Steven Harper and the Government of Canada: STOP Bill C-45 and HONOUR INDIGENOUS RIGHTS
We can "no longer stay silent in the face of what is a legislative attack on First Nation people and the lands and waters across the country”. Sylvia McAdam
"Bill C-45 'demonstrates a pattern of recklessness by the federal government that puts the long-term safety and health of Canadians in jeopardy. These are major changes that, if not stopped now, will ripple out across communities everywhere in Canada -- putting our water, air, food and quality of life at risk'." (http://www.ecojustice.ca/media-centre/press-releases/environmental-groups-first-nations-join-in-opposition-to-omnibus-bill-c-45)
A exerpt from a letter written to every Senator in Canada:
RE: Bill C-45
This message is to strongly express that I do not support Bill C-45.
This Conservative government is blatantly violating the rights of all Canadians
and its Indigenous people to transparency on critical issues facing all people.
Currently, there are numerous MP’s being investigated for the undemocratic and
criminal practice of using robocalls to redirect voters, which calls into question
the legitimacy of this government. I contend that these MP’s do not legally or
constitutionally represent their constituents, and demand that the government
cease passing any forms of legislation until the outcome of these investigations
Furthermore, Bill C-45 specifically affects Indigenous sovereignty and inherent
rights to the land, and therefore must receive due consideration, consultation
and consent from the First Nations leaders and communities in which it directly
impacts. The Treaties that were signed between the Crown and Indigenous
peoples are nation to nation covenants that cannot be arbitrarily changed
through unilateral legislation. Bill C-45 alters sections of the Indian Act and
disregards the Treaties without consultation and consent.
Upon review of Bill C-45, it is clear that this legislation benefits corporations
involved in oil pipelines and nuclear energy, without due attention and
consideration given to the impact that it will have on the land and environment.
This government has proposed reconciliation with First Nations peoples, yet
continues to enforce numerous policies such as Bill C-45 using paternalistic
and neocolonial processes.
I demand that Bill C-45 be stopped until a democratic process of consultation
and consent is duly followed by the various groups that it does impact.
The Following is an article that explains the issues:
First Nations and environmental, recreation and grassroots groups supported by more than half a million Canadians today issued an open letter opposing the federal government’s controversial second omnibus bill, C-45, as the proposed legislation enters final rounds of debate in Parliament this week.
“The changes proposed in this omnibus bill would further weaken Canada’s environmental laws, remove critical federal safeguards, and reduce opportunities for the public to have their say about major industrial projects that could threaten the air, water, soil and natural ecosystems on which all Canadians, and our economy, depend,” they said in the letter.
The signatories include the BC Assembly of First Nations, the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs, leading environmental organizations including the David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice, Équiterre and the World Wildlife Fund, as well as groups from different sectors nationwide (see list below).
The organizations are speaking out against Bill C-45’s deregulation of some of Canada’s key environmental laws, including major changes being proposed to the Navigable Waters Protection Act that would see just 97 of Canada’s approximately 32,000 major lakes protected by the stripped-down act. Major pipelines would also be exempted under the new law, meaning that the scope of impacts considered during environmental reviews will be narrower.
“Simply put, lakes, rivers and streams often stand in the path of large industrial development, particularly pipelines. This bill, combined with last spring’s changes, hands oil, gas and other natural resource extraction industries a free pass to degrade Canada’s rich natural legacy,” said Devon Page, executive director of Ecojustice.
The latest omnibus legislation would further undermine the protection of Canada’s environment by making changes to the Fisheries Act and the Hazardous Materials Information Review Act — critical laws that are used to steward a sustainable environment, clean water and healthy oceans for all Canadians.
Meanwhile, organizations argue the bill represents a two-pronged attack on Canada’s democratic processes, seemingly designed to short-circuit parliamentary discussion of major legislative changes that would significantly reduce opportunities for public consultation.
“This week may be the last time that Members of Parliament will be able to prevent the further loss of environmental protection and public participation that this bill contemplates,” said Jessica Clogg, executive director and senior counsel, West Coast Environmental Law.
“That’s why we’re asking our elected officials to stand up, for Canada’s environment and their constituents who depend on it, and oppose this bill.”
Tabled in October, Bill C-45 follows a drastic overhaul of Canada’s federal environmental laws in the spring omnibus budget bill, C-38. The negative impacts of C-38 are already being seen on the ground and in massive staffing cuts to federal environmental departments.
In their open letter, the groups argue that Bill C-45 “further demonstrates a pattern of recklessness by the federal government that puts the long-term safety and health of Canadians in jeopardy. These are major changes that, if not stopped now, will ripple out across communities everywhere in Canada -- putting our water, air, food and quality of life at risk.”
The signatories are: l’Association québécoise de lutte contre la pollution atmosphérique (AQLPA), BC Assembly of First Nations, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice, Environmental Defence, Équiterre, Greenpeace Canada, Greenpeace Québec, Idle No More (Saskatchewan Grassroots Advocacy Group), Nature Canada, Paddle Canada, Pembina Institute, Ontario Rivers Alliance, Sierra Club Canada, Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs, West Coast Environmental Law, World Wildlife Fund. (http://www.ecojustice.ca/media-centre/press-releases/environmental-groups-first-nations-join-in-opposition-to-omnibus-bill-c-45)
WE MUST BAND TOGETHER AS INDIGENOUS PEOPLE FROM ALL NATIONS-FAR AND WIDE-TO STOP THIS BILL FROM MOVING FORWARD!!!
THERE ARE CHANGES IN THIS BILL THAT AFFECT EVERYONE---ALL CANADIANS ALIKE!!!!
WE CAN MAKE THE CHANGE HAPPEN!
UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL!!!
PLEASE VOTE TO SECURE OUR FUTURE!!!!!!!
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