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budgetMNO President Margaret Froh?

M¨¦tis Nation of Ontario (MNO) President Margaret Froh welcomed the announcements in the March 22 federal budget that will provide greater support for M¨¦tis families, communities and government within the M¨¦tis Nation of Ontario (MNO). The 2017 budget commits significant funding to build the governance capacity of the M¨¦tis National Council (MNC), the MNO, and the other four M¨¦tis governments that constitute the MNC from Manitoba to British Columbia. The funding will include $84.9 million over the next five years as well as ongoing annual funding of $28.3 million.

¡°We are extremely encouraged,¡± said President Froh, ¡°to see a significant commitment of funding towards strengthening our governance and the foundation for a new relationship between M¨¦tis Nation governments and Canada. We look forward to working with the federal government as we move forward on our path of M¨¦tis self-governance and self-determination.¡±

Other highlights for M¨¦tis and other Indigenous peoples in the budget included an overall 27% increase in spending for Indigenous peoples with investments in Indigenous languages, youth, sports, restorative justice practices, Indigenous fisheries and environmental stewardship programs.

¡°M¨¦tis have played a pivotal role in establishing this country yet time and again over the last 150 years Canada has failed to acknowledge M¨¦tis peoples for our contributions. These investments in M¨¦tis youth, justice programs, ending violence against women, housing and the environment, and in M¨¦tis Nation governance, mark a new beginning in that relationship and will provide a better and brighter future for M¨¦tis people and for all our fellow Canadians,¡± stated President Froh.

In addition to investments that specifically target M¨¦tis and Indigenous peoples, there are several other elements in the budget related to education, skills development, tourism, housing and child care that include programs and services that will benefit M¨¦tis in Ontario.

¡°There is much work that remains to be done to correct the historic wrongs in this country and to build that respectful relationship that the Trudeau Government has committed to with the M¨¦tis Nation, and this budget helps move us in that direction. The M¨¦tis Nation of Ontario is committed to doing its part to move this relationship forward, and we welcome the commitments made in this budget to support strong M¨¦tis families and communities, and stronger M¨¦tis governments to support our citizens. Building from this solid foundation, we look forward to the next 150 years, and to a brighter future for the M¨¦tis Nation and for all Canadians,¡± concluded President Froh.

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