Grand Chief Ed John of the First Nations Summit has been appointed to a six-month term to advise government on aboriginal child welfare.

Chiefs press demands with premier, cabinet

Northern First Nations want more input into energy projects after water licence for fracking cancelled

Premier Christy Clark and cabinet ministers met with hundreds of aboriginal leaders from around B.C. Wednesday and Thursday in their second annual session, with social issues and energy projects high on the agenda.

Aboriginal Relations Minister John Rustad opened the two-day event with an announcement that Grand Chief Ed John of the First Nations Summit has been appointed a senior advisor on aboriginal child welfare. A lawyer and former children and families minister, John has a six-month appointment to look at reasons why one out of seven aboriginal children in B.C. are taken into government care at some point in their childhood.

Education Minister Mike Bernier released the government’s new teaching guide, called “Aboriginal Worldviews and Perspectives in the Classroom.”

The guide was developed with input from First Nations, Metis and school district leaders, teachers, support staff and post-secondary institutions. It advises teachers to use contemporary history sources, preferably with involvement of aboriginal contributors.

It advises teachers to “avoid reliance on colonial-era secondary sources (i.e. 20th century and earlier texts and resources)” when discussing topics involving aboriginal people, and contains a section on dealing with racism.

Northern B.C. leaders came to the meeting with a demand for greater consultation and scrutiny on energy projects, with disputes over the Petronas-led liquefied natural gas project at Prince Rupert, the Site C dam that has started construction on the Peace River and oil and gas pipeline proposals.

Fort Nelson First Nation Chief Liz Logan and nine other chiefs presented a letter to Clark calling on the province to recognize aboriginal laws and treaties such as Treaty 8, signed in 1899 to protect traditional hunting and fishing in northeastern B.C.

Logan pointed to what she calls a precedent-setting decision by B.C.’s Environmental Appeal Board this week, cancelling a water licence issued to Nexen Inc. in 2012 for water from a small lake to use in hydraulic fracturing operations in the Horn River Basin.

“The company pumped water out of the lake, even during drought conditions,” Logan said. “There were major impacts on the lake, fish, beavers and the surrounding environment.”

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COLUMN: Diminished Parliament means diminished accountability for Canadians

Bloc Quebecois and NDP use resumption of parliament as bargaining chip

Penticton Farmers Market prepares for return

The weekly market was put on-hold for months due to COVID-19

No injuries in Penticton Indian Band structure fire

The structure, which sustained significant damage, was boarded up and seemingly vacant

B.C. legislature coming back June 22 as COVID-19 emergency hits record

Pandemic restrictions now longer than 2017 wildfire emergency

Central Okanagan schools ready to welcome students back

Students are set to go back to school next Monday, June 1

Houseboat company partly owned by Shuswap MLA withdraws controversial ad

The ad welcomed houseboaters from other provinces, contradicting anti COVID-19 measures.

Squabble between campers in North Shuswap leads to bear spraying

An argument over late night partying escalated into a fight which led to one person being sprayed

B.C.’s essential grocery, hardware store employees should get pandemic pay: retail group

Only B.C.’s social, health and corrections workers are eligible for top-ups

Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto vying to be NHL hubs, but there’s a catch

The NHL unveiled a return-to-play plan that would feature 24 teams

B.C. sees 9 new COVID-19 cases, one death as officials watch for new cases amid Phase Two

Number of confirmed active cases is at 244, with 37 people in hospital

Penticton may soon allow drinking alcohol in some public places

Trying to inconspicuously drink on the beach could become a thing of the past

VIDEO: Flowers stolen from Vernon distillery

Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery captured surveillance footage of the thief in a black car

Most Read