Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, has pledged a fundamental reassessment of how indigenous titles and indigenous rights are recognized by the federal government. He promised to work in tandem with the indigenous partners so that a brand new legal framework could be developed to help in self-governance.
Aboriginal rights were interpreted to include a bouquet of cultural, economic, social, and political rights. These include the right to fish, right to hunt, and also right to the land. They can also establish treaties and practice own cultures.
Trudeau, in his 15-minute long speech in the House of Commons, said that he wants to inject new blood into the Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982. The law both recognize and affirms all aboriginal and the treaty rights. The PM said that successive Canadian Governments have ignored such rights too long. The only recourse for those interested or affected is to define particular rights at particular times. He continued on to say that the previous Canadian Governments, until now, have not recognized and affirmed indigenous rights as they had promised. The people were forced to approach the courts and spend large amounts of money to find out that their rights existed. These must not only be recognized but also implemented.
The Trudeau-announced plan follows a few recommendations made by the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples or RCAP. This report is an old one; it dates back to the 1990s. It calls for the federal government of Canada to assist autonomous efforts by shifting communities away from the limits imposed by Indian Act. The latter was written during colonial times. The RCAP report states that the aboriginal people have maintained their unique identities even under hostile conditions. Traditions were protected. These people should be given all rights to control matters which are vital to nations sand instructive interference.
Jody Wilson-Raybould, the Justice Minister, and a former regional chief of Assembly of First Nations, termed PM Trudeau's announcement as “absolutely historic”. She said that Trudeau wants to make sure that the Section 35 of Canadian Constitution is filled up by the rights of Inuit, Metis, and First Nations across Canada. The Justice Minister said that the government wants that indigenous communities get control of their respective lives. If this is done, they can offer services like healthcare, child welfare, and education to their people. They can also make their own laws.