On February 14, 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Canada’s intention to embark on a nation‐wide engagement strategy to discuss the development of a new recognition and implementation of rights framework.
Since then, on behalf of the federal government, Minister Carolyn Bennett has engaged First Nations and their organizations throughout the country in group dialogue sessions, and in separate meetings with First Nations who have expressed an interest in doing so.
During the week of April 11‐13, 2018, the Hon. Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs, the Hon. Scott Fraser, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation and the BC Assembly of First Nations, First Nations Summit, and Union of BC Indian Chiefs (working together as the FNLC) jointly hosted a two-and-a-half day gathering in Vancouver to provide information and an opportunity to discuss Canada’s recognition and implementation of rights framework initiative.
As part of the Vancouver gathering, BC Chiefs and Leadership participated in a full‐day First Nations internal dialogue session on Thursday, April 12, 2018. At the internal session, Chiefs and Leadership chose to focus on identifying the First Nations perspective of a recognition and implementation of rights framework and minimum starting points and requirements.
Although the federal questions set out in Canada’s recognition and implementation of rights engagement guide were made available at the First Nations internal session, Chiefs and Leadership opted not to focus on those questions; rather, the focus shifted to a discussion about our own processes, priorities and recommendations for what a recognition and implementation of rights framework should look like, from a First Nations perspective.
On June 26, 2018, an All Chiefs Meeting was held in Musqueam Territory (Richmond), which provided further opportunity for the Chiefs in BC to discuss the recognition and implementation of rights framework. A Next Steps Document: Engagement on a New Recognition and Implementation of Rights Framework was developed, as was a presentation to the Chiefs.