Lögberg-Heimskringla - 14.06.1991, Blaðsíða 5

Lögberg-Heimskringla - 14.06.1991, Blaðsíða 5
Lögberg-Heimskringla • Föstudagur 14. júní 1991 • 5 Canadian Ethnocultural Council — INL participation By Elva Simundsson The Canadian Ethnocultural Coun- cil met for its semi-annual Board of Presidents Meeting on the weekend of June 2 & 3 in Ottawa. The Icelandic National League is an active member in the Council. The council is a non-profit, uon-partisan coalition of 39 national cthnocultural organizations which, in turn, represent more than 2,000 pro- vincial and local organizations across Canada. The CEC reported on the 1990-91 highlights of their activities. A commu- nity forum on immigration was held with the then-Minister Barbara McDougall in Toronto last October. McDougall announced at that time her new immigration strategy, which would increase annual immigration levels to 1%. With our declining birthrate and ouragingpopulation,the countryneeds more immigrants to remain interna- tionally competitive and to support the social programs Canadians have come to expect. The CEC requested that employ- ment equity be considered by the C RTC in their deliberations on condition of hcense for broadcasters. The council mquested a return of heritage language funding that could be operated from the proposed Heritage Language Insti- tute in Calgary. They further made sub- missions to request a depoliticization of the Canadian Race Relations Foun- dation and an increase in community involvement by filling positions on the Board of Directors through open ap- plications from the public. I represented the interests of the Icelandic National League at the meet- ings. I was contacted and asked to take part in a panel of experts who spoke on behalf of their regions or areas of con- cern. Representatives from the Assem- bly of First Nations, the Maritimes, Quebec, and Westem Canada each spoke and then responded to several questions from the council members. I spoke on the western perspective and on my understanding of what the mood of the people was concerning the fu- ture of Canada. I rriust say that I was not overly optimistic about how the mainstream of the population of West- ern Canada was willing to offer special considerations orrecognize distinctso- cieties at the expense of further eroding their own status within the constitu- tion of Canada. It was pointed out to us by the rep- resentative of the Assembly of First Nations that their sovereignity has never been given away. Their respec- tive nations have treaties with Canada. According to legal definition, only sov- ereign nations can enter into treaties with one another. Self-determination JCELAND? fXhe very center of the worRil) Your European holiday, centered around breathtakingly beautiful lceland, not only puts you in the very heart of things but saves you a nice bit of change, too. • Eurobargain and Soper Bar- flain fatres on directfJights from New York and Orlando, Fla. to Luxembourg. • Low cost round trip ser vice to f^arie. Frankfurt, London and Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oalo, Heteinki, Gothenburg, Bergen. @ Bargain stopover tours of lceiand, • Super Saver car rentals in Luxernbourg. • FREE bus service from Lux- embourg to citíes In Germany. • Reduced traln faresto Switzedand and France. THE ORICINAL tOW COSt AtRUNC TO ELfROPE JT CAU YÖUR TRAVEL AGENT ORICELANDAIR 1-800-223-5500 and self-government will be a require- ment in any constitutional agreement between the assembly peoples and Canada. The speaker on behalf of Quebec, Madame Senator Therese Lavoie, spoke quite tactfully about the require- ments of Quebec’s inclusion in the Con- stitution of Canada under a renewed Federalism. Renewed Federalism will require some concessions on the part of the rest of Canada but she was as- sured that their conditions would be met and separation would not occur. Monday, 3rd of June was parlia- mentary day. The council met with the three major political parties and pre- sented a number of questions. I took part in each of the three council panels, posing a question to each caucus con- cerning our opposition to the concept of recognizing only two founding na- tions in Canada. The exercise is con- ducted each year and gives the CEC some degree ofvisibility with the oppo- sition parties as well as the party in power. The Minister of Multi- culturalism, Gerry Weiner, is now more interested in hearing from ethnocultural groups in light of the new Federal Multiculturalism Act that has recently recieved assent. A black leather jacket Jón Mímir Einvarðsson is an Icelandic student who is studying aviation management in Grand Forks, North Dakota. A month ago, he visited the Lögberg-Heimskringla of- fice in Winnipeg. He and our editor decided to meet at the Montcalm Restau- rant on Pembina Highway in Winnipeg. “I’ll be wear- ing a black leather jacket,” said Jón to our editor over the phone, “that’s howyou can recognize me.” Our editor arrived a bit early for this meeting. While she waited for Jón, no less than four men, all wearing black leather jackets, entered the restaurant. She eyed each one of them up and down and thought to herself, no, this one doesn’t look Icelandic at all, and that other one seems too old for the voice on the phone, but that good- looking one over there—well I don’t know. Oh my God ! He’s noticing that I’m looking at him, and now he smiles— good looking yes, Icelandic no. I had better look the other way before he misinterprets my gaze. Finally, a young man, dark, but unmistakenly Icelandic, entered the restaurant. “You’re Jón , aren’t you?” MESSUBOÐ Fyrsta Lúterska Kirkja Pastor Ingthor 1. lsfeld 10:30 a.m. Tlic Service followed by Sunday Scliool & Coffee hour. First Lutheran Church 580 Victor St., Winnipcg MB R3G 1R2 Ph. 772-7444 our editor said with relief. “Yes, “an- swered Jón. “Whatever you do Jón— don’t ever again ask anyone to recog- nize you by your leather jacket alone,” she said. “ Here I’ve been sitting for more than half an hour, staring at strange men wearing black leather jackets, and trying to find facial features—noses, mouths,eyes—from the Icelandic ‘gene pool’, and these guys probably think... Well, never mind.” Jón had come to Winnipeg to pick up copies of Lögberg-Heimskringla. He was working on an essay on K.N., and needed some articles, and Paul A. Sigurdson’s translations of K.N.’s po- etry. Jón said that he is very impressed with how well the Westem Icelanders he has met, in North Dakota, have maintained their Icelandic language and heritage. Jón has now left for Iceland where he will work during the summer, but in the fall, he will retum to his studies in Grand Forks. He is hoping, perhaps, to participate in some of the social activities of UMIS S (University of Mani- toba Icelandic Student Society), upon his next visit to Winnipeg. H.K.D. Minnist í ERFÐASKRÁM YÐAR



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