Skip to main content

Will Morin of Subury, Ont., marches toward Parliament Hill during Idle No More protest, Jan. 11, 2013.

Dave Chan/The Globe and Mail

Twenty Canadian first nations have taken to the world stage to accuse the Harper government of violating the human rights of their people and of failing to take action against "racist" media reports.

The communities – most of them Cree – made two presentations before the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in Geneva on Friday.

The first nations accused the federal Conservative government of introducing a slate of legislation that violates the human rights of first nations.

Story continues below advertisement

The legislation includes two omnibus bills that were passed into law last year, as well as bills dealing with first-nations financial transparency, matrimonial rights on reserve, first-nations elections, reserve drinking water, self-government and changes to the Indian Act. All have been the target of demonstrations by the loosely knit protest group Idle No More.

The first nations say the legislation was drafted without their input and they argue that the government's "denial to include us within a democratic decision-making process" violates the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

The second presentation took issue with a number of columns and an editorial, mostly about Idle No More, that have been published in the Sun Media newspaper chain as well as a column in the National Post that they say "perpetuate and reinforce negative stereotypes that belittle and depersonalize first nations and our members based on our race."

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter