While many were disappointed that pandemic precautions prevented the planned gathering in Waskaganish, Cree leaders believe this year’s virtual Annual General Assembly (AGA) September 1-2 represented significant progress for the Cree Nation on several issues.
Electors across Canada will have the chance to vote for their Member of Parliament in the September 20 federal election. In Abitibi–Baie-James–Nunavik–Eeyou, there are five declared candidates from the major parties, with Sylvie Bérubé of the Bloc Québécois running for re-election.
Quebec Premier François Legault and Indigenous Affairs Minister Ian Lafrenière met with newly elected Grand Chief Mandy Gull-Masty and Deputy Chief Norman Wapachee in Mistissini August 16, the first meeting between the new administration of the Cree Nation Government and the Quebec government.
Despite the organizational challenges posed by a renewed Covid-19 pandemic, new Cree Youth Grand Chief Adrian N. Gunner and Deputy Youth Chief Jordan Masty are determined to address the challenges facing young people in Eeyou Istchee.
Many were surprised when Abel Bosum conceded the race for a second term as Grand Chief shortly after seeing the first-round Cree Nation Government election results July 14. However, his decision to forego the run-off vote was characteristic of the respect with which he approached his leadership.
Following two rounds of voting, Mandy Gull-Masty was elected Grand Chief of the Cree Nation July 29. With 3,120 votes, Gull-Masty garnered 64% of ballots cast, versus 36% for Pakesso Mukash (1,779 votes).
Once again, it’s election time for the top positions of the Grand Council of the Crees and the Cree Nation Government. Advance polls open July 7 and election day is July 14 to decide which two of the hopeful candidates will helm the CNG for the next four years.
An Auditor General’s report on health resources in Indigenous communities found that the federal government met less than half their requests for additional health care staff during the Covid-19 pandemic, though it generally provided communities with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) on a timely basis.
The Quebec government’s recently tabled Bill 96 represents the largest expansion of French-language rights isince the passing of Bill 101, the Charter of the French Language, in 1977. It is also raising concerns from Indigenous language advocates.