Issues

Representation at the council table

  • Some councillors do not say much at the table. We need a strong voice.
  • Some councillors do not read their packages so are unprepared to discuss or make decisions that impact the community.
  • Some councillors have missed almost half of the meetings and still get paid.
  • We need skilled councillors who have a strong understanding of budgets, program oversight.
  • Community need to be encouraged to bring things to council and should not feel afraid to speak out for fear of losing services.
  • Councillors should be people who do not abuse drugs and alcohol  or have criminal records.

Benefits for All Equally

  • Services and programs should be available to all Cowichan tribes members.
  • Housing list should be shared with the members so they know where they are on the list and it doesn’t change all the time.
  • We need to use some of our revenues to help the community
  • Tobacco tax distribution amount should be raised to 50%. So many of our off-reserve members cannot access services and programs because of the on-reserve funding agreement with AANDC.

Purchasing

  • The GMC Denali pick-up truck is an example of financial spending that was wrong. Cowichan lost $14,000.00 because they do not have financial rules about approvals. This should have gone to the council table.
  • Large expenditures should be reported to Chief and Council on a monthly basis.
  • Property purchases should be reported to the community and approved before the final approval is approved by council.

Finance and Business

  • KDC: full disclosure of financial payments to board of directors is a requirement of the corporations regulations.
  • KDC: there have been years where someone on council should have said something and done something to address the losses experienced in this corporation of Cowichan Tribes.
  • Now we have no businesses operating at a profit.
  • We need a separate annual general meeting where community can review audited statements and provide input.
  • Public disclosure of all funds should happen. Notices to community.
For KDC and Cowichan Tribes
  • Contracts should be going to public tender so that everyone can apply for the work. The winner of the contract should be publicly disclosed in newsletter.

Treaty Issues

  • Treaty process is not progressing and we are incurring debt over $20 million as reported by HTG.
  • We should suspend activities until proper communication can be established with provincial and federal governments.  Negotiating in GOOD FAITH is required before we spend more money.
  • We are nearly 50% of the population of HTG and only get one Vote at the table.  We need to protect our interest in this group.

Employment

  • Huge unemployment rates for our people leave our community living in poverty.
  • High reliance on income assistance programs.
  • Need better program and service delivery of CSETS funds, TESI funds, WOP and ASARET programs in Social Development.
  • Need partnership development with local business and industry, as well as developments in the region.
  • Need to provide better training opportunities that are based on labour market data for the region.
  • Need to provide training and work experience that are based on our community needs.
  • Need to apply for funding to properly support the Individual Opportunities Program (IOP)
  • Tobacco tax training dollars should go to community training with only a limited amount to support Cowichan Tribes employment positions.

Culture and Language

  • Our language will not survive much longer with no action.
  • Programs need to reach our community.
  • Early intervention is absolutely necessary.
  • we need to apply for language program funding that sadly has not been applied for by Cowichan Tribes Education.
  • Cultural Sensitivity training is needed for our Centre managers who are not Quw’utsun Mustimuhw. The managers need to understand the way in which our people like to be treated and respectful dialogue.
  • Policies need to take into account our interconnected and extended families.

Our Land

  • Our land needs to be looked after so that it can provide for our children and our grandchildren.
  • We need to protect our lands so that we can continue to practice our culture and traditional practices.
  • Our Land investigation committee needs to meet regularly.
  • Land disputes need to be resolved
  • People need to receive they Certificates of Possession.