Section 35 of the Constitution

Section 35 of the Constitution...

In 1982, Canada changed its Constitution to add a Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Charter sets out the fundamental rights and freedoms that all citizens of Canada enjoy. The Charter is the highest law of Canada, and all governments, agencies and boards are required to follow its words.

At the same time, Canada included specific recognition of Aboriginal Rights in section 35, it says:

(1) The existing Aboriginal and Treaty rights of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada are hereby recognized and affirmed.

The addition of section 35 to Canada’s Constitution was the result of all the work, legal action, political activity, protests and lobbying by Aboriginal groups in Canada. It has become the basis for all legal actions for the recognition and enforcement of Aboriginal Rights and Title. As well, it is the backbone of all negotiations for land claims and self-government agreements.

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Canadian Constitution, and Charter of Rights and Freedoms