We’re kicking off phase one consultations for the North Saskatchewan Regional Plan by talking to communities about their visions for the region. Last week, we heard from First Nations representatives at a two-day workshop in Edmonton.
On Friday and Saturday, we also met with Métis representatives from the region. Here’s what they had to say:
Vision for the plan
- Need for more inclusion in land-use policy development process
- Concern that there is not enough time for community members to provide feedback on proposals
- Meaningful Métis participation is necessary for sustainable land resource and development
- Métis cultural practices are constantly being affected by the surrounding economy
Healthy ecosystems and environment
- Issue with implementation of “shared stewardship” – how can there be shared stewardship when Métis inclusion is so limited?
- Government needs to be more diligent about land reclamation, to ensure the proper process is followed
- The regional plan should respect the land use plans that communities already have in place
- More work needs to be done with individual community members, as each member’s knowledge of the land is different
- Government needs to provide a status report on how Métis concerns have been addressed in the past and how they will be addressed going forward
- Need for prompt reporting of the feedback recorded at the workshop, as well as contact information for the government and facilitating staff present
- Question: how will the land-use framework be taught to Aboriginal youth and students?
This week, we’re talking to the communities of Rocky Mountain House, Lloydminster, Drayton Valley, Spruce Grove, and Fort Saskatchewan. We’ll post a summary of each discussion on the blog – so stay tuned for updates.