The new Mrs. Universe Ashley Callingbull has been outspoken in her views of the Conservative government.

New Mrs. Universe encourages First Nations people to vote for change

The first Canadian and First Nations woman to win Mrs. Universe is using her new fame to urge aboriginal people in Canada to vote

The first Canadian and First Nations woman to win Mrs. Universe is using her new fame to urge aboriginal people in Canada to vote to oust the Conservatives in the federal election.

Ashley Callingbull said the Tory government treats First Nations people like “terrorists” and that the government is working against them.

“I believe that this government was created to work against us and not for us,” said Ashley Callingbull in an interview with Rosemary Barton on CBC’s Power & Politics last Wednesday. “There’s just so many problems with it for First Nations people. We’re always put on the back burner.”

Callingbull, who is trained as a professional actress and featured the APTN series “Blackstone,” said she’ll use her Mrs. Universe win to voice her concerns about First Nations issues in Canada.

“With the bills that have been passed, we are being treated like terrorists if we’re fighting for our land and our water,” Callingbullsaid. “It’s our right to, and now we’re being treated like terrorists if we do anything about it … It’s ridiculous.”

The theme for this year’s competition was “domestic violence and reflection over children.” As a survivor of both sexual and physical abuse, Callingbull told CTV News that she “wanted to be there for other women, to have a voice for them, because a lot of people can’t talk about things like that. And a lot of people can’t heal on their own. They need someone to guide them.”

Callingbull has been open about her past, saying she hoped her story would help others dealing with the same pain.

“I was picking bottles for food. I would have never thought I’m going to be Mrs. Universe someday,” she said. “Growing up and dealing with that, I thought this is a perfect platform to share my story … to be a success story for them.”

She also wanted to celebrate her First Nations identity, wearing a traditional jingle dress for the parade of nations, and singing a traditional song for the talent competition. “A lot of people misrepresent us in pageants,” she told CTV news. “For example, if a Canadian woman is representing Canada, they might wear a revealing, sexualized outfit, with a head dress, and that is a complete misrepresentation.”

Twitter exploded with support for Callingbull — posts crowned her “an inspiration,” “a trailblazer” and “the most interesting person in Canada right now.”

Author and fellow Albertan Kelly Oxford penned a congratulations message on Instagram, saying that while she is “typically anti-pageant and objectification of women,” she believes “Ashley will be such a positive inspiration for so many Canadian First Nations girls — who are the group of Canadians needing it the very, very most.”

“I urge all First Nations people in Canada to vote in this upcoming election. We are in desparate need of a new Prime Minister,” Callingbull said on social media. “Fight for your rights before they get taken away. Please vote to make change. Say NO to Harper’s government!”

Just Posted

Conservation officers relocate two grizzlies away from Bella Coola

Officers worried the bears would become reliant on human food sources

Explosives, firearms recovered from weekend standoff in Hagensborg

A high stakes standoff ended peacefully last Friday when single male was arrested without incident

‘Daddy bonus’ common in B.C. workplaces, study finds

UBC researchers say dads don’t have to be number one in the office to get a raise

30 degrees and warmer forecasted with heat wave in B.C.

The weather could stay well into next week, according to Environment Canada

B.C. Place will miss out on World Cup soccer celebration

Premier John Horgan doesn’t ‘regret for a minute’ pulling out

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

B.C. NHL prospect expected to make ‘full recovery’ after an incident in Calgary

Jordy Bellerive was injured in a reported house fire Saturday night

BC Lions defensive back Marcell Young levels streaker in home opener

Young hit the fan near one of the 45-yard lines

Police: Taxi driver who hit 8 Moscow pedestrians fell asleep

Two Mexican World Cup fans were among those hit

B.C. VIEWS: Orphans of our urban drug culture neglected again

Child advocate Bernard Richard leaves B.C. with harsh message

From marijuana beer to pot cookies, Canadian companies creating cannabis edibles

Manufacturers think that edibles will do well with users who don’t want to smoke or vape

Privacy lawyer warns against victim blaming in recent sextortion scams

Perpetrators get sexual photos of the victim and threaten to share them with friends and families

QB Jennings leads Lions to 22-10 win over Alouettes

B.C. wins CFL home opener over Montreal

Most Read