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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 13, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta 12 THE LETH2RIDGE HERALD Wednesday, Jens 13, 1973 Band city topper David Lewis, national New Democratic Party leader, held several speaking engagements in Sasckatchewan on the weekend and was presented with a plumed band major's hat by the chamber of commerce during a stop in Moose Jaw, the band city. New approach to problems of natives needed OTTAWA (CP> The Native Council of Canada told the fed- eral government today the con- dition of Metis and non-status Indians is a "national disgrace" and a bold new approach is re- quired if these people are to be- come anything more than homeless strangers in their own country. And if any new programs are to be successful, said the coun- cil in a brief to cabinet, the na- tive people themselves must be involved. "We want to investigate our own needs, work out our own programs, and discover the means of controlling them our- selves.' A "substantial infusion of fed- eral funds" would be required to help catch up with other Ca- nadians in the fields of housing, health recreation, cul- tural and economic develop- ment. There can be no single solu- tion because there is no single problem, said the brief. "There is only the certain knowledge that inflexible pro- grams designed by inflexible people has brought us to where we are today The council asked the govern- ment not hide behind the con- stitution. "We are satisfied that the is- sue is not one of the con- stitution, but rather one of polit- ical will. If you want to, you can help us and no province will stand in your way." There would be no hope "if our needs are left to the mercy of already-strained provincial and territorial resources." ASK FOR PROJECTS With an infusion of federal funds to let native people work out. their own programs, the council asked for two major re- search concerning history- and the other involving land. There was a great need for a detailed history of non-status Indians in Canada written by themselves, said the council brief. "It will provide a sound basis to. justify land and related claims. It will explain to us and to the public at large the posi- tion of Metis and non-status In- dians and how this condition came to exist. "It will strengthen the iden- tity and self-image of our people. It will facilitate a better understanding by governments at all levels of the aspirations of our people." A history was needed "so that can move forward to a ra- tional and careful examination of our future potential." The land-research project would be "a concrete and de- tailed examination of the lands we occupy today, the ownership of those lands, the use that is being made of them, their po- tential for the future, and the compensation that might rea- sonably be given our people for the losses they have suffered in the past." The council estimated that re- search into land claims would cost "We believe that the program we have in mind, which we our- selves will carry out, can en- able us and you to arrive at a thorough understanding of our present position in Canadian society. We further believe that, through this process, we and you can jointly move forward to the difficult problem of grap- pling with the future." BRIEF CONVINCING State Secretary Hugh Faulk- ner, who heard the brief along with eight other cabinet minis- ters, said the council's submis- sion was "very convincing." But he wouldn't commit the government to offering the re- quested money until he had studied the council's projected budget. "I agreed to look at he said later. Council President Tony Bel- court said he had "some mis- givings" about Mr. Faulkner's reaction to the proposal. "We tried to make an offer they couldn't he said. The councils budget had been worked On for eight months with deparmtental officials, and he said he couldn't understand why Mr. Faulkner wanted to "stall" longer on a decision. "We want a piece of the ac- tion in this country." Seek remains of war dead TOKYO (Reuter) Missions arc to go to six areas in the Pacific in an attempt to collect the remains of Japanese killed during the Second World War, the welfare ministry announced here today. It said the areas were Saipan and Tinian islands in the Ma- riana group, Truk Island, Oki- nawa, the Marshall group and the Gilbert Islands in the cen- tral Pacific, eastern New Guinea, and Luzon and Mind- anao islands in the Philippines. Similar missions have already beeen sent to two other areas. The ministry said that of the es- timated Japanese war dead in the Pacific, the remains of have so far been brought home. 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