FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Métis Will Have a Key Role in the Off-Reserve Aboriginal Action Plan Abbotsford, B.C.
Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) as the recognized representative was invited by the provincial government to be a partner on the Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation’s (MARR) ORAAP project.
The BC government has established a Provincial Co-ordination Team (PCT) to oversee the development of ORAAP. The PCT includes representatives from the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres (BCAAFC), Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC), Aboriginal Affairs of Northern Development Canada (AANDC), Ministry of Children and Family Development, Ministry of Social Development and Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation (MARR).
MNBC Minister for Children and Families, Daniel Pitman, is encouraged by the MARR-ORAAP announcement, as he believes this is an excellent opportunity for Métis Community leadership to improve the socio-economic needs of Métis children and families of British Columbia. Minister Pitman further commented that he encourages Métis community leadership to become actively involved in the process of developing local community action plans to achieve healthier outcomes for Métis Citizens of British Columbia in the areas of education, employment, healthier families and strengthen Métis culture and traditions.
Five pilot communities have been identified as part of this roll-out: Vancouver, Surrey, Prince George, Kamloops, and Duncan. Communities were selected by the PCT based on a series of factors, including: high concentrations of British Columbia’s urban Métis, Inuit and First Nations population; alignment with the AANDC Urban Aboriginal Strategy; coverage of key regions of the province; critical mass of programs and services; and, the readiness of the community to participate in a pilot. Local friendship centers in Duncan, Kamloops, Prince George and Surrey will lead the community planning in acting as a host for the communities. The Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council will take the lead for planning in Vancouver.
The Métis Nation BC has Chartered Communities in the five identified Pilot Communities in which the Métis Peoples will engage in this Action Plan. This is an opportunity for the MNBC to assist and improve on the socio-economic needs of Métis in BC. We welcome and support this project and thank the Provincial Government for recognizing the Métis Peoples needs in this Province.