Goodale spoke to Indigenous leaders from across Canada on ways to improve safety, education and health care among First Nations people.
Goodale says the federal government has made strides with Indigenous people lately, starting with the increase in funding in the federal budget.
“The beginning of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and girls. There were several justice related items in the budget, the investment in women’s shelters, for example.”
Goodale says they will also make an effort to change the policy on the First Nations Policing Program, which was last updated in 1996.
“That’s a long time ago. A lot of things in Indigenous communities and policing have changed over the course of 21 years.”
Also in attendance was Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde, who says having the meeting is a step in the right direction, but more work needs to be done.
“We’re hoping for a dialogue and a process to bring about constructive changes to the policies and programs that need updating.”
Bellegarde says he’s pleased with the increased funding in the federal budget, but long term financing needs to be put in place.