The federal government and the Peepeekisis Cree Nation have settled a century-old farming claim.
As part of the agreement, the First Nation will receive $150 million in compensation with the option to acquire up to 18,720 acres of land, which can be added to the reserve.
The claim concerned Canada’s breach of fiduciary obligations when it implemented the File Hills Farm Colony Scheme with its first transfer and settlement of industrial school graduates onto the Peepeekisis Cree Nation’s reserve without the informed and willing consent of Peepeekisis Cree Nation in 1898.
The Colony Scheme included providing parcels of prime agricultural Peepeekisis reserve lands without the Nation’s consent.
In creating and implementing the Colony Scheme, Canada breached its fiduciary duty to the Nation by failing to protect the Nation’s interest in the land and not providing any compensation to the Nation.
“After decades of opposition and denials by Canada and the judicial system, the File Hills Colony Specific Claim has finally been settled. Moving forward this Settlement Agreement will allow our community to close this unfortunate chapter in our shared history, heal and prosper for our future generations. We cannot change the past, but the resolution of this Specific Claim provides us with the opportunity to move forward together within Peepeekisis Cree Nation and with Canada,” said Chief Francis Dieter.