1969 White Paper
The Federal Government's "White Paper," "Statement of Government of Canada on Indian Policy, 1969," fanned the flames of the native land claims movement in British Columbia. The White Paper rejected the concept of special status for native people within confederation - they should have the same rights and responsibilities as other Canadians. The government argued that aboriginal and treaty rights were irrelevant in today's society; the important issues demanding attention included economic, educational, and social problems. In their superficial assessment of the native situation, the government could not see that the poverty, social crises, and bleak future faced by most First Peoples was rooted in the very denial of aboriginal and treaty rights.