The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Canada:
Lessons from B.C.

Featuring John Borrows, Christina Gray, Darcy Lindberg, Shiri Pasternak & Judith Sayers

Edited by Hayden King

"Broken" by Bracken Hanuse Corlett, Wuikinuxv & Klahoose Nations (2020)

IN NOVEMBER 2019, the province of British Columbia passed the first law in Canada aimed at implementing the United Nation’s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.

This Special Report – with contributions from six primarily Indigenous authors – considers the promise of that legislation but also some of the challenges that have emerged, specifically around implementation. Taken together, this resulting report offers both caution and insight for communities working towards realizing the Declaration in Canada.


The Declaration of Slow

By Hayden King, Anishinaabe, Beausoleil First Nation


Rights & Responsibilities: Implementing UNDRIP in B.C. and our own Communities

By Christina Gray, Dene and Ts’msyen & John Borrows, Anishinaabe, Chippewas of the Nawash First Nation


Opportunities and Barriers for the BC Declaration of Rights Act

By Judith Sayers, Hupačasath First Nation


B.C. might want to align with UNDRIP, but does UNDRIP align with B.C.?

By Shiri Pasternak


Judicial Expertise, UNDRIP & The Renewed Application of Indigenous Laws

By Darcy Lindberg, Plains Cree, Wetaskiwin, Treaty 6

Manufacturing Free, Prior and Informed Consent:
A Brief History of Canada vs. UNDRIP

Download this timeline here

Manufacturing Free, Prior, and Informed Consent: A Brief History of Canada vs. UNDRIP

Download this timeline here


This piece is about systems and ways of knowing. The implementation of UNDRIP is a minimum standard that should have been in place long ago. Whether it is legally binding or not I take a cynical approach to it, as it would be filtered through the same system that banned our Potlatches on the West Coast from 1885 to 1951. My family is in the process of throwing our first Potlatch within memory and this directly ties to the ban that was put in place. The Tlakwa or Copper is a significant symbol of the Potlatch. Breaking copper can be seen as an act of transgression, defiance or as a challenge. We are taking our coppers back into ceremony regardless of what is happening with systems in the outside world.

– Bracken Hanuse Corlett

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