KAIROS’ Top 10 Wishes for 2016 – plus one more
It’s a new year and Canada’s new federal government has already taken some promising steps towards reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and a more climate friendly economy.
These steps, however, are only the beginning of a long journey, one fraught with many obstacles. By year’s end, KAIROS hopes it will be able to look back at the following achievements that will bring us closer to our goals of a reconciled, respectful relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, and a just transition to a clean energy economy. These are our top 10 wishes for 2016.
- Fulfillment of the Canadian government’s promise to implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples including the right to free, prior, informed consent, ensuring that natural resource development benefits the public interest.
- The appointment of an independent ombudsperson to ensure that Canadian mining companies respect human rights wherever they operate.
- The perspectives and experiences of Indigenous women in Canada and in the global South are heard and are visible when resource extraction projects and their impacts are being considered.
- Women, particularly victims and survivors of militarized conflict, are empowered to participate in peace building processes at all levels, from local to international.
- Indigenous kids in Canada receive the same level of services as other Canadian kids.
- The families of missing and murdered Indigenous women have an inquiry that gives them healing and justice.
- The federal government creates a path to permanent residence for all migrant workers.
- Temporary migrant worker permits do not tie them to a single employer.
- The federal government lives up to the commitment it made at the Paris climate conference — to hold the global temperature increase to under 1.5 degrees Celsius — by working with Alberta to forge a detailed plan to phase out tar sands production.
- The federal government implements a national, rising price on carbon that integrates with provincial carbon pricing mechanisms to effectively drive down greenhouse gas emissions across the country and spur the country’s renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors.
KAIROS has one more wish for 2016, one that the provinces are asked to fulfill. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) released its final report in 2015, after a five-year, cross-Canada consultation process on Indian Residential Schools. Too many Canadians do not know the history of these schools and the impacts of colonization on Indigenous peoples in this country.
- All provinces receive strong grades in KAIROS’ Report Card: Provincial and Territorial Curriculum on Indigenous Peoples because they are implementing the TRC’s Calls to Action #62.i. This Call urges provinces to make mandatory in grades Kindergarten to 12, age-appropriate curriculum on residential schools, Treaties, and the historical and contemporary contributions to Canada of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.
Photo credit: Inspirit Foundation