STAND OFF, AB, July 16, 2016 /CNW/ - Settling claims is an important step in advancing reconciliation with First Nation communities in Canada and a key path to economic growth.
The Government of Canada and the Blood Tribe marked a key step to renew their relationship today by celebrating the final settlement of a longstanding specific claim that dates back over 70 years.
Achieved in a spirit of partnership, this negotiated settlement honours an outstanding legal obligation owed to the Blood Tribe. The settlement includes approximately $6.3 million in financial compensation from the Government of Canada.
"After over 75 years of this much-awaited claim resolution, today's announcement marks an important step in renewing our relationship and advancing reconciliation with the Blood Tribe. I'm glad that this negotiated settlement will open the door to new opportunities for the Blood Tribe to invest in a more prosperous future that will benefit its members and all Canadians."
The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs
"I am pleased with the settlement of this 75 year old claim, which was accepted by our membership on December 9, 2015. This settlement marks a milestone in our relations with Canada. Negotiations is the way forward, it reflects and engenders a conciliatory approach that is more productive in building solid relationships of respect, trust, equality and justice."
Chief Charles Weasel Head,
- The Blood Tribe reserve is located in southern Alberta, near Lethbridge.
- The Blood Tribe's specific claim dates back over 70 years, when 55,000 acres of the Blood Reserve (IR 148) were leased to the Department of National Defense for use as a bombing and gunnery range during World War II.
- The negotiated settlement provides the Blood Tribe with financial compensation to resolve this longstanding claim.
- In a community vote held on December 9, 2015, 88 percent of First Nation members voted in favour of the negotiated settlement. Canada gave its final approval on May 2, 2016.
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SOURCE Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
For further information: media may contact: Sabrina Williams, Press Secretary, Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, 819-997-0002; Media Relations, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, 819-953-1160; Rick Tailfeathers, Blood Tribe, Communications Director, Cell: 403-308-0760