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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - April 30, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD TuMdiy, April 30, 1974 MAVIS OKA CALVIN SALMON 'They're not here to be taught how to be an Indian' Concluded from Page 3 There is also a church-inspired foster-care program for reserve children, Mr. Burt points out, which tries to "teach them a better way of life, a more advanced way of life." Chester Walburger, chairman of the Cardston school board, says he doesn't think there is any discrimination in the town toward Indians. About one-quarter of all students in Cardston schools are Indian but there are almost no classes relevant to Indian culture or history. Mr. Walburger says that with standard curriculum, the schools are meeting the needs of all the students "They're not here to be taught how to be an he says. But Grant Matkin, school superintendent with the district, admits most textbooks used in the schools are culturally- biased It's hard to select books that aren't, he says. Mr. Meyer says Indians try and. blame town residents for their problems. "We're no more responsible for their problems than anyone else in the he says. But white society has to take blame for the conditions Indians live under, Mr. Meyer says. Whites "have done nothing for the Indian people but degrade them. We've snuffed out their pride, but you can't blame the people of Cardston for he says. There is no easy solution to the problems faced by Indians, he says, but they have to start making their own way working instead of living on handouts. With its economic development policies, the Blood Reserve is probably one of the most progressive in the Mr. Meyer says. He criticizes many Cardston merchants for not recognizing the economic benefit to the town from the reserve. There are almost no Indians working in the town, and there are no town-wide promotions to attract reserve business The business community didn't even say they were sorry to see the Blood band offices move out of the town to Standoff, he says. Marvin Fox, director of Kainai community services and a member of the government's Alberta Human Rights Commission, says there is discrimination toward Indians in towns bordering the reserve a feeling that Indians are merely tolerated. How many Indians are hired by town merchants, or belong to service clubs, he asks. He says some people in Cardston do treat Indians as inferiors and claims some restaurants have refused to serve Indians. "But I'm hoping things are he says. Getting rid of discrimination is a matter of changing attitudes and "you're not going to accomplish that overnight." The human rights commission has just been set up, and it has "an awful lot of work to Mr, Fox says. But some steps have to be taken by community leaders to try and increase inter-racial communication. Commission members can speak to service clubs, schools, and other groups, he says, but they have to be asked. FRANK DANIELS ARNOLD FOX HARRIET HEAVY RUNNER RANDY BROADHEAD ;