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First Nations, Aboriginal, Native Peoples Culture

Heritage Conservation Act or Heritage Destruction Act
"Lack of conservation and protection within the current Heritage Conservation Act,
including lax policies and enforcement, does not consider, let alone acknowledge or respect,
indigenous rights."

May 2007
Cheryl Bryce, Songhees First Nation

Cave Damaged by Development
"This is so upsetting that such blatant brutality is allowed and tolerated by government.
Once again I say it is another form of Cultural Genocide
by government and corporations based on economy."

January 2007
Cheryl Bryce, Songhees First Nation

Lands Manager

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"I am not sure if the entire cave has been destroyed.
The entrance and one side of the cave has been blasted
but the complete entrance and other side of the cave with the pool chamber is questionable
whether it is destroyed, right now. It needs to be investigated further.
I understand that the plan (or new plan) is to put an artificial lake at this site.
Previously I was told it was going to be houses..the development plans seem to change a lot."

Cheryl Bryce, January 26, 2007
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More Images
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Sacred Cave Sacrificed
for Economic Benefits
December 2006
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Culture for Sale?
Sacred Cave Replaced by First Nations Casino?
December 2006

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First Nations Fight to Protect Sacred Site
NOTE from the editor of Turtle Island Native Network
RE: David (Cheryl) vs. Goliath Battle
Imagine the challenges faced by Cheryl Bryce and others at Songhees.
There wasn't even the capacity for a lands department until 2003.
Meanwhile, developers are making a fortune

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Good Minds in a Good Place
longhouse meeting ends with agreement to act together

November 18, 2006
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New Relationship Helps Stem Conflict
Two week truce agreed to
November 18, 2006

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BC Government Promises Action
New Relationship With First Nations Tested
November 17, 2006

It is "Cultural Genocide"
Cheryl Bryce, Songhees First Nation
November 16th, 2006

Sacred Cave Threatened by Development Project
Click Here

It was so secret, even most First Nations people were unaware of its exact location.
Culturally Significant Site
The existence of the sacred cave(s) is well known to the elders
and those focused on cultural renewal and preservation.
Desperate to Prevent Damage and Prove Their Case
First Nations Reveal Cave Site to Media
Click Here

There is Life Inside the Cave
and Cultural Connections for Songhees

BC Needs a "New Heritage Act and Better Enforcement"
Provincial Officials Approve Cave Destruction
First Nations Shocked and Disgusted
Click Here

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Months ago BC Minister Made a Promise
"Archaeological sites and first nations heritage are a valuable part of who we are as a province,
and we have been working with the leadership council on protocols around archaeological sites.
If there are caves or graves or sites of first nations significance, we will work with the local nations,
our archaeological branch and the developer to preserve them."

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Turtle Island Native Network Asks
Question: "The developer claims your concerns are about land that is away from their development site,
and that even though the areas of concern are off site, they have been co-operative, along with other developers.
Is that true from your perspective?"

Answer: "No they haven't been cooperative.
They have never consulted with us on any archaeological or culturally significant sites from the beginning
- even on what has been developed to date.
He didn't even meet with the Songhees Lands Department until February 6, 2006.
He doesn't even know the areas we are referring to as he hasn't met with us on them
or even started an archaeological impact assessment (AIA)."

Cheryl Bryce, Lands Manager for the Songhees Nation
in response to questions by Turtle Island Native Network
May 23, 2006
"What I am aiming for is protecting this cave not just from people entering the cave
but from destroying the cave by either developer or general public."

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She is Fighting the Big Guys
Click Here

She has spent this year dealing with development issues and the obvious disrespect
of cultural and archaeological sites in her nation's traditional territory.

The Almighty Dollar
Click Here!

A Fight for First Nations Rights, Recognition, Respect
"They took out large amount of Garry Oaks and arbutus and all plants associated with it (and other trees).
They did this with out doing an AIA to ensure there was no CMT's (culturally modified trees*).
They burned the trees they took down so there was no way of knowing if they took CMT's."

Cheryl Bryce responding to questions from Turtle Island Native Network in May 2006.
A Playground for the Rich

Rather Than Meaningful Consultation and Dialogue
The Wrong Kind of Talk
Confrontational Style of Developer Doesn't Help
Click Here!

"I would be curious to find out what he refers to as Consultation - a letter or a phone call or two?"
Songhees Lands Manager Cheryl Bryce responding to questions from Turtle Island Native Network
He said She said
Developer says, "When Bear Mountain was first envisioned on private land in 2001,
there was a detailed consultation process, including First Nations."

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Cheryl Bryce is Dedicated to Her Nation's Needs
Her Life Revolves Around Her People's Culture and Traditions
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"We need to interact with the land and remember our past."
Cheryl Bryce, lands manager for the Songhees First Nations
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*Culturally Modified Trees
A term commonly used to refer to trees modified by First Nations Peoples
during their cultural use of trees in their traditional territories.
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Songhees Nation
The Community, Culture, Traditions
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Gaining Respect for Songhees (Lekwungen) People
Familiar Effort in Recent History
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Heritage Conservation Act
British Columbia

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