Better Together: Partnerships with First Nations for the benefit of all Yukoners

WHITEHORSE – “Yukon First Nations are modern people with modern agreements, being held back by outdated thinking,” said Liberal leader Sandy Silver today at a First Nations Chamber of Commerce luncheon. “Years of fighting and court battles with First Nation governments are damaging our economy. If properly implemented, the agreements are assets, beneficial to Yukon economically, socially, and environmentally. Agreements, if properly followed, provide for responsible, sustainable development and a strong economic future.”

In Alaska, 9 of the 10 highest revenue producing businesses are First Nation development corporations and are among the top employers in the state's private sector. First Nation development corporations have played a major role in diversifying that economy.

Yukon Liberals have a strong economic plan based on working with First Nations and the business community to build a new Yukon economy. The Yukon Liberals plan will diversify our economy, level the playing field for Yukon businesses, keep dollars from government spending in the territory and make First Nation governments full partners in building a strong economic future.

“Yukon Liberals believe the key to a strong, well-rounded economic future is economic diversification and partnerships with First Nations. This is a lesson the current government failed to learn and instead was caught flat-footed when mineral prices fell from historic highs,” said the Liberal leader.

“We believe that it takes all of us, together, to truly move forward. The Yukon Liberals are committed to creating a territory where all voices are heard.

“It’s time to improve bilateral relations between the Government of Yukon and individual First Nation governments. It’s time to honour the self-government agreements that are in place. They are the path to Yukon’s economic future. If we sit down together government, First Nations, business and NGO’s we can grow the economy, create jobs and benefit all Yukoners.”