Category Archives: Community Development
Attawapiskat, Revisited: While Many Indigenous Communities are Economically Impoverished, They Are Far From Poor
By Leanne Simpson. Leanne is of Mississauga Nishnaabeg ancestry and is the author of Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence and a New Emergence. She is the editor of Lightening the Eighth Fire: The Liberation, Resurgence and Protection of Indigenous Nations and This is an Honour Song: Twenty Years Since the Blockades, all published by Arbeiter Ring Publishing in Winnipeg.
As usual posting this should not be taken as an endorsement of the line of Leanne Simpson.
At the time of writing this, three months have passed since Attawapiskat became a household name in Canada. Three months, and the band-aid solution of 22 homes has not been delivered and the community remains virtually unchanged. Three months, and the issues this community brought to the consciousness of Canadians have been all but forgotten.
We all like to believe that things are shifting in Indigenous-state relationships. We like to believe that things are getting better, that we’ve moved on from the circumstances that created flashpoint events like the Oka Crisis, Ipperwash, and Caledonia. Read the rest of this entry
A casino will affect almost every aspect of our lives. Jealousy, competition and gluttony should not rule our culture or economy. Why live unnaturally and unequally, beyond our means?
We should be strengthening our family and community ties, producing our own energy and food and keeping the soon-to-be desperate foreign interests out. Coming is hunger instead of plenty, cold instead of warmth, violence instead of peace. To survive we have to take care of each other.
Many of us elders remember the modest and meaningful life we once had. The men went away to do ironwork and the women and children stayed home and took care of our community.
Having worked in an Indian casino, the harm is easy to see. The house always wins. The work force will be mostly non-natives. Many of us don’t qualify for jobs due to our backgrounds, non-criminal records and not speaking French. Read the rest of this entry