Otipemisiwak (1)

Recorded livestream: freeman.streamme.ca/MetisOntario2020
Video from the Conference available now.

Press Release

Media Advisory

On March 9-10, 2020, the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO), the Métis Nation – Saskatchewan (MN-S), and the Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA) are coming together to host the first ever National Conference dedicated to conversations about Metis Self-Government in Canada. Collectively, these three Metis Governments represent over 200,000 rights-bearing Métis citizens living across Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta.

“Otipemisiwak” is a Plains Cree word that has been used to describe the Métis people, meaning “those that rule themselves.” The Métis have always possessed the inherent right of self-determination and self-government. Referring to Métis as Otipemisiwak has become particularly resonant since June 2019 when the MNO, MN-S, and MNA each signed historic Self-Government Agreements with Canada. These Self-Government Agreements built upon generations of struggle and hard work by the MNO, MN-S, and MNA citizens and leadership.

This two-day gathering taking place in the National Capital Region will bring together Métis leadership and citizens from across three provinces to reflect on the journey of Métis self-determination and to discuss the next steps on advancing Métis rights and self-government. The conference will be webcast so that Métis citizens from across Canada can participate and share in this historic event.

The conference agenda will pay respect to the struggles of our Métis ancestors who fought for recognition and respect for our Métis Rights, including self-government and the right to “rule ourselves.” We will draw upon the insights of Indigenous leaders that have walked a similar road and hear from Canada about its perspective as our partner on the road to reconciliation. We will also hear from the voices of Metis youth, and highlight that as we look to the road ahead, we are guided by working in the best interests of Métis families, communities, and our future generations.

About the Self-Government Agreements

On June 27, 2019, the Métis Governments of Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta each signed Métis Government Recognition and Self-Government Agreements (the Self-Government Agreements or MGRSAs) with Canada. The Self-Government Agreements provide for Canada’s immediate recognition of the inherent right to self-government held by the Métis communities and citizens represented by each of our Métis Governments, and set out a clear, mutually agreeable path for recognition of the Métis Governments as Indigenous governments in Canadian law. This is the first time that Canada has ever recognized an inherent right of self-government for Métis.

For more information please email: SelfGovtConference@metisnation.org


Click image for a PDF version of the poster.

Posted: February 18, 2020

Updated: March 5, 2020