Officials gathered Tuesday at Lower Fort Garry to mark the 150th anniversary of the signing of Treaty 1 with the Crown.
Chiefs from across Turtle Island took part in the ceremony at the fort located about 30 km north of Winnipeg on the banks of the Red River.
Federal government ministers also took part.
While there was a celebration about how far things have come, there was an acknowledgement that progress still needs to be made.
“A lot of it has caused a significant barrier to First Nations wellbeing,” said Jerry Daniels, grand chief of the Southern Chiefs Organization. “And so we’re talking about health transformation now, we’re talking about child welfare changes and changes to the justice system. How do we create more oversight, a system that’s responsive to creating wellbeing a way of life. All of that is our hope for the future and these sorts of things are recognition of where we have been to prepare us for where we are going.”
Also in attendance was Assembly of First Nations National Chief RoseAnne Archibald and Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller.
Treaty 1 was signed by Ojibway and Swampy Cree leaders. The territory covers 43,250 square km which includes Winnipeg
The celebrations will continue until Aug. 9.