WINNIPEG, MB, Sept. 20, 2023 /CNW/ - Today, the Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF) - the National Government of the Red River Métis - expresses support for the First Nations protest on Parliament Hill against Canada recognizing unfounded and illegitimate Métis rights of Métis Nation of Ontario communities.
Ontario First Nation Leaders are taking a strong stand against Bill C-53 and its recognition of these communities. They say there are no Métis Communities in eastern Ontario. We have no reason to doubt them when they say they have never heard about eastern Métis communities in their territories. We have done our own studies and have come to the same conclusion. We support them as they stand up for their sovereignty against unfounded Métis rights claims.
"The MNO is attempting to use our Red River Métis culture, identity, flag and language, as well as their alliance with Métis Nation Saskatchewan and Métis Nation Alberta to camouflage their true nature," said David Chartrand, President of the MMF. "Once they've gotten what they want from Canada, they will no longer need to use our symbols or our legitimacy to bolster their claims, which is a clear bait and switch tactic, with an ultimate result that will shock true Red River Métis Citizens across the Homeland and leave Canadians and our people paying the price for generations to come."
On the other hand, the Red River Métis are well known throughout our Red River Métis Homeland. We are a distinct Indigenous People and Nation. The Red River Métis know who we are. Our First Nations neighbours and relatives throughout our Homeland also know who we are.
Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) represents many individuals not part of any historical or contemporary Indigenous community. They represent a patchwork or hodgepodge of identities. They take First Nations Ancestors and traditional territories, and mix these with our Red River Métis symbols, cultural heritage, historic milestones, and military events. MNO throws these together into a bizarre collection. This identity theft is disrespectful and impacts both us and First Nations.
"The MMF will continue to take the necessary steps to protect our identity," said President Chartrand. "We left the Métis National Council several years ago at the direction of our Citizens, in protest over Métis organizations in other provinces asserting or supporting assertions that they are Métis in eastern Ontario. They are not us ? they are not our kin and we do not know them."
The Red River Métis' tradition is one of respecting other Indigenous Peoples in Canada and around the world. We insist our own rights and identity also be respected. We define and speak for ourselves. The MNO is not a part of us.
"Decisions made by Canada in support of these individuals and communities without due diligence will have current and future impacts on legitimate rightsholders for generations to come," said President Chartrand. "We cannot let these cultural thieves and modern-day identity colonizers erode our distinct Red River Métis identity or those of the First Nations for their own gain."
Believe in Yourself; Believe in Métis.
The Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF) is the democratically elected National Government of the Red River Métis, also known as the Manitoba Métis. The Red River Métis are a distinct Indigenous Nation and People and Canada's Negotiating Partners in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.
SOURCE Manitoba Métis Federation