(Image / University of Victoria Twitter)

UVic will soon be home to a national Canadian Indigenous law centre thanks to the support of a $9.1 million investment from the federal government.

The new centre is being designed to be an accessible space for cultural engagement and discussion and will be the first institution to offer a joint degree program in Canadian Common Law and Indigenous Legal Orders (JD/JID) in Canada.

The facility will also be the first to feature an Indigenous Law Research Unit, and is intended to revitalize indigenous legal systems and the significant roles that they play in both Indigenous communities and the country as a whole.

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“Our government’s investment in the University of Victoria will create local jobs, and significant Indigenous input will go into the design and construction of the national centre for Indigenous law,” said federal Minister of Innovation, Science. and Economic Development, Navdeep Bains, in a statement.

“The building will use innovative technology to teach and connect at a national and international level regarding Indigenous law.”

Besides the $9.1 million contribution to construct the centre, the Department of Justice Canada will also be investing $173,300 over three years to UVic’s Faculty of Law to help fund courses and field studies in Indigenous communities.

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“Canada is firmly committed to implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action to ensure Indigenous peoples and knowledge are included and respected as we build a stronger Canada,” said federal Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Carolyn Bennett in a statement.

“The national centre for Indigenous law will create a space for conducting the research and providing the teaching necessary to ensure Indigenous laws will guide the paths of self-determination and reconciliation.”