British Columbia Treaty Commission

British Columbia Treaty Commission

February 18, 2013 13:33 ET

Over 120 Leaders to Convene at Section 35 Symposium Tomorrow

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 18, 2013) - The Beyond Section 35 Symposium will tomorrow bring together over 120 Indigenous and non-Indigenous leaders, academics and top legal minds in Vancouver BC. Participants will engage in a two-day dialogue about the substantial impact that Section 35 recognition of Aboriginal rights has had on altering both federal/provincial law and policy regarding Indigenous Peoples and governance in Canada.

Former Supreme Court Justice, The Honorable Justice Mr. Ian Binnie, will deliver the keynote address on day one of the event. Other scheduled speakers include British Columbia and Saskatchewan AFN Regional Chiefs Jody Wilson-Raybould and Perry Bellegarde-key leaders who participated in the discussions held between Prime Minister Harper and Chiefs on January 11, 2013.

The BC Treaty Commission encourages the three principals to utilize the potential of treaty negotiations to implement the promise of Section 35 by completing more treaties. "But change is needed", said Chief Commissioner Sophie Pierre. "It is only by making Section 35 a key policy directive, with leadership and oversight from the Prime Minister, that the Section 35 obligations of Canada can be fully realized," adds Pierre.

The Commission has partnered with the New Relationship Trust, with the assistance from the Institute on Governance, to host this two-day symposium on February 19 and 20 at the Wosk Centre for Dialogue in Vancouver. Panel presentations as well as facilitated dialogue sessions will be utilized to engage participants in discussions around the aspirations and promises of Section 35.

Section 35 is Canada's promise of rights recognition-a promise of change-of a new relationship with the Aboriginal people of this country. In recognition of the pioneers of this change, the "Change Makers" ceremony will be hosted by former Lieutenant Governor Steven Point, to honor the first test of Section 35 through the 1990 R. v. Sparrow decision of the Supreme Court of Canada. Recipients include Chief Wayne Sparrow, Ron Sparrow, and former Chief Ernest Campbell of the Musqueam First Nation.
Media are invited to the Change Makers Ceremony at 12:00 on February 19th, 2013 at the Wosk Centre for Dialogue, 580 west Hasting Street, Vancouver BC. VIEW FULL AGENDA HERE

For more information or to arrange an interview see contact information below.

Contact Information