Canada | Opinion

Jordan Wheeler: Justin Trudeau doesn't deserve Native headdress

Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau receives a headdress from the Tsuut'ina First Nation in Canada on March 4, 2016. Photo from Justin Trudeau / Twitter

Writer Jordan Wheeler, a member of the George Gordon First Nation, applauds Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for taking steps to improve Canada's relationship with First Nations but warns that the new Liberal Party government has yet to accomplish anything:
The photos made the rounds on social media and when I first saw one, I nearly spat out a mouthful of coffee. There was Prime Minister Justin Trudeau posing on a stage in a blazer, denim pants and a headdress. Expletives were part of my reaction.

Reading the print I saw that it was the Tsuut'ina First Nation, in Alberta, that bestowed the adornment on the national boss for — among other things — green-lighting the long awaited inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women.

Now I applaud Trudeau for green-lighting the inquiry. I also applaud Trudeau for the reversed attitude his government has shown toward indigenous people and indigenous issues compared to previous governments (including his dad's).

He made lots of nice-sounding promises during last year's elongated federal election and many indigenous people bought in. The inquiry was one promise. Whether remaining promises come to fruition remains to be seen.

Let's be clear on one point though. These are initial steps. This government is less than six months into its mandate. It hasn't done anything yet. Announcements are great but they're words, not actions.

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Jordan Wheeler: Justin Trudeau doesn't deserve headdress (CBC 3/8)

Also Today:
First Nations education funds quietly 'removed' by the previous government, Liberals say (CBC 3/11)
Justin Trudeau honoured by Tsuut'ina First Nation as 'the one that keeps trying' (CBC 3/4)
PM Justin Trudeau faces tough questions about missing and murdered indigenous women (CBC 2/1)

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