Grand Council Treaty #3 Announces the Creation of an LGBTQ2S Council as an Integral Part of Its National Governance

Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh and Grand Council Treaty #3 feel honoured to announce the creation of an LGBTQ2S Council as an integral part of the governance structure of the Anishinaabe Nation in Treaty #3.

(L to R) Chief Howard Kabestra (Naotkamegwanning), Chief Waylon Scott (Wabaseemoong), Chief Lorraine Cobiness (Niisaachewan), Chief Vernon Redsky (Shoal Lake #40), Chief Will Windigo (Nigigoonsiminikaaning), Chief Chris Skead (Wauzhushk Onigum), Chief Brian Perrault (Couchiching), Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh (GCT3), Chief Derek Maud (Lac Seul), Chief Lynn Indian (Mishkosiminiziibiing), Chief Janice Henderson (Mitaanjigamiing), Chief Candi Kelly (Onigaming) and GCT3 Staff, Dan Morriseau and Donald Kelly holding the GCT3 Pride Flag.

The Anishinaabe Nation in Treaty #3 is governed by its Four Directional Model. As part of this model, the Chiefs-In-Assembly and the Ogichidaa are guided in their work by the four councils: the Women’s Council, the Men’s Council, the Youth Council, and the Elder’s Council. Each council consists of four members, one from each of the four geographical directions of the Nation that can participate in the four Chiefs Committees in a dedicated guidance role from the perspective of men, women, youth, and elders.

However, after significant thought and reflection, the Chiefs-in-Assembly have concluded that there are members of the Anishinaabe Nation that may not find themselves represented within these four councils. The decision was made that the creation of a fifth council is necessary to ensure that every citizen of the Anishinaabe Nation feels they see themselves and their experiences within the Nation’s governance structures.

“This past summer has given us all time to reflect on how society excludes many people and their stories,” said Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh. “This has been a personal journey for myself as well, as a heterosexual man, who must admit that he does not know the realities faced by those whose genders or sexual orientations varies from that which society has long deemed “normal.” Sometimes a governance system, no matter how sacred or functional, must be changed if it excludes those that are most vulnerable. This council is of critical importance to me as I seek guidance on how to ensure that LGBTQ2S individuals are never again left feeling as though they do not have a place within the Nation that loves them.”

Selection of the LGBTQ2S Council members will occur at the next Chiefs-in-Assembly in the same manner as the other four councils and its four members will be invited to oversee every aspect of the governance of the Anishinaabe Nation in Treaty #3.

Grand Council Treaty #3 would also like to encourage all other indigenous organizations, governments, and nations to reflect on how their systems impact the life experiences of LGBTQ2S people and how the revival of their place within our nations can contribute to the decline of the colonial systems forced upon us and contribute to the healing we work towards every day.


For more information please contact: Daniel Morriseau, Political Advisor – Grand Council Treaty #3 (807) 464-2647 or by email