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Ignorance driving racism against First Nations after blockades: minister

Last Updated Mar 4, 2020 at 2:50 pm MST

Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth Bardish Chagger speaks at an announcement on the LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund Call for Proposals, at Kind Space in Ottawa, on Wednesday, March 4, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

OTTAWA — The federal cabinet minister for diversity, inclusion and youth says racism targeted at Indigenous people in the wake of national anti-pipeline protests is “horrible.”

Bardish Chagger says people advocating for violence against First Nations people as a response to recent blockades are coming at the issue from a place of ignorance.

She says too many Canadians have not been taught enough about Indigenous history and rights.

Chagger made the comments at an announcement promoting a government fund supporting LGBTQ community groups.

Jade Byard Peek, director of advocacy for the Ottawa group hosting today’s announcement, says anti-Indigenous sentiment is spreading.

She says it’s not just up to the government to address it, and all Canadians must speak up in support of Indigenous rights.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Mar. 4, 2020.

The Canadian Press