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CanadaFormer Harper-era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG inquiry report 'propagandist'

01:15  03 june  2019
01:15  03 june  2019 Source:   cbc.ca

National inquiry calls murders and disappearances of Indigenous women a 'Canadian genocide'

National inquiry calls murders and disappearances of Indigenous women a 'Canadian genocide' The thousands of Indigenous women and girls who were murdered or disappeared across the country in recent decades are victims of a “Canadian genocide,” says the final report of the national inquiry created to probe the ongoing tragedy. The inquiry's final report, obtained by CBC News and verified by sources, concludes that a genocide driven by the disproportionate level of violence faced by Indigenous women and girls occurred in Canada through "state actions and inactions rooted in colonialism and colonial ideologies.

A former federal Aboriginal affairs minister under the Stephen Harper government is doubling down on his social media claim that the finding of "genocide" by the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and girls was " propagandist ."

Former Harper - era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG inquiry report ' propagandist '. National inquiry calls murders and disappearances of Indigenous women a 'Canadian genocide'. RCMP commissioner tells MMIWG inquiry she doesn't think force will reach full gender equity.

Former Harper-era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG inquiry report 'propagandist'© CBC Former Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt blasts National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls report over 'genocide' finding.

A former federal Aboriginal affairs minister under the Stephen Harper government is doubling down on his social media claim that the finding of "genocide" by the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and girls was "propagandist."

Bernard Valcourt, who was Aboriginal affairs minister from 2013 until the defeat of the Harper government in the fall of 2015, blasted the inquiry's conclusion that the thousands of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls were victims of a wider "Canadian genocide" inflicted on Indigenous people.

Inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women issues final report with sweeping calls for change

Inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women issues final report with sweeping calls for change After more than three years, dozens of community meetings and testimony from well over 2,000 Canadians, the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls inquiry will deliver its final report to the federal government at a hand-off ceremony in Gatineau, Que. today. The report, which CBC News obtained before its official release, includes many recommendations to government, the police and the larger Canadian public to help address endemic levels of violence directed at Indigenous women and girls and 2SLGBTQQIA (two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual) people. CBCNews.

Former Harper - era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG inquiry report ' propagandist '. Like a lot of people, I suspect. It is no doubt that sort of benign indifference on the part of some Canadians that prompted the MMIWG commissioners to deploy the incendiary accusation of genocide

A former federal Aboriginal affairs minister under the Stephen Harper government is doubling down on his social media claim that the finding of "genocide" by the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and www.cbc.ca. news/indigenous/valcourt- mmiwg - report -1.5159437.

"How far do those activists will go? What has been the cost to Canadians for this propagandist report? What have we learned that we did not already know?" said Valcourt, who now lives in Edmundston, N.B., in a tweet posted on Friday evening.

"Who feels better in Canada among First Nations for that thunderous silly conclusion that all we wanted was to kill them all?"

Valcourt faced an immediate backlash on Twitter that continued into Sunday. That included reaction from leading Indigenous voices like Cindy Blacksock, who heads the First Nation Child and Family Caring Society, and Pam Palmater, chair of Indigenous governance at Ryerson University in Toronto.

Valcourt remained unbowed during a Sunday morning interview with CBC News.

Our casual racism causes Indigenous suffering: Neil Macdonald

Our casual racism causes Indigenous suffering: Neil Macdonald Quibbling over the definition of genocide does nothing but help obscure the long history of vicious racism and undeniable suffering of Indigenous people in this country. It's bad enough whatever you want to call it. MMIWG recommendations As for the commission's long list of recommendations, which Judge Buller calls legal imperatives and says the government must absolutely implement in their entirety, I can confidently say most won't find their way into law. Reform moves glacially, especially reform of governance. And certain of the recommendations are unworkable.

The former MMIWG National Inquiry commissioners and families of survivors are criticizing the government for what they call “one year of inaction” on the

MMIW or MMIWG . The Conservative federal government under Prime Minister Stephen Harper , and Bernard Valcourt, who served as federal Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development from 2013 to 2015, had rejected calls for an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women, saying

"I take offence to Canada being accused of genocide. My comprehension of genocide is measured by what genocide really is," said Valcourt. "I don't think it serves any purpose to call the action of the government genocide because it was not genocide."

Valcourt said "First Nations got a bad rap from colonialism that has given birth to this country."

But he said that using the word genocide "won't solve anything."

The national inquiry said the evidence it gathered led it to conclude that missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls were the victims of a "Canadian genocide."

The inquiry said the genocide was "empowered by colonial structures" such as the Indian Act legislation, which was enacted in 1876, the Indian residential school system, the Sixties Scoop, the forced sterilization of Indigenous women and the child welfare system, which it called a "tool of genocide."

The political quagmire of the prime minister accepting his country's complicity in genocide: Robyn Urback

The political quagmire of the prime minister accepting his country's complicity in genocide: Robyn Urback If Trudeau is serious when he says "this was genocide," agreeing with the conclusion of the MMIWG report, legal proceedings will be forthcoming. If that doesn't happen, which is more likely, Trudeau sends a message about how serious he is when he calls the treatment of Indigenous people "genocide."

Former Harper - era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG national inquiry report ' propagandist ' | CBC News. A former federal Aboriginal affairs minister under the Stephen Harper government is doubling down on his social media claim that the finding of "genocide" by the National

Earlier on Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised that his government would fail Indigenous women and girls “no longer,” as the report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls ( MMIWG ) was released.

The inquiry, which cites contemporary scholarship on genocide to support its finding, said it would be publishing a supplementary report on the legal definition of genocide and its application to Canada and posting it on its website at a later date.

The report also criticized Valcourt for claiming while he was minister that 70 per cent of homicides of Indigenous women were caused by Indigenous men. The report said the RCMP data used by Valcourt to make the claim was flawed and inaccurate.

The Canadian Museum of Human Rights in Winnipeg also now deems the treatment of Indigenous peoples in Canada as a genocide.

Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett weighed in against Valcourt on Sunday with a tweet blasting the former minister and calling on Conservative leader Andrew Scheer to denounce him.

"Distressing to see @BernardValcourt displaying such ignorance," tweeted Bennett. "@AndrewScheer needs to denounce him & ask him to join Senator (Lynn) Beyak on the cultural sensitivity that seems to be necessary for all Conservatives."

COMMENTARY: Use of the word ‘genocide’ undermines the MMIWG report

COMMENTARY: Use of the word ‘genocide’ undermines the MMIWG report 'The case for using the term 'genocide' is tenuous at best and counterproductive at worst,' Rob Breakenridge says.

Sen. Lynn Beyak was recently suspended from the Senate and kicked out of the Conservative caucus for refusing to pull down racist letters against Indigenous people on her website.

"It's difficult to imagine how someone who once held the job as minister of Aboriginal affairs could be so ignorant and insensitive," said Bennett in a statement sent to CBC News. "To dismiss this vitally important report as propaganda without even having read it demonstrates the kinds of attitudes that have lead to this national tragedy."

The Conservative party distanced itself Sunday from Valcourt.

"Mr. Valcourt does not speak for the Conservative party of Canada with these unacceptable comments," said Conservative MP Cathy McLeod, the shadow minister on the Indigenous affairs file, in a tweeted statement.

McLeod's statement said that former interim Conservative leader Rona Ambrose endorsed the inquiry and current leader Scheer has also supported it.

Ry Moran, executive director of National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation in Winnipeg, which is the archival repository for historical records on residential schools, also blasted Valcourt on Twitter.

Moran pointed out how the former minister remained seated during a standing ovation at a 2015 ceremony where the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) released its calls to action and specifically called for a national inquiry into murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls.

"There is a very troubling pattern of not listening to women when their needs are being expressed and when they are seeking justice for the very serious and terrible things that have been done to women over the years," said Moran.

"The harder we look at Canadian history, the bleaker it gets," said Moran.

Valcourt remained unrepentant for refusing to join the standing ovation in support of the TRC's call for an inquiry.

"When they called the inquiry and everyone stood up to applaud, what was I going to do, play the game? To be a hypocrite? I'm not," said Valcourt in the interview.

"I stand for what I believe and I did not believe that this was going to accomplish anything positive and I think I'm proven right."

Valcourt said the inquiry's report and his critics are playing "identity politics" and they have a right to their own opinion as he does to his.

"Identity politics is alive and well with the left and the ultra-left and this is something the government of Justin Trudeau is pursuing," he said.

Read more

Premier Scott Moe disagrees with MMIWG inquiry's genocide finding.
Premier Scott Moe disagrees with the MMIWG inquiry's finding that genocide was committed by the state against Canada's Indigenous peoples from the colonial era to the present. The word has been up for debate by some since the report was released last week. This discourse dismisses the serious nature of missing and murdered Indigenous women and misses what's important — the recommendations and action moving forward, said freelance journalist and Indigenous affairs columnist Doug Cuthand. He wrote a column about the use of the word — and the push back against it. "It's all focused on this one word — and that's a mistake​," Cuthand said.

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