Mr. Speaker, June 21 is National Aboriginal Day. It is a day for us to honour and celebrate the aboriginal people and cultures who have blesses this land and who have contributed so much to our country.
It is also a day for us to reflect on the history of aboriginal people in Canada, a history filled with mistakes, tragedy and genocide perpetrated against the aboriginal people by colonial powers and the Canadian government.
While this history is tragic, it saddens me even more to see this Liberal government of today continuing some of those mistakes. Aboriginal people in Canada continue to have the lowest living standards, the worst housing, the least access to clean drinking water, the worst health care and the fewest educational and job opportunities of any group in Canada.
The Liberal government's failure to live up to treaty promises, to provide opportunity and hope to aboriginal communities is a disgraceful legacy for a tired, sad, arrogant government. What is more, with initiatives like the first nations governance act it continues to impose misguided, made in Ottawa policies on aboriginal communities.
I hope the Liberal government will take some time this National Aboriginal Day to reflect on this and remember that the treaties were supposed to be about partnership and sharing.