dubayaax a ts’awalk
everything is one
Ditidaht First Nation
The land, the waters, the resources, the environment have always been the source of life, culture and spirituality of the Ditidaht People.
Clear air, pure water and the food of the forests and the waters of our Territory have sustained our people, our economy and our traditions.
That we hold the wealth of our Nation and the use of our lands, waters and resources in the future as we did in the past, to the common good and benefit of all Ditidaht, by fostering development that is based on the principle of caring for and maintaining our physical and spiritual linkages with our lands, waters and resources for all generations.
The Ditidaht Constitution
Ditidaht First Nation is governed by an elected Chief and 4 councillors. Elections are held every second July in odd years.
Robert Joseph –
David Darryl Tate –
Kelly Sport –
Jack Thompson Jr. –
Terry Edgar –
Ditidaht traditional territory is large. It stretches inland from Cowichan Lake, down through Nitinat Lake, and to the coast between Bonilla Point and Pachena Point. Our territory also reaches out to sea all the way to the salmon, halibut and cod banks that feed our people. It includes the headwaters of streams and rivers that drain to the coastline.
Traditional territory flyover tour
This video provides an introduction to the extensive lands and waters within Ditidaht traditional territory, highlighting a selection of areas used and inhabited by the Ditidaht for generations.
Ditidaht First Nation retains copyright over all information provided on these videos. These videos do not represent the entirety of Ditidaht Indigenous Knowledge or Ditidaht’s oral histories and do not address all matters related to Ditidaht’s Aboriginal rights, Aboriginal title or Ditidaht’s traditions and culture.
All information on these videos is provided for community educational and illustrative purposes and may not be used for any other purpose without the express written consent of Ditidaht First Nation Council including, without limitation, any regulatory or other government decisions, industry consultation processes or any court or administrative proceedings.
Land and resources
Ditidaht Fishery information
- General regulations
- Plans and enforcement protocols
- Violation consequences – first and second violation
- Openings – notices
- Closings – notices
The Ditidaht Economic Development Corporation is working on a variety of projects designed to optimize existing resources and businesses and identify new opportunities. Learn more here.
July 9, 2019
Food Fish 2019- DFN Membership Addresses- Contact Update’s.
To Ditidaht Members:
The DFN Fisheries Department is planning for the 2019 Food Fish to membership.
Please update your addresses and contact information. If you have changed residences since last year and/or your phone/contact information.
You can e-mail or call in at 250) 724-3333 administration front desk. Or contact Paul M. Sieber or Darryl Tate- DFN Fisheries Manager to update your information.
Paul M. Sieber
DFN Natural Resource Manager
The Ditidaht Council is pleased to announce that on Friday, June 28, 2019 the Ditidaht / Pacheedaht Agreement In Principle was signed. After many years of work, our nation can now move into Stage 5 of the BC treaty process (final agreement negotiations).
Ditidaht Chief Councilor Robert Joseph, Pacheedaht Chief Councilor Jeff Jones, Premier John Horgan, and MP John Aldag, along with other government dignitaries and members of both Ditidaht and Pacheedaht, met on the traditional territory of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations at the Empress Hotel in Victoria, BC for the official signing.
At its current stage, the treaty proposes $40 million to Ditidaht that would be paid upon implementation of the Final Agreement, plus economic development funds of $3 million.
The proposed treaty land entails our nation’s existing reserves, plus areas to be transferred from Crown land and the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Once we complete our final agreement, we will own 751 hectares of our current reserve lands, almost 4,000 hectares of crown land and 1,453 hectares of national park land in the south-eastern portion of Vancouver Island.
The province has also pledged to establish a 54 km gravel forest road from Cowichan Lake to the end of Nitinaht Lake to benefit the Ditidaht Community upon approval of the Final Agreement (treaty).
The Ditidaht negotiators foresee our nation becoming more empowered to economically benefit from our lands if a treaty is implemented.
“As we recognize the Ditidaht and Pacheedaht First Nations for their work to reach today’s milestone, we remain committed to advancing reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and building a better future for everyone in B.C., today and every day.” “Our government is proud to work with the Ditidaht and Pacheedaht First Nations toward a renewed government-to-government relationship, based on rights, reconciliation and respect,” said Premier John Horgan, who is also the local MLA.
Thank you to the Ditidaht treaty negotiation team (Jack Thompson, Shelley Chester, Robert Joseph, Robert Freedman of JFK Law) for their continued work – it has not been an easy journey. Also, hands up to those members of the Ditidaht Treaty Committee, past and present, as without their efforts we would not be where we are today.
For further information, please contact Ditidaht Chief Negotiator, Jack Thompson at 1-888-745-3366 or Shelley Chester, Ditidaht Treaty Coordinator at 1-800-997-3799. More information on the BC treaty process can be found at: http://www.bctreaty.ca/
Ditidaht Treaty Notice – Upcoming AIP Signing
The Ditidaht Chief and Council and Treaty team is excited to announce the end of Stage 4 negotiations with the official signing of the Ditidaht / Pacheedaht Agreement-in-Principle (AIP) with BC and Canada. The signing ceremony will take place on June 28, 2019 at the Empress Hotel in Victoria.
We would like to take this opportunity to explain what this means, how we got here, and where we are going next.
What does the Agreement in Principle mean?
This does not mean we have finalized our treaty; but an AIP is an important step in the treaty process. The AIP has no legal effect. Because of this, Ditidaht members will not be voting on this version of the treaty. However, every eligible Ditidaht member will have a chance to review the final version of the treaty and vote on whether to accept it or not. The treaty explains who is eligible to vote. A number of community meetings were held in to go over the land and cash component of the AIP as well.
A respectful and satisfactory treaty can provide great benefits for Ditidaht. If approved, the Indian Act would largely not apply to Ditidaht. The treaty will provide us with more land and cash and it will recognize our right to self-governance by giving Ditidaht greater control over our land, laws and our democratic processes. It also provides economic benefits, and clarifies our rights and our relationship with Canada and BC, especially off treaty settlement land (TSL), through the negotiation of co-management agreements.
The AIP will set the stage for the negotiation of our final treaty. It includes sections on our treaty settlement lands, which are lands that Ditidaht will own and govern, governance, harvesting, culture, environmental protection, federal parks, taxation, funding, forestry relationships with the three levels of Canadian government (federal, provincial, and local government) and other issues. We will also negotiate implementation and related funding. It does not include details on our fishing rights, water, or provincial parks, all of which will be negotiated in the Final Agreement stage. In addition, we have negotiated framework agreements that will give Ditidaht a much greater say over decisions made that occur on lands off TSL but within our Traditional Territory.
We are also negotiating with Canada and BC to take a different approach to how the final treaty will affect our existing rights, including various ways to amend the final treaty. For example, the Parties are exploring an approach that would better strike a balance between a common and clear understanding of our rights while still allowing for changes to the treaty if a court decides the scope of our rights is different, or if there are aspects of other treaties in the future that Ditidaht could benefit from.
The Ditidaht treaty team began negotiations with Canada and BC in 1994. It has taken us a long time to get to an AIP, but we believe we are on the path to a meaningful and strong treaty. Since 1995, we have made significant progress and have seen Canada and BC put more on the table in terms of lands, money, and meaningful self-governance and harvesting rights that are so important to Ditidaht.
As you know, we have been holding community meetings with members of the Nation. The community gave us the approval to move into final agreement negotiations through a series of meetings held in 2017 and 2018 in Malachan, Nanaimo, Port Alberni and Vancouver.
What will happen next?
After the AIP is signed, the Ditidaht treaty team will resume focused negotiations with Canada and BC on the remaining issues and work to quickly finalize our Treaty.
We have left matters like the development of our constitution, and negotiation of fishing rights, water rights and our rights within provincial parks to the Final Agreement stage of negotiations. We have done this because we want to have much more engagement with members of the Nation, given the critical importance of these issues.
We will continue to provide regular updates through bulletins and community meetings and we will engage the community to gather your views and inputs much more often, as we move through the final agreement negotiation stage. In addition, once the AIP is signed, as set out in the Incremental Treaty Agreement we signed in 2013, BC will transfer another parcel of land to Ditidaht, identified as Block A in the attached map.
Thank you to every Ditidaht member for your continued
engagement on this important topic.
Attached is a report prepared by Paula Beltgens and team from the Community Engagement Sessions that took place this past Winter / Spring 2019 in Nitnaht, Port Alberni and Nanaimo. We thank all our members for coming out providing feedback and learning with us.
Please see attached the FINAL list of Candidates for the election.
Please note Voting Day is July 6th, 2019 from 8am til 8pm at the Ditidaht Community Hall.
If you are unable to vote in person, please contact Graeme Drew, Electoral Officer for other arrangements.
If you are unsure if you are eligible to vote, please contact Karen Mack at 250-745-3333
May 27, 2019
Ditidaht Fisheries Meeting- May 30th/19. Starting at 10:00am to @3:00pm.
At the Malachan Community Hall. Lunch will be served.
To All; Ditidaht Fishermen and community members.
Ditidaht First Nation 2019 Food and Ceremonial Fishing Plans for salmon, groundfish, shellfish and herring.
2018-E.S.S.R. Catch results.
2019- Nitinat River chinook/chum forecast returns.
Hobition River Sockeye Closure and Cheewhat River Sockeye Closure.
Cheewhat Watershed Restoration Project Update.
DFN Fisheries crew monitoring fall monitoring, spawning counts on Hobition, Caycuse and Doobah River’s.
Everyone is welcome to attend this meeting.
Paul M. Sieber
DFN Natural Resource Manager
The Ditidaht First Nation will be holding 3 community engagement sessions (Malachan, Port Alberni and Nanaimo). We encourage all members to attend these sessions to provide input into the development.
Dinner will be provided.
Just like on our old website (Ditidaht.ca), our new website (Nitinaht.ca) has a password protected area that contains treaty updates and other important information. By now you should have received an email that explains the simple steps to follow to create your password. If you didn’t get an email, go to nitinaht.ca/members and ask for one. Problems? Fill out the form at nitinaht.ca/contacts. Note: Don’t worry if you keep thinking the website address is Ditidaht.ca. It is linked with Nitinaht.ca.
Our new Nitinaht.ca website has three parts: tourism, economic development and member information. This site is the ‘go to’ place for information about what’s happening in our region and in our Nation. Have an item for the community calendar? Want to add something to the newsfeed? Need to send a bulletin to all members? Just email and we’ll make it happen.