Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Barriere Lake Solidarity: Panel with Arthur Manuel

Canada, a Pariah State? Indigenous rights in Domestic and International Law a lecture by Arthur Manuel

Join the support in Montreal:
MONDAY, November 3, 6:30pm, 2008
McGill Faculty of Law, Moot Court
1st floor of New Chancellor Day Hall
3644 Peel Street
For childcare or translation call 514-398-7432, 48 hours in advance.

How well does Canada live up to its reputation as a human rights champion? When it comes to the situation of Indigenous peoples, it falls dreadfully short. Few people know that the Canadian government is regularly condemned by the United Nations. Canada doesn't only ignore minimum provisions of international law -- it also thinks little of domestic legal standards set by the Supreme Court. In its determination to retain control over the lands and resources of Indigenous peoples, Canada runs rough-shod over the emerging framework of international and domestic law supporting the rights of Indigenous peoples to self-determination and ownership of their traditional territories.
Few people can speak better to this reality than Arthur Manuel, spokesperson for the Indigenous Network on Economies and Trade. Former Chief of the Neskonlith Band and chairperson of the Interior Alliance of BC First Nations, Manuel has been a leading voice of opposition to the Canadian government's agenda to "extinguish" Aboriginal and Treaty rights and assimilate Indigenous peoples into the Canadian body politic. Active locally in defense of Shuswap land (during the expansion of the Sun Peaks resort), and at the national level, he has also taken the struggle international, following in the path of his father, the late George Manuel, President of the National Indian Brotherhood and founder of the World Council of Indigenous Peoples. In the lecture, Manuel will lay out an alternative agenda for First Nations to achieve economic empowerment, third order government, and social and environmental justice.
Sponsored by: McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, QPIRG McGill, Barriere Lake Solidarity Collective

Defenders of the Land: The Barriere Lake Struggle Continues
A panel with Arthur Manual, Russell Diabo, and community representatives
TUESDAY, November 4, 6:00pm, 2008
Native Friendship Centre of Montreal
2001 boulevard St Laurent & Ontario (metro St-Laurent)
Free dinner served by Midnight Kitchen
For childcare or translation call 514-398-7432, 48 hours in advance.
Since the Department of Indian Affairs ousted their Customary Chief and Council in March 2008 and used the Surete du Quebec to forcibly impose the authority of a minority community faction, the Barriere Lake Algonquins have been organizing to roll-back the quiet coup d'etat. They are campaigning to make the government honour a number of agreements, including the Trilateral, a internationally praised land co-management and resource-revenue sharing deal the Algonquins signed with Canada and Quebec in 1991. It would significantly protect their forests from clear-cut logging, but it remains unimplemented.
They first signed the agreement after a campaign of logging road blockades, which culminated in a one-day blockade of highway 117, a crucial economic vein in Northern Quebec, in 1990. In October, 2008, Barriere Lake returned to the blockades, to force the government to respect their agreements and their leadership customs. The SQ brutally put down the peaceful action.
Community representatives will be joined by Arthur Manuel and Russell Diabo, a noted aboriginal policy analyst, editor of the First Nations Strategic Bulletin and advisor to Barriere Lake's Tribal Council, the Algonquin Nation Secretariat.
Sponsored by: QPIRG McGill, Barriere Lake Solidarity Collective
Donations are encouraged to support the community's political campaign. Dried goods are also welcome. For a full list of community needs: http://barrierelakesolidarity.blogspot.com/2008/03/donations.html
This event is part of Culture Shock, two weeks of programming aimed at exploring Canada's cultural and political myths. It is a collaborative effort by the McGill Anti-Racist Coalition (MARC), Quebec Public Interest Research Group (QPIRG McGill), and Student Society of McGill University (SSMU).
For a full schedule of events, visit http://www.qpirgmcgill.org/
Collectif de Solidarité Lac Barrière

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