11 July 2011
Stand Off, Alberta
Today Prime Minister Stephen Harper was named an honorary member of the Kainai Chieftainship by the Blood Tribe of Alberta.
"It is a great privilege to be named an honorary Chief of Alberta’s Blood Tribe, a strong and proud First Nation," said Prime Minister Harper. "I am particularly proud of this honour given it recognizes the efforts that our Government has been taking to help preserve the rich culture and heritage of First Nations in Canada while also investing in the future of Aboriginal peoples."
The honorary Chieftainship was requested by Blood Tribe Chief Charles Weasel Head in response to the heartfelt apology in 2008 by the Prime Minister to former students of Indian Residential Schools.
Honorary Chiefs are expected to help promote the cultural pride of the Blackfoot and Kainai and all First Nations. They are expected to maintain the headdress with the highest respect and be an available resource to First Nations.
"My family and I are deeply grateful for this gift and I will carry my Blood name, Chief Speaker, with great joy and pride," added the Prime Minister.