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STATEMENT: Ministers’ Meeting Builds Momentum on Conservation, Indigenous Peoples Ready to Partner

Pat Kane

Ottawa: Thur. June 28, 2018: Federal, provincial and territorial Ministers responsible for parks and protected areas met today to discuss advancing toward the shared goal of protecting at least 17% of lands by 2020.

Valerie Courtois, the director of the Indigenous Leadership Initiative, made the following statement:

“Today’s meeting builds momentum. Provinces and territories are focused on creating new parks and protected areas, and Indigenous Nations across the country are too. From the Sahtu in the Northwest Territories to the Misipawistik Cree Nation in Manitoba, First Nations are moving forward on conservation.”

“I just came from visiting several Indigenous communities in the Northwest Territories that are working to create protected areas, and they are ready to partner with Canada. They are excited about contributing to the effort to protect at last 17% of lands by 2020. Today’s meeting helps shift these efforts forward.”

“It’s significant that Indigenous Guardians are being recognized as an integral part of reaching the targets. With support from the Nature Fund for Indigenous Guardians programs, Indigenous protected areas and other effective tools, we will see measurable progress on conservation and reconciliation.”