A First Nations leader from New Brunswick implored others to help stop social media attacks being launched at the Assembly of First Nations new interim chief. Newly-appointed Interim National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Joanna Bernard, centre, gets help adjusting her regalia before leading the grand procession during the AFN annual general assembly in Halifax on Tuesday, July 11, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese

Stop attacks against interim AFN chief, New Brunswick leader implores at assembly

  • Jul. 12, 2023 9:39 a.m.

A First Nations leader from New Brunswick is imploring others to help stop social-media attacks targeting the new interim chief of the Assembly of First Nations.

Terry Richardson, chief of Pabineau First Nation in northern New Brunswick, addressed leaders gathered in Halifax today for the assembly’s annual meeting, held weeks after the ousting of former national chief RoseAnne Archibald.

Archibald attended the three-day meeting virtually on Tuesday and was eventually barred from participating after pleading with chiefs to challenge the organization’s leadership, whom she accused of orchestrating her removal.

Joanna Bernard, a regional chief from New Brunswick tapped to serve temporarily as interim national chief, told leaders the decision to remove Archibald was “not taken lightly,” and acknowledged it has thrown the assembly into a period of transition.

Richardson requested today that chiefs reach out to their members to stop social media attacks against Bernard.

He did not specify what comments were being made, but said what he has seen is “disrespectful” and “unacceptable.”