BC workers welcome introduction of Indigenous rights legislation

October 24, 2019 | News Release

Vancouver-The BC Federation of Labour (BCFED) and its affiliated unions stand proudly with Indigenous people and communities in support of historic Indigenous rights legislation introduced today by the BC NDP government. The Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act was co-developed with the First Nations Leadership Council and introduced in the BC legislature on Thursday.

“Workers understand that Indigenous rights are human rights. Respecting those rights will benefit everyone,” said Laird Cronk, president of the BCFED. “Indigenous rights have been denied too long leading to conflict and uncertainty. This legislation creates a just and equitable path for economic development that benefits all workers and communities in BC.”

The BC labour movement has a clear and longstanding mandate from its members to support action on Indigenous rights implementation. At its 57th convention in 2016, resolutions were passed committing the BCFED to support Indigenous peoples' inherent right to self-determination as well as to support efforts to bring the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples into law in BC and Canada.

“The status quo isn’t working,” added Cronk. “The courts have been imploring governments to get on with real action on Indigenous rights for decades. As the voice of 500,000 unionized workers, including many thousands of Indigenous workers in the province, we are proud to support this historic piece of legislation that does just that.”

Laird is available for comment and for live interviews today from the BC legislature.

Media contact:
Communications Director Jonathan Sas
P: 604-861-4321 E: media@bcfed.ca