Members of Grassy Narrows in Toronto as Ontario premier expected to make TRC announcement

Members of Grassy Narrows First Nation will be in Toronto Monday.


APTN National News
TORONTO –Members of the Grassy Narrows First Nation (Asubpeeschoseewagong) will make their yearly trip to Toronto Monday to try and convince the province of Ontario to clean up a former pulp mill that is the cause of widespread mercury poisoning in the area.

Grassy Narrows First Nation sits on the English river in northwestern Ontario and for years the community has been trying to get a commitment from the Ontario government to clean up the land around a former pulp mill that spilled mercury into the local environment.

Scientists studying people in the community say it is causing a number of health problems associated with mercury poisoning.

Wynne said last year that more study is needed before the mercury contamination can be cleaned up.

A number of members of the community will hold a river walk and news conference in Toronto.

This will come on the heels of  the province’s response to the recommendations in the Truth and Reconciliation report.

It’s expected that Premier Kathleen Wynne will stand in the legislature at 9am ET and apologize for Ontario’s role in the residential school era that saw Indigenous children taken from their families and sent to government run schools.

The province joins Alberta and Manitoba who apologized for not doing more to protect children. Canada announced an official apology in 2008.

It’s also expected that Wynne will announce a major shift in the province’s education curriculum.

Last week Ontario announced an unprecedented injection of $222 million over three years for Indigenous health.

Residential school survivor Andrew Wesley will be joined by Indigenous leaders from the Assembly of First Nation, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, Metis Federal of Ontario along the Native Women’s Association of Canada and the Ontario Friendship Centres for an announcement from the province’s premier Monday.

Patrick Brown, leader of the province’s Conservative party and Andrea Horwath, leader of the provincial NDP will also take part.

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