A First Nation interpreter explains the cedar medicine, Pukaskwa National Park of Canada, ON
© Parks Canada
A costumed interpreter playing the violin, Batoche National Historic Site of Canada, SK
© K. Hogarth
Inuit elders sharing a moment together
© Parks Canada
The Aboriginal Affairs Secretariat (AAS) was created in 1999 to provide national leadership and support within Parks Canada on matters relating to Aboriginal peoples and to facilitate the strengthening of relationships with Aboriginal Peoples.
The AAS is located in the Parks Canada offices in the National Capital Region and currently consists of eleven employees. The Director of the Secretariat is accountable directly to the CEO. The AAS also provides support and networking possibilities for the many PCA staff working on Aboriginal Affairs across Canada.
The broad objective of the AAS is to facilitate the participation of Aboriginal people in Canada's natural and cultural heritage places. Flowing from that objective, five main priorities have been identified:
- Strengthening relationships with Aboriginal communities;
- Increasing presentation and interpretation of Aboriginal heritage;
- Encouraging economic partnerships and opportunities with Aboriginal peoples;
- Enhancing Aboriginal employment opportunities; and,
- Commemorating new national historic sites focusing on Aboriginal history.
The AAS is divided into three key program areas to ensure the delivery of the Agency's Program Activity commitments:
Aboriginal Engagement - The Policy Advisors/Officers support the Field Units in the development of engagement practices and structures with Aboriginal communities. They also advise federal departments on PCA's position regarding engagement practices in the Agency and provide expert advice and analysis to senior management on Aboriginal engagement and policy development.
Aboriginal Consultation - The Policy Advisors/Officers support the Field Units during negotiations and implementation of consultation protocols with Aboriginal communities. They also advise federal departments on PCA's position regarding consultation in the
Negotiations - The Land Claim and Treat Negotiation Advisors represent the Agency during negotiations of comprehensive land claim agreements and other land claim-related agreements to support establishment and conservation goals. They also advise federal treaty negotiators regarding Parks Canada's positions on issues related to treaty negotiations and provide expert advice and analysis to senior management on Aboriginal negotiations and policy development.
Contact Information for the Aboriginal Affairs Secretariat