Liberal Member of Parliament, Robert Falcon Ouellette believes the federal government has not cared about Indigenous Peoples for 150 years.
“In fact, not only have they not cared, they’ve actually been actively trying to destroy Indigenous Peoples and their cultures for 150 years.”
However, the MP for Winnipeg Centre says the Liberal government under Justin Trudeau has changed direction and “trying to do something completely different.”
“I think the prime minister does give an ‘F’ about the rights of Indigenous Peoples” says Ouellette during a new episode of Face to Face with host Dennis Ward.
Ouellette was reacting to comments recently made by NDP MP Romeo Saganash in the House of Commons.
Saganash said “why doesn’t the prime minister just say the truth and tell Indigenous Peoples that he doesn’t give a f**k about their rights?”
Ouellette points to the billions of dollars promised in the last two federal budgets for Indigenous Peoples.
“We have increased funding enormously.”
Ouellette also discusses the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
A project he wants to see Indigenous Peoples take ownership of.
The MP has at times been at odds with his own party and with some in the Indigenous community.
Earlier this year, Ouellette said he felt sorry for the family of Gerald Stanley after Stanley was acquitted in the shooting death of Colten Boushie.
Boushie and Ouellette are both from Red Pheasant Cree Nation.
At the time, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs expressed shock at Ouellette’s comments.
In a release, AMC Grand Chief Arlen Dumas said “for a prominent Indigenous MP to support the right of an individual to defend their property in this same manner is reckless and dangerous, and could result in an increase in violent confrontation and the deaths of more innocent people.”
“What Gerald Stanley did was wrong” says Ouellette. “But there are some underlying issues that are not being dealt with and it’s wrong to take the life of a young man, any young man. I offered my regrets that he had taken a life and that he has to bear that for himself.”