The Assembly of First Nations is finalizing its 2005 Pre-Budget Submission for presentation to the Standing Committee on Finance in September. To ensure it includes the issues and concerns of all First Nations and is truly representative of all of our people, the AFN is asking for input from First Nations/Tribal Councils as to what you would like to see included for First Nations in next year’s Federal Budget.
The Pre-Budget Submission is an important opportunity to reach beyond the courts and Indian and Northern Affairs, and speaks directly to the central agencies and politicians that make important decisions in identifying the government’s plans and priorities, and explains our interests in a way that other forums do not allow. It has become an important tool in the AFN’s lobbying efforts, particularly in the current minority government situation.
The AFN is particularly interested in receiving testimonials about declining resources or other specific difficulties encountered by First Nations communities from across Canada. Statistics, reports and other data on life in your community would also be useful, as well as any input on policy issues.
In order for the AFN to incorporate your material into the Submission, please submit further input by August 28, 2005 to Yuri Artibise, Strategic Planning and Policy Coordination, at email@example.com. For more information, call 1-866-869-6789 ext. 230.
The Assembly of First Nations is hosting a First Nation Economic Summit in Calgary from November 7-9, 2005.
The national forum is aimed at First Nation leaders, practitioners, regional organizations, stakeholders, business leaders, federal government, and provincial and territorial representatives who have a direct interest in the development of First Nation economies. It will provide an opportunity for dialogue and policy recommendations on incentives and infrastructure to encourage First Nation economic opportunity and growth.
“Economic development is critical to sustaining the future of our people,” said Judy Whiteduck, Director of the AFN Economic Partnerships Secretariat. “First Nations must be the drivers of their own economies. We need to advance proposals that support economic development because it is key to achieving selfsufficiency and self-determination. This forum will provide an opportunity to further identify what’s needed to create sustainable and successful First Nation economies.”
The Canada-Aboriginal Peoples Roundtable process, specifically the First Nation discussion on Economic Opportunities, has provided a basis to discuss the practical issues related to supporting economic growth in First Nation communities and, ultimately, exploring a new economic development strategy.
It is planned that the Summit will address issues such as the state of First Nation economies and economic infrastructure, regional economies, labour force development and participation, mainstream procurement, federal processes and legislation, energy, trade, resources and revenue sharing, and economic partnerships.
The conference will be held at The Westin Calgary. Details will be posted on the AFN website, www.afn.ca, as they become available. For more information, contact Ryan Corbiere at 1-866-869-6789, ext. 394.