MNO Commission on Métis Rights and Self-Government

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MNO President Margaret Froh delivering the State of the
Nation addree during the 2016 MNO AGA in North Bay.
Click here for a larger version of the picture.

On August 27, 2016, during her State of the Nation address during the 2016 Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Annual General Assembly (AGA) in North Bay, MNO President Margaret Froh announced the formation of the MNO Commission on Métis Rights and Self-Government (the Commission). Establishing the Commission was one of President Froh’s major commitments during the recent MNO general election.

President Froh announced the names of seven MNO citizens from across Ontario who will serve on the Commission. “Our Commissioners – four women and three men -- come from across the province,” explained President Froh, “and represent a good cross section of our citizens including our youth, elders, harvesters, as well as French and Michif language speakers. Their job is to help lead a forward-looking dialogue with our citizens on some key issues—Métis rights and self-government – to listen to citizens’ voices and report back.” 

Click here for information on the Commissioners.

The Commissioners will consult and engage with MNO citizens in all 29 MNO communities across Ontario. They will encourage citizens to share their thoughts on the MNO’s governance structures, including how these can better reflect Métis community, identity and culture, and how the MNO can move forward on harvesting mobility and self-government.

“This is the ideal time for our Commission to undertake its work,” stated President Froh, “the stars are indeed aligning for the Métis Nation – especially with the April 2016 Supreme Court decision in Daniels v. Canada and the recent report from Tom Isaac, The Ministerial Special Representative on Métis Section 35 Rights. This is an important time for the Métis Nation. Working together, we will build on these opportunities to create an even stronger, healthier future for our people.”

The Commission will begin its engagement sessions in the late fall of 2016, which will be complete by May 2017. The Commissioners will issue a report of their findings and, working with the Provisional Council of the Métis Nation of Ontario, present findings and recommendations to the 2017 AGA. 

Update

The Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Commission on Métis Rights and Self-Government is geared up to begin province-­wide community engagement sessions beginning in February and ending in May.

The commission will visit all 29 MNO Community Councils as well as the MNO Youth Council, MNO Veterans’ Council and the Women’s Secretariat of the MNO (WSMNO) to discuss: key Métis governance issues; how we can better reflect Métis community identity and culture within our governance; protecting the environment; and how we can move forward on harvesting, mobility, and self-government.  There will be various ways that our citizens can engage with the Commission and share their thoughts. Every citizen of the MNO is welcome to participate in these important discussions.  

The creation of the MNO Commission is both timely and significant. The stars are aligned for Métis in Ontario with recent watershed events including the Daniel’s decision, the Isaac Report and supportive federal and provincial governments, that are the culmination of decades of dedicated effort and reflect the collective aspirations of the Métis Nation. These events provide opportunities for once-in-a-generation advances on Métis rights, Métis land claims and modern day Métis treaties with the Crown.  

To prepare for these discussions, we are working diligently with the Commissioners as well as the PCMNO to put together background resources for our communities and citizens, which will be distributed in advance of the sessions. These resources will be made available through the MNO website and through local MNO offices.  

A draft schedule of community engagement sessions is included below; please visit the MNO website frequently as the Commission work progresses over the coming months.

I look forward to attending each of the community engagement sessions and hearing directly from citizens across Ontario. At the conclusion of the province-wide consultations, the findings of the Commission will be presented in a What We Heard Report that will contribute substantially to the MNO’s ongoing efforts to extend and build upon the remarkable achievements of the past 20 years in advancing Métis rights and self-government.

The What We Heard Report will be presented at the Annual General Assembly in 2017 and will greatly assist the MNO in moving forward with the MNO’s Métis rights and self-government agenda in the years to come. We will work together to consolidate the accomplishments of those who have come before us, and to lay a solid foundation for those who will follow.

Your voice as a citizen of the Métis Nation of Ontario is important and we look forward to your participation with the MNO Commission on Metis Rights and Self-Government in the coming months. Please join us when we are in your community and be a part of developing this vision for our nation.

M. Margaret Froh
President, Métis Nation of Ontario

Updated on: December 1, 2016
Published on: October 25, 2016