Website Mission:
The Katzie Treaty Team website will inform and educate its members and the general public on its vital and historic treaty negotiations with Canada and British Columbia.


Katzie First Nation
Administration Office

10946 Katzie Road,
Pitt Meadows, B.C. 
V3Y 2G6
Ph: 604-465-8961
Fax: 604-465-5949
Email: katzie.treaty@
shawcable.com



Traditional Territory

The Katzie traditional territory is identified as precisely as possible as that territory granted by the Creator, to the descendants of Oe’lecten and Swaneset - the Katzie people. It comprises the land and resources over which Katzie people have asserted title and rights, according to Katzie customary law, from time immemorial.

For the purposes of the BC Treaty Commission process, the Katzie First Nation identifies as Katzie territory all those lands, waters, and natural resources used and occupied by the Katzie First Nation, and owned by the Katzie First Nation, according to Katzie customary law.

The territory is identified as the entire Pitt watershed, including the Alouette watershed to the height of land surrounding the Pitt and Alouette drainages and includes as precisely as formal agreements with neighboring First Nations will provide portions of the Fraser River and lands adjacent to the Fraser River. The Katzie First Nation’s understanding of its territory is strictly consistent with all the evidence established from the earliest times by Peter Pierre, Simon Pierre, and later by Katzie elders and by the contributions of elders and representatives of neighboring First Nations.

Many Katzie families from other First Nations have lived seasonally within the Katzie territory and have harvested resources within this territory. While much land and much natural resource wealth outside the identified territory may be properly considered ‘shared territory’ with other First Nations, or may even be considered by some to be properly Katzie territory, it remains important to the Katzie people to identify lands and resources which Katzie people alone, may with complete certainty, rightfully assert unimpeded and unextinguished aboriginal title and rights.

>> download .pdf map

  The Katzie View on "Overlaps"

At the outset, it is important to state that aboriginal concepts related to title, rights and territory do not easily conform to European or Canadian terms such as “territory” and “boundary.” This difficulty is apparent in misunderstandings such as the existence of apparent “overlapping claims.”

The Katzie people are part of a broader family of peoples, beginning with the peoples of the river (very generally known as “Sto:lo” people), including the Kwantlen, Coquitlam, Musqueam and Tsawwassen people, extending throughout the Halkomelem-speaking peoples of the mainland and Vancouver Island, and also including Straits Salish people and all Coast Salish people. The Katzie people maintain long-standing ties within this larger cultural family. Discussions with Katzie elders clearly show that the English language and European concepts are limited in their ability to articulate the nature of the Katzie First Nation’s traditional view of “ownership,” to the extent that it would likely be as true to say the land owned the Katzie people as it is to say the Katzie people owned the land.

The challenge in “overlap” resolution is to maintain the vitality and complexity of Coast Salish customary law as it relates to title and territory, while at the same time conforming to the rules under the BC Treaty Commission process.

The Katzie First Nation’s view of the territory it identifies as its own must be understood in the context of the lands and resources made available to the Katzie people by the Creator, and by interventions of Khaals; by the history of the Katzie people until the assertion of British sovereignty in 1846; and by the commandments that have guided the Katzie people down through the ages and have come to form the Katzie customary law.

Interviews with Katzie elders clearly demonstrate that:

1) The Katzie First Nation has always regarded itself and has always been regarded by neighboring First Nations, as the keeper and protector of the Katzie territory.
2) People from other First Nations communities have enjoyed long-standing associations within the Katzie community based upon linguistic, economic, social, cultural and ceremonial ties.
3) Other First Nations have always been welcome in the Katzie territory and it has been a long-standing tradition among the Katzie to invite relatives from neighboring First Nations to participate in the harvest of resources surplus to Katzie requirements.
4) It has been a long-standing tradition among neighboring First Nations to invite their relatives from Katzie to their territories for similar purposes, and to transport resources from their territories to the Katzie territory.

The archeological, cultural and ethnographic evidence of these traditions is overwhelming. These traditions of reciprocity and sharing form a significant aspect of the Katzie assertion of rights and title. The Katzie Treaty Team is committed to doing its utmost to ensure that these traditions are in no way encumbered by BC Treaty Commission process, or by eventual treaty settlement.

  Statement on "Overlaps"

Late in 1995, some discussions involving the Katzie First Nation, the Sto:lo, and other “Lower Mainland” First Nations began, for the purpose of coming to some common approach to resolving apparent overlaps in the area. The Katzie Treaty Team agreed to try a common approach on the basis of a November 16, 1995 treaty team discussion, which states, in summary:

There is a Katzie territory within which no other First Nation has any over-riding aboriginal title or rights: Within Katzie territory, other First Nations and First Nations families and individuals may have certain rights or interests that accord with the customary law of the Katzie First Nation; These other First Nations also hold traditional territories within which no other First Nation has any over-riding aboriginal title or rights; Within those territories, the Katzie First Nation, Katzie families and individuals may have certain rights and interests, according to the customary laws of those other First Nations; The Katzie First Nation recognizes that there may be rights or interests in land and resources that it shares equally with other First Nations.

To date, a number of agreements have been reached with a few of our neigbouring First Nations, while other talks have achieved some progress. The results of these talks have been made available to the B.C. Treaty Commission and are available to the negotiators of B.C. and Canada.

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Updated: October, 2002
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