Thursday, 5 November 2015

Indigenous appointments in 23rd Canadian Ministry

Indigenous issues and interests take priority with appointment of Canada's 23rd Ministry

Oct. 5, 2015 (J. Fraser)

By now you have read, viewed and watched extensive coverage of the officiating of Justin Trudeau as Canada’s 23rd Prime Minister. He also announced his cabinet and 23rd Canadian ministry.  

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated he would appoint an equal amount of women and men to his cabinet and he has delivered on that promise. The new cabinet represents a broad cross-section of Canadian people of different ages, from diverse backgrounds and regions.

This includes two Indigenous people appointed to the cabinet, Jody Wilson-Raybould as Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada and Hunter Tootoo as Minister of Fisheries, Ocean and the Canadian Coast Guard. Long time Indigenous advocate and former Liberal party critic Dr. Carolyn Bennett was appointed Minister of Indigenous Affairs and Northern Affairs.

Once Parliamentary Secretaries have been appointed, we will add them to this list.

Rt. Hon Justin Trudeau  
(Also Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Youth)
Cabinet Committees:
Chair - Cabinet Committee on Agenda and Results
Chair - Cabinet Committee on Intelligence and Emergency Management

(Editorial Comments: Prime Minister Trudeau has campaigned on building a Nation-to-Nation relationship with Indigenous people, as Prime Minister and Intergovernmental affairs minister he will play a pivotal role in engaging Indigenous people and leadership)

Hon. Jody Wilson-Raybould 
Cabinet Committees:
Vice-Chair - Cabinet Committee on Canada in the World and Public Security
Vice-Chair - Cabinet Committee on Intelligence and Emergency Management
Member - Cabinet Committee on Agenda and Results
Member - Cabinet Committee on Diversity and Inclusion
Member - Canada in the World and Public Security: Sub-Committee on Canada-United States Relations
Member - Cabinet Committee on Open and Transparent Government

(Editorial Comments: Minister Wilson-Raybould as a senior Minister will have an important role in developing MMIW enquiry, working on Indigenous justice issues, reversing government litigation against First Nations and developing the Nation-to-Nation relationship with Indigenous peoples)

Hon. Hunter Tootoo 
Bio | Twitter | Facebook
Mandate Letter Click on text above to see highlights. 
Cabinet Committees:
Member - Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs
Member - Cabinet Committee on Environment, Climate Change and Energy

(Editorial Comments - As Minister Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Minister Tootoo is also the regional minister for the north. He will play an important role in being a voice for the north and from an Indigenous perspective engaging Indigenous people on management of Canada's waterways. With the recent capsizing incident of off Tofino, Indigenous people have said they should play a role in Canada's Coast Guard)

Hon. Carolyn Bennett 
Cabinet Committees:
Member - Cabinet Committee on Diversity and Inclusion
Member - Cabinet Committee on Environment, Climate Change and Energy

(Editorial Comments - Minister Bennett has stated she sees her role as a minister of reconciliation, building bridges and engaging and consulting First Nations, Metis and Inuit people. The Trudeau government has committed to reviewing legislation imposed by the Harper government and ensuring Indigenous people have meaningful consultation and fulfill the duty to consult.)

Yvonne Jones

List of all Parliamentary Secretaries 

All Ministerial Mandate Letters include this preamble specific to Indigenous peoples: No relationship is more important to me and to Canada than the one with Indigenous Peoples. It is time for a renewed, nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous Peoples, based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation, and partnership.

You are expected to do your part to fulfill our government’s commitment to transparent, merit-based appointments, to help ensure gender parity and that Indigenous Canadians and minority groups are better reflected in positions of leadership.
Individual Mandate Directives to be posted soon.


The Cabinet committee is a set of Committees in the Canadian Federal Government that are responsible for enacting the operations of the Government's agenda.

Learn more about Cabinet Committees and which Ministers sit on specific committees:

The full Canadian Cabinet (Ministry): 

The names of several departments are being changed as follows:
• Citizenship and Immigration Canada to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada;
• Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada to Indigenous and Northern    Affairs Canada;
• Industry Canada to Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
• Environment Canada to Environment and Climate Change Canada.



Stay tuned we will write an article about NDP/CPC Shadow Cabinet and Indigenous Critics when they are appointed.

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