12 Common Mistakes in First Nation Consultation

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jul 2, 2015 11:35:48 AM

Consultation with First Nations is a necessary part of doing business on First Nation treaty or traditional land. Most levels of government and business leaders have accepted that consultation with First Nations is a legal, necessary and important aspect of doing business with First Nations.

Some First Nations have developed guidelines and protocols for consultation. Some provinces have developed “toolkits” for consultation. What there isn’t is a template for consultation – each Nation and each project requires a consultation process tailored to the situation.

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Topics: Aboriginal Consultation and Engagement

What is First Nation self-reliance

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 26, 2015 6:30:00 AM

First Nations want the ability to participate in the political, and more importantly, the economic mainstream without having to rely on federal funding to meet their community needs. In addition to business opportunities, they also want to get into the realm of taxes, royalties and revenue sharing on land developments which are viewed as critical to becoming self-reliant.

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Topics: Aboriginal Self-government, First Nations

Indian Act and Elected Chief and Band Council System

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 25, 2015 6:30:00 AM

The first thing to know about the Indian Act electoral process is that if you are chief or council, you are elected by your people, but you are accountable to Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development. 

Ever since the arrival of the colonizers and the imposition of their governance systems throughout Canada, the Aboriginal peoples have resisted and struggled to reconstitute their traditional forms of political representation and governance practices, to maintain control of their own affairs, and to have governments be accountable to them. [1]

As stated in the quote above, the imposition of the Indian Act electoral system undermined a tradition of self-governance that had existed effectively for thousands of years. The imposed system displaced traditional political structures and did not reflect, consider or honour First Nation needs or values. It also did not recognize that each Nation had its own style of governance with specialized skills, tools, authority and capacity developed over centuries. It was designed for assimilation – to remake traditional cultures in the image of the colonizers.

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Topics: Indian Act

15 Strategies for Teachers of Aboriginal Students

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 23, 2015 10:30:00 AM

“The pedagogical challenge of Canadian education is not just reducing the distance between Eurocentric thinking and Aboriginal ways of knowing, but engaging decolonized minds and hearts.” [1]

This is an exciting junction in Canadian history as non-Aboriginal Canadians wake up to the harsh reality of the residential schools, as shown by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) report. This new awareness could well be the catalyst for real, fundamental change, and where more effective than in the classroom?

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Topics: Aboriginal Education

Indian Act and the Pass System

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 23, 2015 9:36:37 AM

“No rebel Indians should be allowed off the Reserves without a pass signed by an I.D. official.The dangers of complications with white men will thus be lessened. & by preserving a knowledge of individual movements any inclination to petty depredations may be checked by the facility of apprehending those who commit such offences.” [1]

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Topics: Indian Act

Chief Robert Joseph Appointed to Order of British Columbia

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 17, 2015 5:03:52 PM

On June 15, 2015, I, along with my sisters, had the great honour of witnessing our father, Chief Dr. Robert Joseph, be appointed to the Order of British Columbia by Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon. To say I was proud would be an understatement.

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Topics: Indian Residential Schools, Famous Aboriginal People

ABC of Aboriginal Awareness

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 15, 2015 6:30:00 AM

In the run up to National Aboriginal Day, June 21, we decided to see if we could put our blog to the test of having an article that applied to every letter of the alphabet. Well, with a wee bit of leniency, at the very least, we have articles that apply in some way from A to Z. We really struggled with the "x" and "z".

Here are our ABCs of Aboriginal Awareness:

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Topics: Aboriginal Awareness

Indian Act and the Permit System

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 10, 2015 10:18:00 AM

This article is part of our series on the Indian Act and the many restrictions historically imposed on First Nations as a means of controlling them and assimilating them into European culture. Or, in the words of John A. McDonald “to do away with the Indian problem”.

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Topics: Indian Act

Beyond Corporate Social Responsibility

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 9, 2015 2:12:19 PM

The term “Corporate Social Responsibility” has been around for some time now. Essentially, it’s about pursuing a broader and more inclusive approach to business practices and performance measurement – placing environmental and social standards alongside rather than beneath financial indicators. Increasingly, the business community is learning that investors and markets will recognize and reward values-based business practices. In some cases, a track record of demonstrating progressive social practices and inclusive Indigenous policies is a prerequisite for consideration for procurement contracts.[1] More companies, governments, and consumers are seeking social benefits in addition to financial benefits from the work and business they do, and from the goods and services they buy.

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21 Things You May Not Have Known About The Indian Act

Posted by Bob Joseph

Jun 2, 2015 6:00:00 AM

"The great aim of our legislation has been to do away with the tribal system and assimilate the Indian people in all respects with the other inhabitants of the Dominion as speedily as they are fit to change.” - John A Macdonald, 1887

Many laws affecting Aboriginal Peoples were combined in 1876 to become the Indian Act. The Act gave Canada a coordinated approach to Indian policy rather than the pre-Confederation piece-meal approach.

Here is a permission slip that would have be required to leave the reserve.  

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Topics: Indian Act, First Nations