McMurray Métis has released a comprehensive report entitled Fort McMurray: Historic and Contemporary Rights-Bearing Métis Community. The report was completed by Willow Springs Strategic Solutions and authored by Dr. Timothy Clark, Dermot O’Connor, and Peter Fortna. It presents archival information, primary oral history interviews, secondary historical scholarship, and primary government sources that demonstrate Fort McMurray is a historic and contemporary rights-bearing Métis community as defined in R. v. Powley.
“For as long as I can remember, Governments have refused to acknowledge the historic facts with respect to the McMurray Métis and the constitutional obligations that come with the fact that we’re a historic and contemporary Métis community that meets the test laid out in the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in R. v. Powley,” stated McMurray Métis President Gail Gallupe, “In commissioning this report we wanted to lay out the facts in black and white in order to convince Governments to finally acknowledge our status, and the obligations that come with it.”
Report lead author Dr. Timothy Clark stated, “In writing this report we utilized historical census data, Hudson Bay Company archives, oral history accounts, and genealogical information that enable the McMurray Métis community to trace its origins as a distinctive settlement within a broader regional Métis community prior to the time of what jurisprudence labels Effective European Control of northeastern Alberta. The evidence is conclusive that Fort McMurray is a historic and contemporary Métis community.”
Founded in 1987 and governed under the bylaws of the Métis Nation of Alberta by an elected Local Council, McMurray Métis is accountable to its membership with a mandate to pursue the advancement of the Métis people of Fort McMurray and northeastern Alberta. For more information please visit www.McMurrayMetis.org.