The Toquaht Nation Constitution outlines the structure of our government and the responsibilities of each branch. We are committed to upholding the highest ethical standards and using our resources efficiently. The Constitution was approved by eligible voters on May 14, 2007, with amendments approved on January 27, 2014. You can read the full Constitution here.
The preamble of the Constitution declares our Toquaht identity and affirms the individual rights and freedoms of our citizens.
A. Declaration of Toquaht Identity and Territorial Existence
We, the people of the Toquaht, by this Constitution, declare our unique identity as a Nation and claim our rightful place in Canadian society.
We have existed from time immemorial and have occupied and used the lands, waters and resources of our traditional territory, as set out in Schedule 1 to this Constitution, throughout history.
We draw our identity from our relationship to our lands and from our rich heritage, culture, language and our stories, myths and oral traditions.
We honour our ancestors and our Elders and commit ourselves to the values that they preserved for us, values that provide us dignity and enhance our humanity.
As self-determining peoples, we accept the responsibilities inherent in governing ourselves and seek, with the assistance of Naas (the Creator) to govern with wisdom and respect for all people.
Through the act of governing, we assume the power to preserve our natural world and enhance our identity.
B. Declaration of Toquaht Rights and Values
From this historic foundation we, the Toquaht people, have adopted and shaped fundamental values that unite us, define us and upon which this Constitution is based. These values include:
(a) a belief in, and reverence for, the Creator,
(b) honouring our ancestors,
(c) respecting our Elders,
(d) abiding by an internal order based on our ḥaʔwiiḥ and our ḥaaḥuułi,
(e) respecting our family and kinship systems,
(f) our unique language, and
(g) a respect for the land, air, water and environment which encompasses the ḥaaḥuułi of our ḥaʔwiiḥ.
As a distinct people, we possess certain fundamental and inalienable human rights, rights which have never been extinguished, ceded or surrendered. These include, without limitation:
(a) the right to our traditional territory, including rights to water and beds of water,
(b) the right to resources within our traditional territory,
(c) the right to govern within our traditional territory,
(d) the right to utilize and protect our language,
(e) the right to practice, protect and enhance our culture,
(f) the right to the wealth of our traditional territory and a sound economic foundation,
(g) the right to protect our sacred and spiritual sites,
(h) the right to protect our family and kinship systems, and
(i) the right to define ourselves and the criteria for the identification of our citizens.
C. This Constitution
This Constitution and all powers and jurisdictions established in it, are made in accordance with and subject to the Maa-nulth Treaty.