POLITICS

NDP MP Romeo Saganash Trolls Trudeau With 'Canoe And Paddle Program'

02/10/2017 10:59 EST | Updated 02/10/2017 10:59 EST

An NDP MP has crafted a brutally satirical response to comments made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau last month on the needs of indigenous youth.

Romeo Saganash shared a post on his Facebook page Thursday outlining his request to include a "National Canoe and Paddle Program" in the government's upcoming budget.

The Quebec MP's proposal mocks a response the prime minister gave in Saskatoon to a question on why promised funding to First Nations communities had not been delivered.

While speaking at a town hall on Jan. 25, Trudeau said several chiefs told him they needed money for youth centres with "TVs and lounges and sofas," according to CBC News. That request showed him, he said, the chiefs didn't know the true needs of young people.


The PM said indigenous youth have told him they need "a place to store their canoes and paddles so they can connect back out on the land, and a place with internet access so they can do their homework."

Saganash, a former Cree leader, wrote in his troll-tastic post that it was an "honour" to finally have a prime minister that understood the needs of indigenous youth. He said he was "ashamed for my people that we haven't been listening to our youth in the way you have."

"I myself have often lamented the lack of space on Parliament Hill to store my canoe and paddle," Saganash wrote in his post. "I commend your vision, Prime Minister, and look forward to your government addressing this immediate crisis in the upcoming budget."

You can read Saganash's full post below:

I have written a letter to the Prime Minister regarding my proposed National Canoe and Paddle Program.

While I am not...

Posted by Romeo Saganash on Thursday, February 9, 2017


Trudeau's comments in Saskatchewan were panned by several indigenous leaders, according to CBC. Protesters also descended on some of his town halls during his cross-country tour to rail against his government's approval of pipelines, as well as its treatment of First Nations reserves.

At one of the prime minister's public forums in Winnipeg, Trudeau said his government will have failed if it does not make a "significant and real positive difference" in the lives of marginalized Canadians.

“We need to lift kids out of poverty. We need to include all Canadians in the opportunities for success that we have, particularly through reconciliation and support for indigenous peoples,” Trudeau said.

“Unless we have made Canada a fairer and more just place, with real opportunities for everyone, then we won’t have succeeded as a country and we won’t have succeeded as a government."

With files from Althia Raj

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