Bruce and Dan,
I am writing this letter to demand your immediate public apology in writing to Mr. Daryl Piper and Mr. Lyle Letendre for your behaviors and words to our BC Métis Federation board members at a meeting held with the Fort St. John Métis Society (FSJMS) on Saturday, April 21st 2012.
The BC Métis Federation was invited by the FSJMS board (copy enclosed) to attend their Annual General Meeting and provide information to their members. We understand Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) was also invited and we had no objection and welcomed your attendance as a public opportunity to discuss issues. The BC Métis Federation believes in true democracy and we recognize the importance of public debate. However we do not take threats by MNBC representatives lightly in any forum. These are actions that are immature and will not be tolerated by anyone within the BC Métis Federation.
During this meeting you threatened both of our representatives who were clearly invited to attend and present during this FSJMS meeting. First the two of you tried to kick Mr. Piper and Mr. Letendre out of the Friendship Center upon arrival based on a false sense that somehow this was an MNBC meeting and each of you have ultimate authority. Bruce you further continued your attempt of intimidation when they did not leave and verbally threatening our representatives by challenging them to go outside.
Each of your actions as MNBC leaders and provincial representatives was shameful and lack of leadership and political judgment questions the manner in which MNBC is operating today, a point we have identified for some time. Do you not recognize the image MNBC is now projecting to all Métis people and communities in BC? How can you believe threatening and trying to intimidate Métis people will encourage support or confidence in anything you say? In fact we now know as MNBC leaders you went further to suggest Métis communities are subject to MNBC “masters” and as such they cannot serve two masters? You own MNBC Constitution and Community Charters speak to the freedom of association and autonomy of the community so where are you coming from?
The fact is neither of you offered any answers to real issues about why MNBC increases debt or why MNBC slipped over $752,000.00 in employment and training funds in 2010-2011 that directly meant a loss in this region and specifically Fort St. John of approximately $65,000.00? Did either of you explain this to the families why their sons or daughters could not get the much needed support? Neither of you produced one shred of documentation to dispel BC Métis Federation claims.
Unfortunately for each of you the FSJMS members in attendance, I will add by a by a large majority, refused to accept any more MNBC deceit, gossip, or deception from MNBC. We know each of you left the meeting not answering any real questions well before the meeting was completed and as soon as you realized MNBC was not going to be able to bully these members. If you had stayed you would have seen the strong support BC Métis Federation was receiving because the legitimate FSJMS members recognize the volunteer work, fact based presentations, and commitment to open governance shown through our leadership at the BC Métis Federation. Our representatives took notice of the strong reaction by legitimate FSJMS members against the two of you and although this presents a challenge, I remind MNBC that you have created this situation. MNBC board refused to answer questions posed by the former CCMC or any Métis person they perceive as opposition. I can assure you this is only the beginning of your public challenges in the future.
I truly feel sorry for the Métis Chartered Communities or fellow MNBC board members who believe in your twisted interpretation of Métis governance. Plainly stated it is undemocratic, not transparent, based on innuendoes, and presents a complete MNBC dictatorship. We know there is growing unrest throughout BC and we continue to call on governments to take immediate action to suspend funding for MNBC. Recently the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) lost their core funding from Health Canada for governance issues, specifically citing that NAHO no longer had a mandate from National Aboriginal organizations. While I do not claim to know the exact details I know MNBC is facing the exact same challenges in BC, not to mention the financial crisis. This latest MNBC behavior has already jolted numerous people to contact BC Métis Federation office for membership, including some of MNBC’s former strong supporters in the past.
I can assure you that although we have witnesses who have already confirmed your threatening behavior we will not seek civil action, in stark contrast to MNBC where under your leadership you have used the courts against MNBC citizens in the past on several occasions. Unlike MNBC, the BC Métis Federation has confidence that Métis people will see MNBC for what it has become and make their own determination about what they want for their future.
I look forward to receiving your written apology. You can send to Mr. Piper and Mr. Letendre care of the BC Métis Federation office address.
Your behaviors should demand your immediate resignation. The Métis people of BC have had enough.
British Columbia Métis Federation
[ilink url=”/wp-content/uploads/BCMF-Letter-to-MNBC-April-24th-2012.pdf” style=”download”]Download this Letter in PDF format[/ilink]
[ilink url=”/wp-content/uploads/FSJMS-Invitation-to-AGM-April-2012.pdf” style=”download”]FSJMS Invitation to AGM April 2012[/ilink]