Áthelets/Aitchelitz; Leq’á:mel/Lakahahmen; Sq’ewá:lxw/Skawahlook; Sq’ewqéyl/Skowkale; Ch’iyáqtel/Tzeachten; Yeqwyeqwí:ws/Yakweakwioose
We are the Stó:lō Xwexwílmexw Treaty Association (SXTA) — six Stó:lō Villages continuing the work of our ancestors to ensure that we govern our people, lands and resources. Our collective goals are to create prosperity and opportunity for our future generations, through governance, self-reliance, lands, culture and heritage.
WE BELIEVE IN STÓ:LŌ
The issues we face are similar to those faced by other First Nations across the country: oppression under the Indian Act; marginalization of our people; restrictions placed on our ability to exercise our Aboriginal rights; denial of our unceded and unextinguished title; and constraints preventing our full participation in the economic landscape.
NO TESTED PATH
There is no tested path in this work. Given where we are at in this critical time in history, our six communities strongly believe, that we will be able to achieve our goals through strategic negotiations conducted through the BC Treaty Commission (BCTC) process.
The BCTC process provides advantages that include the ability to establish our own governance institutions, the recognition of our Aboriginal title, and a defined relationship with the provincial and federal governments. This way forward was further strengthened when the federal government announced that it will forgive loans to Indigenous groups who have been negotiating comprehensive claims and treaties and that all negotiations will be supported by grants in the future.
WE ARE USING PREVIOUS TREATIES AND CASE LAW TO OUR ADVANTAGE
We have the best legal guidance to help us utilize every opportunity and precedent established in Aboriginal case law, including the Calder, Sparrow, Delgamuukw, and Tsilhqot’in decisions.
WE WANT INFORMED/ENGAGED MEMBERS
Indigenous rights and title are held collectively by the people. Building out our Stó:lō Xwexwílmexw government vision is a massive undertaking requiring time, capacity, and the meaningful engagement of our members.
Definitions of Halq’eméylem words used throughout the website
- “Sqwélqwel” means the ongoing oral Stó:lō story and includes their collective and personal histories since sxwōxwiyá:m
- “S’ólh Téméxw” means our world or our land and refers to Stó:lō traditional territory
- “Sxwōxwiyá:m” means narratives of the distant past “when the world was out of balance, and not quite right”, and the actions of Xexá:ls “making the world right,” which describe the origins of and connections between the Stó:lō, shxwelí, Sxexó:mes and S’ólh Téméxw