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Article
First Nations and the Constitution: A Question of Trust
Canadian Bar Review. Volume 71, Number 2 (1992), p. 261-293.
  • Brian Slattery, Osgoode Hall Law School of York University
Document Type
Article
Publication Date
1-1-1992
Keywords
  • Aboriginal rights,
  • Canadian constitution,
  • Collective trust,
  • land rights
Disciplines
Abstract

This article argues that the fiduciary relationship between Aboriginal peoples and the Crown is a special instance of a general doctrine of collective trust that animates the Canadian Constitution as a whole. This doctrine sheds light on the federal structure of Canada the unique status of Quebec, and the position of First Nations as a self-governing polities within Confederation. The article explores the origins and character of the constitutional trust, and considers its application to issues surrounding the inherent Aboriginal right ofself-government and Aboriginal land rights.

French Abstract

Dans cet article l'auteur suggère que la relation fiduciaire qui existe entre les peuples autochtones et la couronne est une application particulière d’une doctrine générale de fiducie collective sous-jacente à l'ensemble de la constitution canadienne. Cette doctrine aide à comprendre la structure fédérale du Canada, le statut spécial du Québec et la position des premières nations en tant qu'entités politiques autonomes dans la confédération. L'auteur examine les origines et la nature de la fiducie constitutionnelle et considère son application pour ce qui a trait au droit inhérent des Autochtones à l'autonomie gouvernementale et à leur droit à des territoires.

Comments

Reprinted in in R.S. Blair and J.T. McLeod, eds., The Canadian Political Tradition, 2nd ed. (Toronto: Nelson Canada, 1993), pp. 112-36.

Citation Information
Slattery, Brian. "First Nations and the Constitution: A Question of Trust." Canadian Bar Review 71.2 (1992): 261-293.