K’ómoks First Nation, Canada, and British Columbia sign agreement committing to revitalized negotiations and a treaty in 2 years
With the signing of the Agreement to Revitalize K’ómoks First Nation Treaty Negotiations, K’omoks First Nation, Canada, and British Columbia embrace a new approach to negotiations based in rights recognition and non-extinguishment. The agreement is guided in part by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, along with other influential policy documents.
Through the agreement, the parties commit to a core treaty approach to Stage 5 negotiations, and to the completion of a comprehensive reconciliation agreement within 2 years. Core treaties are flexible agreements that constitutionally-protect specific elements of a treaty, such as self-government, law-making authorities, and land ownership and stewardship. Amendable side agreements will accompany the core treaty, so that the treaty remains flexible for future policy changes to be incorporated.
The K’omoks negotiating table signed an agreement in principle in 2012 and entered Stage 5 of the BC treaty negotiations process. In 2017, the parties signed an incremental treaty agreement, which provides the transfer of two land parcels to the First Nation in advance of treaty implementation.
There are approximately 330 K’omoks members representing four clans: Sathloot, Saseetla, Ieeksun and Puntledge. The nation has traditional territory spanning the Comox Valley in the central eastern part of Vancouver Island, extending into Johnstone Strait. K'omoks Hegus (Leader) Nicole Rempel, federal Minister Carolyn Bennett, and provincial Minister Scott Fraser signed the agreement on behalf of their respective governments.