British Columbia Treaty Commission

British Columbia Treaty Commission

March 15, 2011 18:52 ET

British Columbia Treaty Commission: Minister Polak Can Achieve Treaties

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 15, 2011) - The Treaty Commission will ask newly appointed Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister Mary Polak to work with the other parties to conclude more interim agreements and complete treaties.

"Our message to the new premier, the new minister and the Cabinet is to maintain the commitment to treaties you have shown over several years," said Chief Commissioner Sophie Pierre. "We are asking the government to continue developing interim solutions, and to work on revenue sharing and shared decision making with First Nations, while continuing on the path to treaties."

The Treaty Commission will meet with the minister at her earliest opportunity to discuss the initiatives in the treaty process that are underway to improve the lives of First Nations people in the province. The latest development in treaty making was ratification of the Yale First Nation treaty by members in a vote held Saturday.

"Minister Polak has an immediate opportunity to confirm the government's commitment to treaties by ensuring quick passage of the Yale First Nation treaty through the legislature," said Chief Commissioner Sophie Pierre. "We have had an excellent working relationship with the ministry and former ministers, which we hope will continue."

There are six ratified final agreements, one with Tsawwassen and five with Maa-nulth First Nations, three completed final agreements yet to be ratified and two final agreements close to completion for a total of 11.

There are seven First Nations close to concluding agreements in principle and another 27 First Nations that remain active in treaty negotiations, for a total of 41 of the 60 First Nations in the treaty process. The 60 First Nations represent 67% of the registered Indian population in the province and 110 Indian Act bands.

Contact Information

  • British Columbia Treaty Commission
    Brian Mitchell
    Communications Manager
    604-482-9215 or 604-788-5190
    bmitchell@bctreaty.ca