The Canadian government is being reminded once again of its obligations to Indigenous Peoples in Canada and its failure to live up to the standards of the International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD).
The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD)–following its Hearing last month in Geneva–has released an ‘advance unedited version’ of its concluding observations regarding Canada’s compliance with the legally binding treaty.
Those observations contain more than two dozen recommendations based on a review of Canada’s self-assessment and information provided by Indigenous Peoples and civil society organizations such as the First Nations Women Advocating Responsible Mining, Indigenous Bar Association, Treaty 4 First Nations, Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs, Western Shoshone Defense Project, InterPares, the International Indian Treaty Council (IITC), the Tsilhqot’in National government and the First Nations Summit.
Those recommendations include:
The full implementation of treaties between Indigenous Peoples and the Crown (Canada);
Ensuring that Canadian-based transnational corporations do not cause human rights violations impacting Indigenous Peoples in other countries;
Implementing Free, Prior and Informed Consent regarding development projects impacting Indigenous Peoples lands; and
Creating a national plan of action to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Concerning the actions of transnational corporations in other countries, The Committee urges Canada specifically to “Take appropriate legislative measures to prevent transnational corporations registered in Canada from carrying out activities that negatively impact on the enjoyment of rights of indigenous peoples in territories outside Canada, and hold them accountable.”