FREDERICTON (Sep. 15, 2020) – The following statement was issued by the Chiefs of the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick:

We congratulate Premier Blaine Higgs on his re-election.

We urge Mr. Higgs to come to the table with us and other representatives of Indigenous peoples for a nation-to-nation dialogue of respect.

He can begin to show he is serious about respecting our people by continuing to have a full-time minister responsible for Indigenous affairs and by reappointing Jake Stewart as minister.

We urge Minister Stewart to continue to be engaged on our issues and to return to his previous position in favour of an independent, Indigenous-led inquiry into systemic racism. We urge Premier Higgs to join the minister in taking this view.

We hope to meet with the Premier and Minister soon. These are trying times where our people not only have to continue to live through systemic racism, but also in which the livelihood and quality of life of our people
is threatened by government action and inaction.

We extend the hand of cooperation to Premier Higgs. We hope he will join us in building a better relationship between our governments.

Media Contact: Megan Fullarton, 506-476-4385, megan.fullarton@wolastoqey.ca