I have come to learn that within the Indigenous worldview, everything is related. Relationships explain our connectedness with the natural world, the spiritual world, and our human world. Everything exists in relationship.
I respect this worldview. I believe that we need to honour this perspective to build promising relationships with Indigenous Peoples when we sit across from each other in a meeting or sit together in a pipe ceremony.
When we as the government enter into agreements with First Nations leaders based on a government-to- government relationship, we understand and honour the depth of the commitment we are making.
That includes the historic protocol agreement signed by the Stoney Nakoda-Tsuut’ina Tribal Council and the Government of Alberta.
This agreement opens the opportunity to build relationships at different levels by working on the mutual priorities of:
- economic growth
- family services and housing
It also commits to a meeting every year between the Premier and Stoney Nakoda-Tsuut’ina tribal Council Chiefs. Cabinet ministers with related portfolios will also join protocol tables, so everyone involved has face-to-face time to explore the issues and to get to know each other.
We live in a time when relationships between Peoples is made richer and clearer by agreements like this, which is so important to a path to reconciliation.
Stronger relationships between our governments lead to a prosperous and promising future for First Nations and all Albertans.
We are all connected. When First Nations thrive, our province will thrive.