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Battling complacency an issue on S-3 for council

Council continues to try to engage the community on the federal bill MCK feels is an existential threat to the community’s membership. (Daniel J. Rowe, The Eastern Door)


A disheartening total of four people showed to the Bill S-3 youth information session last Thursday, February 28 at the Kahnawake Youth Center.

Allan John Rice, Brandon Bordeau and Mohawk Council chief Kahsennenhawe Sky-Deer led the youth information sessions and awareness to “Canada’s newest assimilation attempt.”

Bill S-3, An Act to amend the Indian Act, would allow for up to 60,000 people to become members of Kahnawake, according to council.

The disappointment in the number of attendees to the information session was evident from Sky-Deer.

“We did so much outreach,” she said. “It just goes to show that the complacency in our community is not just with the adults.”

She thinks maybe because there are so many meetings and S-3 debriefings being posted online and throughout Kahnawake, that everyone felt they knew enough of the situation and didn’t feel the need to make their way to the meeting.

Another factor she thinks is hindering the attendance at the recent meeting is the weather.

Nonetheless, this problem of not enough people making their way to important meetings is discouraging for those who want to do something about Canada’s law.

“We give them their own venue to have their own voice, they still didn’t take up the opportunity,” said Sky-Deer. “I don’t know what its going to take.”

Council’s plan is to get the information out via technology and make it more visible and attainable for the youth, since they are more technology-orientated.

A survey was sent out Monday, and will be available until 11:59 p.m. April 3.

Kiosks will be open at the Kahnawake Services Complex on March 19, 22 and 29 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for in-person surveys.

Although there weren’t enough attendees to make the meeting go through its whole timeslot, the four minds who made their way to the KYC were listening with interest.

“Quality over quantity,” said Sky-Deer.

“Regardless of its deadness, they were helpful with asking and answering questions,” said Emma Ouimet.

Ouimet went to the youth information session because she wants to be up to date and active with the community’s involvement with government acts and how it’ll affect her and her fellow community members.

“I am interested in community politics and what the future may hold in regards to new Indian Act policies and amendments, and what effects or dilemmas they may bring to Kahnawake’s future,” said Ouimet.

“We want a pretty diverse group of community members to develop a Kahnawake position based on all the feedback, based on the outcome of the survey we launched, to say this is an official Kahnawake stand on this matter,” said Deer.

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