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November 24, 2020
VANCOUVER – The BC Treaty Commission is pleased to release its 2020 Annual Report. This past year, despite unprecedented global challenges, has culminated in advancements for rights recognition and reconciliation in British Columbia.
Two key milestones this year were the implementation of Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (Declaration Act) and the final steps to eliminate all outstanding First Nation comprehensive claims negotiation debts across Canada. BC made history as the first jurisdiction in Canada, and one of the first jurisdictions in the world, to enact legislation aimed at aligning its laws with the standards outlined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN Declaration).
While the Government of Canada works towards tabling similar legislation, it is crucial that British Columbians and Canadians remember that we all have a role in reconciliation and in creating a more equitable sharing of power between the Crown and Indigenous peoples.
“Indigenous sovereignty,” says Chief Commissioner Celeste Haldane, “is a foundational principle of Indigenous rights. Reconciliation requires a sharing of power – a sharing of sovereignty – between Indigenous Nations and the Crown. The negotiation of treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements can accomplish this.”
“By negotiating the sharing of government powers and authorities, the parties can achieve the goals and commitments of the new Rights Recognition Policy, the commitments to implement the UN Declaration, and each government’s respective commitments to reconciliation” says Haldane.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Mark Smith / Director of Process / [email protected]