FPIC Politics

Minister Bennett clarifies Canada’s position on implementing UNDRIP and FPIC

In an earlier post, Northern Public Affairs presented responses from the Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs’ office to questions about the Government of Canada’s plans for implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), including the right to free, prior and informed consent.

Since then, we have been working to bring forward commentary on these responses from experts in the field of law and politics.

On May 3, we received a call from Minister Bennett’s office seeking to clarify the original responses. The text of this clarification, received on May 4, is published below.

We are grateful for the interest our readers have shown in this quickly evolving issue and we look forward to releasing further commentary and analysis in our free digital issue on the right to free, prior and informed consent.

Specifically what steps does the Government intend to take to meet its election pledge to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples?

Canada is deeply committed to renewing the relationship between the Crown and Indigenous peoples, based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership. This renewed relationship includes the full adoption and implementing the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples‎.

As [we] move towards the full implementation of UNDRIP, our government will be working in partnership with First Nations, Inuit and the Métis on the best approach.

The Government will also be working with stakeholders, including provinces and territories, and Industry, on their role and perspectives on the implementation of the Declaration in Canada.

Specifically what role will Indigenous Peoples play in this process?

The Government will work in full partnership with Indigenous groups on an approach to the implementation of the Declaration.

Have any resources been allocated specifically and solely to undertake this process?

The Government of Canada engages with Indigenous groups as a matter of course on policies that will impact them and that whatever resources will be required to support this particular exercise will be found within the Department’s budget.

Will the Minister support legislation to ensure that all necessary measures are taken to ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples?

The Minister’s overarching goal is to renew the relationship between Canada and Indigenous peoples. This renewal must be a nation-to-nation relationship– one based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership.

We will be working in Partnership with First Nation, Métis and Inuit peoples on the best approach to the implementation of UNDRIP including its use in the review of federal laws and policy.

How does the Government intend to ensure that Article 19 of the UNDRIP concerning the right of Indigenous Peoples to free, prior, and informed consent is enacted in Canadian law, policy, and administrative practice?

Canada is deeply committed to renewing the relationship between the Crown and Indigenous peoples, based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership. This renewed relationship includes the full adoption and implementing the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples‎.

As [we] move towards the full implementation of UNDRIP, our government will be working in partnership with First Nations, Inuit and the Métis on the best approach.

The Government will also be working with stakeholders, including provinces and territories, and Industry, on their role and perspectives on the implementation of the Declaration in Canada.◉


Photo credit: istockphoto/Alessandro Lai

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