By Katherine Palmer Gordon, September 2012
The BC treaty process turns 20 this month. Will it make it to 21?
Sometimes it seems that for every step forward in the BC treaty process, we take two steps back,” says Chief Treaty Commissioner Sophie Pierre, the frustration loud and clear in her voice.
At its inception 20 years ago, there was optimism that the treaty process would be complete by now. It’s not even remotely close. Only two treaties have been completed, the Tsawwassen and Maa-nulth agreements.
By Katherine Gordon, December 2010
British Columbia’s 32 indigenous languages were almost completely obliterated during the infamous reign of the residential schools. In 2010, they remain close to extinction. In a province where English predominates, does restoring them to active use make any sense? Overwhelming evidence suggests that the answer is yes—not only for the First Nations people from whom they were stolen, but for everyone.
"All our social problems stem from the disconnection of our young people to our culture because they don’t know our language,” says Renée Sampson, tears sparkling in her eyes. “Without that sense of cultural identity, they just don’t know who they are.”
by Katherine Palmer Gordon. July 2010
Three controversial infrastructure projects highlight the need for a better way to decide what projects are most important to residents of the region—and which get funding.
February, 2008: Dozens of RCMP, some armed with assault rifles, swarm a campsite in Langford and arrest six unarmed citizens, charging them with mischief. As many as 300 police officers surround a nearby neighbourhood for several days afterwards, questioning local residents as they travel to and from their homes.