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Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples key theme in Liberal pre-election budget

Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples key theme in Liberal pre-election budget
Politics
OTTAWA -- The federal Liberal government plans to spend $4.5 billion over the next five years to narrow the socio-economic gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people -- part of a plan to keep reconciliation at the forefront of this fall s campaign narrative.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau s latest budget -- and his last before voters head to the polls in October -- includes $1.2 billion over three years to develop a long-term approach for services for First Nations children based on what s known as Jordan s Principle.

The policy is named after a Manitoba First Nations boy, Jordan River Anderson, who died at the age of five after jurisdictional squabbles between federal and provincial governments over payment for his care.

Today s budget includes $220 million over five years, beginning in 2019-20, to provide services to Inuit children who face unique challenges to access health and social services.

It also reflects the government s ongoing response to the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which spent six years exploring the tragic legacy of Canada s residential schools.

The spending plan includes $126.5 million in 2020-21 to establish a national council on reconciliation designed to serve as a permanent reminder of the fraught past between Canada and Indigenous Peoples and to contribute to better understanding of it.
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