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Salt River First Nation Treaty Settlement Agreement (Specific Claim) 
 Salt River The Salt River First Nation (SRFN)  Treaty Settlement Agreement was signed by the Salt River First Nation, the Government of Canada and the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) in March 2002. 

Under the Treaty Settlement Agreement, the SRFN received a capital transfer of approximately $83 million from the  Government of Canada. The Treaty Settlement Agreement also provides for 102,400 acres, or 414 square kilometres, of land to be established as reserve land. The land is in multiple parcels, dispersed within and outside of the town of Fort Smith and within Wood Buffalo National Park.

On September 5, 2008, through an Order-in-Council, the Government of Canada established the Salt River First Nation Indian Reserve. The SRFN may also choose to acquire additional lands in the future with the capital transfer monies it has already received under the Agreement.  

Key Documents:

Salt River First Nation Treaty Settlement Agreement

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Who are the Salt River First Nation?

  • The Salt River First Nation are Chipewyan descendants of Aboriginal peoples who traditionally used and occupied land in the Fort Smith area.  Specifically, the Salt River First Nation is comprised of descendants of the distinct Chipewyan group known as the 'Dedharesche'.

2. What type of agreement did they negotiate?

  • The Salt River First Nation successfully negotiated a treaty land entitlement agreement that fulfills outstanding obligations associated with Treaty 8, signed in 1899.  The SRFN wanted to establish a reserve within and adjacent to the town of Fort Smith.  In March 2002 the SRFN, the Government of Canada and the GNWT signed the Salt River First Nation Treaty Settlement Agreement, and the reserve was officially created in September 2008.

3. Why was the GNWT involved in negotiating the Agreement?

  • A Programs and Services Agreement was negotiated as part of the SRFN Treaty Settlement Agreement to determine arrangements for the future delivery and administration of programs and services to residents living on the reserve.  The GNWT was involved in the negotiations because the delivery of territorial programs and services will be impacted as SRFN members move onto the reserve.

4. Over what geographic area does the Salt River Treaty Settlement Agreement apply?

  • The Treaty Settlement Agreement sets aside approximately 401 square kilometres of reserve lands at numerous sites in and around the town of Fort Smith, as well as approximately 13 square kilometres of reserve lands at four sites in Wood Buffalo National Park.
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