Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Around the Arctic February 24, 2017 - 7:00 am

PM Trudeau sets up group to look at laws affecting Indigenous peoples

Six ministers will make recommendations on changes to federal laws and policies

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami President Natan Obed at the signing of an agreement in Iqaluit Feb. 9 that launches a new Inuit-to-Crown partnership. On Feb. 22, Trudeau announced that a working group of six ministers will review all federal laws and policies that affect Indigenous peoples. (FILE PHOTO)
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami President Natan Obed at the signing of an agreement in Iqaluit Feb. 9 that launches a new Inuit-to-Crown partnership. On Feb. 22, Trudeau announced that a working group of six ministers will review all federal laws and policies that affect Indigenous peoples. (FILE PHOTO)

The federal government has created a working group made up of six cabinet ministers to review all federal laws and policies affecting Indigenous peoples, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Feb. 22 in a news release.

Trudeau said after the working group does its review, the members will recommend to him what laws and policies should be changed.

And the group will do that work in light of the Crown’s constitutional obligations, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action, and international human rights standards, including the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Trudeau said.

The group will work also with Indigenous leaders, youth, and experts on laws and policies that affect Indigenous peoples.

“Through this initiative and the other steps we have recently taken, we are working on a complete renewal of Canada’s nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples,” Trudeau said.

This move follows meetings in Ottawa this past December between Trudeau and the leaders of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council and the Assembly of First Nations, when Trudeau agreed to create permanent, bilateral policy structures with each organization.

That led to the Feb. 9 signing in Iqaluit of the Inuit-Crown Partnership Declaration between Trudeau and ITK President Natan Obed.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould will chair the working group.

Here’s a list of the ministers who will serve on it:

• Carolyn Bennett, minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs;

• Dominic Leblanc, minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard;

• Jody Wilson-Raybould, minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada;

• Jane Philpott, minister of Health;

• Jean-Yves Duclos, minister of Families, Children and Social Development; and,

• Jim Carr, minister of Natural Resources

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