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 courtesy 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 agreement, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), 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 MOU was signed by Kathryn Teneese, chair of the Ktunaxa Nation Council, Carolyn Bennett, federal Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, and Scott Fraser, British Columbia’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 Scott Fraser, B.C.’s Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

“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 MOU with Ktunaxa Nation is a clear example of the innovative and flexible approaches that we are taking to transform the Crown-Indigenous relationship,” said Carolyn Bennett, federal Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations.

“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

Jumbo saga reaches finale

A three-decade long disagreement comes to a close.

Ktunaxa, supporters celebrate protection of Qat’muk and the Jumbo valley

Speeches, acknowledgements and ceremonies mark an emotional gathering in Cranbrook

Former Waterside property to be rezoned?

Invermere residents supported rezoning Waterside property.

Angel Flight

Flights take patients for medical appointments.

Potential pints and a paroled peacock

Radium council discussed a micro-brewery and one of the village’s wildlife mascots.

After cashing in on QB gambles, Chiefs and 49ers to clash in Super Bowl

KC beats Tennessee, San Francisco dispatches Green Bay to reach NFL title game

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

Victoria family focuses on ‘letting go, enjoying time together’ after dad gets dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Most Read