Stand.earth applauds B.C.’s historic move toward legally implementing UNDRIP

Stand.earth applauds B.C.’s historic move toward legally implementing UNDRIP

Thursday October 24, 2019

If passed, legislation tabled Thursday would enshrine United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, allowing province to align laws with international human rights standards

UNCEDED COAST SALISH TERRITORY (VANCOUVER, BC) — Environmental organization Stand.earth applauds today’s historic move by the B.C. government to table a bill to legally implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). If passed, the legislation would enshrine UNDRIP and allow the province to align its laws with international human rights standards outlined in the declaration.

“This historic legislation means that B.C. recognizes the importance of considering Indigenous peoples as equal decisionmakers on legislation that impacts their lives. Canada’s federal leaders have stated their commitment to reconciliation, and today British Columbia’s provincial leaders took a necessary step toward fully recognizing basic human rights and rights to self-determination for all Indigenous peoples,” said Sven Biggs, Climate and Energy Campaigner at Stand.earth. 

Both British Columbia and Canada have endorsed UNDRIP, which is meant to recognize the basic human rights of Indigenous people along with their rights to self-determination. UNDRIP has become an international symbol for Indigenous people to achieve “free, prior and informed consent” for resource development and other activities in their traditional territories.

“We applaud provincial leaders for recognizing B.C. has a legal obligation to consult and cooperate with First Nations on projects that will affect their lands. Bringing these decisions closer to home will lead to better outcomes for First Nations and local people who live in these communities. These are the people — not faraway bureaucrats or corporations — who will have to experience firsthand the impacts of decisionmaking,” said Biggs.

Read the declaration online at https://www.un.org/development/desa/indigenouspeoples/declaration-on-the-rights-of-indigenous-peoples.html

Read more about the bill online at: https://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/bc-undrip-indigenous-rights-1.5333137.

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Media contact: Sven Biggs, Climate & Energy Campaigner, sven@stand.earth, 778-882-8354