Dale Swampy talks about the challenges facing Indigenous communities in Canada, particularly the issue of poverty. He highlights the importance of acknowledging that while external factors play a role in this issue, there is also a need for self-reflection and taking responsibility for addressing the issue.
Dale discusses how his organization, the NCC, was initially created to promote coalition building and social acceptance of major projects. However, in 2018, they expanded their focus to include on-reserve poverty. Dale emphasizes the need for employment opportunities that are accessible to those with lower levels of education and skills, such as greenhouse facilities and meat packing plants.
Dale also shares a personal story about his sister, who moved back to the reserve after working in the oil industry for 30 years. She saw the poverty and hunger in the community and started cooking for those in need, eventually starting a program that provides food, clothing, and other necessities to community members. Dale highlights the importance of community involvement and volunteerism in addressing poverty, rather than relying solely on government programs.
Overall, Dale emphasizes the need for a comprehensive approach to addressing poverty in Indigenous communities, including employment opportunities, education, and community involvement.
About Dale Swampy
Dale is a member of the Samson Cree Nation in Maskwacis, Alberta and a graduate of the University of Alberta with a B.A. degree majoring in Economics.
In 2006, after working for 22 years with his band, Mr. Swampy left his position as CEO with the Samson Cree Nation to start his own business as an Indigenous Relations consultant working on a variety of projects including the Alberta Clipper and Southern Lights Pipeline projects. After the completion of these projects, Mr. Swampy was honoured by the Dakota Sioux Tribe of Manitoba with their highest honour, the Horse Medallion, for service to their communities.
In 2010, Mr. Swampy joined the Indigenous Relations team for the Northern Gateway Pipeline Project as Director of Indigenous Relations for the B.C. terrestrial region. During this time, Mr. Swampy, and Indigenous Relations team members of Northern Gateway would work with Indigenous community leaders to establish the Northern Gateway Aboriginal Equity Partners group, or AEP – a group comprised of 31 Aboriginal community leaders working as part of an unprecedented partnership with Northern Gateway. In 2014, the AEP leaders selected Mr. Swampy to manage a newly formed Stewards group comprised of four AEP community leaders that worked closely with the Northern Gateway management team to publicly support the project and to negotiate project benefits on behalf of the 31 AEP communities.
In 2016, after the cancellation of Northern Gateway, Mr. Swampy started the National Coalition of Chiefs (NCC). Today, the NCC works with Chiefs from across Canada and is committed to “Defeating On-Reserve Poverty” through positive dialogue and partnership with Canada’s Natural Resource Industry.