For immediate release:
Apr 22, 2008

Bryant attempts bait and switch on Barrett’s Hamilton HDI question

Queen’s Park – It seems that Aboriginal Affairs Minister Michael Bryant does not understand the difference between the Nanfan Treaty of 1701 and the Haldimand Proclamation of 1784.

During a line of questioning in Question Period today, Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett explained to members of the House that the Haudenosaunee Development Institute has now set their sights on the Ancaster Fairgrounds. HDI says they are exerting their authority under the Nanfan Treaty of 1701.

Barrett asked: “Minister, what do you know about this treaty and do you agree with HDI using the Nanfan Treaty to now justify protesting outside the Haldimand Tract?”

Obviously confused or evading the question, Bryant accused MPP Barrett of mocking the Haldimand Proclamation. The question asked by MPP Barrett was not answered.

The Ancaster Agricultural Society received a letter from Six Nations asking for a donation and a $500 fee. The City of Hamilton has already said that this is not a municipal issue and therefore it is between the fair board and HDI.

“Your government told homebuilders during work along the Haldimand Tract that they’re on their own—and that was just two days before Sam Gualtieri was almost beaten to death,” Barrett said. “Minister, will you now intervene or are fair boards in Ontario now on their own?”

Once again, Bryant dodged the question and spoke of a provincial side table.

Following Question Period, MPP Barrett said that it is regrettable, for those who care so deeply about this issue, that the Minister continues to avoid questions that truly need to be answered.