MLT Aikins lawyers participating in The Impact of UNDRIP on Resource Development Projects conference

On April 27, MLT Aikins lawyers Amyn Lalji, Drew Lafond and Travis Smith will participate in The Impact of UNDRIP on Resource Development Projects conference presented by the Pacific Business & Law Institute. The conference brings together experts to explore how Indigenous communities can use UNDRIP to gain economic participation in resource developments on their traditional lands.

Amyn Lalji is the conference chair, and will also present on “The Interplay Between UNDRIP and the Duty to Consult.” This session will cover the potential impacts of implementing UNDRIP on the duty to consult, the evolution of free, prior and informed consent, and jurisdictional issues.

Drew Lafond will co-present “Using UNDRIP and Exercising Indigenous Jurisdiction to Further Joint Decision Making.” The presenters will share success stories of commercial agreements with municipal and provincial governments. The session will also discuss section 7 agreements under DRIPA, consent-based negotiation techniques and effective practices, and a new future in true partnership.

Travis Smith will present “Looking Forward: UNDRIP and the Judiciary.” The session will review the judiciary’s engagement with UNDRIP, discuss the possibilities and limitations of future judicial treatment of UNDRIP, and address what section 35 jurisprudence can teach us about UNDRIP’s implementation in Canada.

The conference will address key issues including:

  • The interplay between UNDRIP and the duty to consult
  • Potential jurisdictional considerations
  • Free, prior and informed consent
  • Environmental and impact assessments on major resource projects
  • Measuring cumulative effects
  • Implications of the Yahey Decision and the Blueberry River First Nations Implementation Agreement
  • Case update on the Gitxaala mining case before the BC Supreme Court in April
  • Consent-based negotiations, effective practices, recent agreements and success stories
  • Using UNDRIP to further joint decision making

The conference is offering guests of MLT Aikins a 15% discount off the registration fee. Should you wish to take advantage of the discounted registration fee, please contact the Pacific Business & Law Institute directly at 604-730-2500 and quote discount code “F15-1794” when you register.

About the Pacific Business & Law Institute

Founded in 1989, PBLI’s mission is to create educational events that transfer knowledge to new audiences, inspiring and uniting them in shared understanding. The institute’s goal is to create educational events that answer your questions and build bridges across uncharted territory. The institute’s programming grows directly out of the suggestions and feedback from faculty and delegates. The organization operates from the belief that only those who continue to learn can successfully lead and contribute to positive change.

About Amyn Lalji

Amyn has more than twenty years of experience representing Indigenous clients in negotiations and advocacy in respect of Canada’s largest resource-based projects and economic development initiatives. He also provides advice to Indigenous governments, leaders and development corporations in many areas of the law. Amyn has been recognized as a leading lawyer in Canada practising in the area of Aboriginal law. He represents numerous First Nation development corporations and provides advice to their executives and boards on their roles, responsibilities, opportunities and potential liabilities in the areas of corporate, tax and employment law.

About Drew Lafond

Drew advises clients on matters related to economic development, gaming, housing, commercial leasing, corporate governance, structure and finance. Drew also assists Indigenous clients with asserting and exercising jurisdiction over cores areas of governance, including land management, taxation, gaming and agriculture in Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Yukon. Drew was raised in Treaty 6 territory on the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation reserve and is also of Secwepemc descent from the Simpcw First Nation in British Columbia. He has also served as President of the Indigenous Bar Association since 2019.

About Travis Smith

Travis is an associate practising with the MLT Aikins Indigenous and Environmental practice groups. He has experience advancing the rights and interests of First Nation clients in environmental regulatory proceedings and Indigenous sovereignty in First Nation governance disputes. He has also recently represented a number of First Nations in the engagement process carried out under Canada’s United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act.