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Alex Neve and Sarah Morales: Site C dam still far from ‘point of no return’ PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Tuesday, 20 November 2018 11:49
Alex Neve and Sarah Morales: Site C dam still far from ‘point of no return’
ALEX NEVE & SARAH MORALES Updated: November 19, 2018
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Installation of concrete for the south-bank tailrace wall in July at B.C. Hydro's Site C dam construction project on the Peace River near Fort St. John. B.C. HYDRO / PNG

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Installation of concrete for the south-bank tailrace wall in July at B.C. Hydro's Site C dam construction project on the Peace River near Fort St. John. B.C. HYDRO / PNG
 
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Last month, the B.C. Supreme Court handed the Horgan government a victory that may prove much more costly than a defeat.
 
The West Moberly and Prophet River First Nations had asked the court to temporarily suspend construction of the Site C dam, or at least protect critical areas of the Peace Valley while their still unresolved Treaty rights challenge is being considered. On Oct. 24, Justice Warren Milman dismissed the injunction application entirely. This is exactly what the provincial government and B.C. Hydro had asked the court to do.
 
At the same time, the judge ruled that the First Nations’ legal challenge can continue with the possibility that, if the First Nations are able to prove their case, the dam could be stopped before plans to flood the Peace River Valley are completed.
 
In other words, the court told the province, if you so choose, you’re free to continue sinking billions of dollars into a project you might never be allowed to complete.
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New rules inside the B.C. NDP could limit the ability for some members to publicly criticize the NDP government of Premier John Horgan. PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Monday, 15 October 2018 18:07

Rob Shaw

he Province

Published: October 14, 2018

Updated: October 14, 2018 6:00 PM PDT

New rules inside the B.C. NDP could limit the ability for some members to publicly criticize the NDP government of Premier John Horgan.

New rules inside the B.C. NDP could limit the ability for some members to publicly criticize the NDP government of Premier John Horgan. CHAD HIPOLITO / THE CANADIAN PRESS

New rules inside the B.C. NDP could limit the ability for some members to publicly criticize the NDP government of Premier John Horgan. CHAD HIPOLITO / THE CANADIAN PRESS

New rules within the B.C. NDP could limit people's ability to criticize the government and party policies.

VICTORIA — B.C.’s governing New Democratic Party has crafted new rules that could prevent some members and officials from publicly criticizing the decisions of Premier John Horgan’s government.

A draft of an internal NDP code of conduct, obtained by Postmedia News, shows it would require members of the party’s provincial executive and committees to sign non-disclosure agreements that forbid them from publicly disagreeing with party or government policies.

“Individuals agree that they shall, in all public statements (either written or verbal), promote the positions taken by the party through its duly constituted bodies and shall refrain from public criticisms of the party, its positions, or its elected officials,” reads the code of conduct. Any criticisms should be expressed only through internal channels, it reads.

The document also says all matters dealt with in party meetings are confidential and not to be discussed publicly.

The code is a draft, but could go before the NDP’s provincial council for a vote next month. It would apply to the provincial executive — which includes table officers and two representatives from each region of the province — and the NDP’s nine committees where members meet to discuss issues such as the environment, agriculture, women’s rights, youth, pride, people living with disabilities and Aboriginal representation.

Signed agreements could effectively act as gag orders for NDP members who disagree with the Horgan government’s decisions to approve the Site C dam, give tax breaks to the LNG Canada project and campaign in favour of proportional representation.

NDP officials argue the intention is not to silence people from speaking their minds, but instead to formalize what has been an implied obligation in the NDP constitution that

people who represent the party — especially on social media — do not criticize it or break with its positions in an official capacity.

“Individuals will still be individuals,” said NDP communications director Glen Sanford. “I think you know the NDP well enough to know there will always be robust discussions and our folks really don’t hold back on how they feel about things. That’s not going to change. The clarity that’s being looked for here is ensuring there’s procedures and lines of responsibility and accountability for people who are representing bodies of the party.”

Sanford said the party has already heard concerns from some members about the language used in the draft and the need to more explicitly state that people can still be critical of the party and government as long as they make clear it is their opinion.

The code of conduct, which also includes sections on conflict of interest and dispute resolution, is modelled after those used by federal political parties, unions and corporations, said Sanford.

Nonetheless, the code would be unique among B.C.’s political parties, where pressure to toe the party line is often real but usually unwritten.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 06 November 2018 23:09
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Paddle for ?EL¸TOS and the Salish Sea! September 2 PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Friday, 24 August 2018 10:02

Tsawout Chief and Council invite all relations in WSÁNEC and neighbouring communities to participate in the PADDLE FOR ?EL¸TOS and the Salish Sea, in support of Tsawout's claim to the island, also known as James Island.

 
 
 
The event is taking place on Sunday, September 2, 2018, beginning at 9:00 am at ?IX_E? (Cordova Spit) with a community breakfast, followed by a paddle around ?EL¸TOS (James Island) and then a feast in the Tsawout Gymnasium.
 
 
 
The history of use and occupation is significant combined with significant archaeological history. The island was part of the homelands and provided a rich, productive way of life as it was well supplied with plantlife and surrounded by a rich variety of saltwater food supply (fish/shellfish). When it was taken over as part the war efforts it was still occupied and people felt that the island would be fully returned once it was no longer required. However, the history shows that the Tsawout/WSÁNEC People were forced off the island and it then became privatized and was eventually sold.
Last Updated on Monday, 10 September 2018 20:28
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Tsawout First Nation invites community to join September 2 paddle for ?EL¸TOS and the Salish Sea PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Friday, 24 August 2018 09:48
 
 
 
 
Tsawout would like the Paddle event to be a fundraiser to assist with the research and legal work required for the claim and will be accepting donations prior to the event and at the event made out to TSAWOUT FIRST NATION with notation for “ ?EL¸TOS” (which can be mailed to Tsawout First Nation, 7728 Tetayut Road, Saanichton, BC  V8M 2E4).
 
 
 
To join the Paddle for ?EL¸TOS and the Salish Sea, sign up today at: www.TurningtheTide.ca/leltos.
 
 
 
HÍSW_?E,
 
Chief Harvey Underwood
 
 
 
Learn more by watching the:
Paddle for L?EL,TOS (James Island) and the Salish Sea Film
 
 
 
 
Arguments in Site C dam court case represent ‘cynical denial’ of Indigenous rights: B.C. Indian Chiefs PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Posted by Joan Russow   
Thursday, 09 August 2018 09:38
 
 
BC Hydro lawyers argue Treaty 8 never guaranteed any "practical, traditional, cultural, or spiritual connection to any land" for First Nations
 
By Sarah Cox Aug 7, 2018  
https://thenarwhal.ca/arguments-in-site-c-dam-court-case-represent-cynical-denial-of-indigenous-rights-b-c-indian-chiefs/
 
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Grand Chief Stewart Phillip with his wife Joan Phillip at the 2017 Paddle for the Peace.

 
The Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs has taken the unusual step of writing an open letter to Premier John Horgan denouncing legal arguments made last week by BC Hydro as a form of “neo-colonization” and demanding a formal apology from the provincial government.
 
BC Hydro’s lawyers made the arguments during ongoing B.C. Supreme Court hearings for an injunction application by West Moberly First Nations to halt work on the Site C dam on B.C.’s Peace River, pending a full civil trial to determine if the $10.7 billion project violates treaty rights.
 
“We call on you to publicly denounce these statements that diminish Indigenous rights in an open letter to the B.C. Supreme Court, and to apologize formally for the disrespect shown to the Treaty 8 First Nations,” said the letter, signed by Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs (UBCIC), as well as vice-president Chief Robert Chamberlin and secretary treasurer Judy Wilson.
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