Transfer of lands on the west side of Batoche National Historic Site to Métis Nation–Saskatchewan

Backgrounder

·  Declared a national historic site in 1923, Batoche National Historic Site is located an hour northeast of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The site attracts approximately 14,000 visitors a year and is an important economic and heritage resource for the region. Batoche National Historic Site commemorates the armed conflict between the Métis Provisional Government and the Canadian government in 1885, the Métis community at Batoche and the Métis river lot system.

·  The West Side lands that Parks Canada is transferring to Métis Nation – Saskatchewan protect important Métis cultural resources and are located on the west side of the South Saskatchewan River in the Rural Municipality of Duck Lake, northeast of the City of Saskatoon. They are situated west of the historic Village of Batoche.

·  Parks Canada and Métis Nation–Saskatchewan (MN-S) have a long history of collaboration and share a common interest in protecting the natural and cultural resources of Batoche National Historic Site and recognize that the site holds great cultural and historical significance for the citizens of Métis Nation–Saskatchewan.

·  Since the late 1990s, the Métis Nation–Saskatchewan has expressed the desire to acquire Crown lands at and around Batoche. Lands located to the northeast of Batoche National Historic Site were previously transferred to the Métis Society of Saskatchewan (predecessor to Métis Nation–Saskatchewan) in 1996. These lands are currently used by Métis Nation–Saskatchewan as festival grounds for the annual “Back to Batoche” festival.

·  In December 2020, Parks Canada and Métis Nation–Saskatchewan agreed to explore and discuss a full range of options related to the future management of Batoche National Historic Site, at a sub-table to the regular meetings held between the Métis Nation – Saskatchewan and the Government of Canada under the Framework Agreement for Advancing Reconciliation. As part of this Sub-Table, Parks Canada and the Métis Nation–Saskatchewan discussed the transfer of certain lands near Batoche National Historic Site.

·  The transfer of lands located on the west side of Batoche National Historic Site, which holds great cultural, spiritual, and historic significance to the Métis Nation–Saskatchewan, is a tangible example of the Government of Canada’s commitment to advancing reconciliation, and fulfills an outcome identified as part of the Recognition of Indigenous Rights and Self-Determination discussion table process.

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