NEWS RELEASE · 3rd December 2012
Tla-o-qui-aht FN Treaty
Editors Note: Just another example of news that doesn't get into the mainstream media. If the vote had been the other way?
November 30, 2012
The Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations (formerly referred to as the Clayoquot), are a Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation in Canada. They live on ten reserves along the Pacific Rim National Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. They are part of the Nootka Confederacy and governed by the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council. Their primary economic activities are fishing and tourism.
Clayoquot Sound is located on the western coast of Vancouver Island, north of Tofino.
Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations community members have voted against the Agreement-In-Principle.
In total, 269 ballots were cast by members from Seattle, Victoria, Nanaimo, Port Alberni and Tofino. 58% opposed the agreement, and 42% voted in support of the AIP.
We thank all TFN members for taking the time to get informed and participate in this important process.
The objective of our negotiations is to build a strong future for our community that restores our historic rights, creates economic opportunity and protects our lands and resources. We believed the AIP was a tool to achieve this objective.
Although we are disappointed with the outcome, we have listened, and will now take the necessary time to meet with the leadership to determine what the next step will be.
For starters, 269 souls do not constitute a nation!
Comment by Janice Robinson on 6th December 2012
Congratulations to the 153 leaders in the village of Tla-O-qui-aht.....a humble community within the great Nuu-chah-nulth Nation, who voted against that "Agreement in Principle." We are proud and grateful for the stand you took against the treaty making efforts of Canada in beautiful British Columbia. My community of Kitsumkalum, a village within the magnificent Tsimshian Nation, has also been chosen by the treaty makers to exploit in such a way. Many of my people are confused, afraid to speak of their concerns, and angry about all this treaty nonsense. More current, important issues, like the health of the people, youth suicides, addictions and poverty are all ignored......while millions of dollars, resources, and mindspace are used/exploited by treaty offices.
On December 4, 2012, I respectfully sat at yet another treaty meeting at our community hall while two more members of the Kitsumkalum Treaty team repeated, ad nauseum, the same drivel already droned by Gerald Wesley, et al. I am sure this is the same process already suffered by the good people of Tla-o-qui-aht community, in the governments' efforts to divide and conquer the Nuu-chah-nulth Nation.
At the meeting on Dec.4, 2012, Alec Bolton and a white fellow named Bill Stipdonk made the following statements (among many others), regarding the absolute necessity that Kitsumkalum accept the AIP, and the pending treaty:
- we (Tsimshian) "will continue to own nothing until the treaty is signed."
- relieving the Tsimshian of our tax-free status is a fundamental goal of the government of Canada. Period. Never mind the deaths, pain, and suffering of millions of our ancestors, courtesy of genocide by smallpox blankets and other diseases, starvation, residential schools, lies, and other abuses. Our ancestors paid dearly, and we need to respect their suffering and price paid.
- land taxes, on Kitsumkalum, will be paid to the band council (or whatever they choose to call themselves). For what? The same-old-same-old? Yes!
- "The government of Canada is getting out of the Indian business." Alec Bolton mentioned this twice in his efforts to show us the importance of voting to accept the AIP, and the treaty process to follow.
- Attendees were advised of the importance to keep the content of community meetings to ourselves, and discouraged from sharing ideas, concerns, and content of these "meetings" with other Canadians (via media).
Remember, whenever someone tells you to keep your mouth shut ("It's our little secret."), no good will ever come of it.