FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following statement was issued today by Service New Brunswick Minister Ed Doherty, who is also minister responsible for aboriginal affairs, on the occasion of National Aboriginal Day, June 21:

This year, National Aboriginal Day is celebrating 20 years of strong vibrant cultures and traditions. On June 21, New Brunswickers will join 15 Mi’kmaq and Wolastokiyik (Maliseet) communities across New Brunswick in marking National Aboriginal Day as an occasion to celebrate aboriginal history and culture. This is a way to recognize the important contributions First Nations people have made to our province.

I recently joined my federal, provincial and territorial counterparts as well as the leaders of the Assembly of First Nations, Métis National Council, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, Indigenous Peoples’ Assembly of Canada and Native Women’s Association of Canada at a meeting to confirm a new approach in support of improving outcomes for Indigenous peoples and promoting reconciliation in Canada.

Ministers and leaders agreed to establish the framework for a new federal, provincial, territorial and indigenous forum and to a strong partnership moving forward.

I will continue to work in partnership with ministers and leaders in order to progress on issues most important to First Nations communities and for New Brunswick.

I encourage all New Brunswickers to take part in events planned for National Aboriginal Day and throughout the summer months that will help educate residents about the history of the country’s first inhabitants and provide an occasion for all to join in the celebration of aboriginal culture and customs.

I wish all First Nations peoples an enjoyable National Aboriginal Day.