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June 1, 2021 (Vancouver, BC) – To honor National Indigenous History Month, the BC First Nations Forestry Council is launching an awareness campaign to bring into focus the BC First Nations Forest Strategy (the ‘Forest Strategy’) and the six goals informed by direct input of First Nations for over a decade.
“BC First Nations have endorsed the six goals identified within the Forest Strategy,” tells Charlene Higgins, CEO of the BC First Nations Forestry Council. “It’s time for Government and Industry to acknowledge and implement them; it’s time for us to move forward.”
The Forest Strategy reflects the principles of UNDRIP and was developed to support government-to-government relationships between the Province and First Nations to increase the role Indigenous Nations play in the governance and stewardship of forest lands and resources.
“The Forest Strategy and Implementation Plan were released in 2019, but the Province still hasn’t fulfilled their commitment to action or endorsing either,” says Higgins.
“We must do better if we are to revitalize the BC forest sector with First Nations as full partners.”
Throughout the month of June, the Forestry Council is calling on industry, community, and Government to help amplify the goals of the Forest Strategy by taking action and sharing goals from the Forest Strategy online.
Visit this link to learn more about each goal, their link to UNDRIP, and how you can participate in the #ItsTime campaign during the month of June.
The Forestry Council will also be marking this year’s National Indigenous History Month with the 2nd Annual BC First Nations Forestry Conference, taking place virtually between June 16-18, 2021.
“To truly implement UNDRIP, Nations must play a larger role in decisions pertaining to the management and stewardship of forest lands and resources,” tells Higgins. “The Conference will highlight good examples, and changes needed to make First Nations full partners in the forest sector.”
You can view the full conference program at this link.
“Reconciliation is hard work” tells Higgins. “We look forward to continuing this work with industry and the provincial government to put words into action in changes to forest policies, legislation and regulations to increase the role Nations play in the governance and stewardship of forest lands and resources.”
For additional info, contact:
BC First Nations Forestry Council
+1 +1 604-971-3448 (ext. 4635)