Explains the purpose and structure of this Land Use Plan. It also provides basic (but important) background information.

Our Story

Provides a brief history of our people and our Territory. This section is very important as it provides the historical setting through which our Nation evolved from time immemorial until today.



Aboriginal Title
The Supreme Court of Canada described Aboriginal Title in Delgamuukw v. British Columbia as
a right to exclusive use and occupation of the land for a variety of purposes provided that the
group claiming traditional land is able to show exclusive occupation of their territory at the time
the Crown asserted sovereignty over their territory. In Tsilhqot’in Nation v. British Columbia the
Supreme Court of Canada declared Aboriginal Title to approximately 2000 km2 of Tsilhqot’in
Territory – the first time in Canadian history that a court has declared Aboriginal Title to lands
outside of a reserve. Aboriginal Title includes: the right to decide how the land will be used; the
right of enjoyment and occupancy of the land; the right to possess the land; the right to the
economic benefits of the land.


Aboriginal Rights
Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, recognizes and affirms existing Aboriginal Rights. The
Supreme Court of Canada has defined Aboriginal Rights as activities that are elements of
practices, customs and traditions that are integral to the distinctive culture of an aboriginal society.
The Supreme Court of Canada, in the Haida, Taku River, Mikisew and Tsilhqot’in cases,
established that Aboriginal peoples asserting Aboriginal Rights must be consulted and
accommodated prior to occurrence of any decisions, conduct or activities that may have impact
on the rights and interests of Aboriginal peoples.

According to Article 19 of the United Nations Declaration of Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP):
States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the Indigenous Peoples concerned
through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free, prior and informed
consent before adopting and implementing legislative or administrative measures that may
affect them.

The BC government passed the legislation in November 2019 to implement UNDRIP. The legislation
mandates the BC government to bring provincial laws into harmony with the UN Declaration.



Consistency and Compliance (External Plans)

Plans and policies developed by other organizations operating in our Territory must be consistent with this Land Use Plan when applicable.  Examples include – but are not limited to:

  • Local Government Plans and Bylaws (e.g. Official Community Plans and Zoning Bylaws)
  • Provincial land use plans and policies guiding resource development and tenure approvals
  • Forest Stewardship Plans

Supporting Documents

This Land Use Plan is supported and implemented by a series on supporting plans, policies and regulations. These include – but are not limited to:

 Comprehensive Community Plan

This is an overarching and holistic plan that will outline our vision for the future. If Quatsino First Nation decides to prepare a Comprehensive Community Plan in the future, it will set higher level directions for the community that are complementary with this document.

Economic Development Plan

Quatsino First Nation intends on preparing an Economic Development Plan that will outline priority community economic development initiatives and developments. Those developments will be consistent with the approach outlined in this document.

Community Energy Plan

Quatsino First Nation is in the process of preparing a community energy plan that will identify community projects aimed at reducing energy consumption and increasing self-sufficiency. It will also identify large-scale projects throughout our Territory that Quatsino could develop to create employment opportunities and generate new sources of revenue. Those developments will be consistent with the policies outlined in this document.

Housing Policies

This document provides direction on where housing can and cannot be located on our reserves, but it does not address how housing will be administered or allocated. A separate document containing housing policies is currently being prepared.

Infrastructure and Capital Plans

Quatsino First Nation regularly develops capital plans and submits funding applications for community infrastructure projects. This land use plan provides direction on where those infrastructure projects will occur and provides some guidance in terms of the level of service to be provided.

Regulatory Laws

Quatsino First Nation intends on establishing a “land code” that contains a series of regulatory laws for its reserve lands (zoning, animal control, unsightly premises… etc.). Those laws will be consistent with this plan. They will establish clearly enforceable rules on matters at a level detail that is beyond the scope of this land use plan (e.g. establishing specific setback distances for buildings).

Area Specific Plans

At times this plan will be implemented through other detailed plans that are specific to certain areas. Some examples include – but are not limited to:

  • Neighbourhood and subdivision plans for new developments on our reserve lands;
  • Plans for Special Management Areas (see Section 4.2);
  • A cedar strategy guiding the management of stands within our Territory;
  • A marine use plan for all waters within our Territory.

These plans will provide specific direction on matters at a level of detail that is beyond the scope of this plan.

Traditional Use Studies

The Quatsino Tribes have been studied by anthropologists and ethnologists since the late 1800’s and many works have been published over the years. Quatsino First Nation has also commissioned several studies of its own. The information obtained through this research and those initiatives has been incorporated into this land use plan. This land use plan will continue to be updated as new studies are conducted, and new information becomes available.

Cultural Heritage Resources Policy

This document outlines specific policies on how to deal with cultural and heritage resources on the land.

Quatsino First Nation Consultation Accommodation Policy

This policy outlines the minimum expectations for Crown and proponent consultation and accommodation in our Territory.

 The Planning Process

This document has been driven by a grassroots movement and is intended to reflect the collective vision of our people. It has been in process for many years and represents the culmination of numerous community engagements. Over a three-year period (from 2016 to 2020) our Lands and Resources Department organized numerous field trips with members on the land and hosted 38 community meetings to present information and discuss the contents of this document. Most of the meetings were held in our main community; however, several took place in Vancouver and Campbell River. At meetings members filled out surveys, marked up maps and provided direction using live polling (a.k.a. “clickers”). At several events, members were asked to write their ideas on sticky notes. The sticky notes were posted on the gym wall and grouped into themes. This proved to be a huge success. Sticky notes were left on the wall and our members continued to add their ideas long after the meetings were finished. Our leadership and staff also operated with an “open door” policy and encouraged members to visit informally to discuss their ideas. Many members presented their ideas to Chief and Council.

A Living Document…

This is intended to be a “living document”. It will be continuously reviewed and updated and evolve as new information becomes available and when new priorities emerge and need to be clarified.