Sol Mamakwa, the NDP’s critic for Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, issued the following statement after Doug Ford failed to answer a question Monday on the provincial government’s commitment to passing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).
Mamakwa introduced the UNDRIP bill one year ago in the Ontario legislature. The bill passed second reading, but has since been left in legislative limbo.
“UNDRIP and reconciliation in Ontario need to be priorities for Doug Ford and Minister Rickford. Given the conditions in our communities, nothing less will do,” said Mamakwa.
The UNDRIP bill has been collecting dust as First Nations struggle on a daily basis to meet their basic needs like clean drinking water, safe housing, and access to health care.
“It is clearly time for Ford to get to work so that First Nations basic human rights can be met,” said Mamakwa. “We must all demand that Indigenous Peoples are treated equitably under the law. After more than 150 years of colonialism, the status quo is no longer acceptable. As we have seen in demonstrations across the continent, the struggle for justice is real. Racial inequalities are not acceptable.
“The people of Ontario must ensure their government respects human rights for Indigenous communities.”