CV Amnesty invites public to discussion on Bill C-262

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) is the focus of the evening

On Oct. 22, community members are invited to join CV Amnesty at the K’omoks Band Hall (3320 Comox Rd.) for home-made desserts and an evening of information and discussion.

Focus for the evening is the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), Bill C-262 and a look at the history we didn’t learn in school.

Canada has endorsed UNDRIP, but has yet to ratify it in Parliament. Bill C-262, an act to ensure that Canadian laws are consistent with the UN Declaration on the rights of Indigenous Peoples, (Private Member’s Bill, Romeo Saganash, MP), will have its second reading in late October.

The goal for the Oct. 22 evening is to provide insight into the history that will continue to influence legal decisions for First Nations Peoples unless the principles in UNDRIP are ratified by Parliament.

The evening will begin with desserts, followed by screening of a talk by Robert A. Williams, Jr., an internationally acclaimed expert in First Nations rights, law professor and member of the Lumbee Indian Tribe of North Carolina. Mr. Williams, an engaging and informative speaker, explains The Doctrine of Discovery and its continuing impact on the lives of First Nations Peoples hundreds of years later. He describes justifications for conquest, war, acts of racist violence and colonial dispossession from the time of the ancient Greeks to 21st century treaty negotiations. This information is put in a Canadian context using a case example that went before the InterAmerican Human rights Commission in May 2013: the Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group case.

Following the screening, a panel representing government and First Nations will discuss the impact of UNDRIP on day-to-day life in the Comox Valley.

Members of the CV Amnesty Action Circle believe that these are very important issues not only at the federal and provincial level, but also at the municipal level because we all live on the unceded territory of the K’omoks First Nation. We are all stakeholders in our joint past and will all be affected by our future decisions.

Questions and discussion will follow as will information about how to take action to support UNDRIP and Bill C-262.

Amnesty International has endorsed Bill C-262. For more information visit amnesty.ca.

Please join us on Sunday evening, October 22 at the K’omoks Band Hall ( 3320 Comox Rd.) at 6:45 for a delicious and informative evening. Admission is free, however donations are always appreciated to support the work of Comox Valley Amnesty International.

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