The department manages several programs and projects. These include: Specific Claims Research program, Treaty Discussion Forum, Fur Management Agreement, and Canada Ontario Resource Development Agreement. We are also responsible for monitoring the hunting, fishing, trapping and harvesting activities of our member citizens. Our main objective is to protect our citizen’s treaty and aboriginal rights and to ensure the enforcement authorities don’t infringed upon those rights. These rights are protected under Section 35 of the Canadian Constitution.
The Land, Rights and Treaty Research unit is mandated by resolution dated October 1984 to: “carry out research on claims and other matters on behalf of its member First Nations and to continue the various projects in Treaty No. 9 and Treaty No. 5.”
The research unit is responsible for conducting the historical research, development, preparation and submission of specific claims to governments on behalf of NAN First Nations. We are funded by the Indian Affairs Canada through the Native Claims Contribution program. Research work plans and budget submissions are due January 15th annually. First Nations that wish to have their claims researched, please contact us for more information.
Over the last three years, research funding has been significantly reduced and our research budget has placed an enormous burden on our ability to advance First Nations claims in a timely manner. We currently struggle with a 60 percent reduction in research staff, severely curtailed travel budgets resulting in long delays obtaining records and oral history, restricted abilities to purchase documents, grossly inadequate funds to cover legal fees, and cover our basic operations. The Specific Claims Tribunal is inadequately funded for First Nation’s support and have been battling appeals by the crown where tribunal decisions won by First Nations. There has been a call for action to restore the Specific Claims research funding and to undue the actions taken by the previous government.
Canada Ontario Resource Development Agreement
The Canada Ontario Resource Development Agreement (CORDA) is an agreement between Canada, Ontario and First Nations in Ontario. CORDA is funded by Indian Affairs and Northern Development Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. The Agreement promotes resource and economic development initiatives of First Nations by providing financial assistance to develop and utilize renewable natural resources. First Nations, their members and organizations in Ontario are eligible to apply for funding. The maximum funding level for projects is $35,000.00 per year. Call for applications are generally announced in early August and due the first Monday of October. NAN is a voting member of the CORDA committee and provides advocacy for NAN First Nations. The funding partners have committed to renewing the five year agreement that will guarantee stable funding from 2017-2022.