Members of Manitoba’s Métis community celebrated a Supreme Court of Canada ruling in Winnipeg on Saturday.
On Thursday, the country’s highest court ruled that the federal government violated the Manitoba Act in the 1870’s. The deal to end the Red River Rebellion promised 1.4 million acres of land to 7,000 Métis children, including what is now known as Winnipeg. The legal battle ensued when the government didn’t follow through on the deal and has been in and out of the courts for the past 30 years.
Local Métis gathered at the grave site of Manitoba’s founder, Louis Riel, to proclaim victory and celebrate the ruling.
“The Supreme Court has ruled — the highest court of land has ruled — a remedy needs to happen,” said David Chartrand, president of the Manitoba Métis Federation.
The ruling opens the door for future land claim settlements.