Indigenous Peoples Report
Wolf Sessions Final Report
On June 23, 2006 a new relationship began between the aboriginal peoples of Canada and The Peace Movement.
Led by the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre Elder’s Council, a procession led Lieutenant-Governor Iona Campagnola, dignitaries and Mayors For Peace into the Orpheum Theatre for the Opening Ceremonies of the 2006 World Peace Forum.
The stage was set for aboriginal participation in this important six-day event.
The special events and sessions that followed were powerful, insightful and celebratory as special guests, presenters and members of the aboriginal community came together to talk about peace and issues of concern.
“Aboriginal community comes out in full force to lead historical Peace Walk. “On Saturday June 24, 2006, Vancouver ‘s Peace Walk hosted the largest contingent of aboriginal peoples ever to take part in a Peace Walk. Led by the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre Elder’s Council, the 2006 Peace Walk, as part of the World Peace Forum, had extensive aboriginal representation at the walk and festival that followed. Walkers sang the Women’s Warrior song for 1 ½ hours.
An absolutely magical evening! On Monday June 26, 2006 the Matriarch Gathering took place at the Native Education Centre. We had 100 women in attendance with special guests; Lavina White/ clan mother from Haida Gwaii, Mona Palucca/ Hopi representative from the 13 Grandmothers, three Buddhist monks, Sierra Noble/ 16 year-old Metis internationally-known fiddler, and representatives from the “Highway of Tears”. Women from New York, Mexico, and the global community shared conversation and celebrated their being.
CLOSING CEREMONIES were held at the Vancouver Art Gallery under the beautiful banner of the Raven Traveling Haida Exhibit. With Hans Blix as special guest speaker, the audience was entertained by Japanese taiko drummers and dancers. The Downtown Eastside Womens’ Centre Elder’s Council sang the Women’s Warrior song then led the public down to the Peace boat at Canada Place and watched as the boat left Vancouver…a very moving experience.
WORLD PEACE FORUM WOLF SESSIONS FIRST NATIONS RECOMMENDATIONS
The following is the list of recommendations from both the national Aboriginal community and the international Indigenous community.
ABORIGINAL PEOPLES OF CANADA PEACE PLAN FOR THE FUTURE
The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada gathered together in Vancouver, British Columbia from June 23-28, 2006.
The Aboriginal Peoples of Canada are still experiencing the effects of Colonialism with continuing injustices such as:
· Appropriation of lands and resources
· Assimilation of language & culture
· Misrepresentation in negotiations
· Invasion/torture and killing of Aboriginal Peoples
· Denial of inherent rights related to fishing/sacred burial grounds & territories
· Policies & programs that systemically further social issues such as poverty/homelessness/rising rates of disease and economic inequality
This is a crucial time in the history of Aboriginal Peoples and we therefore would like to present the following as opportunities to build on the platform of the World Peace Forum: Cities and Communities: Working Together to Build a Just and Sustainable World.
Our intention, to further the platform for the Canadian Aboriginal community is:
· To take control of our identity within the national Aboriginal communities both internally & externally
· To create a stronger sense of unity/community
· To hold to account, leaders within indigenous communities for agreements made on behalf of indigenous peoples, and establish effective ways to have community representation
· To have stronger representation of the community, in all land/resources/planning negotiations
· Create avenues of dialogue & sharing with all youth/adults/elders to carry forward our traditional values & practices
We believe that our future can be a strong and vital network where everyone participates in creating positive models for the matter of living; both in urban and non-urban settings within our national Aboriginal community.
GLOBAL INDIGENOUS RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE WORLD PEACE FORUM
Recommendations for the UN Draft Declaration on Indigenous Peoples’ Rights
That all states, including Canada, the United States, New Zealand and Australia ratify and endorse the UN Draft Declaration on the Indigenous Peoples Rights in its entirety, especially the clause on self-determination.
Recommendations for World Indigenous Forum about Peace and Water
1. That the secretariat of the World Peace Forum endorse the planning and development of a World Indigenous Forum on Peace and Water to take place in 2 to 3 years time.
2. That all countries, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank provide adequate funding for this to take place.
3. That the planning meeting be supported just before the meeting for the UN Indigenous Peoples Permanent Forum in Bangkok, Thailand, in 2007.
Recommendations about Indigenous Peoples and Structural Changes in the UN
1. That self-determination of Indigenous Peoples be fully recognized by the UN.
2. That fair, equitable participation and proper representation be established for decision-making as determined by Indigenous Peoples.
Recommendations about Indigenous Peoples’ Sacred Responsibility to Protect the Water Sources and Sacred Sites
1. Protect the sources of water, for water is life, water is sacred.
2. Stop the pollution of air, land, lakes, rivers and oceans.
3. Stop the production of nuclear power.
4. Recognize Indigenous Peoples’ guardianship of sacred sites.
All levels of government, corporations, and industry must guarantee the protection of water sources and Indigenous Peoples’ sacred sites before any development, mining, forestry or hydro-electric projects are approved.