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MMF Annual General Assembly with Standing Ovation Votes Unanimously to Pass Resolution #6 – Authorization for Manitoba Metis Federation to Withdraw from the Métis National Council

Press Release

September 22, 2019

Authorization for Manitoba Metis Federation to Withdraw from the Métis National Council

WHEREAS the Manitoba Metis Federation is the self-government representative of the Manitoba Métis, the Indigenous People also known as the historic Métis Nation and the Red River Métis, who for over two centuries have protected our People’s rights, interests, and claims;

AND WHEREAS the MMF Annual General Assembly is an integral part of the Manitoba Métis Government structure and process;

AND WHEREAS on August 24, 2019 the Manitoba Metis Federation Cabinet unanimously passed the Manitoba Authorization for Manitoba Metis Federation to Withdraw from the Métis National Council Resolution authorizing the MMF to withdraw from the MNC if necessary in accordance with the terms of the resolution which states as follows:

WHEREAS the Red River Settlement, now Winnipeg, Manitoba, is the Birthplace of the Métis Nation and the Heart of the Métis Nation Homeland;

AND WHEREAS the historic Métis Nation, the historic Red River Métis, and the Manitoba Métis, also known as the Manitoba Métis Community, are the same Indigenous People for which the names have been used interchangeably;

AND WHEREAS for over two centuries the Manitoba Métis have exercised its rights of self-determination and self-government, and protected its rights and its identity through the 1816 Battle of Seven Oaks – also known to the Métis as the Victory of the Frog Plain or la Victoire de la Grenouillère – the 1816 unveiling of the Métis Nation Flag, the 1849 Sayer Trial, the 1869 Red River Resistance, and the 1885 Battle of Batoche, and in recent times, several court decisions including Manitoba Metis Federation Inc. v. Canada (AG), 2013;

AND WHEREAS in 1870 the Manitoba Métis protected our lands, rights, and identity, by standing firm against political and military expansionist forces from the East, and through protecting what is ours, became the Founder of Manitoba and Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation.

AND WHEREAS the Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) as the Manitoba Métis Government has and will continue to protect the historic Métis Nation;

AND WHEREAS the MMF is a founding Governing Member of the Métis National Council (MNC) and acting through the MNC has developed and unanimously adopted in 2002 the Métis National Definition of Métis (“the Definition”) as the means by which eligible citizens of the Métis Nation could be identified;

AND WHEREAS this Definition was agreed to by all the Governing Members of the MNC

AND WHEREAS all of the Governing Members of the MNC have established and maintain Citizenship Registries and agreed to use the Definition in determining their eligible Métis Citizens;

AND WHEREAS the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) has knowingly included in their Registry of Citizens various individuals who do not satisfy the requirements of the Definition, many of whom whose ancestral origins are outside the Métis Nation Homeland and who are from Eastern Canada;

AND WHEREAS this issue has been raised at MNC General Assemblies numerous times culminating in a 2018 General Assembly Resolution;

AND WHEREAS the MNC 2018 General Assembly Resolution put the MNO on probation, pending possible suspension, to allow MNO to meet various conditions including:

  • That all MNO members must meet the criteria for citizenship in the Métis Nation set out in the 2002 General Assembly citizenship resolution including ancestral connection to the historic Métis Nation Homeland;
  • That the MNO must abide by General Assembly directives providing that all members shall re-register under the 2002 criteria with no grandfathering-in of members;
  • That a committee of the MNC Board of Governors shall be established to organize a registry review of all MNO members to ensure the above two conditions are met;
  • That a panel of registrars from the western Governing Members working under the direction of the above committee shall conduct the registry review of existing MNO members and will ensure that all future citizenship applications shall abide by the 2002 criteria.

AND WHEREAS the required committee of the MNC Board of Governors was established and informed the MNO of its intention to proceed in accordance with the General Assembly Resolution;

AND WHEREAS President Margaret Froh of MNO has failed and refused, and continues to fail and refuse, to cooperate with the committee and otherwise comply with the Resolution;

AND WHEREAS the MNC President has suspended MNO for such failure and refusal, and such decision is not being supported by and indeed is being actively undermined by President Audrey Poitras of the Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA) and President Glen McCallum of the Métis Nation – Saskatchewan (MNS) which thereby further encourages MNO to refuse to comply;

AND WHEREAS there has been an increase of individuals and organizations that are now calling themselves Métis and are attempting to use our name, symbols, our history, and our rights, for their own ends at the expense of our Métis Nation and thereby pose a danger to our Métis Nation;

AND WHEREAS the actions of MNO by granting citizenship to these individuals and granting recognition to organizations and communities, such as Mattawa, Georgian Bay, Killarney, and Temiskaming, who are not part of the Métis Nation, have endangered our Métis Nation’s identity including our political, social, and economic integrity and the future of our Nation’s existence;

AND WHEREAS the actions of the MNO have created a dangerous precedent and opens the doors to hundreds of thousands of individuals, who could attempt to claim Métis Nation citizenship, with membership in organizations and communities in Eastern Ontario, Quebec, or even further east;

AND WHEREAS due to the actions of MNO and the support of and undermining by MNA and MNS, the MNC is unable to uphold and protect the integrity of the Métis Nation including the Definition thereby creating conditions that the MNC can no longer have the mandate or authority to speak on behalf of the entire Métis Nation;

AND WHEREAS the MMF President and Cabinet have reached the point at which a decision may be made concerning the MMF’s continued membership in the MNC as a Governing Member.

Therefore the MMF Cabinet resolves that:

  1. The MMF President shall continue to take all reasonable steps to ensure the MNO complies with the Definition;
  2. In the event that the MMF President determines that:
  • MNO continues to refuse to cooperate and comply with the Resolution and continues to grant citizenship to individuals who do not meet the Definition; and/or,
  • MNO continues to receive support for its action from the MNA and MNS, which permits MNO to continue to grant citizenship to individuals who do not satisfy the Definition; and/or,
  • MNC is unable to protect the integrity of the Métis Nation identity and citizenship; and,
  • MMF withdrawal from MNC is the reasonable course of action; the MMF President  is authorized to take such course of action as deemed reasonable to withdraw from the MNC, including providing the MNC with the MMF’s notice to withdraw;
  1. Upon providing the MNC with a notice to withdraw, the MMF President is authorized to negotiate on such matters as may be required to bring about the withdrawal;
  2. And, upon giving the notice to withdraw, the MMF President may advise MNC that the MNC is no longer authorized to represent or speak on behalf of the MMF and the Manitoba Métis.

AND WHEREAS consistent with the Cabinet Resolution above, the 51st MMF Annual General Assembly is willing to take all actions necessary to protect the present integrity and future existence of the Métis Nation;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the 51st MMF Annual General Assembly hereby endorses, agrees with and fully supports the MMF Cabinet resolution above to withdraw from the Métis National Council passed by Cabinet on August 24, 2019 and directs the President and Cabinet to take all necessary actions to fully implement the resolution.


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