The exchange occurred on May 30 during question period between Tory backbenchers Rosemarie Falk and Dane Lloyd, after they voted against NDP MP Romeo Saganash’s Bill C-262.
The bill is meant to ensure Canada abides by the United Nation Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).
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Every Conservative MP in the House of Commons voted against Bill C-262. It ultimately passed third reading by a vote of 206-79, and has now been sent for Senate review.
The party’s lack of support for the bill, and the MPs’ high five were both condemned by social media users.
Several pointed out that Falk represents the riding of Battlefords — Lloydminster, where Indigenous man Colten Boushie was killed.
The move was also slammed by the Battlefords-Lloydminster New Democrats in a Facebook post, who called it “immature, embarrassing, and unfit for Canada’s Parliament.”
“Ugly conduct by Battlefords-Lloydminster Conservative MP Rosemarie Falk,” the federal NDP’s constituency association wrote. “National media have picked up on the story and, once again, a Conservative MP is a source of shame for our riding.”
Perry Bellegarde, the national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, also released a statement on social media.
“For two elected Members of Parliament — elected representatives of the Canadian people — to behave so disrespectfully on a matter of basic human rights is absolutely beyond the pale,” Bellegarde said.
Global News reached out to both Lloyd and Falk for comment. Falk did not respond by the time of publication, while a representative for Lloyd declined to comment.
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However, both Falk and Lloyd commented on the issue to other media outlets, both saying the high five was not related to the bill in question.
“This was in response to the conclusion of nearly an hour of voting in the House of Commons, and not the specific vote in question,” a representative for Falk told website iPolitics.