MNO group signingSignatories to the Cooperation Agreement between the MNO and Mitaanjigamiing First Nation (left to right): MNO Kenora Métis Council President Joel Henley, MNO President Gary Lipinski, MNO Sunset Country Métis Council President Clint Calder, Mitaanjigamiing First Nation Chief Janice Henderson, Mitaanjigamiing First Nation Land Entitlement Negotiating Team member Stewart Henderson, PCMNO Region 1 Councillor Theresa Stenlund, Mitaanjigamiing First Nation Elder and member of Negotiating Team Edna Morrison, MNO Northwest Métis Council President Ronald Robinson , MNO Atikokan and Area Métis Council President Marlene Davidson and Region 1 Captain of the Hunt Sandy Triskle.On October 13, the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) as represented by MNO President Gary Lipinski and the members of the MNO Region 1 Consultation Committee signed a cooperation agreement with the Mitaanjigamiing First Nation.

Mitaanjigamiing First Nation is located at the northwestern arm of Rainy Lake, about 70 kilometres north of Fort Frances. The reserve encompasses approximately 1,600 hectares of land comprised of mainland, a peninsula, and two islands. About 140 people are part of this First Nation.

The Mitaanjigamiing First Nation is currently involved in a Treaty Land Entitlement Claim and will be selecting Settlement Lands that include parts of the traditional harvesting territory of the Regional rights-bearing Métis community represented by the MNO Treaty #3/Lake of the Woods/Lac Seul and Rainy Lake/Rainy River Regional Consultations Committee (Region 1 Consultation Committee).

“The MNO Region 1 Consultation Committee and the MNO support the settlement of outstanding First Nation claims,” explained MNO President Gary Lipinski, “including Mitaanjigamiing’s Treaty Land Entitlement Claim.”

The Mitaanjigamiing First Nation is also involved in discussions with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry concerning formalization of co-management of a campsite on Crown Land at Boffin Lake, which is frequently used by MNO Region 1 citizens for family and community gatherings.

In the Cooperation Agreement, the Mitaanjigamiing First Nations outlines its intention to continue to allow Region 1 MNO citizens access to the Settlement Lands for harvesting and other traditional land use purposes and outlines the conditions for cooperation.

Published on: October 14, 2015