Day: May 6, 2016
Art Exhibition Opening at MOA: Unceded Territories by Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun. 7-9pm, May 10, 2016
Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun:
Tuesday, May 10, 7-9 pm. Free admission. Cash bar.
We invite you to join us for the opening party for our new exhibition, Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territories.
Vancouver artist Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun, of Coast Salish and Okanagan descent, is showcased in this provocative exhibition of works that confront the colonialist suppression of First Nations peoples and the ongoing struggle for Indigenous rights to lands, resources and sovereignty. Learn more.
No RSVP required. Opening remarks will be given at 7:15 pm by MOA Director Anthony Shelton and Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun. A full-colour publication accompanying the exhibition will be available for purchase from the MOA Shop.
This award is part of the UBC Public Scholars Initiative, which intends to build connections, community, and capacity for doctoral students who are interested in explicitly linking their doctoral work to an arena of public benefit and integrating broader and more career-relevant forms of scholarship into their doctoral education process.
Up to $10,000 per student is available to support innovative/collaborative scholarship which the student would otherwise be unable to pursue. Funding can be used for:
- Student stipend, if the student’s current funding source would not allow the alternative project(s)
- A research allowance (including allowance for professional development or travel relevant to the scholarly work)
Funding is available for up to 30 new students in 2016-17. Students may be eligible for renewal for a second year (pending new PSI funding).
Listen to the PSI Info Session, recorded on March 9, 2016: https://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/ubc-public-scholars-award
New Relationship Trust Announces 2016-2017 Scholarships & Bursaries!
Vancouver, BC – The New Relationship Trust Foundation (NRT Foundation) in partnership with the New Relationship Trust (NRT) is pleased to announce that Scholarships and Bursaries for 2016-2017 are now available to First Nations students in British Columbia (BC)!
NRT, the founding partner of the NRT Foundation, has committed $600,000 this year to provide Scholarships of $20,000 for Doctorates, $10,000 for Masters, $5,000 for Bachelors and $2,000 for Certificates, Diplomas, Associates Degrees and Trades Bursaries for BC First Nations students. An additional $494,500 has already been secured from our funding partners that include Aboriginal Energy Solutions Inc., BC Hydro, Canfor, Chief Joe Mathias Foundation, Drillwell Enterprises, First Nations Health Authority, Peace Hills Trust, and Scotiabank.
In 2006, the BC Government worked with First Nations leadership to create NRT, and gave $100 million to NRT to support capacity building initiatives, which include First Nations Scholarships and Bursaries. Since 2010, 1,469 Scholarship and Bursary awards totalling over $6.8 million have been given to students from First Nations in BC.
The NRT Foundation was created to ensure First Nations education awards continue in perpetuity. “The goal of the NRT Foundation is to create a $30 million endowment that will allow us to be self-sustaining so that students have funding options to turn to for generations. We always hear that post-secondary education of Indigenous people is vital – we have taken on the challenge and we are fully committed to supporting our families and to strengthening our communities,” explains Judith Sayers, Chair of the NRT Foundation.
“Eliminating financial barriers to post-secondary education will enable more First Nations students to embark on successful academic journeys,” said NRT CEO, Cliff Fregin. “Improving education outcomes for First Nations students will not only help them achieve their life goals and present them with greater employment opportunities, these students are also helping to strengthen First Nations communities and British Columbia as well.“
REMINDER – on Thursday, July 28, 2016, the 6th Annual NRT Foundation Charity Golf Tournament will take place at the UBC Golf Course in Vancouver. To sign up, go to NRT Golf website – we hope to see you there!!
For more information, please contact:
Matt Cook-Contos, Senior Project Officer
Judge says she was told to take a drug test, then fired ‘without cause’
Chairman says judge waived tribe’s sovereign immunity without hearing
Temporary judge approved, search to start for someone to fill position
The Nooksack Indian Tribe has fired tribal court Judge Susan Alexander due to a ruling she made against the tribal council that is trying to disenroll members.
It is the latest in a series of what the judge referred to as “extreme tactics” as tribal leadership seeks to remove hundreds of tribal members from the tribe’s membership rolls.
The move came just more than a month after the tribe barred Galanda Broadman attorneys from being allowed to practice in its courts. The law firm has for three years represented more than 270 people facing disenrollment who refer to themselves as the Nooksack 306.
On March 21, Alexander ruled against Nooksack Chairman Bob Kelly, tribal council member Katherine Canete, who is also the tribe’s general manager, and other council members in a case involving the 306.
The order took the council to task, saying the tribe’s leadership had access to case law and tribal statutes, while the 306 and their attorneys needed permission from the same council members they were suing to see copies. They were not provided information about a recall process when it was requested.
In February, the Tribal Council also gave itself the ability to discipline attorneys and disbarred the attorneys representing their adversaries without providing them notice or the chance to defend themselves.
One reason cited for disbarring Galanda Broadman was that the firm didn’t have a business license from the tribe.
The court noted that multiple people tried to get a business license after learning of the requirement in late February, but were told there was no form, the form was in draft mode, or they received no reply. The order ruled that on or before April 1 the tribe’s attorneys should provide a copy of the business license procedures to the court.
Alexander was fired on March 28.
When asked why Alexander had been fired, Chairman Kelly said the tribe’s court is only a few years old, and the council has constantly been tweaking it to make it better.
“There are advocates within the judge community and there are movements within that community for changing how courts work in Indian Country,” Kelly said. “We felt like she was part of some movement towards changing tribal courts in a certain direction. I don’t claim to understand what it was, but that’s what I was told.”
When asked what specific change was advocated for, Kelly said, “The actual reason that we fired her was that she had waived the tribe’s sovereign immunity on an issue that wasn’t even before the court and without a hearing.”
Alexander responded to questions from The Bellingham Herald with a memo, noting she normally refrains from speaking to the media but needed to respond to Kelly’s accusations to “set the record straight.”
In response to Kelly’s reference to advocacy, Alexander wrote, “I have no idea what he is talking about.”
“I am not part of, nor have I ever been part of, in his words, ‘some movement towards changing tribal courts in a certain direction,’” Alexander wrote. “Mr. Kelly says, ‘I don’t claim to understand what it was but that’s what I was told.’ I would surely like to know: Told by whom? And where did that person get the information? The allegation is complete nonsense.”
As for the March 21 order she was fired over, it speaks for itself, Alexander wrote.
“I carefully set forth my reasoning for the decision,” Alexander wrote. “If I exceeded my authority, then that was a proper subject for reconsideration or for appeal.”
Alexander said that on March 22, she got a call from someone in the tribe’s human resources office saying she needed to do a “random” drug test in Bellingham immediately.
Alexander submitted to the urinalysis that day, and said shortly after she took the test, General Manager Canete, a defendant in the case, sent Alexander an email referencing the March 21 order.
“She said, ‘Your recent court order clearly undermines the authority of my position as the General Manager of the Nooksack Indian Tribe and seems to be out of character. I have decided to have you drug tested. You are not to return to work pending the test results,’” Alexander wrote to The Bellingham Herald. “In other words, the drug test was not ‘random,’ as represented earlier.”