October 7, 2015 – Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP) National Chief Dwight Dorey has welcomed two of the co-plaintiffs in the Daniels v Canada case to Ottawa, in anticipation of Thursday’s Supreme Court of Canada hearing on the landmark legal challenge.
Gabriel Daniels, from Winnipeg, is the son of the late Harry Daniels, who spearheaded the legal action back in 1991. Harry Daniels was the former president of CAP and passed away in 2004. His name remains on the order motion along with his son’s.
“My father dreamed of fairness, justice and equality for the non-Status Indians and Metis in Canada,” Gabriel Daniels states. “It’s been a very long road, but the Supreme Court hearing brings us one step closer to the possibility of that becoming a reality.”
Terry Joudrey, a Mi’kmaq from Nova Scotia, says “I’ll be listening closely to all of the arguments at tomorrow’s hearing and I’m hoping the Supreme Court will rule favourably when the decision is finally made.”
A third co-plaintiff, Leah Gardner, is not able to attend Thursday’s hearing. The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples is the fourth and final plaintiff in the challenge.
“We are looking forward to our day at the Supreme Court of Canada, although we would have preferred to avoid such a long and costly legal challenge. Recognition and rights for non-Status Aboriginal people in Canada are long overdue,” National Chief Dorey says. “We’re confident that the Supreme Court will uphold the 2013 ruling by the Federal Court of Canada which recognizes non-Status Indian people and Metis people as Indians under subsection 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867.”
The legal action also challenges the federal government’s denial that the Crown owes to Metis and non-status Indians a fiduciary responsibility as Aboriginal Peoples, and that Aboriginal people have a right to be negotiated with, on a collective basis, in good faith with the Crown.
Since 1971, the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples has represented the interests of off-reserve Status and non-Status Indians, Metis and the Southern Labrador Inuit. CAP is also the national voice for its affiliate organizations who advocate on behalf of Aboriginal people living off-reserve.
For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Sue Baker, Communications Co-ordinator
Congress of Aboriginal Peoples
Office: (613) 747-6022 Cell: (613) 266-4009 firstname.lastname@example.org