OTTAWA, March 7, 2020 /CNW/ - The Métis National Council (MNC) is proud to announce it will be holding its Métis Identity, Citizenship & Homeland conference on March 9-10, 2020 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
The conference, which will host hundreds of Métis delegates from across the Métis Nation homeland in western Canada, was organized in response to the Métis Nation-Saskatchewan (MNS) President Glen McCallum's request for a debate of the MNC's suspension of the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO). The suspension was triggered by the MNO's failure to comply with a resolution of the MNC General Assembly requiring a review of the MNO registry to ensure that the MNC citizenship criteria or National Definition have been applied to all registered citizens, its long-standing abuse of our citizenship system including grandfathering of citizens and its unilateral attempt to extend the boundaries of the historic Métis Nation.
"Given the MNC fully complied with Mr. McCallum's request and even organized the conference in his home province, we were surprised and disappointed to learn that he has since chosen to withdraw the Métis Nation-Saskatchewan's attendance," said David Chartrand, MNC National Spokesperson and President of the Manitoba Metis Federation "In fact, he's gone as far as organizing his own competing meeting in Quebec in a desperate and expensive attempt to lure delegates away from the important national conference in Saskatoon."
McCallum will be joined in Quebec by both the president of the MNO, Margaret Froh, and Audrey Poitras, president of the Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA).
"MNO is predominantly a non-Métis Nation citizen body; in fact, MNO representatives themselves have admitted a large part of their membership would not meet the National Definition," said Chartrand. "The real issue here is the failure of these three presidents to fulfil their fiduciary duties as members of the MNC Board of Governors to enforce the bylaws and resolutions of the General Assembly."
Chartrand says the Métis Nation Identity, Citizenship & Homeland Conference in Saskatoon will provide members of the General Assembly and all who attend with the opportunity to discuss and defend the integrity of Métis Nation citizenship rules. The March public gathering will also be webcast, ensuring all Métis Nation citizens will have access to the important discussion.
"It's unfortunate that this distraction has arisen at a time when the MNC is negotiating billions of dollars in funding for Métis Nation citizens across the homeland, including citizens in Saskatchewan and Alberta whose leaders refuse to join us for this historical discussion in Saskatoon," said MNC President Clément Chartier. "We work hard and collaboratively with the federal government on the priorities under the Canada-Métis Nation Accord which is translating into concrete action and real results for our people."
"Matters surrounding nationhood and protecting Métis Nation identity have never been more important," continued Chartier.
The MNC's 'Citizens Forum on Identity, Citizenship & Homeland' will be held at the Delta Bessborough Hotel in Saskatoon from March 9-10, 2020. All media is welcome to attend.
The MNC represents the Métis Nation in Canada at the national and international levels. The Métis Nation's homeland includes the 3 Prairie Provinces and extends into the contiguous parts of British Columbia, Ontario, the Northwest Territories and the United States. There are approximately 400,000 Métis Nation citizens in Canada, roughly a quarter of all Aboriginal peoples in the country.
SOURCE Métis National Council