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October 10, 2021

Ta`an Kwach`an Council Final Agreement

Filed under: Uncategorized — Mark Baker @ 4:24 am

With the arrival of the Department of Indian Affairs, the Ta`an Kwach`an Council was included in the Whitehorse Indian Band, a group of all First Nations who lived in the Whitehorse area. It was not until 1998 that the First Nation finally regained its independence and became a recognized Indian group under the Department of Indian Affairs. Since then, the Ta`an Kwach`an have been actively involved in negotiations on their land claim and are currently on the verge of reaching an agreement. The Ta`an took a traditional mode of leadership by choosing a hereditary chief and governing the First Nation through a family/clan system. The Ta`an Kwach`an Council is one of the Yukon First Nations that has evidence of its long-standing foceral claim to the federal government. Chief Jim Boss wrote a letter in 1902, with the assistance of a lawyer, to the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs in Ottawa, in which he stated that the Yukon First Nations needed a colony because of the loss of land and the exhaustion of the gold rush and the consequent colonization by foreigners. At that time, the Ta`an received a small reserve in their traditional region on the shores of Lake Leberge. Jim Boss` vision finally culminated in the opening of negotiations many decades later in 1973. The Ta`an Kwäch`än Council negotiated with the governments of Canada and Yukon a broad foceral claim and signed its final and self-governing agreements on January 13, 2002 and became a self-governing First Nation on April 1, 2002. Below its lands, the traditional area of the Kwäch`än covers about 12,079 km², of which 796 km² are designated as the country of residence. negotiations between Yukon First Nations and the Government of Canada; and later with the Government of Yukon for the next 20 years until the signing of the Umbrella Final Agreement in 1993.

This document served as the basis for the various end-of-year and autonomy agreements that would follow as soon as in the years to come. The Kwach`an signed their contracts in 2002, 100 years after the boss`s letter. White River First Nation, Ross River Dena Council and Liard First Nation are the remaining Yukon First Nations that have no agreements. Kwäch`än Council signed its final and self-governing agreements on January 13, 2002, and became a self-governing First Nation on April 1, 2002. In 2002, the New Year`s Guardian Council signed a Yukon Country Claims Agreement.

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