The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) is coming out against a Saskatchewan government move to arm conservation officers with semi-automatic rifles.
The AR-type weapons are due to be issued to conservation officers, who have taken on an expanded role as part of provincial efforts to address rural crime.
The move didn’t sit well with FSIN Vice-Chief Heather Bear.
“To my knowledge there has been no evidence presented that conservation officers require military-style weapons.”
She said she had concerns the move amounted to an intimidation tactic against Indigenous hunters and trappers.
“There are some concerns with the conservation officers who possess negative views of First Nations people, based on their lack of education respecting our rights.”
Bear said the FSIN wanted to see more consultation with the province on the issue.