Saik'uz Nation delivers forest resource declaration: No more industrial logging in the territory

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By Shari Narine, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Windspeaker.com

Saik'uz First Nation has given notice: There will be no more industrial forestry development without the Nation’s consent in its unceded and unsurrendered territory in central British Columbia.
“Today we are announcing that these practices will no longer take place in our territory. We further announce that the province of BC and forest licensees must obtain our free, prior and informed consent before proceeding with any forestry or other resource development in Saik'uz territory,” said Chief Priscilla Mueller in a Facebook news conference Oct. 15.
She said they are delivering a forest resource declaration.
“(This is) a day that our members and Elders have advocated for a very, very long time. We view the duty to protect the forests, water ways and the land in our territory as sacred responsibility passed down to us by our ancestors,” she said.
There is a “sense of urgency,” said Councillor Jasmine Thomas, that is not reflected in the actions of Premier John Horgan even though he has said that old growth must be respected as must Indigenous peoples’ land management rights in their territories.
It sounds promising, said Thomas, but too many promises have not been followed by action.
“There are solutions and opportunities ahead of us so that we can collectively work towards new beginnings and outgrow old ways of doing business as usual,” said Thomas.
She outlined the three points of the forest resource declaration.
  • The province must agree to immediate interim protective measures in...continued
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