Granted by our Creator the people of Kasabonika Lake First Nation received a duty to look after the lands and waters of our Traditional Territory and live according to our Creator’s laws. This duty is a sacred responsibility that has been given under the Creator’s Great Earth Law and cannot be delegated, it is what makes us Indigenous people. The Great Earth Law applies to us as Indigenous people. It has many aspects but generally speaking it guides us in the way we live and the way we use our Creator’s creation. It further tells us and teaches us that our lives and our use of all aspects of our Creator’s creation, specific to the land we have been placed on (our Traditional Territory), will be considered when we pass to the next life.
Our Creator did not give us this sacred responsibility in a void but gave it together with inherent jurisdiction over our Traditional Territory, and this jurisdiction prevenes (came before) the asserted sovereignty of the British Queen and her Governments.
After the signing of Treaty #9 (adhesion 1929) Government officials used the Treaty and the asserted sovereignty of the British Queen to justify implementation of legislation over Indigenous people, their land and water, and their resources without the consultation or consent of the Indigenous people, including the people of Kasabonika. This has caused a considerable amount of misunderstanding and un-predictability especially when it comes to resource development initiatives that rely on the asserted jurisdiction of the British Crown only. To this day our people understand Treaty #9 to represent shared sovereignty between the British Crown and the people of Kasabonika. This shared sovereignty includes shared ownership and shared control over land, water, and resources.
Because the jurisdiction of the British Crown has asserted precedence through a process of colonization (with settlers effectively outnumbering our people) this does not mean that our inherent jurisdiction has now been eliminated and replaced by the jurisdiction of the British Crown. The people of Kasabonika will continue to assert their sovereignty in their Traditional Territory, but because we are a peace seeking people we will also continue to strive to avoid conflict and seek for an equitable convergence of our prevenient sovereignty and the asserted sovereignty of the Queen and her Governments in practical ways.
Those practical ways of convergence include implementation of our prevenient jurisdiction over our Traditional Territory through the application of our resource policy. Government legislation and regulations must be viewed together with our policy requirements for resource developers to understand what is required of them when planning to work in our Traditional Territory. We anticipate that the British Crown, her Governments, and her subjects will respect the sacred authority provided by our Creator to us, the people of Kasabonika, and we trsut that they will recognize the reflection of that authority in our resource policy.
The Kasabonika Lake First Nation has had an established resource dev’t planning board since the year 2000. The board represents the people of Kasabonika and assists Chief & Council with the review of proposed resource development projects. The Board has been instrumental in the development of the Kasabonika Resource Policy (2007) and articulation of Kasabonika resource principles and values. To learn more we refer to the page with our guiding principles, where you can also find a copy of our resource policy.