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

Aboriginal Law Report

September 25, 2016

By Bruce McIvor

Here's our update for the week ending September 25, 2016.

In the News

With the proponent and the federal government deciding not to seek to appeal the Federal Court of Appeal's Enbridge pipeline decision, the question now is whether the feds will try to revive consultations with Indigenous Peoples.

Dozens of Indigenous Peoples signed a treaty opposing pipelines.

A new National Energy Board Energy East panel is in the offing. 

This piece from The Nation sets pipeline opposition in the United States in the context of broken treaties.

The fate of a Métis child in British Columbia raised the spectre of a modern '60s scoop.

The federal government's Supreme Court of Canada selection criteria continued to draw criticism.

Pundits waded in on the 'two-founding peoples' myth of Canadian history (and law).

One British Columbia First Nation signed major agreements with the province and a mining company while another rejected a new mineral development in their territory.

The federal government continued to face criticism over the Site C dam.

The re-education of the public on the spirit and intent of the treaties continues.

After much prodding, and delaying over a year, the Alberta government finally announced it will consult with First Nations about the Lower Athabasca Regional Plan.

A new report warned of continued mercury poisoning of Indigenous people in northern Ontario.

In the Maritimes, Indigenous people continued to oppose aerial spraying.

The resumption of Parliament drew attention to the federal government's commitments to Indigenous people.

From the Courts

An Alberta First Nation revived its court challenge to the Grand Rapids pipeline.

Oral summary arguments began in the marathon Nuu-chah-nulth fishing right infringement justification trial in Vancouver

  • Litigation Update (thanks to our friends at the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council for sending this along)

In Nelson, British Columbia a trial began that raises issues of the federal government's power to declare an 'Aboriginal people' extinct and the rights of trans-border Indigenous People to exercise their constitutional rights in Canada.

Another lawsuit was filed in opposition to the Site C dam on the Peace River.

Quote of the Week

"This is a time of great spiritual awakening for our peoples as we reinvigorate our Nations and ensure a better tomorrow for all.”

Grand Chief Derek Nepinak

Off the Bookshelf

"Every person or nation has a right to derive a living from the earth and to participate in the processes of natural creativity; but no one, no matter how desperate his conditions or elevated his ambition, has any right to diminish the complexity, diversity, stability, fruitfulness, wholeness, beauty--in short, the order of the natural world."

Donald Worster, "Restoring a Natural Order," The Wealth of Nature: Environmental History and the Ecological Imagination (1993)

Bruce McIvor, lawyer and historian, is principal of First Peoples Law Corporation.  Download Bruce's bio.

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