Dean Beverly Jacobs Appears in David Suzuki Foundation Video Series
Windsor Law Acting Dean and Centre for Cities affiliate Dr. Beverly Jacobs appears in a three-part video series about land governance produced by the David Suzuki Foundation. The series, entitled “Land Governance: Past, Present, Future” was created to understand how re-establishing Indigenous governance models can support better land-use.
As part of her contribution, Dean Jacobs discusses the definition of “Land Back” stating, “Land Back means future. For us, as Indigenous people, we’ve always had a responsibility to look after the land, but it’s also that deeper spiritual relationship for the future that there’s actually something here for us. We need to act on it. We need to act on our laws and that’s what the land defenders are doing today, is acting on our laws.”
Globally, Indigenous Peoples comprise less than five percent of the world’s population but protect eighty percent of the planet’s biodiversity. Because Indigenous knowledge of lands and waters has evolved over thousands of years, many are looking at Indigenous governance models to help address the global climate and biodiversity crises.
In recent years, the David Suzuki Foundation has supported Indigenous-led conservation by supporting the establishment of Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas and by promoting Indigenous-led restoration and species-recovery work. They caution, however, that Indigenous land governance reaches beyond the boundaries of protected areas: “allies of Indigenous Peoples must also understand the colonial systems of governance that created these conditions for Indigenous Peoples are also the root causes of the environmental crises”.
The Foundation calls upon non-Indigenous people to educate themselves and open the door to wider conversations about land governance in Canada.
For more information, visit the David Suzuki Foundation website.