Nouchimiich Eeyou Eetouin Ehwaptakoonoouch

Reading the signs

The Cree traditional way of life and knowledge acquisition are based on land occupancy, reading natural signs and experience-sharing. The Board’s monitoring framework adopts this philosophy and makes use of the advantage of having access to the territory’s main occupants.

In practicing their traditional activities, the Crees are best-placed to note the effectiveness of the provisions designed to better harmonize forestry-related activities with their way of life. Their involvement in the participative mechanisms provided for in the Paix des Braves Agreement also promotes experience-sharing in this regard.

Bases of the monitoring framework


Board Responsibilities

The Cree-Québec Forestry Board (CQFB) has the responsibility to monitor, analyze and assess the implementation of the forestry provisions of the Agreement concerning a new relationship between the Gouvernement du Québec and the Crees of Québec (ANRQC).[1]

This assessment must enable the Board to recommend, to the parties, adjustments or modifications required for the Adapted Forestry Regime applicable to Agreement territory to evolve in keeping with an approach of continuous improvement.[2]

At the same time, the Board is also responsible for monitoring the implementation mechanisms for the Joint Working Groups (JWG) and is involved in reviewing the forest management plans.[3]

Context

After signing the Agreement, in 2002, the parties began implementing the Adapted Forestry Regime through transitional measures in the early years, up to the completion of the first full planning cycle between 2008 and 2013.

The Cree-Québec Forestry Board’s initial monitoring-related concerns were primarily to ensure that all of Chapter 3’s forestry-related provisions were gradually implemented in a spirit of collaboration between all stakeholders.

In 2009, the Board produced a first assessment of the implementation of the Agreement’s forestry-related provisions for the period 2002-2008.

At this time, the Board observed that the Ministère des Ressources naturelles du Québec (MRN) was deploying measures to ensure implementation of the great majority of Chapter 3’s technical provisions. However, it was recommended that JWG members’ intervention capacity be strengthened so that they could contribute to this process in keeping with their mandate.

The Board also observed that none of the stakeholders was measuring the extent to which Agreement objectives had been reached or questioning the propensity of the Adapted Forestry Regime’s provisions to promote the objectives’ achievement.

As a result, the Board identified implementation monitoring of the Agreement as a priority issue and made the desire to implement the tools and measures required for up-to-date information on achievement of the Agreement’s objectives and provisions one of its action priorities.

In recent years, the Board has developed its monitoring framework and agreed on an action plan to achieve the implementation of the monitoring program.

[1] ANRQC, section 3.30 a)
[2] ANRQC, section 3.30 b) et 3.6
[3] ANRQC, sections 3.30 d) e) f)

Preferred approach


A simple tool meeting the Board’s needs

The monitoring framework is, first and foremost, for Board members’ use to enable them to advise the parties on the Adapted Forestry Regime’s evolution. the Board has been careful to restrict itself to its mandate, which concerns exclusively Chapter 3 (Forestry) of the Paix des Braves. The framework concept is also flexible and able to evolve, in the sense that it is not intended to try to include every possible element from the outset.

Objectives and criteria

The monitoring framework is based on the objectives stated in the very first section of Chapter 3 (Forestry):

«The Québec forestry regime will apply in the Territory in a manner that allows:

  1. adaptations to better take into account the Cree traditional way of life;
  2. greater integration of concerns relating to sustainable development;
  3. participation, in the form of consultation, by the James Bay Crees in the various forest activities operations planning and management processes. »[4]

The framework expresses each of these objectives as a series of criteria. These criteria increase the angles from which an objective is studied and constitute the basis for determining whether an objective has been attained. Therefore, each objective has a number of facets and is described according to several criteria.

Once the “objectives and criteria” structure has been established, the Board enters into the evaluative portion of the monitoring framework. This entails monitoring the provisions’ application in order to systematically paint a picture of the implementation process.

The Board monitors the effectiveness of the criteria whose associated provisions have been implemented to determine whether their implementation contributes to achieving the objectives of Chapter 3. In other words, the Board wants to know whether the provisions are doing the job.

Detection-based assessment

The Board’s monitoring framework differs from the usual criteria and indicator frameworks in that it is not based primarily on achievement of objectives. It is more of a tool for detecting what works well and not so well in the Adapted Forestry Regime’s implementation.

The assessment counts heavily on stakeholder involvement and stakeholder evaluation of whether the provisions of Chapter 3 allow the objectives to be reached.

Concrete action

Through its monitoring framework, the Board seeks to be proactive and to propose concrete action for any problem that may be detected. The Board could also implement further monitoring designed to get more information on the nature of the problems detected or to launch initiatives aimed at rectification.

The monitoring framework is a complementary tool to the Board’s strategic planning in that it may influence the Board’s directions and action priorities depending on the results obtained along the way. Similarly, through its directions and choice of files of interest, the Board may prioritize certain monitoring framework elements and focus assessments on certain criteria or more specific indicators.

[4] ANRQC, section 3.1

Objective 1: Traditional Way of Life

Adaptations to better take into account the Cree traditional way of life


The Agreement specifies that the Cree Nation must continue to benefit from its rich cultural heritage, its language and its traditional way of life in a context of growing modernization (s. 2.2). Chapter 3 deals with forestry and seeks to have the Québec forest regime apply on Agreement territory in a manner that allows adaptations to better take into account the Cree traditional way of life.

To assess to what extent this objective has been attained, the Board seeksto better understand the “traditional way of life” concept. In this regard, the Cree Trappers Association proposes a definition of the concept that allows us to understand its scope and that illustrates its multidimensional aspect as well as the difficulty of circumscribing it:

Eeyou define Eeyou culture simply as the way of life adopted by Eeyou. In fact, Eeyou describe Eeyou culture as “Eeyou Pimaatisiiwin” or Eeyou way of life. For Eeyou, culture is determined and shaped by Eeyou Iyihtiwin – the Eeyou way of doing things – and encompasses the complex whole of beliefs, values, principles, practices, institutions, attitudes, morals, customs, traditions and knowledge of Eeyou. These elements influence the determination of Eeyou laws.

The Board adopts the cultural dimension of this explanation, that is, that the Crees’ traditional activities, regardless of the intensity with which they are practiced and the evolution of the tools used, represent a vector for transmitting culture and language and that the conditions found in the forest must allow these activities to be carried out. However, a great many factors other than forest conditions can also influence the Crees’ practice of the traditional way of life.

To effectively measure the extent to which this objective is attained, the Board is focussing on the adaptations included in Chapter 3 with regard to the Québec forest regime and trying to understand whether these adaptations contribute positively to taking into account the traditional way of life. Given the scope of the concept, the Board considers that it is the Crees who are skilled in practicing and teaching the traditional way of life who are able to judge whether the adaptations to Chapter 3 are beneficial.

In this regard, the most relevant criteria to observe in the context of the monitoring framework are the main categories of adaptations found in Chapter 3. These adaptations, which represent a different way of perceiving forest management compared to the Québec regime, must support the Crees in practicing their traditional way of life.

CRITERION 1.1: ZONING

Under the Québec forest regime, the territory is defined in territorial reference units (TRU) and management units (MU) according to biophysical, ecological and socio-economic parameters. In Chapter 3, adaptations are provided for to adjust the TRUs and MUs to the geographical boundaries of traplines and the reality of Cree communities. This zoning is designed to ensure that forest conditions are suitable to allow practice of the traditional way of life in all traplines at all times.

Related provisions
3.7 The trapline defined as the territorial reference unit
3.8 Management units and northern limit

CRITERION 1.2: SITES OF SPECIAL INTEREST TO THE CREE

Cultural sites are venues that are suitable for transmitting knowledge, culture, language and values through the activities carried out there. They also make it possible to maintain the notion of identity based on land occupancy. Cultural sites can include campsites and the area around them, sacred sites, burial grounds, gathering sites, archaeological sites, portage trails, bear dens, blinds, water sources, etc. Further, forest activities must be harmonized with the Crees’ hunting, fishing and trapping activities. To do so, forest management must take wildlife habitat protection into account and ensure that quality wildlife habitats are maintained on all of the territory’s traplines. The adapted forestry regime stipulates that the tallymen must identify cultural sites and forested areas presenting wildlife interest for which special protection measures are prescribed.

Related provisions

3.9 Sites of special interest (1 %)
3.10 Sites of special wildlife interest (25 %)
C-4 13. Planning-support maps
3.63-3.64 Firewood

CRITERION 1.3: MANAGEMENT APPROACH

Under the Québec forest regime, the sylvicultural approaches selected for forest management depend on a range of variants such as forest composition, stand structure, forest regeneration processes, soil types, effects on landscape, socio-economic factors, etc. Chapter 3’s management approach is adapted to the Agreement’s particular context, considering the variants listed above but advocating increased acceptability and prescribing specific thresholds to comply with in terms of cutting areas, residual stands to preserve, the annual allowable cut rate, the acceptable level of disturbance by trapline, maintenance of the hardwood component, timber recovery in case of a natural disaster, etc. The management approach promoted under the adapted forestry regime is aimed at ensuring that the Crees can continue to practice their traditional activities in harmony with forest management in the territory.

Related provisions
3.11 Maintaining forest cover
Schedules C-2, C-3, C-6
C-4 Harmonisation measures

CRITERION 1.4: RIPARIAN AREAS

Under the Québec forest regime, riparian zones enjoy special protection during forest management activities primarily for hydrographic reasons, that is, to avoid sediment inputs into streams and preserve aquatic environment quality. The Crees associate other essential functions linked to practicing their way of life with riparian environments. For example, their richness of wildlife habitats makes it possible to concentrate various hunting and trapping activities there. Many temporary camps and other cultural sites are also concentrated there. The adapted forestry regime provides for additional protective measures.

Related provisions
3.12 Protection of forests adjacent to watercourses and lakes

CRITERION 1.5: ACCESS

Forest activities involve building and maintaining a major road network in the territory. The Crees can take advantage of this network to access the territory and to travel between various sites. The same road network also gives access to vacationers and other users of the territory, thereby potentially increasing hunting, fishing and trapping activity. Access management, therefore, has direct and indirect impacts on the practice of traditional activities. Chapter 3 provides for adaptations to the Québec forest regime by giving tallymen increased influence on road network development.

Related provisions
3.13 Development of the road access network
C-4 Harmonisation measures (winter/summer roads)

INDICATORS AND VERIFIERS

The indicators selected to evaluate criteria 1.1 to 1.5 are grouped.

Given the specific theme of the Cree way of life, the Board relies on two qualitative indicators, taking advantage of the land users’ knowledge.  They are best placed to determine if the adaptations to the Québec Forest Regime promote better taking into acount the traditional way of life.

 The proposed indicators are:

  • Tallyman (and members of his family)’s appreciation of its ability to practice and teach the Cree traditional way of life
  • Tallyman (and members of his family)’s appreciation of Chapter 3 provisions/adaptations and their usefulness in taking into account the Cree way of life

The Board will assess the possibility of adding one or more quantitative indicators after reviewing the data collected by the Cree Trappers Association and the other related organizations more closely.  In this case, adding quantitative indicators is advisable, but not mandatory.  Data should be reliable and meaningful for our context before anything else.

The proposed main verifiers are:

  • JWG reports (format to be reviewed – frequency TBD)
  • JWG minutes of consultation meetings
  • CQFB interviews with tallymen and families (frequency 5 years)

Other options are also possible:

  • Cree land monitors
  • Pilot traplines / families
  • Focus groups
  • CTA general assemblies
  • Other specific events or workshops

Objective 2: Sustainable Development

Aim for greater integration of concerns relating to sustainable development


In the Agreement, both the Cree nation and the Québec nation agree to continue the development of Northern Québec (s. 2.1). Where forestry is concerned, the Agreement provides a framework for this development, specifying that the forestry regime applicable on the territory must allow greater integration of concerns relating to sustainable development.

The Brundtland Commission defined sustainable development as: “development which meets the needs of current generations without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.[1] Similarly, the Indigenous peoples’ perspective is often expressed in terms of responsibility to the seventh generation:

We cannot simply think of our survival; each new generation is responsible to ensure the survival of the seventh generation. The prophecy given to us, tells us that what we do today will affect the seventh generation and because of this we must bear in mind our responsibility to them today and always.  [2]

The Board’s challenge is to propose a way to express the concept of sustainable development so that the actions taken today can be evaluated in terms of their potential impact on future generations. The Board seeks a fair balance between the three sustainable development axes (economic, social and environmental) and fairness to both the Crees and Quebeckers (Jamesians) living in the territory, now and in the future.

The key is to identify sustainable development-related concerns that reflect the three axes and represent criteria on which implementation of the Agreement’s adapted forestry regime could have an impact. The Board proposes assessing whether Chapter 3 of the Agreement and its adapted forestry regime contribute to sustainable development through these criteria.

A participatory exercise enabled us to agree on the most relevant criteria to assess in the monitoring framework. These criteria are aspects that are not already covered by objectives 1 and 3, which also represent concerns relating to sustainable development.

[1] United Nations. 1987. Our Common Future. Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development.

[2] Clarkson, Linda, Vern Morrissette and Gabriel Regallet. 1992. Our Responsibility to the Seventh Generation.  International Institute for Sustainable Development.

Economic axis

CRITERION 2.1: COMMUNITIES’ ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

The Agreement has a self-professed goal of making the Cree Nation increasingly responsible for its economic development. Through the Agreement, Québec agrees to encourage and facilitate the Crees’ participation in forest-related development projects. The economic forest-related development resulting from the Agreement’s implementation can take the form of income-sharing (indexation formula including timber royalties), guaranteed volumes, business partnerships (community or individual) and contracts of all sorts (timber allowance, work performance, etc.).

Related provisions

3.55-3.59 Access to forest resources
3.6 Employment and contracts
Chapter 7 – Financial provisions
New agreement – CQFEC

CRITERION 2.2: JOB CREATION AND MAINTENANCE

With a relatively high unemployment rate and a markedly growing active population, the Crees identify the forest sector as a potentially important source of job creation. They are looking for sustainable, quality jobs and the support required to develop the skills needed to hold them. Job creation must not simply constitute a transfer or occur to the detriment of Jamesian workers. Maintaining existing jobs is also an important factor. It is hoped that the entire regional population can obtain equivalent opportunities with regard to jobs in the forest sector.

Related provisions

3.55-3.59 Access to forest resources
3.60 Employment and contracts
3.65 Agreements with forestry enterprise
New agreement – CQFEC

CRITERION 2.3: FOREST SECTOR VIABILITY IN THE REGION

The forest sector’s viability can be influenced by a great many contextual or structural factors, be it on the regional, national or international scale. The Agreement’s adapted forestry regime is, however, a specific factor that makes the Northern Québec region unique. Therefore, it is important to verify whether the requirements related to Chapter 3 become constraints reducing the regional forest sector’s viability vis-à-vis other Québec regions, while being mindful of the territory’s unique commitment and rigor to achieving sustainable development.

Related provisions
Spirit of the Agreement (Chapter 2)
New agreement – CQFEC

INDICATORS AND VERIFIERS

The indicators and verifiers proposed for the economic criteria have been developped in partnership with economists from the Bureau de mise en marché des bois (BMMB):

Indicators for criterion 2.1

  • Number of Cree businesses
  • Proportion of Cree businesses compared to the rest of Quebec businesses
  • Hectares treated / volumes harvested or processed by Cree businesses
  • Proportion of hectares treated / volumes harvested or processed by the rest of Quebec businesses

Verifiers

  • MRN Business directory
  • Mills registry (Industria)

Indicators for criterion 2.2

  • Number of Cree workers in the forest sector
  • Employment ratio Cree / total employment in the forest sector

Verifiers

  • Community surveys (responsibility and frequency to be determined)
  • Statistics Canada surveys

Indicators for criterion 2.3

  • Volume harvested in Chapter 3 management units (MUs)
  • Ratio of volume harvested in Chapter 3 MUs / total volume harvested in Quebec
  • Royalties paid for Chapter 3 MUs
  • Ratio of royalties paid for Chapter 3 MUs / total royalties paid in Quebec
  • Ratio of AAC for Chapter 3 MUs / total Quebec AAC
  • Evolution in operating costs for Chapter 3 MUs

Verifiers

  • MRN measurement and billing data (MesuBois)
  • Office of the Chief Forester
  • Pricing models BMMB

Social axis

CRITERION 2.4: CONSIDERING THE NEEDS OF ALL LAND USERS

The Crees are currently experiencing significant demographic growth, which increases the number of people using the territory and could put more pressure on resources. While Chapter 3 of the Agreement focuses mainly on strategies at the trapline level and on the tallymen’s participation in forest planning activities, the approach advocated by the Agreement must be fair and representative for all groups of Cree users, young and old, men and women, seasonal hunters and full-time trappers, with or without access to a family hunting ground. Further, this approach strives to avoid not adversely affect vacationers or non-Cree hunters, who also wish to take advantage of the territory’s resources.

Related provisions
3.4 Improved harmonisation of forest activities with hunting, fishing and trapping activities
Spirit of the Agreement (Chapter 2)

INDICATORS AND VERIFIERS

The Board suggests two qualitative indicators to assess the appreciation of the actors targeted by criterion 2.4:

  • Appreciation of Cree land users, other than tallymen, of their ability to practice the Cree way of life, their access to the land and their level of participation in land management decisions
  • Jamésiens’ (non Cree) appreciation of their access to the land and of level of participation in land management decisions

The proposed verifiers (sources and potential data collection tools) vary:

  • Data from the Cree Trappers’ Association
  • CQFB interviews with other users of the land and community members (frequency > 5 years)
  • TGIRT reports (if available)
  • Income Security Program / Board
  • Others (i.e. Cree Culture Department, COTA, Regional wildlife table, outfitters, etc.)

Environmental axis

CRITERION 2.5: BIODIVERSITY PROTECTION

Protecting biodiversity is clearly an element that is assessed globally on the national and international scale through various types of monitoring. Using a more specific objective, we will look at validating the management strategy used throughout the Agreement’s adapted forestry regime to ensure that it maintains the ecological functions associated with the diversity of the ecosystems representative of the territory. Similarly, the impact of the adapted forestry regime’s management strategy must also be evaluated vis-à-vis species designated threatened or vulnerable and protected wildlife habitats.

Related provisions
Schedules C-2, C-3, C-6
3.10 Sites of special wildlife interest (25%)

CRITERION 2.6: INTEGRITY OF KEY SOCIOECOLOGICAL ECOSYSTEMS

The concept of key socioecological ecosystems is associated with the concept of ecosystem-based services, i.e. the benefits that humans derive from certain ecosystems. In the case at hand, these ecosystems are most often linked to Cree traditional activities. For example, the cultural importance attributed to mature mixed forest stands as crucial moose wildlife habitats, to white spruce forest stands as an important source of medicinal plants, to spawning grounds and to many other ecosystems. Because these ecosystems are often under-represented in the territory, it is important to identify them and verify whether the management strategy used in the territory ensures their integrity.

Related provisions

C-3 Mixed Stands Strategy
3.7 The trapline defined as the territorial reference unit
3.10 Sites of special wildlife interest (25%)
3.11 Maintaining forest cover + Schedule C-2
3.12 Protection of forests adjacent to watercourses and lakes
C-4 Directive for wildlife habitats
C-4 13. Planning-support maps
New agreement –Biological refuges
New agreement – Roads vs spawning grounds

CRITERION 2.7: KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE TERRITORY

Developing better knowledge of the territory’s forest ecosystems, their components in general and wildlife in particular must promote the development of management strategies that are more respectful of natural dynamics and that help ensure resource sustainability. Effective implementation of the adapted forestry regime is based on the existence of knowledge acquisition programs that can take different forms and target different goals such as maintenance, transfer, sharing and research, and which will help develop strategies and/or mechanisms designed to put Cree traditional knowledge to good use in the territory.

Related provisions

3.6 The forestry regime will evolve
Cree-Québec Forestry Board
Joint Working Groups
C-4 13. Planning support maps
C-4 Section on monitoring
INDICATORS AND VERIFIERS

The proposed indicators for criteria 2.5 and 2.6 have been discussed with professionnals from MRN and MDDEFP.  The Board proposes using mainly indicators already monitored by the two entities to facilitate monitoring:

  • VOIT Charts – values, objectives, indicators and targets (Biophysical indicators measured regionally)
  • Sensitive wildlife species (black spruce forests)
    Woodland caribou
    Marten
  • Wildlife species of socio-economic interest
    Moose
    Brook Trout

The verifiers associated with these indicators are multible and remain to be clarified:

  • Status of vulnerable / threatened species
  • MRN monitoring
  • MDDEFP monitoring
  • CTA data

Other options:

  • Habitat suitability models
  • FSC monitoring
  • Other monitoring initiatives & results
  • Experimental sites
  • Inventories
  • Research initiatives & results

More specific indicators are proposed for criterion 2.7 on the body of knowledge. Most cases involve compiling / keeping track of the initiatives:

  • Land visits
  • Initiatives for documenting knowledge
  • Land use studies
  • Inventories
  • Workshops/Symposiums/Conferences
  • Publications

These initiatives will be compiled by the Board Secretariat.

Objective 3 Participation

Ensure participation, in the form of consultation, by the Crees in the various forest activities operations planning and management processes


The concept of consultation of Native peoples translates differently depending on the context. Using a more overall approach, for example, the Québec government’s guide for consulting Native peoples[1] and the protocol of the First Nations of Québec and Labrador Sustainable Development Institute[2]  take an angle based on the Crown’s legal obligation to consult and accommodate. The environmental and social protection regime of the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement provides for a special status and involvement for the Cree people to protect their rights and guarantees. Further, many specific forest management frameworks, such as sustainable forest development principles and forest certification standards, define expectations regarding Native consultation and participation even more clearly.

In the Agreement, the Crees and Québec agree on various forums involving different players to ensure the Crees’ participation in the implementation of the adapted forestry regime. They also agree on specific processes for forest management plan elaboration, consultation and monitoring. The Agreement introduces the notions of real and significant participation in forest management activities, of taking into account wildlife habitat protection and of dispute resolution between users, through the creation of joint working groups.

Chapter 3 of the Agreement seeks to ensure that various consultation mechanisms ensure the Crees’ real and significant participation in the different forest activities operations planning and management processes. The Board seeks to evaluate the effectiveness of these consultation mechanisms in promoting the participation of the Crees.

To do so, the Board sought to look more closely at the concept of Cree participation to better understand their aspirations in this regard. Our findings show that the Crees have a multidimensional approach to participation. They clearly hope to have a concrete influence on the result of the process, as much as the process itself is adapted so as to respect and value their culture and promote their development and greater autonomy as a nation.

This led the Board to conduct a participatory exercise to identify the most significant criteria allowing consultation mechanism effectiveness with respect to the Crees’ participation-related aspirations to be assessed.

[1] Gouvernement du Québec. 2008. Guide intérimaire en matière de consultation des communautés autochtones. Groupe interministériel de soutien sur la consultation des Autochtones.

[2] Institut de développement durable des Premières Nations du Québec et du Labrador. 2005. Protocole de consultation des Premières Nations du Québec et du Labrador. Assemblée des Premières Nations du Québec et du Labrador.

CRITERION 3.1: EFFECTIVENESS OF MECHANISMS AND DISPUTE RESOLUTION

Participation is not an end in itself. Its main virtue is to lead to management proposals that are acceptable to all of the parties involved, ecologically appropriate and technically realistic. In this spirit, the consultation mechanisms under Chapter 3 of the Agreement must evidently show a real opportunity for the Crees to influence the process. They must also lead to concrete results so that the forest activities in the territory are not jeopardized by never-ending processes. Otherwise, participation may, on occasion, lead to divergent viewpoints and opinions that are difficult to reconcile. The dispute resolution mechanism implemented to deal with cases which have reached an impasse must be fair, equitable, efficient and satisfying.

Related provisions

Cree-Québec Forestry Board
Joint Working Groups
Joint Working Groups Coordinators
Schedule C-4

CRITERION 3.2: ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF EENOU STEWARDSHIP OF THE LAND

Significant participation by the Crees involves mechanisms adapted to their culture. The Crees would like consultation mechanisms to recognize their ecological knowledge, acquired through experience and observation, that can be very useful for understanding the impacts of forest operations in the territory and, especially, for minimizing these impacts on hunting, fishing and trapping activities. Their participation is intended to allow the individuals that have this knowledge (tallymen or other experienced trappers) to contribute their expertise rather than having non-Crees interpret the scope of the knowledge the Crees hold. The Crees would also like consultation mechanisms to attribute value to the tallymen’s stewardship role. Traditionally, the essence of the Cree culture is based on land stewardship activities, skills and ethics. Participation must recognize tallymen’s leadership in the ways the territory is organized.

Related provisions
Joint Working Groups
Schedule C-4
New agreement – 3.1 c)

CRITERION 3.3: CONTRIBUTION TO GOVERNANCE OF CREE INSTITUTIONS

Among the Crees, participation is seen as a way of being included in decision-making at all levels and a way of empowering community and regional institutions. The Crees have their own institutions and their own unique ways of exercising their governance. In order to promote greater autonomy on the part of the Crees, the consultation mechanisms under Chapter 3 of the Agreement must encourage Cree participation not only on the scale of the trapline but also through their institutions, whether they work at the community or nation level. These mechanisms must also give Cree institutions the opportunity of increasing their influence not only on management plans but also on other components of forest management.

Related provisions

Cree-Québec Forestry Board
Joint Working Groups
Joint Working Groups Coordinators
New agreement – 3.1 d)

CRITERION 3.4: INDIVIDUAL AND INSTUTITIONAL CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT

Forest operations planning and management uses a range of disciplinary knowledge and requires different technical tools. While participation should promote a greater role to be played by the Crees, it is important that the individuals and institutions involved have the appropriate knowledge and technical means needed to contribute in an enlightened manner. The consultation mechanisms under Chapter 3 of the Agreement must, therefore, be adapted accordingly and structured so as to foster the development of the Crees’ individual and institutional capacities where forest management is concerned. On the other hand, forest management in the territory involves a meeting of the two cultures. Taking the Crees’ interests into account requires forest managers to be made more aware of the Cree culture. This awareness can take the form of efforts managers make to increase their insight, the Crees’ openness to sharing their culture and the availability of tools ands mechanisms designed to foster a better understanding.

Related provisions
Spirit of the Agreement (Chapter2)

INDICATORS AND VERIFIERS

The proposed indicators for the participation criteria are:

Criteria 3.1

  • JWGs & Coordinators’ appreciation
  • Planners’ appreciation
  • Occurrence of conflicts

Criteria 3.2

  • Tallyman’s appreciation of his level of influence and of the participation process

Criteria 3.3

  • CNG/Band councils’ appreciation

Criteria 3.4

  • Existence of training programs/activities
  • Number of cross-cultural awareness activities

* An indicator on Cree institutional capacity remains to be defined

For all indicators, the verifiers proposed are:

  • JWG reports (format to be reviewed – frequency TBD)
  • JWG minutes of consultation meetings
  • Harmonisation follow-up grids
  • MNR monitoring reports (CQNRA statistics updates, five-year reports, others)
  • CQFB interviews/assessments (frequency 5 years)
  • TGIRT reports (if available)

More specifically, for the indicator on training programs/activities, an additional verifier is proposed:

  • CNG/CHRD assessment/data on training, budget, human resources, etc.

Implementation Action Plan
April 2014 

 Context


One of the key responsibilities of the Cree-Québec Forestry Board is to monitor, analyse and assess implementation of the forestry-related provisions of the Paix des Braves agreement. To do so, the Board has developed a framework to help it monitor the Adapted Forestry Regime’s objectives and provisions.

The Board’s monitoring framework is based primarily on three objectives complete with criteria, indicators and verifiers. These elements will be monitored over time to measure the provisions’ application, assess the objectives’ achievement and identify the factors or elements of the Agreement’s implementation that could benefit from Board action aimed at enhancing them.

A working committee involved in developing the Board’s monitoring framework developped an action plan for the implementation of the monitoring framework. Said plan was approved by the Board and is gradually being put in place.

Implementation Mechanisms


Cree-Québec Forestry Board

Directions and decisions

The monitoring framework is a tool created, first and foremost, for use by the Cree-Québec Forestry Board. Therefore, the Board is the main decision-making entity in the monitoring framework’s implementation. This means that the Board will be asked to provide directions for monitoring priorities (objectives and criteria) and for decisions related to using information resulting from the monitoring framework’s application.

The roles the Board is expected to play are:

  • Identify monitoring priorities;
  • Establish official collaboration with monitoring partner organizations;
  • Approve commitment of human, financial and material resources;
  • Receive and study the monitoring results;
  • If need be, meet with the individuals and groups involved in data collection and/or concerned by the monitoring;
  • Generate related actions / agree on follow-up in keeping with the results (Board advice, further analyses, tools development, research, etc.);
  • Approve publication of the monitoring results.

Monitoring Committee

Analysis and assessment

A monitoring committee will implement the Board’s framework-related directions on an ongoing basis. The committee will be primarily responsible for analyzing the data and assessing the monitoring’s preliminary results. It will provide the Board with the tools and information required to support its discussions and decisions related to the framework’s implementation. The committee will meet according to the needs anticipated by the Board or Board Secretariat. It is proposed that the monitoring committee be composed of two members from each party and a Secretariat representative.

In keeping with Board directions, the monitoring committee’s responsibilities will be:

  • Analyze and interpret the results obtained / bring the experts required on board;
  • Meet with the groups concerned by Chapter 3’s implementation and involved in monitoring;
  • Present the results of monitoring to the Board and make recommendations;
  • On an ongoing basis, evaluate the monitoring framework and propose adjustments to its contents (indicators and verifiers).

Board Secretariat

Coordination

The Board Secretariat will coordinate performance of the different tasks linked to monitoring. It will be the depositary of the monitoring-related data base and will organize the meetings or workshops required to analyze the results.

The Board Secretariat will:

  • Coordinate data collection;
  • Commit /coordinate the resources required;
  • Maintain a data base for all criteria and indicators;
  • Sort the data and conduct preliminary analyses, if need be;
  • Organize monitoring committee workshops / keep the Board informed on an ongoing basis;
  • Write the reports and publications linked to the monitoring.

Human, Financial and Material Resources


The Board’s monitoring framework has been created with the preoccupation to maximize the use of existing data and recourse to those concerned by the implementation of the Adapted Forestry Regime for collection of the missing data.

To begin with, the monitoring framework will make use of the Board’s and its collaborators’ existing resources (human, financial and material).

This approach will entail reorganizing the Board Secretariat’s work, involving party representatives in the monitoring committee and ensuring the Joint Working Groups’ (JWG) and their coordinators’ collaboration for collection of the basic data. In the case of more detailed analyses, the Board could bring additional resources on board by adjusting its budget framework.

This strategy will require the Board to establish official collaboration agreements with outside organizations for their participation in data collection or for use of their data.

The Board will be better able to re-assess this approach after the first year of the monitoring framework’s implementation. Workshops with the JWG coordinators will make it possible to evaluate whether the JWG’s workload due to the framework monitoring exercise is too heavy and/or whether additional resources are necessary.

State of reference / Benchmarking


Establishing a reference state / benchmarking is often used in monitoring mechanisms to measure progression or determine evolution over time.

In the case at hand, this involves defining a zero time from which progression is measured for those components of the monitoring framework that lend themselves to doing so. This initial measurement could refer to the current state or go back in the past if data is available or measurable. This could be useful in some cases, given that implementation of the Paix des Braves began in 2002.

However, not all indicators lend themselves to benchmarking. In many cases, we want to assess whether objectives were met or the occurrence of problems was detected. It is not always relevant to measure progression over time.

Where the Board is concerned, benchmarking will not be an end in itself but rather an opportunity. It is proposed that the monitoring committee study each indicator and its verifiers to assess the relevance and feasibility of establishing a benchmark for it. This exercise could be carried out in the first year the monitoring framework is implemented for cases deemed suitable.

Schedule


Ongoing assessment

The Board has expressed the desire that the monitoring framework’s different components be assessed on an ongoing basis. This means that results will be analyzed and problems detected as indicators (quantitative and qualitative) are measured/assessed.

Each indicator’s assessment frequency will be determined according to:

  • The frequency assigned to each verifiers (annual, three-year or five-year);
  • Board priorities; the Board could speed up its verifications or triangulate its data sources if early signs prove problematic.

The Board will be informed of the results as soon as a significant volume of data allows an indicator to be qualified or quantified.

Five-year overall coverage

While the accent may be on one or more specific objectives and/or criteria, depending on the Board’s priorities, it is foreseen that monitoring will cover each of the monitoring framework’s criteria at least once every five (5) years. This way, the Board will have all of the information needed to proceed with an overall five-year assessment of Chapter 3’s implementation, should it wish to do so.

2014-2015 and 2015-2016 Workplan


Objective 1: Traditional way of life / Objective 3: Participation

  • Organize a workshop with the JWG coordinators to develop the data collection mechanisms to be assigned to the JWGs;
  • Foresee one or more JWG briefing / training meetings;
  • Explore the possibility of including quantitative indicators associated with the objectives linked to the traditional way of life and participation.

Objective 2: Sustainable development

Economic axis
  • Establish official collaboration with the Bureau de mise en marché des bois (BMMB) for the collection of economic data;
  • In partnership with the BMMB:
    • Describe the economic indicators chosen;
    • Create composite indices for presentation of the results;
    • Formalize an economic dashboard;
    • Benchmark – document accessible past data;
  • Check whether it is possible to obtain specific economic data from the Crees and the Jamesians:
    • Establish official collaboration with the corresponding entities, if need be;
  • Collect data for Year 1.
Environmental axis
  • With the MRN’s and Faune Québec’s collaborators:
    • Select the biodiversity indicators that are significant for the context of Chapter 3;
    • Select the wildlife indicators that are significant for the context of Chapter 3;
  • Validate the indicators with the Cree stakeholders concerned;
  • Establish official collaboration with the entities (Québec or Cree) to be involved for data collection / sharing;
  • Benchmark (if need be) – document accessible past data.

Framework management

  • Adjust the monitoring framework in keeping with the new Agreement negotiated by the parties;
  • Assess the opportunities for benchmarking through the framework;
  • Implement communication initiatives:
    • Publish a short document explaining the framework;
    • Present the monitoring framework to the parties / interest groups;
    • Develop a section of the Board’s website dedicated to monitoring.