Support fair and equitable treatment of First Nations employees

Support fair and equitable treatment of First Nations employees

November 14, 2015
Petition Closed
This petition had 681 supporters

Why this petition matters

Started by Ramona Dunn

Canada Revenue has been selectively targeting over 4000 First Nations individuals in biased and unfair collection practices. Most of the individuals affected are women who were largely earning minimum wage, working under an employee leasing program that supplied personnel to work in off-reserve Native non-profit agencies that served the urban Aboriginal population.

Over three quarters of these 4000 individuals are sole support mothers with modest incomes while the overwhelming majority worked in the off-reserve non-profit sector.

Legal steps to clarify a Status Indians right to tax exemption has been going through the courts since 1983 and there is a last remaining case currently before the Federal Court of Appeal. A Remission Order Application under the Financial Administration Act has been filed with the Canada Revenue Agency where processing has unfortunately been stalled.

In the meantime, pursuant to an aggressive tax collection policy mandated by the former government, Revenue Canada officials have been making significant and onerous demands on these First Nations individuals.

Examples of actions against these individuals include:

  • Seizing $23,000 of a lump sum pension from a woman with cancer who's only other source of income is CPP.
  • Forcing a former Native Leasing Services employee to take out a $62,000 mortgage on her home to satisfy a tax bill that started out as $10,000.
  • Garnisheeing the CPP of a 68 year old widow who is currently on sick leave from her job at a Native Centre.
  • Forcing a 60 year old Dryden area woman into bankruptcy over a $2000 tax bill that ballooned to $21,000 with interest. Canada Revenue collectors even went to her bank in an attempt to broker a loan to pay off the tax bill.
  • Clawing back GST and child tax credits from a legally blind woman and her husband whose tax bill is nearly $100,000 - mostly interest.

On behalf of 4,000 desperate First Nations individuals, I am asking for help to have the Remission Order Application moved quickly through the assessment process to bring closure and to allow the individuals affected to get on with their lives. As long as the past is forgiven and the tax exemption right has been finally clarified, these individuals are prepared and will pay taxes going forward. I am also asking you to use your efforts to get the collection department of the Canada Revenue Agency to suspend its aggressive collection procedures while the Remission Order Application is being assessed and while the final Test Case completes its journey through the courts.


Petition Closed

This petition had 681 supporters

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