Miller out as Crown-Indigenous Relations minister as Trudeau shuffles cabinet

Toronto MP Gary Anandasangaree takes over role

As part of Wednesday’s cabinet shuffle, Marc Miller, seen in this 2022 file photo, has been shifted out of his role as Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations. He was named immigration minister in a cabinet shuffle on Wednesday. (File photo by Jeff Pelletier)

By Jeff Pelletier - Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

In a move that will impact Nunavut and Nunavik, Marc Miller has been shifted out of his role as minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations in a cabinet shuffle announced Wednesday by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Leaving behind a portfolio he held since October 2021, Miller is staying on in cabinet as immigration minister.

Taking over as Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations is Gary Anandasangaree, a Toronto-area MP.

First elected in 2015 as part of Trudeau’s majority government, Anandasangaree has served on several committees and was most recently parliamentary secretary to the justice minister.

Anandasangaree arrived in Canada as a refugee from Sri Lanka in 1983. He has worked as a lawyer and human rights advocate and has been a contributing columnist to the Toronto Star.

“I believe I bring a unique level of strengths, but of course there’s a lot more I need to learn, and over the next weeks I will be working with our officials, as well as engaging and meeting with Indigenous organizations and communities across Canada,” he said after being sworn in.

Only seven cabinet ministers were unaffected by the shuffle, including Minister of Northern Affairs Dan Vandal and Minister of Indigenous Services Patty Hajdu, who held onto their posts.

In his time as minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations as well as Indigenous Services minister, Miller travelled to Inuit communities on several occasions.

In the spring, he visited Kuujjuaq and Nain, Nunatsiavut.

After the swearing-in ceremony, Miller told reporters he was sad to leave the position but was thankful for all the relationships he made.

“I have been able to develop a deep commitment to Indigenous issues that I, quite frankly, probably didn’t have in that measure four years ago,” he said.

Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. president Aluki Kotierk said in a phone interview that Miller will be “greatly missed.”

She acknowledged him for the relationship he has with NTI and for his leadership on the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee.

Highlighting Anandasangaree’s record on human rights advocacy and as a parliamentary secretary, Kotierk said she looks forward to meeting the new minister and that NTI will send him a congratulatory letter.

“We’ll ask him to have a meeting so that we can talk about some of the areas we’ve been working on, so hopefully we can have that done in the next little while,” she said.

“It’s a standing invitation to any federal ministers to come and visit us in Nunavut, so we will convey that as well.”

Kotierk also said she met with the newly appointed justice minister and attorney general, Arif Virani, when he was still a parliamentary secretary.

She looks forward to collaborating with him as he moves into his new portfolio.

Virani replaces David Lametti, who was left out of Trudeau’s new cabinet entirely.

Nunavut MP Lori Idlout issued a statement through the NDP panning the Liberals on the government’s record on Indigenous issues.

Idlout noted, “Anandasangaree has a monumental task ahead of him.”

“I have seen his passion and sense of justice required for First Nations, Inuit and Métis,” she said.

Abitibi-Baie-James-Nunavik-Eeyou MP Sylvie Bérubé said in an emailed statement written in French that her party, the Bloc Québécois, will be watching how the cabinet shuffle will impact Quebec.

“We will judge ministers and [the] government by their performance,” she said.

Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the national Inuit organization, said it was ready to introduce new ministers to the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee.

Makivvik Corp. did not provide a statement in response to Nunatsiaq News’ request for comment.

Several other cabinet positions changed hands Wednesday.

Sean Fraser was named Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities, and Diane Lebouthillier is the new Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard.

Anita Anand was shifted out as defence minister to become president of the Treasury Board. Bill Blair is the new minister of national defence.



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(8) Comments:

  1. Posted by 867 on

    He will not be missed. Like most of the trudeau cabinet, he was just saying whatever came to his mind to make people happy, however unrealistic or unattainable it may be. And His handling of the winnipeg blockade was disastrous.

  2. Posted by Lost in the wilderness on

    Canada doesn’t need a new cabinet, it needs a new government.

    • Posted by Trudeau II on

      It’s OK.
      Canada did not get a new Cabinet.
      Trudeau II is still the Cabinet.

  3. Posted by Hunter on

    So how does this change the policies of our government to stop us from doing down this road of economic destruction the Liberal government is walking us down?

    It is like the Liberal government has waged war on the middle class.

    • Posted by Lukman Ahmed on

      Assalamu Alaikum, seeing you online, I want to talk about a personal matter from my heart! The thing is, I was dealing in stones and it was doing very well. The government has stopped the stone business! It’s been four years today! Khulbe Khulbe My condition is very bad today I request you please help me with a visa! I hope to manage the cost of reading and writing for my son and daughter! Please help me if you can! I will do whatever you give me

  4. Posted by Umingmak on

    We need a new government, not just a new cabinet. When will Singh stop just criticizing the Liberals and actually take them down? He talks so badly about them, but he keeps supporting and holding them up. Incredible levels of hypocrisy.

  5. Posted by Sum dumb guy on

    Visit a third world country, loose your passport. Cone to Canada as an immigrant and then get treated better than the indigenous ppls.

    Thats Canada for ya.

    • Posted by Pity Party on

      When are you going to give up the pity party? It’s a tired old schtick. You have as many opportunities as any immigrant, maybe you need to take a little more initiative? Think it over.

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