Ex-Senate staffer says she felt forced out for questioning colleague’s Métis identity claims

Article Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/senate-staffer-metis-indigenous-identity-1.5664637

Discussion posted by: Arye ben-Shaoul

A former staffer for a Manitoba senator says she felt forced to resign over the fallout from a complaint she made alleging a co-worker was falsely claiming an Indigenous identity. Breanne Lavallee-Heckert, a citizen of the Manitoba Métis Federation, brought her concerns to Sen. Marilou McPhedran in April in a letter explaining why her co-worker’s claims of being Métis were problematic and the impact it was having on her at work. “Being exposed to someone actively stealing my identity and culture is one of the most humiliating and belittling things I have put myself through,” she wrote to the senator. Lavallee-Heckert said she wasn’t asking for her co-worker to be fired, but she did want the person to stop identifying as Métis, and she asked for “significant changes” to be made.