In 1973, Yukon First Nation Chiefs presented Together Today for Our Children Tomorrow, their Statement of Claim to Canada. This collective effort lead to the first round of land claim negotiations and, ultimately, the signing of the 1993 Council for Yukon Indians Umbrella Final Agreement (UFA). The UFA provided a framework for future negotiations, as a result of which Canada, Yukon and some Yukon First Nations settled their land claims. In 2003, Canada, the Yukon Government and Council of Yukon First Nations(CYFN) the successor of the Council of Yukon Indians, honoured the thirtieth anniversary of their notice of claim in recognition of the fact much work remains to be done to fulfill the vision of Together Today for Our Children Tomorrow.
In 2004, the General Assembly of the CYFN mandated the Office of the Grand Chief to initiate a series of constitutional summits with a view to fulfilling the vision of Together Today for Our Children Tomorrow. The purpose of the constitutional summit process is to discuss proposals for reforming the existing structure and mandate of CYFN with a view to creating a more inclusive regional political body.
The 2004/05 CYFN constitutional summit process was lead by Commissioners appointed to the constitutional Summit Commission by the CYFN General Assembly. The Commission's mandate was to conduct community hearings and receive ideas and suggestions with respect to the current mandate and structure of the CYFN. The Commission reported back to the CYFN General Assembly in late spring 2005 with a proposal for a new constitution and a process for its ratification. To assist Commissioners, a technical working group was established to provide legal and drafting services and to explore a number of governance-related issues. At the appropriate time, the CYFN will be invite the federal and Yukon governments to participate in discussions relating to development of an implementation plan for the new organization.
Most importantly, the constitutional summit process was designed to give a voice to the ideas and suggestions of Yukon First Nation citizens themselves. To provide an opportunity for Yukon First Nation citizens to have direct input into the political decision-making process that will lead to a new creation of a new First Nation regional political body. The immediate objective of the 2004/05 constitutional summit process was to prepare the blueprint to guide future decision-making on this question by the CYFN General Assembly.
The following links are pdf copies of the report to the Special General Assembly, as well as the background information for the report.