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‘FSIN lost its vision’: Poundmaker Cree Nation cuts ties with Sask. Indigenous organization

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Poundmaker cuts ties with FSIN
WATCH: Poundmaker Cree Nation is terminating its relationship with the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations. The nation says the FSIN has lost its vision regarding preserving and protecting treaty rights – Oct 13, 2022

Poundmaker Cree Nation announced Wednesday that it was terminating its relationship with the Federations of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN).

The FSIN represents 74 First Nations in Saskatchewan. On their official website, they state they are “committed to honouring the spirit and intent of the Treaties, as well as the promotion, protection and implementation of the Treaty promises that were made more than a century ago.”

In a media release, Poundmaker Cree Nation Chief Duane Antoine said it’s an independent nation, not affiliated or represented by the FSIN. Antoine stated the Nation will represent itself directly with the federal and provincial governments.

Poundmaker Cree Nation said it believes the FSIN has lost its vision regarding preserving and protecting treaty rights.

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The release explained that the decision to sever ties was in the best interests of their Nation to protect Treaty for future generations, as the FSIN is a provincial body and cannot serve these interests for the Poundmaker Cree Nation.

The release also stated the decision had been a formal discussion among the community members for around a year through public meetings, workshops, elder, and council meetings.

Poundmaker Councilor Bryan Tootoosis said the move stemmed from the FSIN neglecting some of the needs of the nation.

“We don’t see FSIN – only when we invite them. Throughout the year their employees or their staff doesn’t affiliate with our program board, or staff, BTC, or Indian Health.”

Tootoosis shared that children, social workers and professional educators in the community have confirmed that they have never seen FSIN representatives on Poundmaker soil, despite some of them being employed in the community for up to ten years.

Poundmaker chief and council said they are prepared and educated to serve themselves when it comes to supporting and protecting their treaty and inherent rights.

Tootoosis says if the change is done right, it will help the nation progress, adding that government money would go directly to Poundmaker.

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Tootosis said the chief of FSIN had been properly notified.

“Obviously he wasn’t very pleased about the decision, but on the other hand, with leaders in Indian politics and the Indian world, there is respect, and he respects our decision and wished us luck.”

Global News reached out to FSIN for comment but did not hear back before deadline.

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