Advancing Reconciliation With Indigenous Peoples

Across the country, Indigenous Peoples, non-Indigenous Canadians and the Government are working hard to improve the quality of life of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. Together, we are making steady progress—advancing reconciliation and forging a new relationship based on recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership.

Since 2015, the Government has made historic investments to help secure a better quality of life for Indigenous Peoples. These investments in housing, early learning and child care, health, mental health and infrastructure have all helped to close the gap between Indigenous Peoples and non-Indigenous Canadians—but more work needs to be done.

The same is true when it comes to redressing past wrongs and advancing self-determination. The Government is working closely with Indigenous Peoples to better respond to their priorities, and to better support their plans for self-government, self-determination, and their ongoing work of nation rebuilding.

Budget 2019’s investments will help to advance the important work of reconciliation—for the benefit of Indigenous Peoples, and all Canadians.

Clean Drinking Water

Everyone in Canada should have access to safe, clean drinking water. Since 2015, the Government has invested nearly $2 billion to build new public water systems in First Nations communities, and for repairs and upgrades to existing systems. Since then, more than 80 long-term drinking water advisories have been lifted, and the Government is on track to eliminate all of the advisories by March 2021.

Budget 2019 builds on this effort by announcing an additional $739 million over five years, with $184.9 million per year ongoing for urgent repairs to vulnerable water systems, water operator training and other support programs, so that First Nations communities can effectively operate and maintain their public drinking water systems.

Better Services for First Nations and Inuit Children

Jordan’s Principle helps ensure that all First Nations children can access the health, social and educational services they need, when they need them. In 2016, the Government took a new approach to implementing Jordan’s Principle, aimed at reducing the gaps in services between First Nations children and other children in Canada.

To help all First Nations and Inuit children access the social services they need, Budget 2019 would:

Preserve, Promote and Revitalize Indigenous Languages

Restoring Indigenous languages and cultural traditions is a critical part of recognizing Indigenous identity and strengthening Indigenous communities. This is why the Government is committed to enacting Indigenous languages legislation—co-developed with Indigenous Peoples—to reclaim, revitalize, maintain and strengthen Indigenous languages.

To support the implementation of the Indigenous Languages Act, Budget 2019 would invest $333.7 million over the next five years, with $115.7 million per year ongoing, to support Indigenous language revitalization projects, as well as the proposed Office of the Commissioner of Indigenous Languages.

Healthy, Safe and Resilient Indigenous Communities

Budget 2019 also makes targeted investments that would:

Supporting First Nations Priorities

Budget 2019 proposes significant investments to advance priorities identified by First Nations including:

Supporting Inuit Priorities

Through the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee, the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and the Government of Canada have worked together to advance important priorities for Inuit such as eliminating tuberculosis in Inuit Nunangat, creating a permanent Inuit Health Survey and addressing overcrowded housing. Through Budget 2019, the Government is providing $286.2 million over five years to expand the reach of successful activities and take action in new areas, including:

  • $125.5 million over 10 years for an Inuit-led post-secondary education strategy.
  • $50 million over 10 years to continue the important work of the National Inuit Suicide Prevention Strategy.
  • $220 million over five years to provide important health and social services to Inuit children.
  • Support for a distinctions-based approach to Indigenous language revitalization projects with $333.7 million over five years, and $115.7 million ongoing to preserve, promote and revitalize Indigenous languages, including Inuktitut and Inuvialuktun.
  • Up to $100 million to establish an Indigenous Growth Fund to further encourage investments in Indigenous-led businesses by Aboriginal Financial Institutions, including for Inuit entrepreneurs.

Supporting Métis Nation Priorities

In 2017, the Government of Canada and the Métis Nation signed the Canada-Métis Nation Accord. In this agreement, both parties agreed to work together on advancing joint policy objectives and making real progress to improve socio-economic outcomes for Métis Peoples. Building on the significant investments already made to support Métis Nation priorities in the areas of housing, skills and training, early learning and child care, and governance capacity, Budget 2019 continues this progress on Métis Nation priorities, including

  • $362 million over 10 years to support a Métis Nation-led post-secondary education strategy.
  • $30 million to recognize the contribution of Métis veterans to the country’s Second World War efforts and to commemorate the sacrifices and achievements of all Métis veterans.
  • Support for a distinctions-based approach to Indigenous language revitalization projects with $333.7 million over five years, and $115.7 million ongoing to preserve, promote and revitalize Indigenous languages, including Michif, the traditional language spoken by Métis Peoples.
  • $50 million over five years to enhance the funding of the Métis Capital Corporations to support the start-up and expansion of Métis small and medium-sized enterprises, and up to $100 million to establish an Indigenous Growth Fund to further encourage investments in Indigenous-led businesses by Aboriginal Financial Institutions, including Métis Capital Corporations.

Advancing Reconciliation With Indigenous Peoples (167kb)

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