddler and the National Chief discuss the key parts of the Liberal governments Throne Speech, including the importa…
 
**This interview with Dr. Dan Longboat was originally published on the Akhameyimok Podcast on July 23, 2020. ** "Being faced with COVID and the complexity of it, science is just beginning to understand how those things are interconnected with one another, but our elders still have that knowledge and so it is critically important that science begin …
 
This September Brad Regehr made history, becoming the first First Nations President of the Canadian Bar Association. A partner at Maurice Law in Winnipeg, the first and only indigenous owned national law firm in Canada, he has focused on civil litigation, aboriginal, corporate and administrative law. He has represented and advised First Nations cli…
 
The Canadian government is designating two former Residential Schools to the Canadian Register of Historic Places, including the Portage La Prairie Residential School in Treaty 1 territory in Manitoba. National Chief Perry Bellegarde talks to Chief Dennis Meeches of the Long Plain First Nation, home of the Portage La Prairie Schoo,l about the impac…
 
As First Nations children return to the classroom, what are the best ways to protect them from the COVID-19 pandemic. Marion Crowe, CEO of the First Nations Health Managers Association, joins National Chief Bellegarde to discuss best practices for Chiefs, Councils, Health managers, School boards, parents and children for "back to school." She also …
 
On this episode National Chief Perry Bellegarde reaches Gwich'in Grand Chief Bobbie Joe Greenland-Morgan in Inuvik, NWT to talk about the potentially devastating decision by the Trump Administration to open up the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas development. Known as ANWR, this Arctic refuge is 19 million acres of pristine wilderness…
 
Erin O'Toole is one of the front-runners to become the next federal Conservative Party leader in a vote that takes place Friday, August 21st 2020. In this, his first interview with the Ahkameyimok Podcast, O'Toole lays out his vision for working with First Nations if he were to become leader and Prime Minister. In this interesting and wide ranging …
 
"Some people said, 'well there is racism in Canada but there is no systemic racism.' And to those people I said, 'You've clearly never read the Indian Act, because it reeks of systemic racism.'" The Right Honorable Brian Mulroney, Canada's 18th Prime Minister, is National Chief Perry Bellegarde's guest on this latest episode of the Akhameyimok Podc…
 
"Being faced with COVID and the complexity of it, science is just beginning to understand how those things are interconnected with one another, but our elders still have that knowledge and so it is critically important that science begin a process of engaging with indigenous communities to really understand the complexity of the world we live, both…
 
The Indigenous Theatre program at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa was just wrapping up it's very successful first season when COVID-19 hit. It's artistic director Kevin Loring talks with National Chief Perry Bellegarde about the challenges he faces in overcoming the COVID shutdown, what the experience was like starting up the first ever national…
 
Reggie Leach is arguably the greatest First Nations player to play in the National Hockey League. From the Berens River First Nation in Manitoba, Leach was nicknamed the Riverton Rifle for his blasting slap shot. In his thirteen year NHL career he scored 381 goals and 666 points. In 1975, Leach helped the Philadelphia Flyers win the Stanley Cup. Th…
 
With over seven thousand positive COVID-19 cases and over 300 deaths, the Navajo Nation and it's 350,000 members in the American Southwest, has the worst per capita outbreak in America, beating out former hotspot New York. To learn more about what is happening there, National Chief Perry Bellegarde speaks with Shawnell Damon, who is leading the epi…
 
"I received a phone call from the Commanding Officer for the New Brunswick RCMP. He just said there's been an incident. He said, 'the timing is really bad.' That's what he said a of couple of times, 'this is just bad timing.' And I'm just thinking 'When is it a good time to shoot and kill someone?'" That's Chief Bill Ward of the Metepenagiag First …
 
RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki joins National Chief Perry Bellegarde to address the ongoing issue of racism and police brutality towards First Nations people, especially in light of the recent killing by police of a First Nations woman, Chantel Moore, in New Brunswick, the use of an RCMP vehicle to run-over and apprehend a man in Nunavut, and the d…
 
The global pause caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has many leaders around the world saying this is an opportunity to change how our economies work in terms of managing climate change, global health and development. Leaders from the UN Secretary General to global corporate CEO's say we have a chance to "build back better," and create a more equitable…
 
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