Kanaka Bar Indian Band and Canada settle historical claims

News release

May 27, 2021 — Kanaka Bar Indian Band, British Columbia — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

Working collaboratively to renew relationships and righting historical wrongs is key to advancing reconciliation with First Nations peoples in Canada.

Today, Chief Patrick Michell and the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, announced that the Kanaka Bar Indian Band and the Government of Canada have concluded their negotiation of a comprehensive settlement that resolves all specific claims arising from the Crown’s relationship with the Kanaka Bar Indian Band from 1858 to the present day. As part of the specific claim settlement, Canada will provide the Kanaka Bar Indian Band with $7.7 million in total compensation.

Developed in partnership, this settlement agreement expeditiously addresses multiple historic grievances. This settlement is an expression of reconciliation whereby Canada and the Kanaka Bar Indian Band work to right the claims from the past and create a new relationship rooted in trust and collaboration. The settlement will help to support Kanaka Bar’s significant aspirations for the future and realize their long-term community development plans to ensure resiliency, including economic development and efforts to address the effects of climate change that may impact their way of life.

Achieved through dialogue and cooperation, this settlement honours an outstanding obligation to the Kanaka Bar Indian Band and will pave the way for the Government of Canada to renew and advance reconciliation with the Kanaka Bar Indian Band.


“The Settlement Agreement provides the best way to enable our community to plan for the future.”

Councillor Kane Hance, Kanaka Bar Indian Band

“I am very pleased that we have addressed and resolved our Specific Claims. The Claims have been a learning experience, and we can learn from the history of our community so that these claims never happen again.”

Councillor Donna Hance-Glad, Kanaka Bar Indian Band

“Thank you Canada for resolving the Specific Claims Kanaka Bar Band as that will help build trust and provides reconciliation for past actions. Today, Canada and Kanaka Bar Band can start a new way of building partnerships and have the willingness to keep open communication with each other and to “move forward” together to plan for a better future for our children and grandchildren for the next 7 generations.”

Councillor Pauline J. Michell, Kanaka Bar Indian Band

“Today is a step forward in rebuilding our nation-to-nation relationship with Kanaka Bar Indian Band. Righting historical wrongs and settling longstanding specific claims through co-operative partnership is essential to reconciliation. The successful conclusion of these specific claims was reached because of the unwavering dedication and resolve of the Kanaka Bar Indian Band. Thank you to Chief Michell and Council for your hard work. It is our hope that this settlement stands as a significant milestone as we continue to work together on your priorities.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations 


Quick facts

  • The Kanaka Bar Indian Band Comprehensive Specific Claims Settlement Agreement resolves all known and unknown specific claims resulting from events between 1858 and the present. This settlement agreement also resolves all four specific claims that Kanaka Bar Indian Band had filed with the Specific Claims Tribunal.

  • From April 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021, 36 specific claims were resolved for over $1.7 billion in compensation.

  • The specific claims process helps right past wrongs and address First Nations’ long-standing grievances through negotiated settlements. Canada is continuing to consult to co-develop program reforms. To provide timely payment of negotiated settlements of specific claims while this work continues, Budget 2021 will replenish the Specific Claims Settlement Fund in 2022–23.


For more information, media may contact:

Ani Dergalstanian
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett,
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

Media Relations
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

Chief Patrick Michell
Kanaka Bar Indian Band
Office: 250-455-2200

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