Statement by Minister Bennett, Minister Miller and Minister Vandal on Human Rights Day

From: Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

“Today, the Government of Canada is proud to join in the international celebration of Human Rights Day. This year marks the 71st anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, this document was the first of its kind to set the standard for the rights that all people are entitled to as human beings.

The values adopted in this declaration, including equality, justice and human dignity, are still important today. The Government of Canada remains committed to the principles outlined in this guiding document, with the goal of building a more inclusive Canada. This includes promoting and protecting the rights of Indigenous peoples.

For far too long, First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada were denied the right to self-determination and were oppressed by laws, policies and practices that did not fully respect their rights as individuals. Today, we are working together to ensure that history does not repeat itself. That is why the Government announced in the December 5, 2019 Speech from the Throne that we will co-develop and introduce legislation to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in the first year of our new mandate.

The Government of Canada will continue to engage in meaningful partnership with First Nations, Inuit and Métis to respect and promote the rights of Indigenous peoples in Canada. Developing these renewed relationships based on rights-recognition and cooperation remains a priority for Canada, as we all work towards a country where everyone has a seat at the table and a place to be heard.”

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