Aboriginal Law Report
By Bruce McIvor
In the News
#WetsuwetenStrong continues to top the headlines. Here is my latest piece in our 3-part series: The Wet’suwet’en, Governments and Indigenous Peoples: A 5 Step Plan for Reconciliation
- Coastal GasLink environmental assessment report rejected, construction could be delayed | Ricochet
- Trudeau says rail barricades 'need to come down now' | CBC News
- ‘The RCMP must get out’: Mohawks of Tyendinaga say demands haven’t changed - APTN News
- 'Reconciliation cannot be achieved at gunpoint': B.C. Grand Chief Stewart Phillip on Wet'suwet'en stand-off | CBC Radio
- Blockades a genius assertion of Indigenous power: UBC-based First Nations thinker - Georgia Straight
- How the Wet’suwet’en crisis could have played out differently | The Narwhal
- Former treaty negotiator accuses B.C. government of 'picking their Indians' in Wet'suwet'en conflict | CBC News
- The rule of law is ‘racist’ says Mohawk law professor Beverly Jacobs - APTN News
In BC, First Nations reached agreements on caribou recovery and park management.
- Ottawa, province, First Nations sign deal to protect southern mountain caribou - North Shore News
- Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Metro Vancouver sign historic park agreement - The Province
Treaty infringement was front and centre in Robinson Huron territory.
Also in Ontario, the Ring of Fire remains a hot topic.
- Canada steps into 'Ring of Fire' debate with Ontario Premier Doug Ford - The Conversation
- Federal government orders regional impact assessment in Ring of Fire | CBC News
In Nova Scotia, Sipekne'katik First Nation was in court over the Alton Gas project.
- No 'depth' to consultation with Mi'kmaq on Alton Gas, lawyer argues | CBC News
- Mi'kmaq community in N.S. appeals approval of Alton Gas facilities - BNN Bloomberg
Yukon First Nations declared a climate change emergency.
A new report was released on the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.
- Lessons Learned Survivors Perspectives - National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation
- ‘Sincere reflection on the lessons learned’: New report examines the residential school agreement - APTN News
Calls continue for an inquiry into Colten Boushie’s death.
- Online petition calling for inquiry into Colten Boushie shooting gets thousands of signatures | CBC News
The federal government tabled a bill to amend the citizenship oath.
- An Act to amend the Citizenship Act (Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's call to action number 94) - Parliament of Canada
- Ottawa attempting to change citizenship oath to include respect for Indigenous treaties - Global News
From the Courts
The Supreme Court weighed in on the issues of court jurisdiction and Aboriginal rights.
- Newfoundland and Labrador (Attorney General) v. Uashaunnuat (Innu of Uashat and of Mani‑Utenam), 2020 SCC 4
- SCC affirms First Nations can sue in Quebec for alleged harms to lands straddling N.L., Quebec - The Lawyer's Daily
The Supreme Court also refused to hear Nova Scotia’s appeal in the “conquered peoples” case.
- Supreme Court decision means former N.S. Crown lawyer could sue premier for libel - National Observer
- Court documents allege premier, others knew of plan for 'unconquered people' argument | CBC News
First Peoples Law in the News
Off the Press
Here’s a 3-part series on Indigenous rights and the rule of law.
This is an insightful piece on Indigenous law and environmental assessment.
My colleague Kate Gunn and I were in Treaty 6 territory this week speaking at the Treaty Rights Protection Conference.
I’ll be giving a talk at Banyen Books & Sound on March 11 on “First Peoples Law, Decolonization, and the Struggle for Justice in Canada.” Here are the details.
Quote of the Week
"There is a difference between inconvenience and injustice."
Chief Woos, Grizzly House, Wet'suwet'en Nation
Off the Bookshelf
“By relying on the rule of law, colonial authorities aimed to erase their own complicity in the dispossession of Aboriginal peoples across the country.”
Renisa Mawani, Legal Geographies of Aboriginal Segregation in British Columbia (2003)
Bruce McIvor, lawyer and historian, is principal of First Peoples Law Corporation. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of British Columbia’s Allard School of Law where he teaches the constitutional law of Aboriginal and Treaty rights. Bruce is a proud Métis from the Red River in Manitoba. He holds a Ph.D. in Aboriginal and environmental history and is a Fulbright Scholar. A member of the bar in British Columbia and Ontario, Bruce is recognized nationally and internationally as a leading practitioner of Aboriginal law in Canada.
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This week's Aboriginal Law Report was produced with the assistance of Cody O'Neil.