Policy Sectors

Press Release

NWAC Prepared To Engage On New Indigenous Rights Framework

February 16, 2018

OTTAWA, ON – The Native Women’s Association of Canada commends Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Government of Canada on the announcement of a new Indigenous framework that ‘will develop – in full partnership with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples – a Recognition and Implementation of Rights Framework.” This apparent willingness to initiate change in full partnership with Indigenous people is a positive sign that Canada is committed to enhanced and renewed acknowledgment of Indigenous rights in Canada.

This thorough examination and implementation of a new framework must include the perspective and involvement of Indigenous women; therefore, “we anticipate the federal government will ensure that NWAC is a full partner and participant in engagement related to building and implementing the new Framework”, stated Francyne Joe, President of NWAC. Joe further stated, “Indigenous women are life holders and water carriers and collectively, NWAC represents a multitude of Nations of Indigenous women who are First Nations, Métis, Inuit. These women represent non-status women and girls and rights holders with Treaty rights, inherent rights, Métis rights, human rights and gender-based rights. As a representative of Indigenous women, NWAC will provide the required gender-based perspective. In order to achieve success in this new Indigenous rights framework, the Government of Canada must include equal gender-based representation.”

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP) requires particular attention to the rights and special needs of Indigenous Elders, women, youth, children and persons with disabilities. Canada must recognize that Indigenous women have long recognized NWAC as their representative body at the regional, provincial, territorial, national and international levels.

The proposed Framework is a monumental undertaking and unprecedented. The next steps will be telling and must help ensure success in this potentially historic redirection on the rights of Indigenous people of many Nations, as stated by the Prime Minister, these discussions will be in “full partnership with First Nations, Métis and Inuit people”. In order for that to be true, it will include the distinct voice of Indigenous women through that of the Native Women’s Association of Canada.

The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) was founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations, Métis and Inuit women. NWAC is an aggregate of thirteen Native women’s organizations from across Canada and was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1974.


Lynne Groulx - Executive Director

613-722-3033 X223 - 1-800-461-4043 lgroulx@nwac.ca

Joël Lamoureux - Media Relations Officer

613-722-3033 X100 - Cell 343-997-1354 jlamoureux@nwac.ca

Media Contact:

For information, or to arrange an interview, contact:

Roselie LeBlanc
+1 (604) 928-3233

Pour obtenir plus d’information ou prendre des dispositions pour une interview, contacter:

Roselie LeBlanc
+1 (604) 928-3233

About The Native Women’s Association of Canada
The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is a National Indigenous Organization representing the political voice of Indigenous women, girls, transgender, Two-Spirit, and gender-diverse people in Canada, inclusive of First Nations on and off reserve, status and non-status, disenfranchised, Métis and Inuit. An aggregate of Indigenous women’s organizations from across the country, NWAC was founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of Indigenous women within their respective communities and Canada societies.

À propos de l'Association des femmes autochtones du Canada

L'Association des femmes autochtones du Canada (AFAC) est une organisation autochtone nationale qui représente la voix politique des femmes, des filles, des transgenres, des bispirituels et des personnes de sexe différent au Canada, y compris les membres des Premières nations vivant dans les réserves et hors réserve, les Indiens inscrits et non inscrits, les personnes privées de leurs droits, les Métis et les Inuits. Regroupant des organisations de femmes autochtones de tout le pays, l'AFAC a été fondée dans le but collectif d'améliorer, de promouvoir et de favoriser le bien-être social, économique, culturel et politique des femmes autochtones au sein de leurs communautés respectives et des sociétés canadiennes.