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CONTRIBUTION · 25th January 2012
Arthur Manuel
Dear Friends:

On 22 – 23 February 2012 Canada will be before the International Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) to answer questions on their 19 & 20 Periodic Reports. One Question they are being asked is that Canada initiate and "independent mediator". This is paragraph 116 of the Periodic Report and says the the BCTC is an "independent mediator".

116. Finally, in regard to the Committee’s recommendation on the use of independent mediators for land claims, Canada notes that such mediators are already available via the British Columbia Treaty Commission. The BC Treaty Commission is an independent body created pursuant to the recommendations of Aboriginal leaders, Canada and the Province of British Columbia to oversee the British Columbia land claims or “treaty process”. It is mandated to carry out three complementary roles: facilitation, funding and public information and education on the treaty process. In its facilitation role, upon the request of the parties, BC Treaty Commission representatives attend treaty negotiations, offer advice to the parties, “chair” table negotiations and assist the parties in developing solutions and resolving differences arising from negotiations. The BC Treaty Commission is further specifically mandated to obtain dispute resolution services to facilitate resolution of differences or disputes between the parties and does so, upon request of the parties, through the appointment of independent mediators.

I would like to ask if you believe the BCTC is an independent mediator on the Indian land question and, if not, what body do you think that would be acceptable by you as an independent mediator.

I would like to include your answer in a Shadow Report I am preparing for CERD. This Shadow Report has to be completed by 30 January 2012 so time is of the essence. You don't have too be long. Short and brief is okay.

Canada's 19 & 20 report can be obtained by clicking "E" in the Core document and State Report next to the Canada flag on the web page entered below:

Paragraph 116 is the same as the paragraph copied above. You will also notice that Canada's stories back about how well they are treating us Indigenous Peoples, also refer to other matters raised in the Early Warning and Urgent Action submission made by INET in February 2009 on behalf of Bertha Williams of Tsawwassen, Dexter Quaw of Lheidli T'enneh, Darryl Bob of Xaxli'p and Janice Billy of Skwelkwek'welt Protection Centre. Responses by these groups will be made in a separate update to CERD about what is happening on their issues.

I have also attached a copy of letter of concluding reports set out by CERD on 12 March 2010. The reference is in the last paragraph 22 of Concluding Observations.

Open the attachment below

These "Concluding Observations" plus the question under the "Early Warning" and "Urgent Action" are ways that make your issues international in depth and scope. It provides credibility plus security that Canada cannot use anti-terrorist tactics to repress and oppress your issues. You have elevated your issues to an international level.

International work takes time like the time line on these letters tell you, when you work 'international' you work for your grand kids not for yourself.

Thank you for your immediate help on this critical matter. I just want to highlight for CERD that there is concern regarding this matter amongst Indigenous Peoples in Canada.

Sorry for the delay but this effort is done on a voluntary basis and deadlines sometime catch up to me. PLEASE YOU DO NOT NEED TO BE ELABORATE JUST SOME GOOD STRONG COMMENTS THAT CAN BE ADDED INTO A LARGER SHADOW REPORT ON THIS MATTER WOULD BE HELPFUL.

Warmest regards.


Read letter attached below.

email link below also