MNBC Continues to Interfere with Mètis Communities – Director Resignation

(Terrace, BC) The Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) leaders continued their latest tactics to divide their community organizations this past week in Terrace, BC. The North West BC Métis Association (NWBCMA) is one of the identified thirty-three Métis community associations that are listed on the MNBC website as a Chartered Community. The NWBCMA is one of the few active Métis community associations in BC and one of the 24 in good corporate standing that have a relationship with MNBC through the MNBC designed Charter Agreement.

Earlier in June the NWBCMA Directors called a special meeting with the NWBCMA members to decide on terminating their Charter Agreement with MNBC in light of the decision in May to support the Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines Project. Most recently the NWBCMA President Alan Sauve resigned largely due to this reason as well. This past Wednesday NWBCMA Director Rosanne Pearce added he name to the resignations because of the deliberate interference by MNBC once more when they became aware of resolutions to terminate the relationship with their organization.

BC Métis Federation President Keith Henry stated, “The letter from former NWBCMA Director Rosanne Pearce is shameful and revealing. There is no denying that MNBC’s interference at all costs attitude in light of their support for the Enbridge project is a complete and utter disgrace. Terrace if viewed as a critical location in light of their community in relation to the proposed pipeline project. How much did MNBC money pay to send their representatives to Terrace and hold a meeting over the weekend and orchestrate and interfere? Who paid for this? Does anyone really think this is appropriate or the meaning of self governance?”

BC Métis Federation President Henry further added, “Her resignation reveals how MNBC has deliberately interfered on numerous occasions and not consulted with the NWBCMA members about the Enbridge project. This adds to the growing evidence mounting against the MNBC and the misrepresentation they are making to industry and governments alike.”

BC Métis Federation President Henry concluded, “I want to acknowledge Rosanne, her mother Elizabeth and so many previous NWBCMA Directors who donated their time and energy to assist their Métis community in Terrace. The lack of participation, as referred to in her letter in Terrace, throughout BC is due in large part to these sorts of unethical and corrupt tactics by MNBC. MNBC leaders travel around BC, do not provide any real support for Métis communities for infrastructure, and then play heavy handed politics. Ask yourself when was the last time any Métis community was really was assisted by MNBC? That is why there is no progress. We look forward to working with the number if NWBCMA members who are terminating their MNBC citizenship and NWBCMA membership. The BC Métis Federation will rebuild a stronger Métis community with a real voice in Terrace.”

Keith Henry
President, British Columbia Métis Federation
Suite 300-3665 Kingsway
Vancouver, BC
V5R 5W2

Download the full press release in PDF format. Download Roseanne Pearce’s letter of resignation in PDF format.

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13 Responses to MNBC Continues to Interfere with Mètis Communities – Director Resignation

  1. Joe Desjarlais June 29, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    This story is of national significance that has yet to be told in all its nuances. Under the MNBC and their supporters the current path to self government for Metis people has been full of denials, blame, covert agendas, co-optation, and inequitable power contests. Big oil is a flashpoint that lays it all bare and the BCMF is committed to to a new way forward, one that respects place and includes people.

    I repeat myself in that MNBC leaders have failed Metis people as leaders on every turn- Every time they open their mouths ( or through their lawyer) they show their true colors in the manner they conduct themselves when they aught to know better. The silence, the inconsistencies, the denials, the hollow refrains, the horrible decisionmaking just reinforce this. I invite you to move forward with the BCMF.

    I want to assure you that working with the BCMF, Metis people will explore the full weight of their constitutional, economic and political inheritance in Canada.

  2. Russ Roy June 30, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    Russ Roy
    VMCS President

    This is once again another prime example, added to a long line of examples, as to what is factually happening politically, to the Metis people of British Columbia.

    Through inadequate Provincial leadership and the total lack of proper community consultations, one by one, the community groups of MPCBC/MNBC are disintegrating and falling apart as MPCBC/MNBC gets closer and closer to imploding.

    As we all know, MPCBC/MNBC has not properly consulted with the Metis people or community groups in BC. over the Enbridge Oil Line Project, as they profess that they have done.

    Perhaps in hindsight they could have developed and sent out a questionnaire as they did with the Health survey, to properly survey the Enbridge project, before falsely claiming that they have been consulting with the Metis people.

    Questions:

    1. Does the MPCBC/MNBC Leadership believe that they are more Metis than we are, because they get a pay cheque to be leaders?

    2. Does the MPCBC/MNBC Leadership realize that the grass roots members and community Leaders actually do all the work as unpaid volunteers to keep their membership together?

    3. Does the MPCBC/MNBC Leadership realize what they have done, over the last 3 1/2 years to the Metis people of BC.?

  3. Rosie July 1, 2012 at 12:19 am #

    WITHOUT PREJUDICE
    My opinion is that I don’t think they care.
    this has been an ongoing saga for many many years. it’s become all about the “power”

    this is just what i think,…but who knows right?!?

    How many community charters had liaisons to Enbridge and MNBC?
    What if MNBC thinks that these liaisons had the right to speak for their communities?
    And what if these liaisons had their own hidden agendas to provide their support like the promise of work, or company contracts, or donations for events etc that benefits their specific charter or maybe they want to keep getting that 250 bucks a meeting Enbridge pays them to attend? so many what ifs!!

    i think that some of our representatives spoke out of turn based on promises that would benefit themselves or their charters. Whether it was MNBC or Enbridge that made those promises; one will never know unless these representatives start speaking up. Somehow i don’;t think they will,..do you?

  4. Keith Henry July 1, 2012 at 10:52 am #

    Thanks Rosie and this is so correct.

    The reality is that though there are options to address even in MNBC’s own documentation.

    For example, MNBC has their consultation guidelines that clearly describe what was supposed to happen. We all know that despite MNBC’s documentation they have ignored for several reasons, including what you have posted here.

    I hope people feel they have power and a voice on your own or through the BC Metis Federation, You do not have to stay with this dysfunction MNBC or a community organization just because some misguided belief or political wrangling.

    it has been proven beyond any doubt about the MNBC and Enbridge situation on numerous occasions. We are filing a comprehensive submission to the Joint Review Panel and people can read for themselves.

    We will be sure this regulatory body hears the views of all!

    Take care

  5. Richard Lucier-larson July 1, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

    Rosie
    I am in agreement with your last comment, have a mnbc representative speak up ? what a novel idea.
    I really don’t think this will happen, they are not happy to be told what they have done is wrong, those of them with this attitude will crawl away and hope none will remember.

    Most will stick the money in their pockets and ask or look for more.

    So this is why a lot of us in the BCMF are involved, lets stop this process of being in Metis politics for the $$$.
    Remove money from politics and hopefully get a ongoing group who work for the Grassroots.
    Ekosi
    Richard

  6. Free Metis July 1, 2012 at 8:56 pm #

    One of the big problems is the top down, instead of the bottom up, structure of any provincial organization. As soon as you have a provincial president, big chief, or CEO that weilds the power over our community organizations your structure is doomed. From what I am lead to believe the only truly functioning community organizations are those that maintained an autonomy from MPCBC/MNBC, I’ve seen first hand what happens to the Metis organizations that have anything on the go, they get torn apart by those that want to maintain a power base.

    A provincial board should be made up of regional presidents (leaders) that are active in their local….not Regional Directors you never see. Provincial decisions should be made via this council of community leaders…and provincial funding should be controlled by them.

    Why do we have service delivery offices in towns that are separate from the community offices? Native friendship center can deliver social services and employment services from their centers…and Metis cannot? Why do these offices not have Metis working at the desks?

    Why was community capacity building abandoned? We need funding directly into our community associations, where has that all gone?

    I agree we need a rebuilding in BC, no disrespect Mr Henry, we need a different structure that can survive a leadership change….and one that is divided up enough that a failure in any one community will not drag down everyone. IMHO we don’t need a stand alone provincial organization that can ruin us all with a change in leadership that proves to be corrupt.

  7. Grant July 2, 2012 at 2:42 am #

    In our region, every single dollar that ever came out of MNBC, went into someones pocket. There is no accountability. What is your suggestion to stop abuse of funds in local community offices.

  8. Free Metis July 2, 2012 at 7:35 am #

    How to stop corruption in your local? Elect an honest president and board, not the ones that MNBC is supporting. Each community needs an active membership, regular meetings, and reporting. If your leaders don’t want this it’s a good sign they want to hide something. Read your community constitution, there should be a way to stop a rogue board if that is what your facing, the ultimate authority is always in the hands of the members, they just have to know how to wield it.

  9. Grant July 2, 2012 at 8:41 am #

    Very true, but only successful if the membership is educated on roberts rles orderr, meeting protocol and the powers that voting members have. We attended many a meetimg that the MNBC f

  10. s.daniels July 2, 2012 at 8:52 am #

    When a elected leader becomes corrupt, due to power and enormous salaries, how do you expect them to lead with accountability, they rule by scare tactics via through a over paid lawyer.

    Metis communities just want to be able to have, programs in place to help, build a better community, health care education for the youth, and elder care.

    So far none of this as happen through the elected BOD, this BOD are in for themselves and no one else. As a METIS VOICE put a stop to the corruption. Once this BOD steps away, all the people closer to working with them will have no fear to speak up about a lot more than we have heard so far. As a Metis voting body be very careful about who you put in place in the up coming election

  11. Keith Henry July 2, 2012 at 11:13 am #

    Thank you Grant and Free Metis,

    I wanted to weigh in here a little.

    It takes more than just the right people. You also need training and support to build capacity at the community levels. Many of the community boards are not quite clear on their roles and responsibilities or or these organizations should properly function.

    This is not meant to be disrespectful to the volunteers out there but it has been my experience that a lot of training is desperately needed to assist and build capacity to ensure the grassroots are involved and have a FUNCTIONAL voice.

    In terms of the ideas expressed by the Free Metis about governance (last paragraph on first entry here) I think there is a lot of value in these views and ideas. The BC Metis Federation is producing a constitution and this will definitely be a MAJOR consideration. Our challenge is there is not enough functioning community organizations in my view at this time, but clearly this is a good idea.

    Thank you all!

    • Rosie July 5, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

      I agree with Keith, training is essential for any board.

      All board members should know what is expected of them before they agree to be nominated for a position; and then training is necessary to help the board fulfill those duties, and to better understand their requirements and capabilities.

      MNBC should of paid for each chartered community board of directors to go thru some sort of orientation training.after each election.

      Either way, *sigh* in our situation we had 3 board members who just couldn’t handle the load on their own. It seems that in this community when some the elders speak, regardless of whether they are right or wrong, they are treated as if they are right and all that is left is for them to say is bend and the members to say how far.

      We 3 refused to toe the line of MNBC; we chose instead to allow our members to have a voice and a say in the Enbridge fiasco; and we chose instead to follow our by-laws and constitution which those involved in this “secret” meeting had all approved prior to their finalization,… i find it kind of interesting that this was exactly what they were going over when we walked in on their meeting,…the bylaws and constitution.

      Either way, i am done with this entire situation. I patiently await for the cards to fall where they will from the tower that MNBC has so sloppily built for the chartered communities; and for those boards who sit in MNBC’s back pocket to fail as they will in the end.

      Rosie

  12. Beverly July 5, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

    Rose,
    I have never heard of such and honest letter and thank you for sharing the truth.I have never been involved in any politics in my life.But time and time again i have watched this money and power go to their heads and leave our communities to rot.So,if we want to to be healthy this time around and succeed,please have faith and help build it.We all know, it;s the governance structure and greed that gets us every time so why not change it,and make the communities stronger first ,build our Pride and make good solid roots for our children.
    Lets do it the old fashion way.
    Community and BC Metis Federation side by side.Like the Infinity sign that makes us
    “Proud to be Metis”.No one will ever take that away from me;
    No more looking down the sink and waiting for handouts from Governments or our own Nation.I was in tears at the AGM,when they played our National Athem,when it came to the line Never more forgotten people,why was i feeling that from them.I made up my mind to have my voice back then and for others.I hear it in your voice too.Awesome Choice.
    Tear up that card its only paper, and god bless you for your strength and power to walk away from dictators.We need to prove to these organization the power is with the people not them.We are the roots and can bring down those rotten trees anytime.I have no doubt in my mind if people stand together and respect each other,only positive will happen.Please do not wait,help your community rebuild in a healthy way.
    Thanks for listening and caring
    Godbless Us all

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