April 25, 2016

Good Day! Tansi!


                Norway House Cree Nation is currently in the drafting phase of the Norway House Constitution Development Initiative.  The areas that the Norway House Cree Nation Constitution will focus on articles related but not limited to:  


·         The People (NHCN Membership)

·         The Land

·         Institutions

·         Resources

·         Areas of Authority

·         Justice

·         Governance

·         Financial Administration

·         Law Making

·         Conflict of Interest 

·         Referendums

·         Amendments 


As I am leading this initiative (with Councillor Samantha Folster as the Constitution Development Portfolio Holder), I would like to encourage all the Norway House Cree Nation membership to engage and participate in the development and drafting of this integral document.  It is important that all Norway House Cree Nation members feel their needs and values are being taken into consideration during the drafting of our Cree Nation’s Constitution and therefore would like to request the public’s input and participation.  The Constitution of the Norway House Cree Nation will reflect the customs and values of the Cree Nation and will be utilized as a guiding reference point for further policies, legislation and other areas asserting our inherent right to self-government and self-determination.  


Historically, the federal government has made serious and impacting policies which have been assimilative and negative in outcomes.  Goals to eliminate our culture, language and way of life have been long-standing through the role of the Indian Act and other legislations that aim to control our people.  The historical traumas that our people have experienced through colonization have affected our Cree Nation in many ways and we will no longer allow foreign bodies to continue controlling the decisions related to our way of life and our identity as Cree people.  There remains an intense need for local control over local matters and through the development of a solid and genuine constitution, the Norway House Cree Nation will enhance the livelihood of the people for generations to follow so that our Cree Nation will hold total authority over areas which impact who we are as a sovereign nation in Canada.  The Norway House Cree Nation Constitution will contain principles related to collective rights, individual rights and will also set out the expectations our people hold in terms of relationship building both locally and internationally.


As this document will be continuously revised, it is important that YOU as a member of the Norway House Cree Nation feel that the document speaks to you and your family’s views related to the above concepts.  With your participation and contribution, the Norway House Cree Nation Constitution will become a document that will set  precedent for future generations to continue accessing and practicing our rights that we have never relinquished not only as Treaty 5 people but as Cree Nation members.  It is vital that this document reflects the unique needs of our Cree Nation so that decisions related to our well-being and existence will be made in ways that ensure equity while benefiting the people socially, economically, culturally and politically.  Please take some time to contact me to discuss your thoughts and ideas related to the Norway House Cree Nation Constitution and I will ensure your views and opinions are reflected within the framework and articles of the document.


                I want to thank those who have been able to communicate with me their ideas related to the development of the Norway House Cree Nation Constitution and I thank you all for your assistance and contribution during this project’s implementation.  Please take some time to speak to your family, friends and fellow Cree Nation members so that we can move forward in finalizing the Norway House Cree Nation Constitution. I am available to meet and listen to your ideas at any time that will accommodate your schedule and can be contacted by telephone or by email.  


Ekosani! Kinanaskomitinawow!


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