Ear Commanda, RHW Executive director explains the UOS project.
What is the Use and Occupancy Study?
A series of map-based interviews will be conducted with the Anishinaabe of the Robinson Huron Treaty Territory for approximately three years. The Use and Occupancy Study (UOS) data collected through these interviews will be crucial in asserting jurisdiction and protecting areas of Anishinaabe importance.
Use and occupancy mapping tells the story of a person’s life on the land in picture form and is collected through interviews and map surveys. The UOS will include Anishinaabe, who have extensive personal use of their homelands.
Why is this project important?
A community with robust maps will discover them to be an asset for all kinds of purposes in the coming decades.
This research will be valuable in many areas:
• Protect Anishinaabe Rights and Interests
• Monitor the ecosystem within Treaty Territory
• Clarify Use and Occupancy of our Treaty Lands
• Assist with understanding overlapping jurisdiction
• Provide valuable evidence for litigation
• Resource Development Strategy for the Treaty Territory
• Add to baseline understanding and determine impacts
Use and Occupancy mapping has proven to be extremely valuable in asserting and protecting Indigenous rights. We believe that undertaking a robust Use and Occupancy Study is foundational for supporting and fostering treaty leadership.
What the research will NOT do:
• Prejudice or otherwise impact the Robinson Huron Treaty Litigation Fund Annuities Claim
• Define RHT Boundaries
• Limit Anishinaabe rights to the study area, we will continue to exercise our rights where we always have.