The new Recognition and Reconciliation of Rights Policy for Treaty Negotiations in British Columbia, ratified on September 4, 2019, was made possible due to this pre-existing, tripartite relationship between Canada, the Province of British Columbia and the First Nations Summit. The parties share the same goals to improve treaty negotiations in British Columbia. With both the federal government and the Province of British Columbia committing to implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 94 Calls to Action, the parties recognized the opportunity to make profound improvements to how treaty negotiations are approached in British Columbia.
The new BC-specific policy captures ongoing work and new innovations at negotiation tables across British Columbia. It also builds on the work of the 2016 “Multilateral Engagement process” and the more recent “Principals Accord” and draws on the experience gained by the negotiating parties since treaty negotiations began.
This BC-specific policy supports an approach to treaty negotiations based on the recognition of rights. A central feature of the BC-specific policy is that negotiations recognize the continuation of rights without modification, surrender or extinguishment when a treaty is reached. Under the BC-specific policy, future treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements will set out guidelines for reconciling Crown and Indigenous rights based on co-existence that can evolve over time. It also provides greater flexibility to develop agreements incrementally in British Columbia.
For more information and a complete copy of the policy document, please visit the BC Government website