Justin Trudeau was elected as the prime minister for Canada in 2015. Around this time, Trudeau made quite a few different promises, especially to the indigenous people of Canada. Some of them involving educational rights for indigenous people, as well as more funding for them as well. From what it seems, a lot of Canadians had very high hopes for Justin Trudeau, and after listening to his speech to the assembly of First Nations (from late 2015), I can definitely see why so many were rooting for him.
Although his speeches seems very positive and motivating, the actions done in the aftermath is the most important, at least in my opinion. I read several articles regarding Trudeau and indigenous people written in 2017, and it is clear to say that he has managed to disappoint a lot of people. Different articles states that he has forgotten the promises he kept for the First Nations. One of, if not the biggest promise he was pushing, was to renew and improve the relationship between the Canadian people and the First Nations. This point seems to have been the biggest letdown.
“Justin Trudeau told First Nations that if we elected him, he would absolutely respect our legal right to veto any development on our territories. And yet his government has approved two major pipelines.” – Pamela Palmater from CBC News, February 2017
From reading this statement, it seems he has not fought for the indigenous people in the way he said he would in 2017. Another promise he allegedly failed to keep was for “the government to publish legal opinions it received regarding Indigenous and treaty rights, and could directly affect the dynamics of court challenges for major energy projects such as Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain expansion and Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement pipeline projects, as well as B.C.’s Site C hydroelectric dam.” This was not a point that he directly mentioned in the speech I listened to by him, but i suppose I have not been following Canadian politics enough to decline any accusations like this. Either way, it seems like the First Nations people are feeling betrayed, which will in no way lead to any positive change for the overall situation.
I will take in to consideration that, when I search for actions regarding Trudeau and indigenous people, the most popular or top searches will probably be the most controversial and critical ones. In media today, a positive text, only stating what most would look at as boring, would not do as well as a controversial and eye-catting article would.
He made a statement on indigenous women and girls, regarding how they would get more protection, this is something i believe he has at least remotely tried to accomplish, but there does not seem to be much change. A lot of women and girls in the indigenous communities are frequently disappearing, getting raped, or even getting murdered. There also seems to be an unsurprisingly big amount of backlash in this conversation, which I think is kind of needed. People need to be woken up, and not fall for positive words and happy smiles. I do not like making statements on issues I do not really follow that well, but I think it is quite obvious that Trudeau was a big mistake regarding the relationship between a lot of the different cultures in Canada.
- Ashifa Kassam, “Canada’s First Nations already feel failed by inquiry into missing and murdered women”, 30.07.17, 10.01.18, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/30/canada-first-nations-indigenous-women-inquiry
- Mike De Souza & Riley Sparks, “Trudeau government retreats from ket promise to First Nations”, 18.01.17, 10.01.18, https://www.nationalobserver.com/2017/01/18/news/trudeau-government-retreats-key-promise-first-nations
- Pamela Palmater, “Justin Trudeau has forgotten the promises he made to indigenous Canadians”, 08.02.17, 10.01.18, http://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/promise-to-indigenous-1.3972965