On June 10, 2019, Ottawa, ON: The Minister of Indigenous Services, Seamus O’Regan, and the President of the Métis National Council, Clément Chartier, signed a historic agreement that signals the Government of Canada’s commitment to providing post-secondary education supports for Métis Nation students across Canada.
The Canada-Métis Nation Post-Secondary Education Sub-Accord comes on the heels of unprecedented federal investments in Métis Nation post-secondary education and is also a result of the post-secondary education review announced in Budget 2017. It fulfills commitments outlined in the 2017 Canada-Métis Nation Accord and is a historic step in closing the post-secondary education attainment gap between Métis Nation citizens and non-Indigenous Canadians.
The Government of Canada’s Budget 2019 provides for an investment of $362-million over 10 years and $40-million ongoing to support Métis Nation post-secondary education, with the goal of supporting over 7,000 Métis Nation post-secondary students.
This Sub-Accord will establish new approaches aimed at improving the education outcomes of Métis Nation students and programs and support three activity streams including student support, community-based programs and services, and governance capacity.
This groundwork has been laid through an intensive process of policy co-development, and is a testament to the relationships that have been strengthened over the past two years. The Government of Canada is committed to achieving reconciliation with the Métis Nation through a renewed nation-to-nation, government-to-government relationship based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership as the foundation for transformative change.
“This historic achievement marks a significant step in Canada’s relationship with the Métis Nation,” said The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Indigenous Services. “Through this agreement, Métis Nation students will have long overdue equal opportunities to pursue post-secondary education. I commend our partner, the Métis National Council, for providing a brighter future for Métis Nation youth through education, as Canada continues its journey of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples in Canada.”
President Chartier stated:
“The most glaring gap between the educational attainment of our people and the broader population is at the post-secondary level, particularly in the number of university graduates. This significant, long term federal financial support for our post-secondary students marks a giant first step in enabling the Métis Nation to reduce that gap and opens new opportunities for our population to participate fully in the new economy. Again, this is reconciliation in action.”