“Let us understand that what happened at the residential schools was the use of education for cultural genocide—and what that really means is that we’ve got to offer aboriginal Canadians, without any shadow of a doubt, the best education system that is possible to have.”
— Paul Martin, April 2013

The thinking about aboriginal education in Canada needs to move away from asking, “How can they succeed in our system?” to asking, “‘How can we build from something that they have and build upon their notions of success, on their notions of self-determination, the things they wish to keep in their communities that are still viable, and important ways for transmitting knowledge, values and projecting that into the future?”

First Nations education needs fresh ideas, leaders say

The First Nations Education Act does not address the real challenges faced by on-reserve schools, and yet the Harper government is ramming it through. Indigenous activists march, politicians lie—and meanwhile thousands of First Nation, Métis, and Inuit learners struggle, drop out, or commit suicide.

They are not failing. We are failing them.

Photo by Bruce Dean

No one knows this land better than the First Nation communities in northeast Alberta. In recent years, many of these communities have watched as the rapid expansion of tar sands development has threatened their land, their health, and their way of life.

“We identify with our land. When they destroy our land they will destroy our people.”
Eriel Deranger, member of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation

Tar sands mining has already damaged nearly 300 square miles of sensitive land in Alberta and more than 1,150 square miles is expected to be strip-mined within the next 50 years. Despite promises by the oil industry to restore the landscape, less than one square mile has been reclaimed so far.

Extracting bitumen from the tar sands is much more complicated—and more destructive—than drilling for conventional oil.

It’s something that’s plagued me horribly—the impotence that we all feel towards war and America’s ability to wage war and the common citizen’s ability to stop it. I think we had power in those days. There was a place for sincerity, and sincerity had an impact. I think that time has passed. That window of opportunity for an individual has passed. I don’t think that we, anymore, have the ability to have that kind of impact. I think the next level is going to be making art the forum.

Jan Rose Kasmir, 2010

“Democracy has to be protected, defended by every generation. No battle ever stays won. Every generation must learn over again how to preserve democracy and make it in our nations.”
— Premier Tommy Douglas, 28 December 1960

The integrity of Canada’s democracy is at risk. The Harper government is seeking to ram through an election reform bill that will make it more difficult for Canadians to vote, cover up the election fraud of 2011 and silence the Chief Electoral Officer of Elections Canada.

Bill C-23, the “Fair” Elections Act is one of the most destructive things the Harper government has ever tried to do. It is far more serious than proroguing Parliament at whim, curbing the rights of MPs, or centralizing power in the Prime Minister’s Office. It’s even more serious than muzzling scientists, statisticians and others who disagree with the government.

That’s because the Act is an attack on the most fundamental right of all citizens in a democracy—the right to cast a ballot in an election that is fair and free from corruption and dirty tricks.

‘Unfair Elections Act’ looks more and more like a cover-up

Find out more at saveyourvote.ca.

The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.
Honour the Treaties
Photos by Zac Embree The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.
Honour the Treaties
Photos by Zac Embree The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.
Honour the Treaties
Photos by Zac Embree The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.
Honour the Treaties
Photos by Zac Embree The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.
Honour the Treaties
Photos by Zac Embree

The time has come for Canada to decide if we want a future where First Nations rights and title are honoured, agreements with other countries to protect the climate are honoured, and our laws are not written by powerful oil companies. Or not.

Honour the Treaties

Photos by Zac Embree

“Aboriginal levels of incarceration are worse per capita for the black population than during apartheid South Africa. This is a living and breathing example of codified bigotry. So we look away. We don’t want to know.”
Australia’s indigenous incarceration rates are a national shame

While you remember the life of Nelson Mandela, keep in mind that his vision for a world of justice and equality is still unattained in many parts of the world. Racial inequality and marginalization did not end in 1994. The fight for justice is not over.

Is the Stephen Harper ‘brand’ broken?

He promised a change, a new era of accountability and transparency.

Two elections later, we’ve got one of the most secretive governments in the world, a government that spies on its own citizens and lies to parliament. For the past two years, Harper has torn down Canada’s democracy in his fight to consolidate power and pursue his own agenda.

If this government continues in office, this will continue.

We’re running out of time. Top scientists say we have less than ten years to close the emissions gap. Canada doesn’t care. Harper is focused on protecting the Alberta bitumen industry at any cost. Last week the UN slammed Canada for our poor record.

We have got to do better.

And while our political leaders march ahead on tar sands deals and fund dirty oil advertising, we must do what they have failed to do. We cannot sit by and let them endanger our future.

We must rally together, now more than ever. There is no plan B.