POLITICS

Protest camp outside band office on Red Pheasant reserve in Saskatchewan

06/20/2012 12:37 EDT | Updated 08/20/2012 05:12 EDT
BATTLEFORDS, Sask. - Several women from the Red Pheasant First Nation in Saskatchewan have set up camp outside the band office while the chief and a few dozen elders hold a meeting inside.

They say they want change on the reserve near the Battlefords.

Chief Stewart Baptiste says the protesters aren't happy that he beat two other candidates in the last band election.

But the protesters say Baptiste's recent court appearances and substance abuse charges are setting a poor example for the community.

Band councillor Sandra Arias says her group wants the First Nation to ban drinking on the reserve, establish a housing authority and call a general band meeting.

She says those requests have been ignored by the chief and council.

Baptiste says a date for a band meeting has been set for the end of July. He also says talks are underway with the RCMP about making Red Pheasant a dry reserve.

(CJME)