Andrew Scheer stands firm under fire on Indigenous rights - 2019-10-07
Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer came under repeated fire in the leaders debate section on Indigenous issues for his opposition to policies that he said would lead to First Nations blocking pipelines and other resource projects—often against the preferences of other First Nations that badly want that sort of economic development.
"There are dozens of Indigenous communities who want these projects to go ahead because they know that is the key to prosperity," Scheer said in one part of a series of exchanges in which Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and Green Leader Elizabeth May both pressed him on the question of how to consult with First Nations on resource projects in territory over which they have treaty rights or traditional claims.
When Scheer was answering questions from reporters after the debate, the issue came up again. He stressed that whatever system is put in place to give Indigenous peoples a fair way to be consulted must ultimately allow "big projects to get done." "It will not happen if any one First Nation can can veto projects," he said. "That is something that First Nations leaders and grassroots organizations are concerned about as well."