Friday, October 19, 2007

Haldimand "A Residents Point of View"

The following is a comment that was posted on Haldimand "The Government Speaks". The individual did not post their name, but I figure if they already posted a comment I don't need to ask them permission to re-post their words.

As this site is called "Haldimands Unheard Voice", I have always been very willing to listen to what anyone has to say. The only thing that I have ever asked of anyone, is that they stay respectful.

The person who wrote this comment seems to be close to the issue, and maybe once they find that I have posted this as a main article, they will come forth, but that is not necessary.

The poster probably doesn't agree with everything that I post, as I don't necessarily agree with everything they have posted. But never the less we are all fortunate to live in a country where we don't get "shot" for speaking out.

So "thank you" "Anonymous" for your post.

I am very fortunate that I have so many people that post comments on my site, I appreciate every one of them.

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Haldimand "The Government Speaks"":

From the notes printed above:

Ontario recognizes that municipal governments in the Haldimand Tract and the provincial government need to continue to work on mechanisms to consult the Six Nations community about land use decisions and development activity in the area.---------------------------------

What does this statement say to you?

To me that statement suggests exactly what it says - that The Corporation of Haldimand County (and other municipal governments in the tract) and the Provincial government need to consult with Six Nations on development.

Six Nations doesn't have veto power over development - that seems to be the clear position of the government. But for the life of me, I cannot understand why builders/developers are so afraid to speak to Six Nations. I am a firm believer in communication. Although the two sides may not like what the other has to say - it sure beats pretending that Six Nations doesn't exist and risk loosing everything while feigning "But I didn't know" or "the government didn't tell me".

I am sick and tired of listening to the builders and developers of this area talk about "the extortionists on Six Nations". But when you ask some of them if they have ever spoken to the Confederacy or Band Council directly they say either "no", or "I'm not talking to them", or "why should I have to get their permission?", or "why should I?" and so on and so forth.

They seem to be much happier complaining about all of the money that they are not making and all of the trades who are not working, than trying to actually find a way that may just set the ground work for a resolution to this mess.

Nobody is asking the builders, developers, Haldimand Council or the Provincial Government to just cave in and give Six Nations whatever they want.

Nobody expects "appeasement" to be the only answer - but that works both ways.

What has been very eye-opening for me through this whole ordeal, is just how many people demand that the townsfolk of Caledonia unite behind their developers and builders, demand that the residents back some ill conceived plan to March on the DCE, demand that anyone who doesn't live in "the zone" mind their own business and then condemn those same people for not doing anything to help.

Then there are those who "fear monger" with "you won't be able to afford your taxes", "you won't be able to sell your house", "you are going to end up living on leased land", "the government has abandoned you", "you are going to be kicked out of your home", "you are going to have to hand title to your deed over to Six Nations" - but they are the first people to criticize ANYONE who realizes that Six Nations is not some mythical invisible entity.

Instead, they counter with "bring in the army", "arrest the terrorists", "equality under the law", "the police are useless - don't trust them and don't let them come to your house if you call them for help"....etc. etc. etc.

What is any of that doing to help? How is any of that going to bring about any form of resolution?

I'll tell you what I think - It won't. I think that it is high time that people started working with the tools that we have and the cards that we've been dealt and FIND a way to move these issues forward for the betterment of everyone. And that needs to start with our councilors and mayor recognizing that this situation IS their responsibility in partnership with the community, provincial government, federal government and leadership of Six Nations, instead of acting like a bunch of spoiled 4 year olds who didn’t get the toy that they wanted for Christmas and complaining that they aren’t allowed at negotiations. So be it.

It doesn’t mean that they cannot constructively and effectively work to improve the environment of this County and it’s relationship with Six Nations.

They all need to start doing the jobs that they were elected to do. If they are unable or unwilling to do so – then they need to resign immediately and let those who can make that effort to do so in their place. Posted by Anonymous to Haldimand's Unheard Voice at October 19, 2007 8:00 AM


  1. My inderstanding is that when DCE was first being developed back in 2001 that the County did contact Six Nations through the Grand River Notification Protocol. I am unsure of whether this is actually fact or fiction.

    I do agree with you that our council really doesn't do anything except attack each other.

    Donna thanks for allowing others voices to be heard. Good post Anonymous!

  2. Donna we need people like this to be on Council.

  3. Dear Donna,

    This post by anonymos stating how frustrated he or she is with what everyone is doing in reaction to the heartache of the Caledonia native land claim is somewhat idealistic in approach. In Ipperwash our Town and Council were behind the residents one hundred percent in declaring that what was going on in relation to lawlessness and lack of co-operation from the First Nations was tearing a community apart. Many letters were sent by the Mayor and Council to government Ministers and MPP and MPs to no avail. Newspaper releases received no attention either. Many meetings with the First Nations people were requested and denied. Municipal projects were halted by the natives(water line) which compromised fire safety, and other ongoing projects that needed attention periodically to avoid flooding etc. Town's works crews were denied in to do what was needed for years. Resident groups tried for years to talk to the Native Chief to find common ground on which to start building a relationship again and we were denied. The blame game against neighbours, family, friends and Municipal entities has to stop. All of these people desire a solution beneficial to everyone. You must, however, have an adversary who is willing and able to listen and willing to learn how to adjust together in a volatile situation. It appears in Caledonia that there is no spirit of co-operation in either the government or the First Nation. That is what is so appalling in the native land dispute situation. The fact that third parties are entirely left out with no communication, no direction on what is being negotiated and no information on how the end result will affect each resident. Add to that the criminal element and lack of proper policing and you have the recipe for disaster. Government and the Natives must learn that the more information a community has on the issues, the more chance there is for compromise and a de-escalation of fear. My daughter once said to me during my Ipperwash years "Why doesn't the whole Town just lock their doors and walk out to Queen's Park saying give us a place to live, it is unsafe in Ipperwash??" At the time I thought she was off the wall. On retrospect, we all should have done this. Ipperwash might be settled today if we had.

    Respectfully Submitted