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Land Rights Workshop in Victoria

ARC, in conjunction with the Canadian Ecumenical Jubilee Initiative, are presenting a workshop in Victoria on January 26th and 27th titled "Restoring Right Relations with Aboriginal Peoples: A Jubilee Workshop on Aboriginal land rights issues in Canada." For details, refer to the events page.

Last updated January 13, 2001: Added workshop event.

The Federal Government Is Breaking the Law

Lobster Fishing Index:
Some facts and figures

According to the Marshall Decision, regulation of treaty rights requires that the Federal government fully consult with First Nations. Furthermore, any such regulations must be "justified with respect to all the circumstances... the law requires that any intrusion on the treaty right go no further than is necessary and justifiable."

This requirement is not well-understood or well-explained in the mainstream media. Has the government fulfilled its requirement in regards to Burnt Church? This article analyzes the Marshall Decision and the events to date, and assesses how well the government is living up to its responsibilities in resolving the dispute. The article concludes:

Hopefully, Canadians will become more aware of all the facts and become leery of swallowing Fisheries Minister Herb Dhaliwal's statements that the Mi'kmaq are acting "irresponsibly," "flouting the rule of law," and "doing a disservice" to other aboriginal communities in standing up for their rights. In fact, it is the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, not the Mi'kmaq, that is breaking the law in illegally attempting to diminish and regulate a treaty right without lawful consultation with First Nations communities.

For details, refer to Federal Ignorance of Law?


Number of licenced lobster fishers on Canada's Atlantic coast: 11,000
Number of legal traps in the water: Approximately 3,000,000
Number of illegal traps set by licenced fishers (estimated): 300,000
Number of traps proposed by Indian Brook and Burnt Church bands: 6,800
Actual number of traps in the water: 650
Percentage of non-native traps: .02%
Number of armed DFO officers standing by to make arrests: 700
Number of illegal traps commonly set by individual non-native fishers: 200
Last time DFO attempted to prosecute illegal fishing by non-natives: 20 years ago
Number of DFO patrol boats torched by fishermen at that time: 2
Penalty for fishers involved in the theft or destruction of $200,000 worth of native traps: $100 fine
Penalty for native teenagers who broke into a garage in an attempt to retrieve traps: $7,000 and 2 years probation

We welcome your questions, comments, and suggestions! You can contact us at

In Vancouver... In Victoria... National Office...
ARC Vancouver
(604) 730-7143, Fax: (604) 736-9961
#205 - 2776 Pine Street
Vancouver, BC
V6J 3G2

ARC Victoria
(250) 386-8272
1611 Quadra St.
Victoria, BC
V8W 2L5

ARC Ottawa
(613) 235-9956
153 Laurier Ave. E.
Ottawa, ON
K1N 6N8

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