Thursday, July 11, 2013

Pasture Patrons and First Nations speak out this week

CPPAS chair Ian McCreary of Bladworth talking pastures issues with Graeme Gibson (image courtesy of Branimir Gjetvaj)
Yesterday, the Community Pastures Patrons Association of Saskatchewan called for a one year delay to give them and the two levels of government enough time to work out the details of any transition. (Here is an article based on their media release, published in today's Leader-Post.)

Rushing things appears to be a way to intimidate the patron groups into accepting terms in a "take it or leave it" proposition. Meanwhile, there are not so subtle messages coming from various quarters suggesting that if the patrons do not take what is offered now, there are third parties waiting in the wings for their chance to snap up the leases. Before that happens, though, there is another interested party with a very strong legal position. Today, they spoke up loud and clear.

FSIN Chief Perry Bellegarde

Federation of Saskatchewan First Nations head, Perry Bellegarde published an op-ed in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix that everyone who is interested in what happens to the PFRA pastures needs to read.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of our groups working together and forming partnerships to ensure the conservation and protection of our ecological values and the diversity of Saskatchewan’s rich grasslands, as well as to ensure that the Crown meets its lawful obligation to satisfy outstanding Treaty Land Entitlements.” – Perry Bellegarde, FSIN chief
Too often forgotten in the discussion of what will happen to the pastures, the First Nations voice has the potential to resolve the issues that seem to be separating private and public interests in these critically important native grasslands.

The beautiful Auvergne Wise Creek PFRA Pasture--as of today, still under federal management


  1. I have heard a rumour that almost one half a township of native prairie on former crown land in the extreme southwest corner is slated for the plough by "land grabbers".

    True or not we really need to protect the less then 20% of native grassland that remains in Saskatchewan. Surely all the good farmland has been under cultivation for decades?

  2. I heard also the property in that neck of the woods will be related to clearing up long past due treaty rights for Western Canada's Aboriginal rights, and that is I am sure the right thing to do. How ever the management of the land will be up to the.

  3. I was given the notion that the Agriculture lands in the South West portion of your Province was being prepared to clear up outstanding Treaties for the Aboriginals , which is only fair. However the property is managed will probably be up to them rightly so.


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