Do Aboriginal rights include economic rights?

By Nelson Bennett
Business in Vancouver
February 22, 2023
Category: Business & Politics
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER — When the B.C. minister of forests announced deferrals that would prevent logging, the Huu-ay-aht First Nation responded by saying they would make their own decisions. At some point, First Nations like the Huu-ay-aht… may be able to sue governments or regulators when decisions they make negatively affect Aboriginal economic rights. …A succession of Supreme Court of Canada rulings in recent decades strengthened the right of First Nations to have a say. The adoption of the United Nations Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) by the B.C. and federal governments has further strengthened the principle of consent. It is assumed that these decisions and declarations centre on the right of First Nations to say no to things like resource extraction. But three recent court rulings – all in Alberta – suggest Aboriginal rights may work the other way as well, with First Nations having the right to say “yes” to economic development, even when it may conflict with government policies.

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