Canadian high court rules government must consult with natives before developing claimed land

Canadian high court rules government must consult with natives before developing claimed land

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Canada ruled unanimously Thursday that governments must consult with the Assembly of First Nations before developing land that aboriginal groups claim to own, but that governments need not receive consent before using land. The Court said that the duty of consultation applied even if title to land has not been proven through courts or treaties and said that developers aren't required to consult with First Nations. Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin wrote that "the commitment is to a meaningful process of consultation" and that aboriginal claimants "must not frustrate the Crown's reasonable good faith attempts, nor should they take unreasonable positions to thwart government from making decisions or acting in cases where, despite meaningful consultation, agreement is not reached." Read the Court's opinions in Taku River Tlingit First Nation v. British Columbia and Haida Nation v. British Columbia. CTV News has more.