Manitoba grand chief wants meeting with Saskatchewan premier over hunting rights

WINNIPEG -- A Manitoba grand chief is calling for a meeting with Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall after accusing the province of harassing indigenous hunters.

See Full Article

Derek Nepinak with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs has written a letter to Wall outlining concerns over hunters, who the chief says have been ticketed and threatened by Saskatchewan officials.

"These actions have been taken as harassment, bullying and outside the scope of authority of provincial government employees," he wrote in a letter released Thursday. "These tactics are being employed by men and women bearing arms and wearing the crest of the province of Saskatchewan in the commissioning of their activities."

The chief of the Pine Creek First Nation has said officers raided two homes last month and confiscated moose meat harvested from their traditional territory, which crosses the Manitoba-Saskatchewan boundary. Nepinak said it happened the day the Truth and Reconciliation Commission released its final report.

Saskatchewan officials have said they recognize the rights of indigenous hunters and would only step in if hunters were on private land without permission.

The law is clear -- indigenous hunters have the right to feed their families by traditional means, Nepinak said.

"I would like to extend to you the opportunity to meet with Indigenous leadership to begin a discussion about deconstructing the colonial legal and regulatory regimes of the past and begin moving in the direction of truth and reconciliation," he wrote to Wall.

"To this end, I will always be personally open to meet with you."

Wall was not immediately available to comment on the letter.

When asked about the issue last week, the premier said he categorically rejected some of the allegations that have been made by the chiefs. Treaty rights don't trump private property rights or the need for a province to manage its wildlife, he said.

"Whether you have a treaty card or not, you still need the permission of the landowner to hunt on private property," Wall said. "Our officials have been very careful to make sure they're never enforcing anything beyond what's enforceable. We respect treaty rights, but there are certain things that treaty rights do not trump when it comes to hunting."

Nepinak dismissed the argument that Saskatchewan is trying to conserve its moose population. Saskatchewan hands out 6,000 moose tags to sport hunters every year, but allows officials to bully and harass indigenous people who are trying to feed their families, he said.

"There is a correlation between a growing limitation of access to our traditional food sources and the explosion of diabetes to epidemic levels in our families," Nepinak wrote. "As such, the ability of a hunter to bring home natural foods to their families is critical to the health of the family."

-- With files from Jennifer Graham in Regina



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Scottish voters could be the key to thwarting Brexit in U.K. election

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO -- As voters in the United Kingdom head to the polls later this week, Scotland could be the key determinant for the future of Brexit. Scotland represents 59 seats in the U.K. Parliament, meaning voters in the region could deprive Conservative Party Leader Boris Johnson of the majority government that he needs in order to quickly pass his proposal for Brexit. Source
  • Canadian describes unease on cruise ship after deadly volcanic eruption

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO -- A Canadian man is among thousands of cruise ship passengers docked in a New Zealand port after a nearby volcano erupted, killing at least five people and leaving eight others missing – some of whom may be fellow travellers. Source
  • Canadian aboard New Zealand cruise spotted smoke from deadly volcano

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO -- A Canadian man is among thousands of cruise ship passengers docked in a New Zealand port after a nearby volcano erupted, killing at least five people and leaving eight others missing – some of whom may be fellow travellers. Source
  • Report: U.S. misled public on progress in Afghanistan war

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- The U.S. government across three White House administrations misled the public about failures in the Afghanistan war, often suggesting success where it didn't exist, according to thousands of pages of documents obtained by The Washington Post. Source
  • Inventor of the bar code, George Laurer, has died at age 94

    World News CBC News
    George J. Laurer, whose invention of the Universal Product Code at IBM transformed retail and other industries around the world, has died. He was 94. A funeral was held on Monday for Laurer, who died Thursday at his home in Wendell, N.C. Source
  • Families of crash passengers want wider review of Boeing Max

    World News CTV News
    The head of the Federal Aviation Administration will face questions about whether the agency is too cozy with Boeing when he testifies this week before a congressional panel. The chairman of the House Transportation Committee says he plans to ask FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson about Boeing's influence over the FAA's Seattle office and incidents in which FAA managers vetoed the concerns of the agency's own safety experts. Source
  • Caught on camera: Woman pushed out of wheelchair in thwarted theft attempt

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO -- An Arizona man wearing reindeer slippers was arrested after he allegedly tried to rob a woman of her wheelchair while on a light-rail train. According to a series of Facebook posts from the Phoenix Police Department, the suspect was “NOT spreading Christmas cheer. Source
  • Walmart Canada pulls sweater of Santa with what looks like cocaine

    Canada News CBC News
    Walmart Canada apologized on Monday for listing on its website an intentionally ugly Christmas sweater that featured an illustration appearing to depict Santa getting ready to snort cocaine. Users on Twitter had noticed the offer a few days earlier and started posting screengrabs and links to the merchandise. Source
  • Officers 'not negligent' in overdose death of B.C. teen that went viral, police watchdog says

    Canada News CBC News
    The delayed response of two police officers in finding a 14-year-old boy who died from an overdose at a Langley, B.C., park last summer did not play a role in his death, according to a report released Monday by the province's police watchdog. Source
  • Teen runaway found 'camping' inside Bed, Bath & Beyond

    World News CTV News
    GREENVILLE, N.C. -- Employees at a Bed, Bath & Beyond in North Carolina discovered an uninvited sleepover guest hiding in the store when they opened up. The News & Observer of Raleigh reports the Greenville store employees called local police around 8:30 a.m. Source