by Richard L. Provencher
1/26/2013 / Politics
There has been much talk and stories lately regarding how to deal with the negative issues with our Canadian Native Reserves. I believe any problems may possibly lead to solutions and begins with the entitlement Chiefs expect from their Reserve budgets. Rather than extract an unusually large tax-free salary, they should focus on the needs of their Reserve residents.
They should create an internal Reserve Maintenance crew to go around and provide any general maintenance on existing homes. The Chief and Band Council members should visit their residents to make sure their homes are being kept in decent condition in and around the premises.
They can also discover how families are doing and what immediate needs are priorities. They should identify how many students---grades and ages---regularly attend school. They should discover if children have adequate space within the home in order to do homework.
There should be a review of health status of each family and ensure all members have decent health standards---washing, bathing, dental, clean clothing. Chiefs should also identify the spiritual strengths of their residents, and whether there is a drinking, or other addiction problem.
If these kinds of stats can be accumulated, it will be good for the Reserve and provide a foundation for future involvement with the government. I would also suggest Bands twin with another, preferably a more successful one whereby they can provide advice and encouragement. Only by working together, Native and non-Native communities, along with a foundation of faith can trust and development take wings.
Â Richard L. Provencher
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