Gitxaala Nation in B.C. goes to court over automatic mineral rights – by Brieanna Charlebois (Canadian Press/Global News – October 26, 2021)

A B.C. First Nation is challenging in court an online registry the province uses to automatically grant mineral rights on its territory.

Gitxaala Nation has filed a petition to the B.C. Supreme Court seeking a judicial review, arguing that the process doesn’t require the government to consult with the First Nation and simply grants the claim.

“The fact that B.C. still grants mineral claims with total disregard for Indigenous nations like Gitxaała is a damaging relic of colonialism that has no place in the present day,” said Hereditary Chief Matthew Hill in a news release.

The petition, filed with the court on Monday, asserts that the government didn’t fulfill its duty by granting claims without consulting the nation. It is asking the courts to quash seven mineral claims on Banks Island, south of Prince Rupert, and for the court to suspend claim staking in Gitxaala territory.

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