Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

December 06, 2007 10:19 ET

Legislation for the First Modern Treaty Under the BC Treaty Process Introduced in House of Commons

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 6, 2007) - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians, introduced legislation in the House of Commons today to ratify the historic Tsawwassen First Nation Final Agreement.

"This agreement is proof that the best solutions for all involved can be found at the negotiating table," stated Minister Strahl. "Modern treaties like the Tsawwassen Final Agreement provide the basis for a strengthened and forward-looking partnership with First Nations."

Tsawwassen treaty negotiations began in 1993 and the Final Agreement was initialled by the parties in December 2006. In July 2007, Tsawwassen members ratified the Agreement, through a community vote, with 70 percent of eligible members voting in favour. In October, the province of British Columbia introduced, and subsequently passed, settlement legislation to ratify the Tsawwassen Final Agreement.

"The Tsawwassen treaty proves that negotiations work. My community and I are absolutely convinced that the treaty is our way forward," said Tsawwassen Chief Kim Baird. "We no longer have to miss out on opportunities other British Columbians and Canadians have enjoyed for over the past century. Once ratified, we will be able to take control of our own destiny."

The Agreement was signed earlier today by representatives from Tsawwassen First Nation, British Columbia and Canada. Introduction of federal legislation is the next step for Canada to formally ratify the agreement.

Located at Roberts Bank in Delta, British Columbia, Tsawwassen First Nation consists of approximately 350 Coast Salish people, about half of whom live on reserve. The Tsawwassen First Nations Final Agreement includes roughly 724 hectares of land and a capital transfer of $13.9 million over a 10 year period. The costs will be shared by provincial and federal governments. The Final Agreement defines the Tsawwassen First Nation's rights regarding the ownership and management of territory and resources, including self-government provisions and rights with respect to fish and land.

The Tsawwassen First Nation Final Agreement is available at:

This release is also available on the Internet at

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl
    Minister's Office
    Philippe Mailhot
    Press Secretary
    Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
    Media Relations