A delegation of Marine First Nation leaders are in Ottawa this week. They have a powerful message and letter from the Marine Shipping Subcommittee (MSSC) for the Prime Minister, requesting a robust renewal of the IAMC-TMX to continue advancing ocean protection, safety, and monitoring.The move towards Indigenous Oversight benefits all Canadians. The Government of Canada…Read More
On January 31, 2024, leaders from marine communities met on the traditional territory of the Snaw-naw-as First Nation in Parksville, BC, to discuss pivotal issues in the marine space. Trina Sxwithul’txw, chair of the IAMC-TMX Marine Shipping Sub Committee (MSSC), emphasized the need for collaborative efforts in marine regulatory oversight. She highlighted an upcoming collective…Read More
From December 2022 to April 2023 July 2023, the Marine Shipping Sub Committee (MSSC) of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committee (IAMC) undertook a visioning and strategic planning process. The process was informed by:
- Regional workshops - both on the mainland and Vancouver Island - with First Nations communities that included leaders, elders, community members, technical personnel and guardian stewards
- MSSC meetings consisting of MSSC Indigenous caucus, and federal partners from Transport Canada (TC), Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO), Canada Coast Guard (CCG), and Environment Climate Change Canada (ECCC)
- Visioning sessions with participation from the MSSC members including both Indigenous caucus and federal partners.
- In-person and virtual meetings with community leaders, elders, and technical personnel
The outcome was a vision, supported by three goals, and underlying objectives for 2023-2029.
“A vibrant connection to thriving sea life in our waters, rooted in cultural teachings, strong coordination among all parties, and Indigenous-led protection of the ocean.”
Charting a Sustainable Future: The Marine Shipping Subcommittee's Vision for the Industry
Building the foundation for sustainable, integrated, and Indigenous-led marine monitoring and response programs through a regional inventory process, emergency management planning, community wellbeing in case of an incident, and finding a way for community long term sustainable funding.
Establishing a collective and coordinated First Nations voice on Marine stewardship/management, including policy and regulation. Development of a Leadership table to guide the long-term vision.
A longer-term goal to achieve transformational change in marine program administration, funding, and authorities.
This third goal was recognized in the visioning discussions to be part of a “transformed scope” for the IAMC overall. First Nations participants clearly articulated a desire for a transformed scope to enable a more integrated, administratively efficient and ecosystem-focused level of collaboration among federal regulators and First Nations.
Current Status of the Marine Shipping Subcommittee
Since the inception of the MSSC and with an enormous amount of dedication to community outreach, the MSSC currently has 29 marine based community representatives along with five federal department representatives at the table.
Positive momentum and good will has been established within the MSSC through the collaborative visioning process and desire to work together.
Current work includes the implementation of the annual workplan, strategic framework, and underlying 5-year objectives. There continues to be a strong desire to continue MSSC regional workshops/meetings each year to connect with community members.
A marine leadership table has been established to provide ongoing guidance to the work and to advocate for a more coordinated approach to long term sustainable funding that supports communities advancing ocean monitoring, safety and protection.