Métis Rights Symposium

Métis Nation of Ontario and Law Society of Upper Canada Explore Métis Rights Friday, March 27th, 2009

TORONTO, ON -- Gary Lipinski, President of the Métis Nation of Ontario joined Susan Hare of the Law Society of Upper Canada in welcoming nearly 200 guests to a “Métis Rights in an Era of Consultation and Accommodation; New Obligations, New Opportunity and New Outcomes Symposium,” in Toronto on Friday, March 27, 2009. ”

“The Métis Nation of Ontario has experienced great success in recent years in advancing the rights and self government aspirations of Métis in the province,” President Lipinski said, acknowledging that success has resulted in the need to develop expertise in the area of Métis specific community consultation on the part of MNO, industry and all levels of government.

“The recognition of the Métis as a distinct people with rights affirmed by the Supreme Court ushered in an era in which industry and government in the province are recognizing they have new obligations.” President Lipinski says he hopes the Symposium sparks a Métis specific dialogue that leads to effective collaboration, adding “these new obligations mean new opportunities for economic development that will promote the self-reliance to which the Métis in Ontario aspire,” he added.

Distinguished Métis lawyers Jean Teillet and Jason Madden will join industry experts in sharing their unique experience and knowledge in recognizing and working with Métis in exercising their Aboriginal rights in the area of resource development across Canada and in the province of Ontario. Clint Davis, President and CEO of the Canadian Council of Aboriginal Business will Chair the event.

An evening reception with traditional Métis entertainment presented by Roger and Aline Giroux will follow.

Biographies of the speakers are attached.

For more information, contact Marisha Roman at the Law Society of Upper Canada (mroman@lsuc.on.ca or Joanne Meyer, Métis Nation of Ontario (joannem@metisnation.org

Jean Teillet

Lawyer Jean Teillet specializes in the negotiation and litigation of aboriginal rights and is currently the Chief Negotiator for the Sto:lo Xwexwilmexw land claim and self-government negotiations under the BC Treaty Process.  Ms. Teillet was lead counsel in R. v. Powley, the first Métis rights case to be heard at the Supreme Court of Canada.  She was co-counsel at the Supreme Court of Canada in the Taku River case, which established (along with Haida) the consultation and accommodation rights of Aboriginal peoples.  Ms. Teillet also publishes the Métis Law Summary annually. Jean Teillet is a great grandniece of Louis Riel.

Jason Madden

Lawyer Jason Madden focuses on Aboriginal rights litigation and governance issues as well as negotiations on behalf of Aboriginal communities throughout Ontario and western Canada. He has been at the forefront of the new prominence of Métis rights and claims in Aboriginal jurisprudence.  Mr. Madden acted as counsel for the Métis Nation in its interventions in R. v. Powley and R. v. Blais, the first Métis rights cases to be decided by the Supreme Court of Canada. As well, Mr. Madden is counsel in several Métis rights cases, including: R. v. Goodon (Manitoba); R. v. Laviolette (Saskatchewan); R. v. Kelley (Alberta); R. v. Belhemeur (Saskatchewan); R. v. Laurin & Lemieux (Ontario). Mr. Madden is a Métis born and raised in Northwestern Ontario.

Bob (R.D.) Waldon

Bob is Director of Natural Resources, Environment and Community Relations for the Métis Nation of Ontario. His background includes over 20 years in land acquisition, environmental assessment impact-benefit agreements and regulatory processes in the energy industry. He was also a Senior Negotiations Consultant for the province of Nova Scotia for the Canada-Nova Scotia – Mi’kmaw Framework Agreement. Through these roles, Bob has been involved in public, agency and aboriginal consultation programs across Canada.

Tracy Campbell

Tracy Campbell has more than 20 years experience in Aboriginal consultation, working for governments, First Nations and private industry. In her recent work with Alberta Environment, Tracy contributed to the development and implementation of the First Nations Consultation Guidelines for EPEA and Water Act authorizations, including Environmental Impact Assessments. She has managed Aboriginal and public consultation processes for developments in the Athabasca oil sands region. Ms Campbell continues to work with the Dene Tha’ First Nation on a Land Use Management framework and to develop consultation procedures and benefit agreements.

CONTACT:

Chelsey Quirk/ Communications

Tel: 613-798-1488 ext. 108

Cell: 613-859-7130

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