FSIN supports demand for First Nations' say in federal transfer payments

The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations says it stands with Fond du Lac First Nation in demanding First Nations' input be included in federal transfer payment allocations.

Fond du Lac chief calls for more consultation after funding request for longer runway, all-weather road

Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations Chief Bobby Cameron says the federation agrees that First Nations must be consulted about federal transfer payment allocations. (CBC News)

The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations is supporting the chief of Fond du Lac First Nation in calling for First Nations to be consulted about how federal transfer payments are distributed within treaty territories.

The announcement comes after Chief Louis Mercredi went to Ottawa this week to request funding for a longer runway and an all-weather road for the community of Fond-du-Lac, Sask., according to a news release from FSIN.

That funding request comes after two youth took their own lives and a band member died after a plane crash in Fond-du-Lac last month.

The FSIN release says Chief Mercredi was told he needed to ask the provincial, rather than federal, government for funding,  prompting Mercredi to demand First Nations have a say on how federal transfer payments are allocated on treaty territories.

The release says First Nations are not included when federal and provincial governments discuss distribution of federal transfer payments, and that needs to change. 

"The federal government has a fiduciary obligation under the treaties to include us in these decisions which affect our treaty and inherent rights," said FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron in the news release.

In a statement about Mercredi's meeting with the federal government, the Ministry of Indigenous Services said "in discussions with the community, Fond du Lac requested extra health and infrastructure supports. We will be working to ensure extra mental health supports are in place as soon as possible, and will continue important discussions on the all-season road and airstrip."