Cowichan Tribes Chief William Seymour will be in Vancouver next week, along with other leaders for the B.C. Cabinet and First Nations Leaders’ Gathering.
This will be the first event where First Nations leaders will meet Ministers and Deputy Ministers from the new NDP government.
Speaking with Seymour on recent issues, he says he is hopeful to see the Feds splitting the Indigenous portfolio between two Ministers.
Prime Minister Trudeau announced the shuffle last week, with the aim of scrapping the 1876 Indian Act.
Seymour says he is hopeful to see both the federal and provincial governments taking steps to improve relations with First Nations Communities. He says in 2012, Cowichan Tribes declared a state of emergency due to the high suicide rate in the community, and many of those underlying issues still exist.
Seymour says he is interested in meeting with the Minister of Forests Lands and Natural Resources on items like forestry and the Cowichan weir, as well as the Minister of Transportation concerning roads that pass through the reserve.