Profile: Linda Robinson is an Indigenous mother/grandmother, a labour and political activist, and a longtime NDP supporter and former provincial candidate who lives on the Enoch Cree Nation. A polio survivor born in Fort McMurray, who grew up in foster care from the age of two, Robinson has worked tirelessly at forging relations between the labour movement and the Indigenous community. She has used her university education in labour relations to facilitate workshops for the Alberta Federation of Labour, where she worked for many years. She has participated in the Alberta Labour Task Force and supported projects for the Lubicon Cree, among many other projects. For her outstanding contributions to community, union, and charitable causes, Linda was awarded the Jim Shewchuk Award in 2015.
In 1985 Robinson regained the Indigenous ‘status’ that the government had earlier taken from her, and she networks with First Nations families in her community. Her interview explains the implications of band membership status, the passage of Bill C-31, and the foster care system’s impact on Indigenous children. She is critical of the federal government’s stand on reconciliation and thinks that the prime minister “speaks with forked tongue.” Robinson is depending on the youth to continue to fight for change.
Linda Robinson has played wheelchair basketball provincially and nationally and won medals in the sport. She is currently a curler.
Keywords: Alberta Federation of Labour; Cree; Disabilities; First Nations; Indigenous people; Jim Shewchuk award; Racism; Wheelchair sports.
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