Tseshaht, Parks Canada comes to terms over Broken Group Islands

The Tseshaht First Nation in Port Alberni has negotiated with Parks Canada since 1997 over management of the Broken Group.

PORT ALBERNI– On April 19, Tseshaht First Nation and Parks Canada will

sign a Memorandum of Agreement on cooperation concerning the planning and

management of the Broken Group Islands that has been under negotiation since

2007.

 

The memorandum officially acknowledges the Tseshaht First Nation and the

Maa-nulth Accord, and reaffirms Tseshaht-asserted aboriginal title in the Broken

Group Islands.

 

“Along with ensuring that Tseshaht has active involvement in managing what

goes on in the Broken Group Islands,” says chief councilor Les Sam, “this

agreement will enable Tseshaht to develop aboriginal tourism opportunities

through the exposure of our culture to Park visitors.”

 

Parks Canada announced the closure of its campsite on Benson Island in May

2009. Tseshaht lauded this action and quickly saw the hire of a Patrol Person,

Tseshaht Ed Ross, to work directly in and oversee the Broken Group Islands. In

2011, Patrol People were renamed Beach Keepers, and more Tseshaht employees

were hired.

 

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve was created in 1970 and is managed today

as a national park reserve under the Canada National Parks Act until the

unresolved aboriginal claim to rights and title are resolved.

 

The Memorandum of Agreement signing will start at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, April

19, in the Great Room at Tseshaht First Nation administration building, located

at Tsuma-as Drive, Port Alberni. Refreshments scheduled to accompany the

event.