Royal Proclamation and Covenant of Reconciliation (45-47)

Two Row Wampum Belt - Gä•sweñta’ (Image above courtesy of Onondaga Nation, N.Y.) Two nations travelling side-by-side respecting each other's laws, traditions and culture

Current Reality

No progress from the Federal government yet on executing a Royal Proclamation of Reconciliation 7+ years after the TRC Calls to Action were issued in June 2015.

Two of the central tenets of the Royal Proclamation are the repudiation of the Doctrine of Discovery and terra nullius and the adoption of the UN Declaration as the framework for Reconciliation. Out of those flow the practical remedies of “renewing or establishing” treaty relationships and “the recognition of Indigenous laws and legal traditions” to fix 157 years of broken promises and treaties.

Feb. 21, 2024: The B.C. Supreme Court has ruled that a traditional Wet’suwet’en trespass law cannot “coexist” with the injunction order issued to Coastal GasLink in response to pipeline protests from the nation’s hereditary leadership.  In other words, Indigenous laws are subordinate to and subject to Canadian law

See “Current Problems” in “Treaties and Land Claims” for details on federal/provincial and/or territory government actions that are fundamenatly at odds with reconciliation. The problems identified are relevant to UNDRIP, the Royal Proclamation and Covenant of Reconciliation and are more effectively reflected in a separate section “Treaties and Land Claims”

Mar. 30, 2023: The Vatican formally repudiates the Doctrine of Discovery, the 15th-century papal bulls, or decrees that legitimized the colonial-era seizure of Indigenous lands and form the basis of some property law today.

The Vatican statement also declares that these “papal bulls did not adequately reflect the equal dignity and rights of Indigenous peoples” and have never been considered expressions of the Catholic faith. It said the documents had been “manipulated” for political purposes by colonial powers “to justify immoral acts against Indigenous peoples that were carried out, at times, without opposition from ecclesial authorities.”

0/3 CTAs have been completed to date


Government of Canada to develop with Indigenous peoples a Royal Proclamation of Reconciliation

Not Started


Parties to Settlement Agreement to develop and sign a Covenant of Reconciliation to advance reconciliation

Not Started


All levels of government to repudiate Doctrine of Discovery and terra nullius

Not Started

Featured Updates

Current Problems

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Indigenous Laws and Governance

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Political Issues

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Background Content

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Govt. and Institution Issues

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What is the Doctrine of Discovery?

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