Chiefs disrupt Ottawa's natural order

Tease the day: Uncertainty surrounding meetings with PM and GG is effective protest all its own

Sean Kilpatrick/CP

A friend mentioned to me yesterday that Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence’s lack of polish, her propensity for inconsistent messaging, and even her choice to ride in a flashy SUV was all kind of refreshing. That reporters don’t know how to deal with it, aside from getting frustrated and annoyed, was a welcome change from Ottawa’s conventional order. Fair enough. And Spence isn’t the only one keeping reporters off balance. Last night, late into the evening, chiefs from across Canada challenged Shawn Atleo, the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, to demand more from meetings today with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Governor General David Johnston. Some boycotted the meetings, as currently proposed. As of this morning, no one’s sure if the meetings will actually occur. Whether Aboriginal leaders leave Ottawa satisfied or not, they’ve already disrupted the natural way of things in Canada’s capital, which is an effective protest all its own.

What’s above the fold this morning?

The Globe and Mail leads with a tumultuous week for Aboriginals in Canada that’s culminating in a controversial meeting between the Assembly of First Nations and the Government of Canada. The National Post fronts medication errors that are killing children in hospital paediatric wards (not online). The Toronto Star goes above the fold with “secret cautions” that hide medical professionals’ improper behaviour from Ontario patients. The Ottawa Citizen leads with today’s tenuous meeting between Aboriginals and the government. iPolitics fronts an Ontario labour board ruling that teachers’ planned one-day protest is illegal. leads with discord among Aboriginal chiefs in advance of today’s meeting. National Newswatch showcases a Postmedia story about the firing of a B.C. radio DJ who asked premier Christy Clark about being a “MILF.”

Stories that will be (mostly) missed

1. DND costs. The Department of National Defence doesn’t know how much it’ll charge cities and provinces for the deployment of Canadian Forces during natural disasters. 2. Fisheries fraud. A former federal fisheries employee has been charged with 34 fraud-related charges by the RCMP, who allege the man defrauded the feds of $200,000 over eight years.
3. Online drugs. A Canadian man who The Canadian Press reports was a pioneer in Canada’s online pharmaceutical industry was sentenced to four years in an American prison for fraud. 4. Airplane parts. DND denies that counterfeit parts on its Hercules military aircraft pose any danger to its pilots, citing a manufacturer’s guarantee, and say the parts will eventually be replaced.

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