As I'm alluding to here, there is not confidence, given the process leading up to the development of Bill C-38. The process for its very development has not been satisfactory, which has been stated more than once here already, such that the AFN must state that we're understandably very skeptical about any potential improvements.
The whole purpose of pursuing the crown and first nations gathering was to seek a return to a much more respectful relationship, whereby treaty rights and aboriginal title rights are respected and affirmed and where we jointly design processes going forward. That means agreeing on how to give effect to constitutionally protected rights for fish, the relationship to fish habitat and to water, and therefore to water quality. The previous processes were not acceptable, so there's a great concern with what is being suggested here.
However, a way forward as well, a solution, is that if we were to agree to take these elements, as we had suggested, remove them, and begin to work in earnest on them, first nations, as I said in my opening remarks at the January 24 crown gathering, are ready to do that work. The work rightfully belongs with first nations themselves, so that's what I would strongly recommend. Given that the AFN, even with the conversations we've had, the technical briefings...those do not constitute consultation. The deep work must be done with first nations. That's the hard work. The harder work is trying to suggest an easy way forward that is going to skip by this effort, and I fear that it's not a recipe for efficiency but rather one that suggests conflict.