MB Themes

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The themes you see below are meant to help guide and focus Idle No More actions and planning in Manitoba.

People are encouraged to think about one or more of these themes as they plan events and actions.


The themes were developed over several meetings between November 2012 and January 2013.  Approximately 40 individuals from across the province participated in their creation.  The ideas were summarized by organizer Jerry Daniels.

These themes are ever-evolving, ever-changing and will develop as our understanding and knowledge of the issues – and of each other – grows.

1 - spiritual wisdom guidance

 Spiritual Wisdom & Guidance

Listen to our elders

Include spirit in both processes and any future legislation

Remember the next seven generations when considering impact of choices and actions

2 - enviro sustain

Environmental Sustainability

Protect our waters and our lands

Understand that we are having a water crisis and need to promote responsible resource development

Remember it is our role as Indigenous people to be stewards and keepers of the land

3 - legislation

Federal Legislation & Agreements

We must understand the Indian Act and how it affects us today (on and off reserve).

We must find ways to be well-versed in the treaties and agreements that apply to the land where we live/are from, though such documents may be difficult to understand/written in outdated language.

We must also be familiar with international legislation such as the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

5 - history

History of European/Indigenous Relations

Understand that we had our own systems of justice, education, healthcare prior to contact with Europeans.

Recognition that the generosity of Indigenous people was necessary for the survival and establishment of the colony of Canada.

Education was a key agreement in most (if not all) treaties between Canada and the First Nations.  The creation of Indian residential schools and the current under-funding of First Nations education did/does not live up to the treaties.

4 - indigenous governance

Indigenous Governance

We have to understand what we mean when we say nation to nation

Something to consider:  Is our reserve a nation, or is our nation something larger, bigger?

How do we work together to recognize what modern nations look like – both legally and practically?

We must work to understand both the economics and demographics in our communities.

5 - advocacy

Effective and Efficient Advocacy

We must organize quickly.

We have to listen to one another and create space for disagreement and discussion.

We have to develop outcomes (what we want an action or the movement to accomplish) and share them with others so we can grow the number of our allies and work towards our common goals.

We must operate from a strength-based approach and focus on solutions.

We will help one another, share our skills and learn from each other.

5 thoughts on “MB Themes

  1. Pingback: “LEARN” from Idle No More Manitoba | Idle No More Manitoba

  2. “We must understand the Indian Act and how it affects us today”

    Also it’s crucial to understand the rights & political relations enshrined in the Canadian constitution and in the many far-reaching treaties which remain in effect to this day.

  3. My nephews have been in CFS for three years and they were willing to give them back if my mom’s file closed. My mother is fighting for parental custody for my sister’s two boys. The father is a man trying to be involved to get his boys back. For some reason, he does not consider that fact of my mom being the legal guardian because he does not wish upon the idea. The boys can also, be out of CFS’ care if the father signs a paper a give the right to my mom for parental care. When those kids are in care, abused by the foster parents, being adopted out by the CFS worker when she is the support, and keeping them in care. When father doesn’t not reply to the safe keeping of those boys. They could be at home. Safe warm and loved. I’m the auntie.

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