Bill C-262 needs your urgent attention and support. Bill C-262, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act, is in second reading in the Senate and has yet to go to the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples. Passed overwhelmingly in the House of Commons on May 30, the bill will, if enacted, ensure that the laws of Canada are in harmony with the UN Declaration. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) identified the UN Declaration as “the framework for reconciliation at all levels and across all sectors of Canadian society.”
Let’s ensure this Bill is Passed into Law!
When Senators return from recess on February 18 they will have only a few days to pass this private-members bill. Adding to the urgency is that government bills will be prioritized, and some Senators may stall its passage. If Bill C-262 does not reach third reading in the Senate before Parliament is dissolved when the election is called, it will die on the order paper.
Many of us have voiced support for this Bill which, if passed, will establish a legislative framework requiring the federal government to work in consultation and cooperation with First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples to develop a national action plan for implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as urged in the TRC Calls to Action. Canada endorsed the UN Declaration in 2010.*
Join KAIROS in urging Senators to vote in favour of Bill C-262.
Take Action Now!
Take one or more actions.
Send an e-letter
The quickest action is to send a letter to all Senators right now via KAIROS’ letter form. Simply fill out your contact details and click SUBMIT. Already sent a letter to Senators? This letter is new and communicates the urgency in passing the Bill. Thoughtful personal comments make it even more powerful. Please send!
Organize collective action
In the weeks leading up to February 18, please organize an action with your congregation, organization, neighbours, friends, family or group. Handwrite letters, make phone calls, and send messages via social media to Senators on the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples. Get creative! Share photos of yourself and others with placards that
communicate support for the Bill. Positive, respectful messages will help ensure a successful outcome.
Note: Senator Dennis Glen Patterson is the Conservative critic for the Bill. If you are sending a handwritten letter or phoning, please contact him first.
Senator Dennis Glen Patterson (Nunavut)
For a list of Senators on the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, visit: sencanada.ca/en/committees/appa/
They are often given special attention due to the time and care it takes to write them. To help you with your letter, consult the form letter and resources listed below. Letters to Senators are postage-free.
NAME OF SENATOR
The Senate of Canada Ottawa,
Ontario K1A 0A4
These also have impact, especially if key Senators receive many! Ask members of your group to each call the Senators on the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, especially Senator Patterson, and ask them to support the Bill when is presented to this Committee for review. Calling on a weekend? Please leave a message. We want to ensure that the Senators have many messages waiting for them when they return to the Chamber on February 18. For office numbers, visit: sencanada.ca/en/committees/appa/
General toll free number for the Senate of Canada (call during business hours to reach a specific office): 800-267-7362
If you are on social media, encourage your followers to take action too, and direct them to this web page.
Take a photo of yourself or group with a sign urging Senators to pass Bill C-262. Circulate it on social media. Suggested hashtags: #C262 #UNDRIP #SenCA #ReconciliACTION #Indigenous #cdnpoli. Email your photo to Senators on the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples.
Background and resources
KAIROS has closely followed Bill C-262’s journey since MP Romeo Saganash introduced it in the House of Commons in April 2016 as a private members bill. Working to have the Bill enacted into law is part of KAIROS’ Let Justice Roll campaign. To learn more, visit: Campaign on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Ten faith based organizations urge Canada’s Senators to support Bill C-262, theUnited Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act. In a joint letter released on February 7, the Senators were reminded that the time for action is now: Ecumenical letter to Senators on Bill C-262
For more information on the Bill and the UN Declaration, visit the following:
* Canada voted against the UN Declaration when it was adopted by the United Nations in 2007. In 2010, Canada officially endorsed the Declaration but called it an “aspirational document” and not legally binding. In May 2016, Canada removed its objector status and officially announced unqualified support for the UN Declaration.