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

Aboriginal Law Report

August 11, 2019

By Bruce McIvor

This week's edition includes pipelines, Treaty rights, Specific Claims, the duty to consult, a highway round dance, and more.


In the News

Pipelines continue to top the headlines

Blueberry River First Nations’ Treaty rights trial is ongoing at BC Supreme Court

The Muskrat Falls inquiry continues in Labrador

Saugeen First Nation has moved for summary judgment in its longstanding lawsuit over the ownership of Sauble Beach

Lennox Island and Abegweit First Nations’ Hog Island Specific Claim is ongoing

The BC government is seeking leave to appeal the cross-border Aboriginal rights case R. v. Desautel, 2019 BCCA 151 to the Supreme Court

Fraser River salmon made a return to the headlines

A historic governance agreement is in the works in Anishinaabe territory

A cannabis partnership is underway in Mi’kma’ki

Another road has been proposed through Wood Buffalo National Park

A highway round dance took place on the Manitoba-Ontario border

Oka was back in the news

Friday was International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

From the Courts

In Squamish First Nation v. Canada (Fisheries and Oceans), 2019 FCA 216, the Federal Court of Appeal allowed the Squamish Indian Band’s appeal of a Federal Court judgment that dismissed the Band’s judicial review of a Fisheries decision regarding their Fraser sockeye allocation. The Federal Court of Appeal set the decision aside, concluding that it was made in breach of the Crown’s duty to consult with the Band in respect of its asserted right to fish for food, social and ceremonial purposes. 

In Manitoba Metis Federation Inc. v. Brian Pallister et al., 2019 MBQB 118, the Court of Queen’s Bench of Manitoba granted the province’s motion to strike portions of evidence filed by the Manitoba Metis Federation as part of its judicial review of the province’s decision to authorize a policy directive pertaining to hydro benefit agreements with Indigenous nations.

In Grandjambe v. Canada (Parks), 2019 FC 1023, the Federal Court granted a Mikisew Cree First Nation member’s application for judicial review of a Parks Canada decision that denied his application to construct a harvesting cabin within Wood Buffalo National Park. The decision was set aside as procedurally unfair and remitted back to the Park Superintendent for redetermination.

In R. v. Green, 2019 SKPC 44, the Saskatchewan Provincial Court acquitted two Six Nations members of unlawful hunting charges, finding them to be “Indians” within the meaning of the Saskatchewan Natural Resources Transfer Agreement, and thus exercising their constitutional right to hunt for food on all unoccupied Crown lands to which they have a right of access.

Off the Press

Here's an informative piece on the Tsilhqot’in Nation’s ongoing legal battle with Taseko Mines.

Here’s a good feature on the recent opening of Freedom Road at Shoal Lake 40 First Nation.

This is a powerful piece on two-spirit resistance across Turtle Island.

Here’s a revealing feature on the surveillance of Indigenous resistance.

Coast Funds released its UNDRIP and TRC-informed investment guidelines for shareholders. Read the full report here.

Lastly, here’s an interesting piece on the enfranchisement history of Michel First Nation.

On the Air 

Amid recent events at Oka, here’s a good interview on the defence of Kanehsatà:ke Mohawk Territory.

On the Screen

The Ottawa Indigenous Film Festival kicked off this week.

Quote of the Week

“There is recognition that how we have safeguarded our forests and lands benefit the entire world, but our rights to exist and manage these lands need to be strengthened. Will the world listen?"

Sonia Guajajara, Articulacao dos Povos Indigenas do Brasil

Off the Bookshelf

“The only things which the mind cannot examine are memories of the future.”

Han Kang, The White Book (2016)

Download our new eBook for free

Our new book, Canadian Aboriginal Law in 2018: Essays and Case Summaries, is now available as a free download through our website.

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

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This week's Aboriginal Law Report was produced with the assistance of Cody O'Neil.

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