Minister's Statement on Kashechewan First Nation Relocation
TORONTO — Today, the Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of Indigenous Affairs issued the following statement:
"The Ontario Government is committed to do everything in its authority to support the relocation of Kashechewan First Nation.
Today, Kashechewan, Ontario and the federal government signed an agreement that commits the parties to work together to develop a community planning and development process that includes necessary steps to relocate the community.
Kashechewan faces a number of challenges that affect the well-being and safety of community members, including repeated, costly, evacuations in response to annual flooding and infrastructure issues. Ontario supports the efforts of the community and the federal government to secure a new location for the community where families can build their futures together and practice their traditions.
While the federal government has ultimate responsibility for the relocation, we are proud to play an important role and I was pleased to tell Chief Friday and the federal government that we are committed to fast tracking the provincial actions necessary to support relocation. I have had incredible opportunities to work in and with First Nation communities, as a nurse, lawyer and former federal cabinet Minister, and I am pleased that we have now taken this important step forward to improve the long-term health and sustainability of the community.
Ontario will continue to ensure the safety of community members by working with community leaders and host communities to safely evacuate the people of Kashechewan during flood season."