Have you ever wondered why cultural awareness and sensitivity training may be necessary? Or why most corporations and governments (municipal, regional, provincial, federal) in Canada establish and maintain 'Aboriginal Relations'/'Indigenous Engagement' departments, agencies, ministries? Or why all major natural resource extraction projects have to 'consult' with Indigenous communities prior to putting a shovel in the ground?
Have you ever wondered why only a small percentage of Canadians have a strong understanding of the institutions, legislations and systems that have been used against Indigenous peoples of Canada. Or why so few politicians understand how to get rid of the federal Indian Act, Canada's Indian Reserve System? Or why so few Canadians understand that current socio-economic conditions on Indian Reserves are rooted in the effects of Canada's Indian Residential School System?
Are you aware of the implications of the today's BC Treaty Process or the significance of the historical numbered treaties signed 170 years ago? Or the inextricable link between Aboriginal rights and title and Canada's economy?
Do you ever question whether systemic racism exists in Canada? The proof may lie in the systems, institutions (i.e. Indian Reserve System, policing, corrections, etc.), legislation (i.e. Indian Act) that continue to be implemented in a 2020 Canada. Do you want to raise your level of understanding as to how advantages (privileges) created for non-Indigenous Canadians these past 170 years continue to be maintained by these very institutions, legislation and systems. These privileges are a bleak part of Canada's dark history that all Canadians should be aware of.
The Cultural Awareness and Sensitivity Training Backgrounder (CASTB) can raise awareness in any of the areas mentioned above. The CASTB document is a 40-page reference document that highlights the most relevant, challenging areas facing First Nation communities today, topic areas include: the Indian Act; Indian Reserve System; Indian Residential School System; Aboriginal Rights and Title; and Reconciliation. The document also touches on common misconceptions and clarifications, UNDRIP and 94 Calls to Action.
- 2020 Skyway Canada (Edmonton)
- 2020 Superior Propane (Toronto) (in-person and via multiple online Zoom video sessions)
- 2018 Hazelwood Group of Companies (Nanaimo)
- 2018 Fluor Canada (Vancouver) - see testimonial
- 2018 Elections Canada (Winnipeg) - see testimonial
- 2017 ABM Uncensored (held Monday prior to every ABM Classic in-person event)
- 2012 Brooks School (Leadership Program)
- 2012 Powell River Historical Museum 'Voices of Tla’amin (with former City of Powell River Mayor Stewart Alsgard (Qoqohq)
- 2009 Knight Piesold Cultural Orientation (5 sessions - Vancouver, BC)
- 2007 A Provincial Summit of Municipal Leaders 'Cities for Children' Kelowna, BC
- 2005 BC Aboriginal Childcare Society Regional Dialogue Session Early Childhood Development Community Engagement Project. Nanaimo, BC
- 2004 Songhees First Nation. Cultural Heritage Resource Protection. Victoria, BC.
- 2002 Maximillan Kolbe Gymnasium, Wegberg, Germany
The term 'reconciliation' has been portrayed in the media many times these past few years when speaking about the Indian Residential School System and 'students' who survived their 'educational' experiences. It is sad when students not killed by their school system in any developed country no less, are known as 'Survivors.' Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommended reconciliation a part of healing processes for Indian Residential School Survivors. Most cities, municipalities and towns in Canada are situated immediately adjacent to one of Canada's 634 First Nation communities; Metis or Inuit Settlements. Every city, municipality and town should consider initiating a process of reconciling its history with that of their Indigenous neighbor (s). Any process of reconciliation is not limited to cities, municipalities and towns; non-Indigenous businesses and corporations should consider reconciliation; especially if that history goes back many years. It is unfortunate that in 2019, a majority of urban non-Indigenous centres live in complete ignorance of their Indigenous neighbors. This is unacceptable and must change. For positive change to take place, leadership (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) leadership must step forward. Leadership must demonstrate a willingness to listen and learn. For too long, leadership in Canada, at many levels (governmental and corporate) have allowed themselves to be led fear, suspicion, anger and ignorance. My question to you – ‘Is this the 2020 Canada you know?' Be aware that positive and creative intergovernmental work is happening in Canada (i.e. Tla'amin Nation and the City of Powell River - this particular relationship has been developing since 2003). Any relationship always starts with positive communication. Not difficult!
- Southern Interior Local Government Association AGM presentation in Penticton, BC (with Stewart Alsgard) May 3, 2019. September 10, 2018 Union of BC Municipalities Annual Convention: 'Advancing Local Government Relations with Indigenous Peoples' (Whistler, BC) with former City of Powell River Mayor Stewart Alsgard (Qoqohq).
- 2018 Tla'amin Nation & City of Powell River re-signing of Community Accord (July 20). Maynard and Qoqohq acted as co-emcees.
- 2011 Federation of Canadian Municipalities (Victoria, BC - with former City of Powell River Mayor Qoqohq and City of Powell River CAO Stan Westby.
- 2010 Union of BC Municipalities Annual Convention (Whistler, BC - with former City of Powell River Mayor Qoqohq.
- 2009 UBCM Convention 'Practical Pointers on Partnering with First Nations.'
- 2004 BC Treaty Commission 'Planning for Prosperity: First Nations, Intergovernmental Cooperation and Treaties: A Leaders Forum.' Vancouver, BC.
- 2003 Rural Team BC 'Sharing Lessons Learned Between Community Champions. Prince George, BC.
- 2003 First Nations Summit 'Community to Community Forum: Resolving Conflict & Pursuing Joint Opportunities.' Vancouver BC.