Three Principles that Relate to the Land
- Territorial Integrity
- Economic Realization
- Respect for the Spirit of the Land
Given the irrevocable link between title and governance it is imperative that First Nations organize to illustrate both their historic and present day connections to the land. There exist significant challenges to this work resulting from land alienation and destruction but it is vital to extend our connection across the historic areas our nations utilized. Territorial integrity begins with assertion and must be supported by land use mapping and stewardship planning that permit the reclamation of responsibility for decision making.
Effective governments possess the right and the tools to develop their Land into sustainable economies. They realize wealth through participation in resource development and through leveraging those resources to access additional sources of revenue beyond their communities. Aboriginal title includes an inescapable economic component. This is a legal right that First Nations must realize to benefit their citizens and finance their governments. This realization will come through consultation and accommodation that minimize infringement and maximize economic benefits.
Respect for the Spirit of the Land.
First Nations Peoples are positioned to take back our legitimate place on the land. This will be accomplished by asserting our inherent rights to protect and preserve the land and its resources, and by optimizing the economic opportunities the land provides. These rights are ours through our ancestral role as stewards of the land. It is through connecting with and honouring the spirit of the land that our governance strategies remain effective and appropriate.l