KMKNO Position on the Sydney Harbour Divestiture
October 10, 2014
The Made-In-Nova Scotia Process is the negotiations of three parties: the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia, and the Federal and Provincial Governments. Through this Process, the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs (Assembly), Canada and Nova Scotia have undertaken and agreed to work together in good faith and to resolve mutual issues.
Kwilmu’kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office (KMKNO) works to ensure the claims of Aboriginal Rights and Title are recognized, on behalf of the Assembly and the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia. Through the Made-In-Nova Scotia Process and the Terms of Reference for a Mi’kmaq-Nova Scotia-Canada Consultation Process, the Mi’kmaq discuss, and seek accommodation for impacts that resource development, and other Crown decisions, have on Mi’kmaq Rights and Title.
In regards to Sydney Harbour, KMKNO wrote a Consultation letter, on behalf of the Assembly, to Transport Canada stating that the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs expected that prior to any sale, or transfer, of the harbour bed lot 2014-2 to the Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM), that an agreement be drafted between CBRM and the Assembly on the involvement of the Mi’kmaq in the development. The Assembly wants to ensure that there is meaningful and significant involvement of the Mi’kmaq in the planning, development, and management of the Sydney Harbour.
In Nova Scotia there are no land cession Treaties and the Mi’kmaq continue to assert their Rights and Title to their traditional lands. The Mi’kmaq have a strong historical connection to the lands located within, and adjacent to, Sydney Harbour and although neither of the Mi’kmaq communities in the CBRM (Membertou and Eskasoni) oppose the Sydney Harbour divestiture, both communities want to be fully engaged on any activity and/or development that will occur on these lands.
The Assembly does not want their efforts to hinder projects, but they do want developments, such as the Sydney Harbour divestiture, to be seen as an opportunity to engage and include the Mi’kmaq as equal community partners.
For more information contact:
Mi’kmaq Rights Initiative
Phone: (902) 843-3880
Cell: (902) 957-0549
E-mail: [email protected]