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Category Archives: Court Cases

Delgamuukw, Aboriginal Title, Harcourt and Campbell

Conservative MP John Cummins writes a long history of aboriginal title debates since the 1991 Delgamuukw decision. In sum: Recognition of aboriginal title would transfer control of 95 per cent of British Columbia to native leaders who represent little more than three percent of the population. If you own it, control it and have title […]

Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group Back Before Commission on Human Rights

The Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group (Ladysmith, BC) is back before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on Monday, March 23, 2009. From Brian Thom, a HTG negotiator: In this hearing Canada is making legal arguments that the HTG case is not admissible before the Commission. HTG will be responding to these arguments, emphasizing the failure of […]

Xeni Gwet’in In Court Over Mine

The Xeni Gwet’in are in court today claiming that the development of a copper-gold mine is an infringement of their aboriginal right to fish. The mine plan will destroy a small fishing lake called Fish Lake used by Xeni Gwet’in people for food. The Globe and Mail picked up the story (alt. link): While … […]

Vancouver Island Treaty Group Takes Issues to Human Rights Tribunal

The Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group (southern Vancouver Island) is going to Washington DC to argue its rights have been violated before Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. At heart: the slow place of land claims and outstanding grievances related to uncompensated land expropriations for a railroad in the 1880s. The HTG will be heard next week. See: […]

Duty to Consult in Play as Shell Suspends Klappan Drilling?

Intercontinental Cry draws an intriguing connection between a recent Supreme Court of BC decision and Shell’s suspension of drilling operations in the Klappan (Wii’litswx v. British Columbia (Minister of Forests); 2008 BCSC 1139). This Court ruling chastised the provincial government for not consulting the Gitanyow (north central BC; Gitksan) about logging leases on its traditional […]

Fishing Decision: ‘It’s not about race. It’s about place.’

Or so says Grand Chief Doug Kelly, speaking moments ago on CKNW Vancouver radio about the Supreme Court of Canada decision in R v. Kapp (2008 SCC 41). Kelly was talking with Michael Smyth on the Christy Clark show. Phil Eidsvik of the Fisheries Survival Coalition was part of the interview as well. Kelly distinguished […]

Red Chris Mine Environmental Certificates Upheld

Update: CBC TV’s “The National” presented a report from Tahltan territory last night — from Kluea Lake where Red Chris is considering dumping its tailings. The story concerned the issue of dumping mine waste in lakes across Canada. The story is now available on CBC.ca. Original Post: Imperial Metals, owner of Red Chris Mine near […]

No Historical Commercial Fishery for the Lax Kw’alaams

The BC Supreme Court ruled today that the Lax Kw’alaams (Coast Tsimshian; Prince Rupert area) do not have a right to fish for commercial purposes. Ian Mulgrew, of the Vancouver Sun, quotes the judge’s ruling: But their claim that an “ancient trade in eulachon grease has transmogrified to a modern-day right to commercial fishing of […]

Aboriginal Leaders Dissect Tsilhqot’in Decision

Chief Judith Sayers (Hupacasath; Port Alberni), Grand Chief Ed John (Tl’azt’en; First Nations Summit), and Dave Porter (Kaska Dena; First Nations Summit) break down the significance of the Tsilhqot’in Decision in theTyee.ca. Gist: In recognizing the Aboriginal title and rights of the Tsilhqot’in Nation, Justice Vickers has effectively quashed the legal strategy of the provincial […]

Gordon Gibson on the William Decision

Gordon Gibson, former Federal and BC Liberal politician, offers his opinion on the consequences of the William (Tsilhqot’in) Decision. Gist: [Appeals of the William Decision] will be as disruptive to the treaty process as was Delgamuukw 10 years ago. A court has suggested a major change in the balance of power so, for the moment, […]