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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Modern human rights : the Aboriginal challenge Russ, Kelly Harvey

Abstract

This thesis is about the development of a statutory means to allow for the articulation of Aboriginal theories on human rights. Currently, there is no indication that the application of the Canadian Human Rights Act, or the provincial Human Rights Code is the subject of any significant dialogue between the settler Crowns and the First Nations currently involved in treaty negotiations within the British Columbia treaty process. However, the repeal of section 67 of the CHRA, which prohibits the Canadian Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal from adjudicating complaints by status Indians and other persons under the CHRA, would create a unique opportunity to allow for the articulation of an Aboriginal perspective on human rights. More fundamentally, the repeal of section 67 of the CHRA will enable for an intercultural exchange of Aboriginal views and the settler Crowns views with respect to human rights. At the core of this intercultural exchange is the issue of what is commonly referred to as the Bill C-31 debate. As a result of Bill C-31, there is ongoing gender inequality amongst Aboriginal peoples. The resolution of this gender inequality will go a long way in setting the ground work for a modern articulation of Aboriginal human rights. The challenge that will face Aboriginal peoples and the federal Crown is the ability to bridge Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal cultural practices and laws with respect to human rights.

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