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Native People In Modern Society

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452 words

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On Thursday February 4, 1992 I went to Native People Center of Toronto.
My assignment was to interview a Native person and find out how Native
people live in modern society and is there any professionals among them.
That was my first time in Native People Center and to tell You the truth I
was kind of surprised to see that old building and that cafeteria inside
where the Native people who live on the street (or at least they looked
like they just came from there) can have a cup of coffee. There were also a
couple of showrooms with paintings and a secretary behind the front desk. I
tried to talk to the secretary and ask if she could give me any hint how to
find the right person because I really didn't feel like talking to the
people in the cafeteria (that would not help my assignment in any way). The
secretary first said that there's nobody in the center who could help me
because all of the staff is very busy and I would have to make an
appointment. When I asked her for the appointment she said that nobody
takes care of interviews in the center. Well I was lucky there was another
woman passing by and I asked her for help. That lady's name is Fran
Longboat and as found out later she is a pretty well known person in the
whole Toronto Native community. Fran said that there are quite many Native
professionals in the city and she tried to call a Native lawyer to make an
appointment for me but the person wasn't there. Then I finally got a
business card of a person to interview, guess who? -- A cop! OK I went down
to 40 College street and asked for Bob Crawford.

Bob met me very gladly and said that I came in the right moment because
he had nothing important to do and he agreed to give me an interview. We
decided to go to the cafeteria located in the same building and have a cup
of coffee.

I didn't have a tape recorder on me and had to write the main points
down so I can't provide the exact words of Bob but I'll try to do my best.

My first few questions were about Bob's past. He is an Algonquin from
Goldenlake. Bob spent his childhood in Pembroke, Ontario. Bob has never
been in a reserve. At 16 years of age he started to live separate from his
parents. ...

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