The core responsibility encompasses support to Indigenous organizations, individuals, communities and governments in achieving reconciliation and advancing self-determination through strengthening Crown-Indigenous relationships based on respect, cooperation, partnership, the affirmation and implementation of Indigenous rights, and the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Activities include negotiating and implementing treaties, self-government agreements and specific claims; consulting and engaging on issues of importance to Indigenous peoples, providing legislative and institutional frameworks for First Nations’ jurisdiction over local taxation and financial management and addressing historic grievances.
The renewal of a nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown, and government-to-government distinctions-based relationship with Indigenous peoples is critical to moving forward with the unfinished business of Confederation. The renewed relationship, based on the affirmation of rights, respect, cooperation, and partnership, while integrating distinctions-based approaches wherever possible and appropriate, forms the foundation of the department’s approach to the self-determination of Indigenous peoples.
To achieve progress in this area, the department will focus on the following 3 departmental results.
1. Indigenous peoples determine their political, economic, social, and cultural development
The Government of Canada recognizes that all relations with Indigenous peoples need to be based on the affirmation and implementation of their inherent right to self-determination, including the inherent right of self-government.
In 2020?21, the department will focus on the following areas.
2. Indigenous peoples advance their governance institutions and regimes
Renewal of the nation-to-nation, government-to-government, and Inuit-Crown relationships, including treaty relationships, includes putting in place effective mechanisms to support the transition away from colonial systems of administration and governance through support to Indigenous peoples and Northerners to advance their governance institutions.
3. Past injustices are recognized and resolved
While Indigenous peoples will always have the freedom to choose the best and most suitable forum to resolve their legal issues, litigation remains a very adversarial process. To resolve grievances, Canada remains committed to pursuing dialogue, mutual cooperation, partnerships and negotiation as positive means of advancing reconciliation.