‘Another step:’ Federal Court judge releases ruling in Cree and Dene

Justice Sebastien Grammond wrote about the importance of including the two languages in a ruling

The Federal Court of Canada says it has issued a ruling in Cree and Dene — the first time it’s done so in an Indigenous language.

Justice Sebastien Grammond wrote about the importance of including the two languages in a ruling last Friday that overturned the suspension of a First Nations band councillor in Fort McMurray, Alta.

A summary of the ruling was written and recorded in Cree and Dene, which are the languages of the parties that were involved.

“The Federal Court is committed to being more accessible to Indigenous people when they wish to bring legal disputes for resolution by the court,” wrote Grammond.

“Many court hearings are held directly in the Indigenous community or via webcast, and where appropriate court procedure is adapted to make space for Indigenous protocols.

“With the release of today’s decision, the court is also taking another step in making court decisions more accessible.”

Grammond thanked the “language keepers” who assisted with preparing the summary in Cree and Dene.

The case involved Samantha Whalen from the Fort McMurray 468 First Nation who was suspended by her council colleagues. They had concluded she had engaged in wrongful conduct, including the disclosure of financial information and her participation in a blockade of a First Nation’s business.

Whalen argued that the council didn’t have the power to suspend her and the Federal Court agreed.

ALSO READ: Cheers erupt as Federal Court judge approves historic gay purge settlement

A court spokesman said efforts have been underway for the last 15 years to bring in practical initiatives such as guidelines for litigation involving Indigenous people and for conducting court hearings in their communities.

Andrew Baumberg, legal counsel for the Federal Court, said court members decided at a recent meeting to provide summaries of judgments in the language of the Indigenous communities involved in appropriate cases.

“In recognition of the important role that language plays in First Nation communities,” Baumberg wrote in an email, “the Federal Court intends to continue to increase access to justice for Indigenous people.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Brucejack mine fatality identified

Patrick Critch was from Newfoundland

Granisle receives $4.3 million funding for Wastewater Treatment plant upgrade

The village will finally get to upgrade the 49 years old plant

Spirit North Burns Lake conducting canoe, paddle board camp for indigenous kids

Rachelle van Zanten, the Community Program Director for the Burns Lake area… Continue reading

Chinook Community Forest holds open house and BBQ in Burns Lake

Chinook Community Forest held their annual open house and BBQ at the… Continue reading

Burns Lake’s much awaited Splash Park almost ready

The Radley Beach Splash Park is 95 per cent ready. According to… Continue reading

B.C. doctors, dentists call on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

Abbotsford mom worried about her two kids in Beirut following explosion

Shelley Beyak’s children were abducted by their dad in 2018

Young Canadians, hospitality workers bear the brunt of mental strain in 2020: report

A study by Morneau Shepell points to economic uncertainty in the pandemic as the cause for angst

Health Canada recalling more than 50 hand sanitizers in evolving list

Organization says to stop using products listed, and to consult a health-care professional

Most Read