This July 1, we're donating 100% of sales from both of our shops, in store & online, to the Native Council of Nova Scotia (NCNS).
The NCNS is the self-governing authority that represents the Mi'kmaq/Aborginal peoples who continue to reside on traditional Mi’kmaq Territory in Nova Scotia not displaced to Indian Act reserves.
The Indian Act is a set of federal laws that dictate, at its core, “who an Indian is and where an Indian belongs”. Under the Indian Act, the Federal Government dictates on what land Aborginal people may live. All reserve land is considered to be Crown Land, or federally owned land, and does not belong to the people who live on reserve but rather is "kept aside for their use". That land was allocated to the Aborginal peoples without consultation and is often remote and poor quality. On that land, the Indian Act dictates the governing structure of a reserve (known as a Band Council) and it dictates who may live on that reserve (who is considered Registered or "Status"). Those who do not live on reserve may not be Registered or Status and are consistently not consulted over decisions related to their wellbeing and the wellbeing of their ancestral lands, such as policies concerning natural resources and the environment. According to the Government they are not entitled to any of the "benefits" afforded to those who live on Indian Act reserves.
The Native Council of Nova Scotia was created in 1974, determined to end the oppression, social and economic exclusion, prejudice, stereotyping, disadvantages and political vulnerability of off-reserve Mi'kmaq/Aboriginals. Still, they remain the most marginalized in Nova Scotia, subjected to the greatest share of institutional discrimination and want of necessaries, for no other reason than their residence on their traditional ancestral homelands outside of the Indian Act reserves. The NCNS therefore exists to represent and advocate, interfacing with all levels of government and encouraging civic participation and inclusion, to influence policy, programs and decision making and to promote and advance Aboriginal and Treaty Rights and Titles. The NCNS also exists to provide services & programs to off-reserve peoples in order to improve their social, educational, economic and employment opportunities and advance their general living conditions. We are proud to contribute to this organization and believe firmly in their desire to not be denied their birth right identity as a Mi’kmaq, as well as their capacity and competency as Mi’kmaq and their continuum as a People of thousands of years, inhabiting Mi’kma’ki.
Find out more about the NCNS here.