Beginning Tuesday, in accordance with the First Nations Financial Transparency Act, First Nations chiefs and councillors' salaries will now be published on the Internet.
Colin Craig, the prairie director of the CTF, said after all the work his organization has done on the issue, it is great to see it finally happen.
"It improves accountability; it is basic expectation in a democracy that one would be able to find how much their politicians are making," he said. "We heard back in 2009, that several people on aboriginal reserves couldn't get details on how much their own politicians were making, so that is why we started calling and moving forward with a big push to get Ottawa to change the status quo."
Nationwide, only 18 salaries have been posted online -- in Manitoba, only Buffalo Point and Gamblers First Nations have posted their salaries.
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Minister Bernard Valcourt said in a statement on Monday that all the chiefs and councillors in the country are encouraged to file their financial statements as soon as possible. Once they are received, the department will post them.
Craig said prior to this legislation, some band members would often get bullied or risk losing their jobs if they asked about their chief's or councillors' salaries.
"One member actually provided us with a letter they got from their band saying that it was illegal for the government to release the information," he said, noting bands were supposed to be providing those details to their members. "That's one of the benefits of having these details online, everyone can take a look at them and band members can look at the numbers anonymously."
Chiefs and council salaries now posted online | Canada | News | Toronto Sun