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First Nation students picket John Duncan Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development in Thunder Bay

Thursday, December 15th 2011 10:35:10am

Media Release

(Thunder Bay, December 15, 2011) The elected Grand Chief, Marsha Kennedy of the Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School and the school leadership group are showing their support for Chief Theresa Spence and the Attawapiskat First Nation.

This support is evidenced by the demonstration of the student pickets at the Thunder Bay regional office of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada.

As the future leadership of First Nations from the remote communities the Grand Chief and leadership group express their following concerns;

1. Why don't the Governments of Canada and Ontario live up to the treaty promises contained in the treaty #9?

2. The spirit and intent of the treaty to have two peoples co-exist and benefit from resource development of First Nation lands has not occurred.

3.  Benefits from resource development have not flowed to the First Nations-this is evident by the lack of real benefits to the Attawapiskat First Nation as a result of the diamond mine-Victor Mines.

4.  Future resources development such as the "Ring of Fire" does not contain or hold any real promise of benefits for First Nations-this is evidenced by the legal challenge First Nations have launched on the environmental assessment process related to project.

5.  The Government of Canada is shirking its responsibility as a trustee in maintaining the well-being of the Attawapiskat First Nation- the government of Canada has a fiduciary and Treaty responsibility to address the needs of the Attawapiskat people.

6.  The Government of Canada is deflecting the real needs of the Attawapiskat First Nation by calling an audit and third party management of the First Nation's finances.

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