Court decisions hurting Aboriginal communities

It’s time to look beyond the courts for political leadership that works to achieve greater certainty for everyone

Court decisions hurting Aboriginal communitiesIn recent months, several major resource projects across Canada, which would have led to billions of dollars of investment, were cancelled. Another project, the multi-billion dollar Trans Mountain pipeline (which carries oil from Alberta to the west coast of British Columbia), faces an eight-day court hearing that started this week in the Federal Court of…

Give First Nations priority access to marijuana industry

Indigenous communities should have the same access that private sector parties are demanding

Give First Nations priority access to marijuana industryThe legalization of marijuana in Canada in July 2018 gives the federal government an opportunity to bring communities – including Indigenous ones – into this lucrative sector in a big way. For example, Manitoba’s Opaskwayak Cree Nation recently took a major stake in a medical marijuana company. OCN purchased $3 million in shares in National…

Attawapiskat First Nation refuses to address its problems

De Beers decided to shelve plans to expand its mine because of the difficulty of dealing with continual protests from community members

Attawapiskat First Nation refuses to address its problemsAttawapiskat is emblematic of so many First Nations that need the money and jobs that come with developing resource partnerships yet waste these opportunities. Attawapiskat First Nation – an isolated northern Ontario reserve – played a prominent role in the Idle No More indigenous protest movement that erupted in 2012. Then-chief Theresa Spence complained to…

Indigenous communities deserve economic choice

Allowing free market ownership of urban reserves can give First Nations the economic clout to move ahead, despite having to pay taxes

Indigenous communities deserve economic choiceTo help First Nations convert more of their land into urban reserves, the federal government has decided to improve its Additions to Reserve (ATR) policy. It's a step in the right direction but more can be done to enhance the economic benefits. Urban reserves are First Nation-owned land designated by Ottawa. They come complete with tax…

Killing energy projects only hurts First Nations

Stringent environmental oversight already protects native rights to land and water, negating the need for veto rights

Killing energy projects only hurts First NationsThe right of First Nations to question resource development is not the same as a right to veto much-needed projects. Ron Tremblay, Grand Chief of the Wolastoq Grand Council in New Brunswick, said he believes Canada’s adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) gives First Nation communities veto power…

Giving First Nations the power to flourish

Across Canada, significant projects have improved conditions in many communities, thanks to a funding model that demands accountability

Giving First Nations the power to flourishFirst Nations have long been the stepchildren of the Canadian economy. But a funding initiative is changing that. By measures like income, health, longevity, access to services and others, many First Nations people fall well below what are considered normal levels in the rest of Canadian society. The resulting problems rightfully disturb us all. Insufficient and/or…

Mining and First Nations collaboration thriving in Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan one of the most attractive jurisdictions in the world for mining investment

Mining and First Nations collaboration thriving in SaskatchewanBy Ravina Bains and Taylor Jackson The Fraser Institute We often hear about First Nation communities in Canada opposing natural resource projects. Whether it’s an LNG plant in British Columbia or mining projects in eastern Canada, the news is full of First Nation opposition to resource development. However, the one jurisdiction that may be the…

What First Nations can learn from New Zealand’s Maori

How Indigenous-led business partnerships can lead the way

What First Nations can learn from New Zealand’s MaoriMoving Manitoba’s Indigenous peoples from the liability to asset column was a topic that consumed some of Manitoba’s most innovative First Nations and mainstream business minds during a two-day ‘design-thinking boot camp’ recently. It was facilitated by Karl Wixon and Trevor Moeke, two Maori business leaders from New Zealand who, as part of a broad…

Tsawwassen natives’ LNG plan could benefit all B.C

But first, approval must be obtained from the 363 members of Tsawwassen First Nation, 170 of whom do not live on the reserve

Tsawwassen natives’ LNG plan could benefit all B.CBy Ravina Bains and Taylor Jackson The Fraser Institute The Tsawwassen First Nation's proposal to build a liquefied natural gas (LGN) terminal south of Vancouver offers the kind of win-win relationship that could bring prosperity to the First Nation and all of British Columbia. On Nov. 16, the First Nation announced its interest in building…

Canada’s courts create uncertainty on aboriginal rights

Court decisions are undermining the certainty dividend that is supposed to attach to modern land claims agreements

By Malcolm Lavoie University of Alberta and Dwight Newman University of Saskatchewan The past year has seen a lot of Canadians paying attention to aboriginal land rights. From opposition by aboriginal groups to proposed pipeline developments in their traditional territories, to a recent declaration of aboriginal title in British Columbia, to ongoing disputes over modern…