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Métis Nation – Sask. creates new treaty document for self-governance

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Métis Nation – Saskatchewan (MN–S) has launched a new treaty document that will set the stage for self-governance.

The document is called Kischi Mashinahikan Ooschi Michif, which translates to "the sacred document of the Métis."

The new modern treaty obligates Canada to recognize MN–S as government and protects its rights to make decisions – that cannot be overruled by the federal government, regardless of a change in political power.

MN–S President Glen McCallum said the document is 150 years in the making.

"We are one very important step closer to fully realizing our inherent right to self-government," McCallum said.

The sacred document guarantees stable funding for MN–S and paves the way for self-jurisdiction over healthcare, family services and education.

"We’re excited. This is our moment as a community. This is our moment for our citizens. This is our moment for our children and grandchildren and future grandchildren. This document will live forever," MN–S Vice President Michelle LeClair told journalists on Monday.

The document must first be supported by MN–S citizens, 75 per cent of citizens must vote yes to ratify the treaty.

MN–S is pursuing its own agreement, after withdrawing from Bill C-53 – an act that would recognize Métis organizations in Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan.

MN–S said the "one-size-fits-all approach proposed by the federal government was fundamentally flawed." McCallum said Kischi Mashinahikan Ooschi Michi is uniquely designed for Métis people in Saskatchewan.

MN–S aims to bring the document to Parliament Hill in 2025.

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