"We are absolute in our convictions," [Atleo] said. "We need action in particular for our most vulnerable citizens."Watch here.
Referring to the number of missing and murdered aboriginal women, Atleo's voice caught as he recalled going with a family to a morgue after a 16-year-old girl was killed.
"This is what our people are saying. That poverty is killing our people. That the history of colonization and unilateral action on the part of governments will stop now," he said.
Atleo, along with regional chiefs Jody Wilson-Raybould and Perry Bellegarde, laid out a number of specific requests, including treaty implementation, treaty enforcement and a new financial relationship with the Crown.
Bellegarde says one funding formula is 19 years old and hasn't kept up with either inflation or the total First Nations population. The chiefs also mentioned resource development agreements and disputes over changes to environmental legislation the Conservative government made in its two omnibus budget implementation bills in 2012.
"Our treaties were not meant to make us poor in our own homelands."
Many believe Harper cannot control and manipulate the Idle No More movement, that it is powerful beyond anything his calculating, cold chess-player's mind can comprehend, and that this will be his Waterloo.
I hope that's the case.