printable versionPrint this page

Gwich'in and Inuvialuit Self-Government Agreement-In-Principle for the Beaufort-Delta Region

Category: Agreement
Date: 1 January 2003
Sub Category:Self-Government Agreement (Canada) | Agreement-in-Principle (AIP) (Canada)
Location:Beaufort Delta Region, Canada
Subject Matter:Self Government
Summary Information:
The Gwich'in and Inuvialuit Self-Government Agreement-In-Principle (AIP) was signed by the Government of Canada, the Government of the Northwest Territories, Gwich'in and Inuvialuit on April 16, 2003. The AIP forms the framework for a final self-government agreement to be negotiated over the next three years. The AIP applies to the Western Arctic Region and the Gwich'in Settlement Area.

The AIP follows land claims agreements that were finalised in 1992 and 1984 for the Gwich'in and Invuialuit respectively. Neither of these agreements included provisions returning governance authority to the Gwich'in and Inuvialuit. The finalisation of a Self-Government Agreement is supported by the Canadian Government 'Inherent Right of Self-Government Policy', approved in 1995.
Detailed Information:

The key provisions of the AIP relate to a new model of governance for the Beaufort-Delta Region. The AIP also details law-making and administrative powers for the governments in Beaufort-Delta, outlining the jurisdiction and authority involved in each area of governance.

Governance

Under the AIP, a new form of government will exist in the Beaufort-Delta Region. It will consist of Community Councils, Inuvialuit Government, Gwich'in Government and Regional Governments. Membership of each government is overlapping.

Community Councils: Eight Community Councils will replace existing municipal governments in Aklavik, Fort McPherson, Holman, Inuvik, Paulatuk, Sachs Harbour, Tsiigehtchic and Tuktoyaktuk. Each community shall have its own Constitution. The key areas of responsibility for Community Councils will be local government operations and education.

All residents of the community will be able to nominate, run for and vote for the Council and its Chief Councillor. In Inuvialuit communities, 50 percent of seats will be set aside for Inuvialuit. The same rule applies to Gwich'in people in Gwich'in communities. In Inuvik and Aklavik, up to 25 percent of seats will be set aside for Inuvialuit, with 25 percent for Gwich'in. For these assigned council seats, only the relevant Indigenous community can vote, run for, or nominate candidates. All votes in community elections have an equal weighting (Chapter 6.1).

Inuvialuit Government: A separate Inuvialuit Government will exist in the region to protect matters internal to the Inuvialuit. These matters include culture, identity, customs and language as well as relationships to land and resources. An Inuvialuit Government Councillor will have a seat on the Beaufort Delta Regional Government, and the Inuvialuit will have their own Constitution (Chapter 5).

Gwich'in Government: The Gwich'in government will serve Gwich'in in the same manner that the Inuvialuit Government serves Inuvialuit (Chapter 4).

Regional Government: The Beaufort-Delta Regional Government will have authority to serve and represent all residents in the region. The Regional Government will be constituted as follows:
- A Chief Councillor from each Community Government (total of eight)
- A Councillor from Inuvialuit Government
- A Councillor from Gwich'in Government
- A Chief Regional Councillor elected by the entire region population (Chapter 6.2).

Powers

The 29 chapters of the AIP discuss areas of responsibility to be shared amongst the new authorities. Each of the following areas have already been negotiated:
- Culture and language
- Child and family services and adoption
- Social services
- Early childhood education
- Kindergarten to grade 12 education
- Out-of-school care
- Post secondary education
- Student support services
- Training
- Health
- Income support
- Justice and policing
- Guardianship, trusteeship, wills and estates
- Local government operations
By the time the Final Agreement is signed, powers regarding Social Housing, Marriage, Economic development (including tourism, roads, and traffic), Control and use of Inuvialuit and Gwich'in settlement lands and the process for ratifying the Final Agreement will be also be delegated amongst the new governments.

Related Entries

Agreement
  • Inuvialuit Final Agreement
  • Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement
  • Gwich'in Self-Government Framework Agreement
  • Beaufort-Delta Political Accord
  • Organisation
  • Inuvialuit Regional Corporation - Signatory
  • Government of the Northwest Territories - Signatory
  • Government of Canada - Signatory
  • Gwich'in Tribal Council - Signatory
  • People
  • Inuvialuit People
  • Gwich'in People

  • References

    Resource
    (2003) Gwich'in and Inuvialuit Self-Government Agreement-In-Principle for the Beaufort-Delta Region
    (2000) Beaufort-Delta Political Accord

    Glossary

    Agreement-in-Principle (AIP) (Canada) | Self-Government Agreement (Canada)

    Google
    Top of page

    Was this useful? Click here to fill in the ATNS survey