Government appeal of court decision recognizing Metis and Non-Status Indians to be announced April 17

From Congress of Aboriginal Peoples

Federal Court of Appeal to Release Harry Daniels' Decision on Thursday, April 17, regarding Métis and Non-Status Indians

Posted by  on April 14, 2014

 (Ottawa) April 14, 2014 - Congress of Aboriginal Peoples, National Chief, Betty Ann Lavallée, CD, (Ret'd) will discuss what implications the upcoming Federal Court of Appeal decision could have on Métis and Non-Status Indians in the case of Daniels vs. Canada. Additional details will follow regarding time and location for media availability (See attached backgrounder below).

The Federal Court of Appeal decision is expected to be released on Thursday, April 17, 2014 and could have a major impact on the relationship between the Government of Canada and the more than 600,000 Aboriginal Peoples of Canada who live off-reserve.

Media Availability:

Date:              Thursday, April 17,2014 
Time:              To follow 
Location:      To follow

Since 1971, the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (formerly known as the Native Council of Canada) has been the National Representative Organization and the National Voice for the constituency and their Affiliate Organizations making up the Congress' family of advocates for the off-reserve non-Status and Status Indians, Métis and Southern Inuit of Labrador living in urban, rural remote and isolated areas throughout  Canada.  Today, over 75% of the Aboriginal Peoples of Canada live off-reserve.

To arrange an interview, please contact:

Director of Communications:
Congress of Aboriginal Peoples
Ottawa, ON K1K 3B1
Office: (613) 747-6022
Cellular: (613) 325-8264

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Harry Daniels vs Crown

Launched in 1999, by the late Harry Daniels and the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples, the case challenged the federal government's denial that:

  • Métis and non-status Indians are Indians under subsection 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867;
  • The Crown owes to Métis and non-status Indians a fiduciary duty as Aboriginal peoples; and,
  • Aboriginal people have a right to be negotiated with, on a collective basis, in good faith with the Crown.

On January 8, 2013, Justice Michael Phelan of the Federal Court of Canada ruled that Métis and Non-Status are Indians under subsection 91 (24) of the Constitution Act, 1867.

Additionally, the Federal Court recognized that the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples offers "National Representation" to both Métis and non-Status Indians (MNSI) throughout Canada, and highlighted; "the pivotal role CAP played in advancing this claim - a role that few, if any, individuals falling within the group known as MNSI could do."  

The federal Government subsequently appealed the decision.  In October 2013, the case was heard in Ottawa before a three-judge panel of the Federal Court of Appeal.

Lead Counsel for the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples is Joseph E. Magnet, Constitutional Expert and Professor of Law at the University of Ottawa.

Video: Who is Harry Daniels?