Public Awareness

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To help raise awareness and understanding of the application of the new Family Homes on Reserves and Matrimonial Interests or Rights Act, the following will be put into place:

Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada’s Public Awareness Efforts

Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development (AANDC) will develop a two-phased public awareness campaign on the application of the new legislation and how it directly affects First Nation communities and individuals living on reserves.

The first phase will raise awareness and understanding of the Act and provide communications materials and training to those to those implementing the new legislation, including: First Nations communities, organizations, front-line police on reserves and provincial/territorial Superior Court judges.

This information will signal the 12-month transition period that begins when the first part of the Act comes into force. This period allows time for First Nations to develop their own laws respecting matrimonial real property before the provisional federal rules in the Act apply. It will direct its audience to the Centre of Excellence for Matrimonial Real Property.

Once the 12-month transition period concludes and the federal rules are in force, the second phase will begin. At this time First Nations will be reminded that they still have the option to establish their own matrimonial real property laws with the help of the Centre of Excellence for Matrimonial Real Property. They can also choose to enact their own law, and the federal rules will then no longer apply to their community.

Centre of Excellence for Matrimonial Real Property

The Centre of Excellence for Matrimonial Real Property will be established within an existing national First Nation organization and will support First Nations in the application of the legislation and the development of their own on-reserve matrimonial real property laws.

More information to come.

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