What is the Consultation and Accommodation unit?
The Consultation and Accommodation unit primary responsibility is to act as intermediary between the Government of Canada and Quebec and the communities of Gespe’gewa’gi during consultations.
The Consultation and Accommodation unit acts as a facilitator between the communities and the federal and provincial governments. The communities make the decisions via committee’s sessions, meetings with the technical advisory table and direction from the leadership.
The Governments of Canada and Quebec have the duty to consult the First Nations.
What is the purpose of the Consultation and Accommodation unit?
The Consultation and Accommodation purpose is to engage and facilitate the consultation process with the communities of the Gespe’gewa’gi and hear their opinions about various projects.
The Governments and the developers works with the Consultation and Accommodation unit to fulfill their legal obligation to consult with the Mi’gmaq of Gespe’gewa’gi.
As part of its work, the unit identifies and engages with experts who provides advice and opinions on various topics, develops educational materials and builds relationships with governments and developers.
What is the source of the duty to consult and accommodate?
The source of the duty is in the honour of the government. The government must act honourably in its dealings with Aboriginal peoples. The honour requires that any rights that are protected, or potentially protected, by section 35 of the Constitution are “determined, recognized and respected”.
The honour of the government is always at stake because the government is essentially in conflict as it plays the roles of both the party making a decision, which may negatively impact on Aboriginal peoples’ interest and rights, and the party charged with protecting and respecting those rights under the Constitution.
Acting honourably dictates that the government must always fulfill its promises to Aboriginal peoples, and it must not engage in sharp dealing with Aboriginal peoples.
4 stages of a consultation process
The priority of the Consultation and Accommodation Unit is to openly communicate with the leadership and communities of Gesgapegiag, Gespeg, and Listuguj and be transparent in all of our work. Questions? Contact us at any time.