Canada lacks clear funding, overall plan to commemorate treaties: document

·1 min read

OTTAWA — Many First Nations are preparing to mark significant anniversaries of their treaty relationships with the Crown in coming years, but a government briefing document says Ottawa has no plan to commemorate the treaties.

It says most of the 11 numbered treaties the Crown signed with Indigenous leaders are set to turn 150 by 2027.

By way of the treaties, the Canadian government gained access to vast swaths of land for settlement from the Northwest Territories and northern British Columbia through the Prairies and most of Ontario.

In exchange, Indigenous Peoples were provided parcels of reserve land and promised payments and other rights that many First Nations leaders and communities say have never been fully honoured.

Government officials in the Crown-Indigenous Relations Department, which is responsible for settling land claims, say commemorations are an important way to advance reconciliation.

However, they note Ottawa lacks a clear source of funding and approach when it comes to commemorating the anniversaries of treaty signings.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 19, 2022.

Stephanie Taylor, The Canadian Press

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