Carolyn Bennett, federal Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Kathryn Teneese, Ktunaxa Nation council chair, and Scott Fraser, B.C.’s Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, along with their respective negotiators, sign the Ktunaxa Nation Rights Recognition and Core Treaty memorandum of understanding. Photo: Province of B.C.

Agreement brings Ktunaxa closer to treaty with province, feds

Memorandum of Understanding to advance treaty negotiations for all three parties

An agreement between the Ktunaxa Nation and the provincial and federal governments is being hailed as a significant step towards treaty negotiation and reconciliation.

The memorandum of understanding will guide all three parties in the development of a rights recognition approach to a treaty, as well as recognizing the Ktunaxa Nation Council as the legal government and rights-holder of the Ktunaxa First Nation.

The memorandum was signed by Kathryn Teneese, chair of the Ktunaxa Nation Council, Carolyn Bennett, federal Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, and Scott Fraser, BC’s Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

“I am very pleased that the three parties have agreed to adopt an approach that explicitly and properly recognizes our inherent rights as Ktunaxa,” said Teneese. “This agreement ensures the ongoing relationship between the Ktunaxa and provincial and federal governments will be based on mutual respect and understanding and is a key step on the path towards reconciliation.”

Agreeing to a rights recognition approach acknowledges that aboriginal rights are inherent and cannot be extinguished or surrendered, while also seeking to build a collaborative and predicable government-to-government relationship.

Under such an approach, the parties have agreed to develop a core treaty and move directly to the last stage of treaty negotiations.

“This agreement is a product of government listening to the Ktunaxa Nation and taking a collaborative, flexible approach,” said Fraser.

“With the Ktunaxa Nation and the federal government, we are on path to design a treaty that respects and recognizes aboriginal title and rights and lives up to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. This partnership supports B.C.’s ongoing efforts to transform treaties to better reflect our growing and evolving relationship with First Nations.”

Under the agreed framework, key elements such as self-government, land ownership and stewardship and law making authority will be written into a constitutionally protected core treaty. Supplementary agreements will address administrative and policy matters that can be more easily amended, allowing for government relationships to evolve as laws, polices and interests change.

“This memorandum with Ktunaxa Nation is a clear example of the innovative and flexible approaches that we are taking to transform the crown-indigenous relationship,” said Bennett.

“We are committed to working together to develop a new recognition of rights approach with this community, one that includes a core treaty approach and, importantly, a legal recognition of the Ktunaxa Nation.”

The traditional territory of the Ktunaxa Nation covers much of the southeastern corner of the province, including member communities such as ʔakisq̓nuk (Akisqnuk) First Nation, ʔakink̓umǂasnuqǂiʔit (Tobacco Plains Indian Band), ʔaq̓am (St. Mary’s) and yaqan nuykiy (Lower Kootenay Band).



trevor.crawley@cranbrooktownsman.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

B.C. Interior free from measles

Vancouver measles outbreak hasn’t spread to the B.C. Interior

Selkirk College opens up debate on sports team name, logo

Asking for public comment on ‘Saints’ name until March 1

Man injured in police shooting near Nelson has died

The death follows an incident in Bonnington on Feb. 13

Lemon Creek fuel truck driver gets $20,000 fine

Danny LaSante was sentenced in Nelson court today

Students give two thumbs up to no more B.C. student loan interest

Eliminating the loan interest charges could save the average graduate $2,300 over 10 years

Alcohol policies fizzle for Canadian governments as harms overflow: reports

About 80 per cent of Canadians drink, and most enjoy a drink or two

Ontario man accused of killing 11-year-old daughter dies in hospital, police say

Roopesh Rajkumar had been hospitalized with what police described as a self-inflicted gunshot wound

Manitoba ‘pauses’ link with ex-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell after allegations

Campbell had been hired to review two major hydro projects

Heritage minute features Japanese-Canadian baseball team, internment

The Vancouver Asahi baseball team won various championships across the Pacific Northwest

UPDATE: Woman, off-duty cop in critical condition after stabbing outside B.C. elementary school

The officer was interceding in an alleged assault when he and the woman were stabbed

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

Most Read