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Caledonia residents optimistic Ontario will aid businesses hurt by blockade

Canadian Press
Published: Thursday, May 25, 2006

[SISIS note: The following mainstream news article is provided for reference only, as an example of how mainstream media treats indigenous resistance to genocide. Mainstream media often presents biased and distorted information, lacking pertinent facts and/or context. Inclusion of this article on our site should not be considered an endorsement by SISIS.]

TORONTO (CP) - Businesses hit hard by an aboriginal standoff near Hamilton met Thursday with officials from the Ontario government to discuss financial aid.

Haldimand County Mayor Marie Trainer said the need for assistance is paramount.

"We have businesses that are hurting from 25 to 80 per cent," she said.

In a closed-door meeting Wednesday night, the mayor asked provincial government officials to aid businesses that have suffered from the standoff.

"We asked for a lot and we're hoping that we get it," Trainer said in a phone interview Thursday morning.

Thursday's meeting, which was closed to the public, was to take place in the Caledonia area.

A spokeswoman for Ontario's minister for aboriginal affairs could not say who would be attending, how much assistance would be discussed, or where any money would come from.

The land dispute started at the end of February when Six Nations members took over a housing development site, claiming the land was wrongly taken from them.

A blockade of the main road through the town lasted for more than a month and only ended earlier this week.

Local businesses were told Wednesday to compile a case proving that they suffered as a result of the blockade and to show their need for financial aid to stay in business for the next three months.

"This is front-line stuff, helping our small businesses survive," Trainer said. "We're looking to get people back to normal."

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