Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Student Name: Victoria LIABASTRE

Professor Name: Antoine BILODEAU

Course: POLI 204

Due Date: April 19th, 2021

Word Count:  949


The author argues that Truth and Reconciliation Commission reminds us of the importance of treaties with the indigenous people. Argues are an essential element of a long-lasting reconciliation between indigenous of Canada and settlers’ societies. Previously, the Royal Commission of Aboriginal people focused on the treaties to renew the nation’s relationship between Canada and the indigenous community. The Authors see treaties as very important to a common future because they are key to the past. For instance, there is an establishment of relations between the French and indigenous people and the British imperial powers and were conducting political agreements and treaties. After sorting the relationship between British imperial and Canadian settlers, they negotiate treaties with the indigenous. Subsequently, interpreting land’s cessation agreements remains key to many indigenous people, who will view them as the basic foundation for the relationship between them and Canada.

Modern treaties are legal documents that help establish regimes on land tenures and arrangements for self-governance for the indigenous signatories. Some of the rights included in treaties are the modern ones, which the constitution is currently protecting. Therefore, the establishment of institutions through modern treaties is protected against territories and provincial actions, unilateral federal, creating a quasi-federal regime.

The author argues that modern treaties are controversial, leading to land claims which are comprehensive dragging over many years and once agreed upon, the community rejects them in referenda. Few indigenous nations with claims that are not settled refuse to negotiate for modern treatment, and they prefer Courts to take part in settling their claims. Other nations prefer negotiating more limiting agreements with private or government corporations other than committing to long-term agreements. Some who agree to a modern treaty are struggling in having their agreement implemented properly. Most signatories of treaties will end up Curt to defend their rights on treaties against agencies that are not willing their deal’s part.

Modern treaties contribute to transforming the relationship between indigenous signatories and settlers’ states. Treaties have an insightful impact on governance in Canada (Beryl et al., p. 74) They have helped enhance the identity of the indigenous, boosting institutional capacity and helping them establish a position as the main actors in governing traditional lands. Modern treaties also confirm their self-determination within the Canadian federal regime’s boundaries, hence coming up with many assumptions and patterns of colonial authorities, limiting their transformational potentials.

In understanding the two faces treaty, the author underscores underlying narratives and motivations that inform governments and indigenous people during negotiations and implementations of such agreements. There is no uniformity of views on the indigenous people. Understanding treaties is through political compacts aiming to rebalance the relationship with the state and recognize their rights on a self-governed nation’s land status. However, territorial authorities consider the treaties pragmatic due to legal transactions to clarify regimes on land tenure in facilitating the economy’s development. Treaties can prevent repeating historical mistakes; they fail to aim at transforming the Canadian federation structure.

Chapter 11 basically focuses on the treaty’s federalism as a guiding principle to rethink the relationship between the settler society and the indigenous people in Canada. The author also proves the overview of modern treaties and highlights the institutions resisting to change the face of indigenous people in implementation and negotiation for the agreements.

Martin Papillon talks about an increasing recognition of core elements of emerging rights of indigenous internationally, implementing of principles remains contested. As shown by comparative literature, if and how free, prior and informed is contested depends on the institution’s context and actor’s agency—facing the power of division and strong institution resistance to the model fpic as making the decision right. Many indigenous are taking advantage of the legal contests’ uncertainties in operationalizing the model by developing their mechanisms for making decisions.

As also discussed in our lesson, the author also argues that there is reconciliation beyond treaties. Despite the contradictions, modern treaties are continuing to play the role of structuring in the relationship between indigenous and the settlers. Signatories of modern treaties are making important advances in the development of federal relations with Canada’s government. Most of them exercise decisive influence on the nature and pace of developing economically on their traditional land.

Federalism through subnational governments is sharing the rule between regions self-rule and national government. Federalism has a distinctive advantage in a diverse nation like ours. Subnational forms of governments are modified to designing and delivering programs and services to the local people’s needs. Federalism’s current approach is preventing us from effectively responding to, for instance, climatic or Covid-19 pandemic emergencies.

Canada is performing poorly on issues concerning surveillance and public health and sharing of data. For instance, there is no consistency in collecting, categorizing, or disseminating Covid-19 data, despite lessons from SARS, which we should have learned from, where we established public health agency. We are still missing the collaboration between federal and provincial governments, which are necessary for deciding on correct reopening policies. That will enable quick address on the foreseeable hot spots whenever there is an occurrence of new outbreaks.

Covid-19 exposes our federation setbacks which include our failure in the provision of enough supporting incomes and childcare and the dismissal approaching food production and labor of migrants. Federalism is failing to achieve urgent policies (Stapleton, 2020). Unless it corrects three assertions that include a need to challenge the provincial jurisdictions, the federal government is the problem and needs to be challenged. Lastly, if the provinces are the problem, then there is a need to challenge. These failures about federalism limits prospects type of driving mission of Canadian’s public policies that allows for well-being of the people of Canada.


Work Cited

Beryl A., and Joan Price Boase. “Federalism, political structure, and public policy in the United States and Canada.” Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis: Research and Practice 2.1 (2000): 65-89.

Stapleton, Patricia A. “Assisted Reproduction Policy in Canada: Framing, Federalism, and Failure, by Dave Snow.” (2020): e3-e3.



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