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Metis may change name

Paul Bickford
Northern News Services

Hay River (Apr 22/02) - A name change may be in store for the South Slave Metis Tribal Council.

Paul Harrington, a council board member, says in all likelihood an assembly will be held in Hay River July 4-7, at which time a name change may be considered.

"Hopefully, there will be a name change for the organization," Harrington says.

The current name is historically incorrect and does not properly reflect the true extent of land use by Metis, he explains.

The words "South Slave" in the name lead people and government to assume that is the region of the Metis when it is much bigger, he says. "It's huge."

Harrington says the Metis helped open up the country, including such areas as the Deh Cho, parts of Nunavut and northern sections of the western provinces.

It's a problem, so we have to look at changing our name," he adds.

A name change would also hasten the issuing of identification cards for beneficiaries of a Metis land claim, he adds.