Kahnawà:ke and Six Nations sign indigenous gaming rights agreement
The agreement was signed at the Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke and is effectively immediately.
MCK and SNGR will agree to defend the rights of indigenous people to govern gaming throughout the country through collaborative legal and political strategies. This, according to the agreement, includes the fight to conserve the economic benefits indigenous communities would receive.
The agreement also launches the development of a national body of indigenous gaming regulators.
In a joint statement announcing the agreement, both MCK and SNGR said they were disappointed by recent reinterpretations and changes to the Criminal Code of Canada. These changes allowed the government of Ontario establish an online gaming initiative under its iGaming Ontario arm.
The tribal bodies said that this will not economically benefit SNGR or MCK’s online gaming business Mohawk Online.
Ontario is set to launch its online gaming market on 4 April, having issued initial licences to three operators.
“We are pleased to revitalise relations and strengthen our alliance with our brothers and sisters,” said Ohén:ton Í:iente ne Ratitsénhaienhs Kahsennenhawe Sky-Deer.
“Renewal of this longstanding relationship founded on nationhood is the first step needed to strengthen our joint efforts in defending our interests and maintaining a stronghold in the gaming industry and other key areas we identify in the future.”
The agreement also means both bodies will agree to establish an understanding with their local gaming regulatory bodies to discuss online gaming opportunities that would benefit both communities.
“Today’s agreement signifies an important milestone as our communities come together to address our collective concerns,” said chief Mark Hill of the Six Nations of the Grand River. “This type of partnership is the first step in demonstrating the possibilities of what we can achieve as Iroquois communities if we work together.
“We are much stronger not as individuals, but as a collective, and these relationships will strengthen us as we assert our rights and jurisdiction within the gaming industry and beyond.”