The numbered treaties entered into at and around Confederation set out the terms by which Indigenous peoples and the Crown agreed to live together in much of what is now known as Canada. However, Indigenous peoples and the Crown hold starkly different interpretations of the treaties. For decades, the Crown and courts have relied on the decision in St. Catherine?s Milling and Lumber Company v The Queen in support of the position that the Indigenous treaty parties surrendered the entirety of their interest in lands at the time of the treaties in exchange for limited rights to use their ancestral lands. Courts? reliance on St. Catherine?s obscures the fact that in the years closely following Treaty 3, both the Government of Canada and two Supreme Court of Canada justices advanced a different view of the treaty which aligns more closely with the perspective of the Anishinaabe treaty parties.
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Categories: Indigenous Rights in Canada