#5 – Coffee with Marie Wadden, author of “Where the Pavement Ends”

Marie Wadden and I met for coffee and we talked about an article in the Globe and Mail that day. It revealed that flights in and out of Garden Hill First Nation in Manitoba (which has been hit by the swine flu virus) have been departing full and returning empty. They leave with people who have the flu and return WITHOUT masks, respirators, hand sanitizers or other equipment that would help staunch the spread of the flu, even though the Chief had been asking for this kind of thing for days. Marie and I talked about how true reconciliation between Aboriginal and non Aboriginal people would mean equality. So that health care protocols, particularly in what’s now called a pandemic, work for everyone. And everyone has housing that’s not over-crowded, or moldy, and clean running water. It would mean really talking to each other and really being heard. We also talked about creating an organization of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal citizens who would lobby to ensure that Aboriginals have equal footing in our society. Both the conversation and the coffee were very stimulating.

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