First Peoples Law is dedicated to defending and advancing Indigenous peoples' Aboriginal title, rights and Treaty rights.

Federal Court of Appeal's Williams Lake Indian Band Decision

March 1, 2016

By Bruce McIvor

Lots of interest in yesterday's decision so I thought I'd post it asap (see below).

In sum, the Federal Court of Appeal concluded that whether or not the federal government was liable to the Band for the colony having not set aside the village site, Canada had remedied any possible breach by later acquiring other lands for the Band.

The Court set aside the decision of the Tribunal and then took the highly unusual step of deciding the matter itself. On the basis of its own review of the historical record it dismissed the claim, concluding that no other outcome was possible.

Bruce McIvor, lawyer and historian, is principal of First Peoples Law Corporation.

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eleanor Yateman(4 years ago)
Thank you so much for your postings of the Indigenous current events. I feel we are at a pivotal stage in history right now, as we have experienced fifteen years of stagnation related to action taken on Indigenous issues. Your remarks insure that we are aware of the political climate and its ramifications that address not only the Canadian people but extend globally as well. Thank you again so much for your insightful blogs. Eleanor Baptiste Yateman

Bruce McIvor(4 years ago)
Thanks very much for your kind works, Eleanor. We are inspired by Indigenous People, including our clients, and all who support them.

Phil Dwyer(4 years ago)
The fact that the FCA accorded little-to-no deference to the Tribunal - combined with Justice Near stating that his conclusion was the only one possible - makes this decision very problematic, doesn't it? Granted, I am only a second-year law student, but even with the modest amount I learned so far about both Aboriginal and Administrative law it seems to be that there are some issues arising from this decision that are going to need to be addressed. Do you think that Williams Lake Band will appeal to the SCC, or is that possible?

Bruce McIvor(4 years ago)
Good question, Phil. See my radio interview for my thoughts. I just posted the link (see above).

Phil Dwyer(4 years ago)
Thanks. I'll definitely be following this with interest to see what happens. Sounds like it is at least a possibility.

George Kirby(4 years ago)
Rule of law
Royal proclamation
Before sec92 can become legally enforceable,sec91 exists
Why then is the bc provincial government stealing resources from 91(24) lands,further to that throw in the undrip which jr. Is implementing,or at least has said he would,it should enable indigenous peoples to sue for the genocidal colonization that was attempted by the colonists before we all became "civilized"

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