Indigenous Relations

At an an historic ceremony on June 3, 2023, an official CLBC Board statement committing to advance reconciliation with Indigenous peoples was signed. Click here to read the CLBC Board Statement of Commitment on Advancing Reconciliation. You can read more about the signing ceremony here.

On this page:

  • Accessing CLBC Services
  • About Us
  • Indigenous Advisory Committee
  • Elders Advisory
  • COVID-19 Information and Resources
  • News and Stories

Accessing CLBC services

CLBC has been providing services in First Nation communities since August 2014. Eligible individuals and their families residing within British Columbia’s urban, rural, First Nations (Status and Non-Status), Metis, and Inuit communities can access CLBC funded services depending on their needs and the availability of resources.

Click here to learn how to access CLBC services in and outside of Indigenous communities.

Click here to download the “Supporting Indigenous Communities” poster.

About Us

CLBC has a dedicated Indigenous Relations team that works with Indigenous partners to help eligible Indigenous individuals and families access CLBC services. They also work with CLBC staff to build relationships with Indigenous communities in each region.

As a result of the partnerships with Indigenous communities and leaders, the Indigenous Relations team has the following four strategies:

  • Develop meaningful and respectful connections to Indigenous people, including people with lived experience, their families, supporters, and communities.
  • Shifting CLBC culture towards reconciliation
  • Creating more cultural safety within CLBC operations and services
  • Reframing service delivery to support the drafted principles

The overarching emphasis of many of these activities is developing and strengthening relationships with Indigenous people, families, supporters, communities, and partners in culturally safe ways.

This work will be carried out as part of the 2022-2025 Strategic Plan. The partnerships that CLBC builds will act as the foundation for the work that the Indigenous Relations team will do well into the future.

A logo with an Indigenous design that represents CLBC's Indigenous Advisory Committee. The logo colours are blue, green and black. It is an image of a raven with outstretched wings and a person within its chest. Between the raven's wingtips are three symbols: an inukshuk, a feather and an infinity symbol.

The Indigenous Advisory Committee logo: the raven symbolizes the creation of a new path, transformation of the old one, knowledge of the past and the truth to move forward. The person inside the raven represents the Committee’s person-centered focus and dedication to its work within CLBC. The symbols between the wings recognize the three distinct groups of Indigenous people in B.C.: the inukshuk for the Inuit people, the feather for First Nations people, and the infinity symbol for the Métis people. The blue and green represent the connection to CLBC. To learn more, click on the logo above.

Indigenous Advisory Committee

The Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) was started in 2012 to advise CLBC on how to achieve its vision of “communities of belonging, lives with connection” for Indigenous individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

The IAC consists of Indigenous individuals, families, and community members from across BC. They meet quarterly to provide advice, share information, and identify strategies to best provide culturally relevant services to Indigenous individuals and their families. The Committee provides input to enhance relationships with CLBC staff and First Nations, Metis, and Inuit community

Read the Committee’s Terms of Reference here.

Committee members

  • Neil Belanger, IAC Chair, Provincial Rep
  • Frankie Able, IAC member, Hazelton Community Services
  • Charlene Barney, IAC member, self-advocate
  • Nicky Cairncross, Advocate for Service Quality, MSDPR
  • Brian Govereau, IAC Member Provincial Rep.
  • Eugene Harry, IAC member, Squamish Elder
  • Gwen Campbell McArthur, IAC member, Elder specialized in cultural safety and Indigenous cultural competency and standards of practice for the Canadian Federation of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing
  • Ted Nordio, IAC Member Provincial Rep
  • Rheanna Robinson, IAC member, University of Northern BC
  • Sue Sterling, IAC member Provincial Rep.
  • Sherwin Strong, IAC member, CLBC/self-advocate
  • Jackie Watts, IAC member Provincial Rep.
  • Erin Wiltse, IAC member, First Nation Health Authority
  • Joely Viveiros, IAC member

CLBC staff members

  • Jennifer Parisian, Indigenous Practice Advisor

Elders Advisory

CLBC’s Indigenous Relations built an Elders Advisory to be able to engage with the wisdom and knowledge Indigenous Elders hold. They meet monthly and are called upon for consultations with CLBC staff who are working with individuals receiving our funded services.

The cultural perspective provided by the Elders Advisory helps ground the work that CLBC does in a culturally informed way. The Advisory is made up of six Elders who represent five First Nation communities from around British Columbia.

Advisory Members

  • Eugene Harry, Cowichan Tribes, resides in Squamish
  • Gwen Campbell MacArthur, Métis
  • Linus Lucas, Nuu-Chan-Nulth, Port Alberni
  • Ruth Hetu, Saulteau First Nation, Moberly Lake
  • Cheryl Schweizer, Métis
  • Gerry Ambers, Nuu-Chan-Nulth, resides in Victoria
  • Cheryl Schweizer
  • Joyce Roberts

Information and Resources for Indigenous Individuals and Families on COVID-19

As First Nations, Metis, and Inuit peoples take steps to keep every person safe from threat of the COVID-19 virus, we’re reminded of the strength and resiliency of people when we rely on each other.

To help make information easier to find, CLBC in consultation with the Indigenous Advisory Committee has compiled a page of resources to share with Indigenous individuals we support, which you can find here.

News and Stories

Click here to find news and stories that have been published on this website about CLBC’s work with Indigenous communities and people.