Welcome To
Acadia Broadcasting NewsThe Latest and Greatest ContentYour Trusted Local Source


A picture of the area of the Wolastoqey Nation, whose territory extends beyond New Brunswick into Maine and Québec. Image: Submitted

N.B. files court motion over Wolastoqey title claim

By Brad Perry Aug 25, 2023 | 10:27 AM

The province is asking a court to amend an “unprecedented” Indigenous title claim filed by the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick.

Wolastoqey chiefs are seeking a declaration of Aboriginal title to their traditional lands, along with compensation from the Crown for allowing commercial operations on the land.

The provincial government wants more than 250,000 properties owned by individuals removed from the claim, arguing the owners would be exposed to risk should the claim proceed in its current form.

“Today, across more than half of our province, hundreds of thousands of New Brunswickers are at risk of having their property impacted by this unprecedented claim in which they have been denied any standing or representation,” Premier Blaine Higgs said in a statement.

“The plaintiffs have dismissed the fears of these New Brunswickers, which is why our government is taking this action to ensure the plaintiff’s legal claim reflects their statements.”

Wolastoqey chiefs have long said they are not interested in displacing residents from their homes and farms, rather they want more say on Crown land.

But Higgs claims that is not adequately reflected in the legal documents the Wolastoqey have filed with the court.

“If successful, the Wolastoqey would have the right to exclusive use and occupation of all lands in their claim,” he said.

Higgs claims the government’s motion would not impact the status of any of the defendants named in the title claim, which include the provincial and federal governments, NB Power, and 25 private property owners.

Among those property owners are J.D. Irving, Ltd. and its subsidiaries, Acadian Timber, Twin Rivers Paper, HJ Crabbe & Sons, and AV Group.

Meanwhile, the province said it is currently preparing a defence against the overall Wolastoqey claim.


Leave a Reply