FSIN Chief Guy Lonechild upset over name change
Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN) Chief Guy Lonechild is upset after Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the federal department that deals with Canada's indigenous people is changing its name from Indian and Northern Affairs Canada to Aboriginal Affairs.
Prime Minister Harper made the decision during Wednesday's cabinet shuffle.
"An arbitrary name change without consultation with the First Nations leadership is not acceptable," Lonechild told reporters Wednesday. "We are separate and distinct peoples in this country when it comes to Indian status people."
He doesn't believe the federal government changed the title simply to be more inclusive to Metis and Inuit people, and he wants some answers from the Minister of Indian Affairs John Duncan.
"Is there a policy directional change with the Indian and the obligations to First Nations?" asks Lonechild.
"I think for a long, long time the Indian and Northern Affairs department needs to take a greater responsibility protecting and advocating for the rights of First Nations people."
Lonechild insists he has a very good relationship with the federal government, but is concerned that he wasn't consulted first.
Edited by News Talk Radio's Sabeen Ahmad.