The Anishinaabe Clan System served as a system of government as well as a means of dividing labour. The clans, based mainly on animals, were instrumental in traditional occupations, intertribal relations, and government. Today, seven general doodems (clans) compose this framework in our Circles of the Government in Treaty 2 Territory.
The Seven Steps of Rebuilding
The First Nations in Treaty 2 Territory, and local Nations assert the right to govern through these Seven Steps of Rebuilding:
Embracing and exercising agency in change. It is important to understand change and how to support it in rebuilding our Local Nations. Members and leaders prepare to support change.
With change, comes clear vision. Local Nation members will create such vision. Mandating change will be in the hands of members. Change comes from within.
The territory-mapping process is two-fold: the physical map and knowing your traditional, territorial, ancestral lands. This map will take time and will include all members of Local Nations. Moving forward requires your Nation to have a clear vision while documenting lessons learned and adapting to change.
Our Local Nations have ancestral and inherent rights. These rights must be learned and understood. The call for change and vision will increase with this deeper understanding. These rights are not documented. They are passed on by our ancestors and members of our Local Nations. The responsibility is ours to learn and understand these rights.
Decolonization requires dismantling the Indian Act. It is a paternalistic document governing the lives of our Local Nations. It was enforced five years after Treaty was made with the Crown. A pathway should be determined by developing a Nation’s ancestral laws. With this, our Nation will prosper in the very way that our ancestors intended when they made treaty.
The principle of Nation Self-Determination has been in existence for generations. It derives from our culture and spirituality; it is the essential structure of our natural law.
Life Long Learning will support Nations in this process. Learning our history and our ancestral ways utilizing a modern approach will support change and vision. We must exercise belief and faith in ourselves and our Nation for everyone to build and move forward. Practicing positivity in change processes will support the delivery of goals and vision. The responsibility of learning and preserving our ways and languages is ours—and ours alone.
Constituting the Governance Territorially and Locally
To join the process of building a Territorial Government, each member Local Nation will participate and support the development:
- A Local Nation Constitution to govern its reserve and membership;
- A FNT2T Constitution to govern the territory.
By creating a territorial constitution, the Local Nations have a frame of law in which they can rely on and govern accordingly. Same is true for Local Nation constitutions, the people are central to the way governance is conducted on their lands and traditional territories. The Territorial Government cannot interfere with matters specific to the Local Nation, nor can one Local Nation speak for the collective, unless approved set out in the law to do so. For these reasons, both levels of constitutions will outline the distribution of responsibilities and the relationship between local and territorial governments.