Referendum studied

Published January 1, 2002

The diocese of New Westminster’s Justice and Peace Unit wants a new task force that will determine its stand if the government of British Columbia goes ahead with a plan to hold a referendum on First Nations treaty negotiations.

Craig Vance, diocesan justice and peace consultant, said that if formed, a task force might recommend a boycott of the referendum, or participation with a particular focus. The church should be involved, he added.

While the referendum was a key part of the B.C. Liberal Party platform before it was elected with an overwhelming majority, the plan has been strongly opposed by many aboriginal groups.

The task force would include aboriginal people, and consult widely with politicians and academics to develop its position.


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