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Temperatures sizzle at 36th annual Grand River Powwow

Pow wow dancers in full colourful regalia entered the dance arena at the Grand River Pow Wow this past weekend to the    delight of crowds of visitors. (Photo by Jim C Powless) See pages 16 and 17.
Pow wow dancers in full colourful regalia entered the dance arena at the Grand River Pow Wow this past weekend to the delight of crowds of visitors. (Photo by Jim C Powless) See pages 16 and 17.

Special Section: Champion of Champion's Pow Wow ... Read more

In a testament to their grace and athleticism, a sizzling mid-summer sun didn’t stop hundreds of dancers from across Turtle Island from showcasing the beauty of their regalia and elegant moves during the 36th annual Six Nations of the Grand River Champion of Champions Powwow at Chiefswood Park this past weekend.

Dancers young and old alike wowed international visitors in the annual showcase of beautiful regalia, ancient customs, delicious food, quality crafts, and mesmerizing movement; a fusion of past and present that has come to signify the Grand River Champion of Champions Powwow.

The annual powwow kicked off Saturday and Sunday at noon with the traditional Grand Entry of dancers led by the Six Nations Veteran’s Association carrying the sacred eagle staff as a flag song heralded their arrival.

Master of Ceremonies Dennis Bowen explained to the audience the dancer’s arena is like a classroom before naming off the veterans of the colour guard.

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Conservatives give $1.4 million to Polytechnic for languages

Rebecca Jamieson, president of Six Nations Polytechnic. thanked Brant Conservative MP Phil McColeman who presented Polytechnic with $1.4 million, the largest portion to go for language promotion. (Photo by Donna Duric)
Rebecca Jamieson, president of Six Nations Polytechnic. thanked Brant Conservative MP Phil McColeman who presented Polytechnic with $1.4 million, the largest portion to go for language promotion. (Photo by Donna Duric)

Six Nations Polytechnic now has $1.4 million to spend on promoting indigenous languages after Brant Conservative MP Phil McColeman announced the extra funding last Wednesday.

The funding injection comes just months before a federal election but McColeman insists his team had already been working on obtaining the funding for the past two years.

“We’ve been pushing for this kind of funding and movement forward for the health of indigenous education for a long time,” said McColeman.

The grant equals about 10 per cent of $15 million the Conservative government has promised for First Nations post-secondary education.

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Six Nations Police issue warnings during RIDE program

RIDE program over powwow weekend

One charge and numerous warnings were issued to motorists after Six Nations Police stopped hundreds of vehicles during RIDE (Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere) checks over the powwow weekend.

On July 25, Six Nations Police conducted RIDE spotchecks throughout the Six Nations territory. Police stopped 140 vehicles and issued the following warnings and charges:
-Nine seat belt warnings
-One open alcohol warning
-One charge issued to a 36-year-old Six Nations woman for transporting a passenger under 16 failing to wear a seat belt. The Six Nations Police R.I.D.E. program is a year-round initiative. Police urge all drivers to take proactive measures if drinking, by ensuring they have a designated driver, making overnight accommodation arrangements, or by taking a cab or other public transportation. The message is clear: DO NOT DRINK ALCOHOL AND DRIVE.

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Catching a honey bee swarm means sweet honey future

Frank Mt. Pleasant and Terrylynn Brant looking over the hive.
Frank Mt. Pleasant and Terrylynn Brant looking over the hive.

Living in a small community is a great thing as our friends keep us informed about the happenings around town. Sunday night after I got home the powwow my good friend Wilma Green put me in touch with her friend Frank MtPleasant. The result of this connection I am happy to say is a new family of bees living at Frog Pond.

Catching a swarm of bees is a feat in itself but doing it with an old timer is inspiring.

Frank "Hawkeye" Mt Pleasant is 91 years young and a lifelong resident of Six Nations. Like many of his generation he has a bee story or two to share.

When I arrived Frank pulled up on his tractor. As many of you know, he's the old guy who drives his tractor to Ohswéken regularly to get his mail. He pulls up under the swarm with a tippy trailer and a small sawhorse in it and yells "Close enough ! "

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This Week's Local News Headlines

Local News

  • Police seeking public’s help in locating missing man ... Read more
  • Miss Teen Six Nations gets over $800 from councillors ... Read more
  • Pope praises Jesuit missions ... Read more
  • IDLA invest in youth ... Read more
  • Killer whale stranded on B.C. rocks nursed for 8 hours ... Read more
  • Man car in ditch ... Read more
  • Special Section: Champion of Champion's Pow Wow ... Read more

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Six Nations Midget Rep

  • Atiqtaaq Uuttuvak being called the next Jordin Tootoo ... Read more
  • Ontario Senior Women dramatically capture gold ... Read more
  • Six Nations Atom Girls 2 feeling confident ... Read more
  • U19 Field Lacrosse team was paid tribute at the Aboriginal Pavilion ... Read more
  • Six Nations Warriors looking to rebound at home ... Read more
  • Team Ontario Bantams dramaticallty strike gold ... Read more
  • Rebels facing biggest playoff challenge vs. Orangeville ... Read more
  • Six Nations Arrows officially punch ticket to Junior ‘A’ finals... ... Read more

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Six Nations Audit Information

Six Nations own revenue paying the bills | Council Members spending activities ... Read more

2014 Financial Statements of the Six Nations of the Grand River (Band Council) ... Read more

First Nations Financial Transparency Act

Frequently Asked Questions: First Nations Financial Transparency Act

First Nations Profiles – Audited Consolidated Financial Statements and Schedule of Remuneration and Expenses

Reducing the Administrative Burden of First Nations

Questions and Answers Related to the First Nations Financial Transparency Act (FNFTA)

 
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First pride parade in First Nations community held at Six Nations

The Gay Pride parade made its way through Ohsweken Saturday. (Photo by Donna Duric)
The Gay Pride parade made its way through Ohsweken Saturday. (Photo by Donna Duric)

It was history in the making as a crowd of about 200 people marched through Ohsweken Saturday during the first-ever Six Nations Gay Pride Parade.

It all started when Six Nations woman Myka Burning was talking with her daughter about LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) people and her daughter asked her if there are any gay aboriginal people.

“Of course there are,” Burning told the crowd.

And it got her thinking: why not hold a pride parade on Six Nations and show support for LGBTQ community members?

She teamed up with fellow community members and Lyndon “Longfeather” George, a two-spirited man from the Stony Point First Nation, as well as many activist groups and unions from Hamilton to help put on the parade.

Saturday’s turnout was far better than she had hoped for, she said.

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Brant County among 51 potentially First Nations influenced ridings

OTTAWA -- The Assembly of First Nations has identified 51 federal ridings across Canada, including Brant County, that could affect the outcome of the vote in the October election.

Ontario and B.C. tie at 1each for the most ridings where aboriginal voters could make a difference in who gets sent to Ottawa this fall.

The national chief of the Assembly of First Nations says aboriginal voters could make the difference between a majority and minority government in the next federal election.

Perry Bellegarde says his advocacy organization has identified 51 influential ridings, including several in western Canada, where First Nations voters could affect the outcome.

There are five in Atlantic Canada, eight in Quebec, six in Manitoba, sevenin Saskatchewan, 11 in B.C.,.one each in Alberta, Yukon and NWT.

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Great Law recital has begun in Akwesasne

The Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs and helpers including Tadodahoh (far right seated) Hohahes(Leroy Hill sub chief to Deskaheh), Oneida Chief Howard Elijah (back row) have begun the recital of the Great Law in Akwesasne. The recital will be held at Six Nations in 2016. (Submitted Photo take with permission)
The Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs and helpers including Tadodahoh (far right seated) Hohahes(Leroy Hill sub chief to Deskaheh), Oneida Chief Howard Elijah (back row) have begun the recital of the Great Law in Akwesasne. The recital will be held at Six Nations in 2016. (Submitted Photo take with permission)

AKWESASNE- Over 300 people have gathered here to hear the recital of the “Great Law.”

The recital began Monday.

On Tuesday the story of the Mohawk Chiefs accepting the law, titles and the story of grief and ayonwata.

Haudenosaunee have come from all over Haudenosaunee territories to hear the orators in a peaceful, calm setting .

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Food truck showcases aboriginal cuisine during PanAm Games

New Credit Chief Bryan LaForme enjoys a sampling of indigenous foods from the Your Are Welcome Pan Am food truck that stopped at New Credit last week. (Photos by Jim C Powless)

MISSISSAUGAS OF NEW CREDIT - Have you ever had a “nish-kebab?”

Or curried elk and sweet potato pastry?

Or blueberry bannock? Mmmm, blueberry bannock.

If not, you’re missing out!

The lucky ones who got to sample the delicious and inspired dishes created by renowned Chef David Wolfman sure went home with a satisfied palate when the “You Are Welcome” food truck stopped by New Credit last Friday.

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Six Nations Youth Study STEM at Mac

McMaster grad Christa Jonathan joins the camp to share her experience and encourage the next generation of Haudenosaunee scholars. (Photo by Eulene Bomberry)
McMaster grad Christa Jonathan joins the camp to share her experience and encourage the next generation of Haudenosaunee scholars. (Photo by Eulene Bomberry)

HAMILTON-School may be out for the summer, but several Six Nations junior high school students have been studying Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) at McMaster University with Venture Camp. The camp programming designed by McMaster faculty and students, introduced different issues facing Six Nations and local communities and then gave the students an opportunity to design solutions. From bridges, to landfills, to water filtration, the students tackled a new project each day learning how to apply what they learn in school and at camp to create real world solutions.

Camp leader, Brandon Smit enjoyed seeing the campers’ confidence in themselves and their understanding of science, technology, engineering and math grow. “On Monday when they first arrived, a lot of them were pretty nervous about being here,” Smit shared, “but by Friday a lot of them were saying ‘I want to be an engineer!’ and were really experimenting and thinking beyond our instruction.” Having spent 3 summers as a camp instructor, Smit noticed the Six Nations youth are particularly skilled at learning from oral instructions and excelled at the hands-on tasks.

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Water tests look for link between oil sands pollution and cancer

Vanessa Gray pulling a sampling basket out of the Ankijig pond on Aamjiwnaang lands. The creature in the basket is a catfish minnow. The pond is being tested as well as Talfourd Creek, as there are stories told among FN members that chemical dumping took place there in years past (Photo by Colin Graf)
Vanessa Gray pulling a sampling basket out of the Ankijig pond on Aamjiwnaang lands. The creature in the basket is a catfish minnow. The pond is being tested as well as Talfourd Creek, as there are stories told among FN members that chemical dumping took place there in years past (Photo by Colin Graf)

AAMJIWNAANG-It’s going to be a muddy weekend for members of the Aamjiwnaang community, near Sarnia, as they prepare to collect water, sediment, plants, and frogs from a local creek as part of a grass-roots project to find out what pollution is doing to their land and water.

The project will collect samples alongside and from the bottom of Talfourd Creek that flows past an oil refinery and chemical plants in the industrial area of Sarnia known as the Chemical Valley, said organizer Vanessa Gray. She recently spear-headed an on-line crowdfunding campaign that raised $10,000 in under 2 months to kick-start the water project.

Samples will be collected at locations along the creek identified by interviews with band elders this week who have witnessed signs of pollution, said Stephane McLachlan, a professor from the University of Manitoba who is working with the project’s organizers.

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Opinion

Lynda Powless, Editor

HCCC did it all out in open, in front of us all...

This week Six Nations people, at least those that have not travelled to Akwesasne for the Great Law Recital, will finally have a chance to look over what the Six Nations Band Council’s economic development department is doing with its new corporation and the three boards that will apparently govern it, oversee it and decide what to do with the money that it accumulates in its trust account.

Much has been made by a small group of people at Six Nations over the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chief’s Council (HCCC) decision to create a corporation to hold its “off reserve” investments including its current equity in a wind farm.

The HCCC instructed its development department to create the corporation. A corporation, not unlike trust accounts or even bank accounts hold your investments in the HCCC case, its ownership in a wind farm.

The band has been quiet about its corporation. Even refusing to answer questions at a recent community meeting on the Niagara Wind project when director Matt Jamieson said they were having difficulty with Revenue Canada getting a tax exemption for the new corporation because of its structure, they had created three boards instead of one.

In both cases, both bodies, working independently are creating corporations to hold assets that belong to the community of Six Nations.

Assets aimed at providing a future for Six Nations, they tell us, but assets that Six Nations/Haudenosaunee people need to get their heads around.

The band council isn’t overly concerned about creating incorporated bodies. The band is incorporated and has to be, to receive government funds. In fact a number of organizations at Six Nations funnel funds through them because they themselves are not incorporated so a vehicle to funnel it had to be found.

And the band doesn’t seem to have any problem with creating a storm over the Confederacy’s decision to create a corporation.

And create the storm it appears they did.

Sources have told Turtle Island News that in fact it was a band council member themself who turned over the Ontario incorporation registration to another publication wrongly claiming both the HCCC and HDI were now secretly incorporated and blamed the HDI for leading the HCCC down the ill begotten path to financial freedom.

The publication, not understanding what a corporation is, how it is created or even what it does, incorrectly claimed the HCCC and or the HDI were, and this is the kicker, “secretly” incorporated.

The problem is a “reporter” for the publication was present at HCCC meetings when the issue was discussed, when reports were made, when approval was given and each month when every development, unlike the band council, was discussed in the open.

So yes, the HCCC created a corporation to hold your assets. And they did it out in the open for all to see.

The question is what game was the band council playing if it leaked a PUBLIC document claiming the HCCC and HDI were secretly creating a corporation?

Was it to get the HCCC out of the negotiation field with developers?

Or to force the closure of the HDI through a misinformation campaign?

And was there a deliberate attempt to mislead an HCCC chief?

We could go on.

One knows the band has been hard at work demanding Ontario not recognize the HCCC and demanding any lands coming back to Six Nations come back to the band not the HCCC, even though the HCCC negotiated their return.

And we know Chief Ava Hill herself yelled at the HCCC legal adviser Aaron Detlor at a meeting with Ontario representatives and the Men’s Fire.

One can surmise the band’s plan was to create division among HCCC supporters while behind the scenes a band council corporation was being created to hold unknown assets.

After all let’s remember these are the people who behind closed doors brought us the idea of a brewery for Six Nations.

So yes, the HCCC created a corporation to hold assets, like ownership in windmills.

But they did it in the open.

At HCCC meetings.

And in front of reporters. One who now claims he lost all his recordings of HCCC meetings and had no resources to rely on.

A “reporter” who was present each time the HDI reported to the HCCC on the corporation.

A “reporter”, who without the facts made unfounded allegations against HDI staff, HCCC supporters even chiefs and clanmothers.

That shouldn’t surprise anyone.

After all just a few months ago he was making similar allegations against Mohawk lawyer Aaron Detlor.

Oddly enough the “reporter” doesn’t appear to be able to read a lawyer’s bill either.

He was given a copy of another lawyer’s review of Detlor’s legal bills to one of his clients.

Of course it didn’t occur to the reporter to read the entire document that at no time included any allegations of wrongdoing.

But it sure had a sales pitch to that band for the band to hire them as their lawyers instead of Detlor.

Lawyers who quickly distanced themselves from the fiasco when questioned by Turtle Island News.

And it was the same “reporter” making allegations against the Men’s Fire a few short weeks ago accusing them of withholding information from the community on the lands along Sixth Line deeded to the community from a Brantford developer that the Men’s Fire have placed in the HCCC registry and are planning meetings on what the community wants to do with the lands.

Open meetings.

So did the HCCC create a corporation?

Yes they did for the faces yet to come.

And they did it out in the open for all to see.

 

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