Reconciliation and the Metis Conference (October 2015)

The Metis Treaties Project co-sponsored a conference in October of 2015.  The conference brought together scholars of various disciplines to consider outstanding questions regarding the state of Metis affairs in Canada.  Relevant topics included the debate around questions regarding who are the legitimate Metis and what is the nature and source of their rights.  The conference also considered and examined the growing and deeper scholarly history of Metis people that has emerged and how this has enriched the history and understanding of Metis peoples.  This knowledge will no doubt contribute to future policy and legal developments.

Also highlighted was an overview regarding the nature of historical relations between Metis peoples and First Nation peoples and how this relationship should be manifest today.  Moreover, the conference also explored the historical and evolving relationship between the Metis and the Crown, particularly the potential impact of the Daniels case.  A review of constitutional and legal developments and how they may contribute to new models of Metis – Crown relations was also provided by several panelists.

These were difficult topics especially around the issue of Metis identity and there were strong and in some cases opposing views expressed by participants and speakers which has generated controversy and debate.  We hope that this conference and the debate that ensues will be a small step towards a deeper and richer understanding of the Metis and the relationships between the Metis and others.

Posted on this website are videos of the various speakers and presenters from the conference.

Nicholas Vrooman and Nathalie Kermoal: Montana’s Metis, The Canative Project, and Metis of British Columbia.

Rob Innes on the mixed community of Cowessess, Signa Daum Shanks on the Metis community of Ill-a-la-Crosse and Brenda Macdougall on the Metis Digital Archive Database (DAD).

Sebastien Grammond on the courts and Metis identity, Chris Andersen on Metis peoplehood and the Metis Nation and Denis Gagnon on Metis Idenity politics.

Brenda Gunn on International perspectives on Metis Treaties, Adam Gaudry on Metis – First Nation treaties and Darren O’Toole on the Manitoba Act as a Metis Treaty.

Joseph Magnet on the Daniel’s case, Cathy Bell on inter-jurisdictional Immunity and the Metis Settlements of Alberta and Larry Chartrand on re-interpreting s.91(24) of the Constitution Act.

Presentation on the Gabriel Dumont Institute and Round table Summary Reports in Plenary.