I have been writing a few posts now about my thoughts as I delve into issues surrounding Métis Identity. There are so many regional groups who claim to represent us, I decided to jot down a brief overview I made for myself when researching whether it was worth joining any association and which ones were legitimate.
First, I encourage anyone who self-identifies as Métis to do their own research to see which group best represents their interests. FOREMOST, make sure that the organization is *legitimate*. If they do not require extensive genealogical proof, they likely are not. Which, I surmise, will mean that the entire organization and its members would be at risk of not being recognized, nor would they be accepted into larger associations…
This list may not be complete; there are many, many groups popping up and there is no index.
Two associations represent “Federal” interests. That was my starting point, mainly because my understanding is that “Métis are within federal jurisdiction because they come within the definition of “Indians” in s. 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867″
The Métis Federation of Canada
The MFC’s vision is to represent all Métis from all regions of Canada (and the US). They are a recent arrival in the landscape and is rapidly growing. They have already signed several Unity Treaties with regional groups, which includes:
Communauté Wik Wam Oté (New Brunswick)
L’Association de Métis-Acadiens Souriquois (Nova Scotia)
Unama’ki Voyageurs Metis (Nova Scotia)
Communauté Métis Autochtone de Maniwaki (Quebec)
L’ Association Métis Côte-Nord – Communauté de Mingan (Québec)
French River Métis Tribe (Ontario)
The MFC has recently been granted leave to intervene in the Daniels case.
You can apply for Membership directly to the MFC by clicking this link.
The MFC is the group I decided to join. That’s my disclaimer, right there. I joined them because their philosophy corresponds to mine.
The MNC represents what they consider as
“historic Métis Nation Homeland,” which includes the 3 Prairie Provinces and extends into parts of Ontario, British Columbia, the Northwest Territories and the northern United States.
They require that member’s ancestry links back to what they consider as a historic Métis Nation community, as mentioned above.
You must apply for Membership (which they refer as Citizenship) through the MNC Governing Member in the province in which you reside. Each Registry has its own application forms and application process. I have been told that the various application processes may exclude Métis who do not reside in the same province or historical community as where their ancestors originated.
The MNC Governing Member by province are as follows. You can click on each link representing the provincial association:
Métis Nation of Ontario Manitoba Métis Fédération
Métis Nation Saskatchewan ** Métis Nation of Alberta
Other noteworthy Associations not currently associated with the two “Federal” ones:
BC Métis Federation – Their Métis Coffee Talk, a weekly webbroadcast every Thursdays, 7:30 pst and available on-demand. Very interesting topics every week!
**Communicating with the association may be difficult, due to current issues not yet resolved.
So good luck in your search for the association that will best represent YOUR beliefs!