Indian Time - A Voice from the Eastern Door

Entewatathá:wi Engagement Session Held at Ànowaràkowa Arena

 

November 9, 2017

An engagement session was held on October 30th, at the Ànowaràkowa Arena from 6-7 pm. The engagement session was open to the community to become more informed on the strides that the Entewatathá:wi Program has taken to establish self-governance in Akwesasne. The Entewatathá:wi Program commits to work with cross organizational groups facilitating the development of codes and agreements in association with Council's vision of asserting jurisdiction. The Entewatathá:wi Program has held several educational meetings for the community to attend, with the hopes of more community members becoming more interested and involved in the process of self-governance.

The main objective of the Entewatathá:wi Program is to change the Indian Act in a way that it gives the members of Akwesasne more control and jurisdiction in what goes on within the community. The only way to make self-governance a reality, is to get most of the community on board with the decisions being made.

10 things you should know about the Entewatathá:wi Process

1. Final Agreement will retain existing tax exemption

2. Final Agreement will not remove fiduciary relationship with Canada.

3. Final Agreement will not limit or restrict its relationship with other Haudenosaunee or other Mohawk communities and assertion of their rights.

4. No prejudice or restriction on Aboriginal or Treaty Rights in s.35 (1) Constitution Act 1982.

5. Greater recognition for Akwesasne jurisdiction and authority.

6. Final agreement will not come into effect until full consultation with membership and ratification vote by members.

7. This is not a treaty. Land Claims are not addressed or prejudiced.

8. The status of lands will remain as federal reserves s.91 (24) Constitution Act (1867).

9. Existing interest in Akwesasne lands are recognized and will continue in effect (i.e. CP's leases and permits continue).

10. Final agreement will not relieve Canada of responsibility or liability for past errors or mismanagement.

Community Concerns:

1. Why don't we just declare ourselves 'sovereign' and cut all ties with Canada?

2. We are comfortable with Indian Act and don't like change.

3. What happens to OAS, CPP, Unemployment benefits, Children allowance, etc.?

4. Would your grandparents want self-governance?

5. We don't trust MCA. What steps are being taken to gain trust?

6. Provincial Agreements- Tobacco Royalties sounds like taxation to me, and these provincial agreements brings in Revenue Canada, why?

7. How many votes are going to be required by the people, because we don't see much acceptance by many Akwesasronon – poor turnouts?

8. Where does Mohawk Nation fit within self-government negotiations?

If you are interested in finding out the answer to the concerns voiced by community member, or have a concern of you own, you can come to the next Entewatathá:wi engagement Session. The next engagement session will be held on November 27th from 6-7 pm at the Kana:takon School. They Entewatathá:wi Program will also be present at the next general meeting held by Mohawk Council of Akwesasne.

 

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