“We welcome the recent adoption of Bill C-15 by the Canadian Parliament, which affirms the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as applicable in Canadian law.
The adoption of this new law represents a historic development in Canada, as it establishes a strong framework for the recognition and protection of indigenous peoples’ rights in accordance with international standards.
We hope the new legislation, which sets out a framework towards healing, truth and reconciliation, will help the country to acknowledge and repair the painful history between indigenous peoples and the Canadian authorities.
The new Act is a powerful tool but it needs to be promptly implemented. The real test will be to ensure that the inequalities, discrimination and violence that indigenous peoples have suffered over time are swiftly and effectively addressed. Active and meaningful participation by indigenous peoples in this process, and in all issues that concern them, should also be ensured.
Canada’s agreement to receive a visit by the UN Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) this year is welcome and EMRIP’s technical assistance could prove extremely relevant in light of the new legislation.”
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