British Columbia tables legislation to implement UNDRIP.
On October 24, 2019, British Columbia introduced Bill 41, the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act, to begin implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (“UNDRIP”).
Bill 41 sets out a framework to align the laws of British Columbia, including existing and future laws, with UNDRIP, and requires the province to prepare and implement a plan on how to meet the objectives of UNDRIP. This plan must be prepared and implemented in consultation and cooperation with Indigenous peoples in British Columbia.
UNDRIP was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in September 2007. Canada first formally opposed UNDRIP’s adoption in 2007, but later removed its permanent objector status to UNDRIP and formally endorsed it in 2016.
A similar bill, Bill C-262, An Act to ensure that the laws of Canada are in harmony with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, was introduced in the House of Commons in 2016. The bill passed in the House of Commons in 2018, but died on the order paper in 2019.
The information provided above is a summary and is not intended to be legal advice. Aldridge + Rosling LLP has expertise assisting modern Treaty First Nations on the implications of UNDRIP and new legislation. Please contact us if you have any questions or require formal advice.