One of the most experienced treaty law firms in BC
Modern treaties and the modern treaty process offer an opportunity for Canadians and Indigenous Peoples to come together to create solutions to work towards reconciliation and develop a framework of re-empowerment for First Nations. Treaty making remains the only viable tool to comprehensively redefine aboriginal peoples’ place within the Canadian federation.
Our team of lawyers have been involved with the negotiation, closing and implementation of two of the three modern British Columbia treaties that achieved implementation. Our work in this area is driven by three objectives:
- Restore governance capacity and ensure that treaty First Nation governments are fully functional and accountable
- Restore sufficient lands and resources to the treaty First Nation to enable it to construct a sound and vibrant economy
- Achieve legal certainty for all parties regarding full recognition of treaty First Nations within the Constitutional framework of Canada. Legal certainty decreases the potential for conflicts and the difficult and often repeated litigation necessary to resolve those conflicts.
Developing, negotiating and implementing treaties is complex, time consuming and requires a high degree of technical expertise and assistance and, most importantly, patience and perseverance.
When working with a First Nation, we strive to help establish the infrastructure and resources necessary to improve the lives and wellbeing of their citizens through programs and services, as well as work to preserve and enhance a connection to the past by being able to support their history, culture and traditions. All treaty work has these objectives as its underlying motivation and guide.
Our expertise navigating the broad range of sophisticated and interrelated issues provides our clients with a trusted collaborator in dealing with law-making authorities, governance structures, lands and resources, fiscal matters, harvesting rights, culture and heritage, transitioning out from under the Indian Act, and the role of the treaty First Nation off its treaty lands within its traditional territory.