The federal government has committed $474,000 over four years towards the Yellowknives Dene First Nation’s Rebuilding Project, which is intended to re-establish a Dene system of law.

The money will help with items such as consulting Dene knowledge-holders to provide insight on traditional laws and legal traditions, developing a framework to shift to the traditional Dene law system and establishing a constitution for Yellowknives Dene First Nation.

“This is a promising step towards a future where our right to self-governance is a reality for the Yellowknives Dene First Nation,” Dettah Chief Edward Sangris said on Aug. 9. “We look forward to working together with the Government of Canada on the further involvement needed to make self-governance a reality and renew the relationship between our nations.”

The money is coming from Ottawa’s Justice Partnership and Innovation Program — Call to Action 50.

“I am proud of the work undertaken by the Yellowknives Dene First Nation to revitalize legal and governance traditions within their community,” stated NWT member of Parliament Michael McLeod. “The funding highlighted today will support this important work and help to advance reconciliation with Indigenous peoples in Yellowknife.”

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