WINNIPEG — A First Nations politician in Manitoba says he does not want his children to see themselves as victims of genocide.
Opposition NDP Leader Wab Kinew says the term genocide should not be the legacy of a national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.
The use of the term instantly became a flashpoint after the inquiry's report, released Monday, concluded that violence against Indigenous women in Canada has amounted to genocide.
Kinew says the report lays out a good argument for how the United Nations definition of genocide applies in Canada.
But he says he would like citizens, organizations and governments to keep focused on ensuring change for Indigenous people.
"I have no interest in my sons seeing themselves as the victims or survivors of genocide," Kinew told reporters Tuesday.
"I want my sons to view themselves as proud, capable people of integrity, people who hold their heads high in society."
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday that he accepts the finding that Canada's treatment of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls amounts to genocide.
But he said people are wrapped up in the use the powerful term, when the focus should be on how to put an end to issues raised by the inquiry.
Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister said he will let other people debate whether genocide is the right term while his government considers how to move ahead in the spirit of the report.
"What I am interested in is moving forward, understanding our history, learning from it, not repeating it, but moving forward."