Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Leaders send weak signals

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Idle No More demonstrators gather in London, Ont., in March.

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Idle No More demonstrators gather in London, Ont., in March.

I agree with the July 19 editorial Canada's legacy of abuse that the treatment of our aboriginal peoples is "Canada's enduring dirty secret."

Apology aside, what resolutions have we seen from federal government leaders since 2008?

What signal does our prime minister send to Canadians with his weak response to cries for help from First Nations leaders? Symbolism can be powerful.

In contrast to the American leader, who is not afraid to speak up for his people, our leaders are mysteriously silent publicly on First Nations issues even when they are brought to the forefront with the Idle No More movement.

Are they hiding behind an indifferent public mindset?

It's absolutely correct to describe the history of abuse as "horrific treatment." It is even more awful when we realize most of the abuse was directed toward children.

Bold steps are needed. Sadly, I don't see any sign of resolve coming from our current government.

JANICE ISOPP

Selkirk

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 23, 2013 A8

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