Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh of the Grand Council of Treaty 3 said a lot of hard work has gone into an agreement that will create the best opportunities possible for Anishinaabe children and youth to live in safe and healthy families and communities.
On Sept 7, the Grand Council signed the ‘relationship agreement’ with the province to transform the services provided by the ministry of Children and Youth in northwestern Ontario.
The agreement was signed in Kenora, Ont. and reaffirms a commitment to co-implement the Ontario Indigenous Children and Youth Strategy, a ‘long-term, generational and whole-of-government framework that seeks to transform the relationship between Indigenous peoples and the Ontario government,’ read a statement.
“I would like to commend the hard work of all of our Treaty 3 leadership, our regional organizations and community front-line staff who work tirelessly in the development and implementation of local and regional programs and services,” said Kavanaugh.
The Grand Council Treaty 3 is the traditional government of the Anishinaabe Nation, comprising 26 Anishinaabe communities in northwestern Ontario and two in southeastern Manitoba.
Commitments to strengthen the relationship between Ontario and Grand Council Treaty 3 were first set out in a bilateral agreement signed in May 2009. The new agreement will complement and advance the Ontario-Grand Council Treaty 3 bilateral agreement.
“The relationship agreement between the Government of Ontario and Grand Council Treaty 3 signifies the important work we have done together through the Ontario Indigenous Children and Youth Strategy. This agreement also affirms our shared commitment to strengthen our bilateral relationship and continue working to achieve better outcomes and opportunities for Anishinaabe children and youth in Treaty 3,” said Michael Coteau, minister of Children and Youth Services.