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Saturday 1 November 2014

Lodge owner sorry for ‘native Americans can’t handle alcohol’ slur

29th May, 2014 by Lauren Eads

A Canadian lodge owner has been forced to apologise for comments made in a “15-year-old brochure” warning tourists not to give alcohol to native American guides as they cannot handle it.

10411908_875886279093133_6822254021637757857_nManitoba’s Laurie River fishing lodge came under fire on Facebook over comments made in a 37-page brochure for the facility that warned guests not to give alcohol to aboriginal guides, according to a report by globalnews.ca.  

The section read: “We take great care when hiring our staff, however the subject of native guides must be touched upon.

“We use Cree Indian guides from the town of Pukatawagon (sic) in northern Manitoba. They are wonderful people and fun to fish with however, like all native North Americans, they have a basic intolerance for alcohol. Please do not give my guides alcohol under any circumstances.”

David Harper, grand chief of the Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak, which represents First Nations across northern Manitoba, called the comments “totally derogatory” and treating aboriginal guides “like an animal” likening the situation to telling tourists “not to feed the bears”.

Brent Fleck, of Laurie River Lodge, has since apologised for the comments telling globalnews.ca: “It was a total mistake and should not have been in there. It’s an old trip planning guide that I’ve used for like 15 years and I had no idea that that was even in there,”

“I’ve issued an apology to the chief down in Pukatawagan and to the natives that work for me and … it’s certainly not our opinion and not something that we want to forward in any way shape or form.”

One Facebook user is reported to have called it “an incredible display of racism”.

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