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Canada Watch Vol. 5 No. 5, pp.77-79


The Aboriginal peoples have been living on the land in what is now Canada and deriving their livelihood from its natural resources for thousands of years. Elder Alex Stead, at a public hearing held by the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (RCAP) in Winnipeg on April 22, 1992, put it this way: "We are so close to the land. This is my body when you see this mother earth, because I live by it. Without that water, we dry up, we die. Without food from the animals, we die, because we got to live on that. That's why I call that spirit, and that's why we communicate with spirits. We thank them every day that we are alive" (RCAP Report, vol.2, Pt. 2,435-36).


Copyrighted by York University, Centre for Public Law and Public Policy; the Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies, 1997