The Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NLCA) is many things, a modern day land claim, a treaty within the context of Section 35 of the Constitution Act, a contract or agreement between the Inuit of Nunavut, Government of Canada, and Territorial Government. Each of these different constructs has different legal implications, especially in their interpretation within the legal system. In addition to binding the signatories to the NLCA, it also binds third parties through the Nunavut Act, Nunavut Land Claims Act, Constitution Act, 1982 and Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The NLCA is a result of over 20 years of negotiations. At the time, there was often confusion about what each was entitled to with respect to land rights, social and cultural rights or programs and services, and much more. Because of the lengthy time, there were a number of Inuit negotiators who came and went over the 22 year period. [Read more …]