moved for leave to introduce Bill C-569, An Act to ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased and proud to introduce this legislation entitled, “An Act to ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples”. This declaration was passed at the United Nations General Assembly on September 13, 2007, by an overwhelming majority of 144 to 4, with 11 abstentions.
Canadians join human rights supporters from across the globe in their disappointment that, for the first time ever, Canada has sought exemption from a human rights standard adopted by the United Nations General Assembly.
Canada's national aboriginal and political leaders, including President Mary Simon of the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, National Chief Phil Fontaine and President Clem Chartier of the Métis National Council, have joined in their support. President Chartier said:
By ignoring Indigenous rights to self-determination, Canada is sending a negative message to the world. Despite this, by standing united Aboriginal peoples are clearly determined to secure our right to self-determination as defined in international law....
It is, however, never too late for Canada to embrace the rights of indigenous peoples at home and around the world and support the UN declaration.
With this in mind, I encourage all parliamentarians to join me in this battle to help return Canada as a human rights champion and ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)