AFN supports the First Nation YouthBuild Initiative




DECEMBER 4, 5, AND 6, 2018, OTTAWA    ON Resolution no. 86/2018 


TITLE:   Realizing a National First Nations Youth Build Canada Program 


SUBJECT:   Youth Employment and Sustainable Development 


MOVED BY:  Chief Marcel Moody, Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation, MB


SECONDED BY:   Chief Harvey McLeod, Upper Nicola Indian Band, B.C. 


DECISION    Carried by Consensus 



A.  The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration) states: 

i. Article 21 (1): Indigenous peoples have the right, without discrimination, to the improvement of their economic and social conditions, including inter alia, in the area of education, employment, vocational training and retraining, housing, sanitation, health and social security; and. 

ii. Article 21 (2): States shall take effective measures and, where appropriate, special measures to ensure continuing improvement of their economic and social conditions. Particular attention shall be paid to the rights and special needs of Indigenous elders, women, youth, children and persons with disabilities. 

iii. Article 23: Indigenous peoples have the right to determine and develop priorities and strategies for exercising their right to development. In particular, Indigenous peoples have the right to be actively involved in developing and determining health, housing and other economic and social programs affecting them and, as far as possible, to administer such programs through their own institutions. 

B. First Nations in Canada require a future that fosters improvements to the socio-economic circumstances of First Nations by addressing personal and systemic barriers to labour market opportunities and thereby increases access to these opportunities.


Certified copy of a resolution adopted on the 6th of December 2018 in Ottawa, ON. 




DECEMBER 4, 5, AND 6, 2018, OTTAWA,  ON Resolution no. 86/2018 

C. It is estimated that 350,000 Indigenous youth will have reached working age by 2026, which the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) called an unprecedented opportunity to fill crucial labour shortages in Canada. 

D. The economic loss currently suffered by all of Canada and resulting from the gaps in economic outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians is significant. Closing these gaps would result in an increase in Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by an estimated $27.7 billion or a 1.5% annual increase. 

E. Recent YouthBuild (YB) programs in Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation and Winnipeg have had success in delivering youth programming that has led to increased employment and the development of human capacity to address housing concerns in both urban and First Nations environments. 

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Chiefs-in-Assembly: 

1. Direct the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) to establish a steering committee to study the potential of a National First Nations YouthBuild Council to lead the development of a First Nations YouthBuild program to address the above issues. The results of this study will inform the AFN and the Government of Canada to consider the value of an investment in a National First Nations YouthBuild program to improve opportunities for sustainable employment, career development and income for First Nations youth in Canada. 

2. The steering committee would be responsible for developing: 

a. A terms of reference for a YouthBuild Canada Governing Council 

b. A strategic plan for a National First Nations YouthBuild Program 

c. A business plan for a National First Nations YouthBuild Centre  

3. Direct the AFN to call on the Ministers of Youth, Indigenous Services Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada, to provide the necessary financial supports to undertake the study for a First Nations Youth Build Program. 


Certified copy of a resolution adopted on the 6th of December 2018 in Ottawa, ON. 



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Information on Assembly of First Nations of Canada

Mandate letter to Minister of Indigenous Services

"Ensure the successful delivery of the significant investments made in Indigenous services through Budget 2016 and Budget 2017. This includes new and repaired housing" (2018)

"to improve essential physical infrastructure for Indegenous communities, including improving housing outcomes" (2018)

"undertake a review of all current federal programs that support Indigenous students choosing to pursue post-secondary education. The purpose of the review is to ensure these programs meet the needs of individual students while supporting completion of a post-secondary credential" (2018)

"to promote economic development and create jobs for Indigenous Peoples" (2018)

"continuing to grow and maintain Canada's network of shelters and transition houses" (2018)

Mandate letter to Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

"prioritizing infrastructure investments in affordable housing and seniors' housing, including finding ways to support the municipal construction of new housing units and refurbishment of exiting ones"

Providing communities the money they need for Housing First initiatives that help homeless Canadians find stable housing"

Mandate letter to Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

"help Canadians get the skills they need for good quality working with Indigenous Peoples, the post-secondary education system, employers and labour to strengthen our training systems to build the human capital that Canadians and employers need"

"to renew and improve the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy"

"developing a framework to fund training facilities"

"to increase the workforce participation of women and under represented groups"

Mandate letter to Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

"to improve essential physical infrastructure for Indigenous communities including improving housing outcomes for Indigenous People"

Right Honourable Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau

"Indigenous youth should not grow up surrounded by the things that place them at elevated risk for suicide - things like poverty, abuse, and limited access to a good education and good health care. Better opportunities for Indigenous Peoples, and certainly for Indigenous youth, are precisely what we hope to achieve."