Madam Speaker, before I begin, I will let you know that I am sharing my time with the member for Vancouver Granville.
I am pleased to stand today to speak to the work by Justice Canada to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act. It is a key piece to reconciliation, ensuring the effective implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act in consultation and co-operation with indigenous peoples.
This initiative is a key priority for our government. It brings to light the commitment made in the 2021 Speech from the Throne to implement the declaration at the federal level. It also supports the directions in Justice Canada's mandate letter to prioritize the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act and to work with indigenous people to accelerate the joint development of an action plan to achieve the goals of the declaration.
The main estimates include $3.3 million to support broad and distinctions-based engagements with indigenous peoples and to develop an action plan by June 2023 as well as annual progress reports to Parliament for the 2021-22 and then 2022-23 fiscal years.
Budget 2021 provided short-term funding to Justice Canada, which was $5.8 million over two years through to March 2023, to support the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act in consultation and co-operation with indigenous people.
Budget 2021 also provided $23.6 million over two years to CIRNAC to support indigenous participation in the engagement process, including support for indigenous-led consultations. On December 10, 2021, the government launched a broad and inclusive engagement process with aboriginal peoples and a call for proposals for funding for aboriginal participation in the process, including support for aboriginal-led consultations.
The call for proposals closed on April 15 of this year, and 151 projects were approved in whole or in part. The department ensured that the participating groups reflected first nations, Inuit and Métis peoples across Canada. Regardless of whether or not a particular indigenous governing body, representative organization, group or community has received funding, there will be a number of avenues for them to contribute their perspectives on the UNDA implementation.
Timelines are tight. The UNDA put in place a two-year time frame to complete the action plan by June 2023. The plan must include a broad suite of measures, including, but not limited to, measures to tackle violence and discrimination against indigenous peoples and measures to promote understanding through human rights education. Funding is available to communities, nations and organizations across the country to support the participation of partners in the engagement process, with a focus on supporting indigenous-led work to identify priority areas for the implementation of the UN declaration.
Budget 2022 proposes to provide $65.8 million over five years starting in 2022-23, and $11 million ongoing, to Justice Canada and Natural Resources Canada to accelerate work to meet legislated requirements under the UNDA, including the co-development of an action plan with indigenous partners.
While the details of the budget are still being reviewed, we expect that part of this investment will be to support indigenous capacity going forward. This generational work will help advance reconciliation and forge stronger and renewed nation-to-nation, Inuit-to-Crown and government-to-government relationships.
The main objective of this funding that is received is to support both departments' capacity to advance reconciliation through a three-year funding for the reconciliation secretariat. It is also to provide capacity funding directly to indigenous groups, organizations and communities to enable them to collaborate with the department on shared justice priorities, including developing an indigenous justice strategy.
As emphasized in the Speech from the Throne 2021, the government remains highly committed to advancing reconciliation with indigenous peoples and accelerating the work on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's calls to action, the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people's calls for justice and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
This funding supports key government priorities, including the implementation of the direction in the justice minister's mandate letter from 2022 to develop, in consultation and co-operation with provinces, territories and indigenous partners, an indigenous justice strategy to address systemic discrimination and the overrepresentation of indigenous people in the criminal justice system.
Of this funding, $13.2 million will enable the department to build its capacity, which had never previously been funded, to work in co-operation with indigenous governments and representatives in order to continue to develop the relationships needed for reconciliation over the next two years. Importantly, $11 million or 45% of this funding has been provided directly to indigenous groups to support indigenous-led engagement within communities and organizations over the next two years and collaboration with the department on an indigenous justice strategy to develop solutions to justice-specific barriers that indigenous people face, including systemic racism and overrepresentation in the justice system.
Policies, programs and legislative initiatives based on the lived experiences of indigenous peoples will benefit first nations, Inuit and Métis people as they seek to reduce contact with the mainstream justice system, promote access to fair and equitable treatment in the justice system and revitalize indigenous legal systems.
The departmental funding will also support department-led engagement sessions with key stakeholders to ensure that a broad spectrum of indigenous voices and perspectives is fully reflected in the indigenous justice strategy.
Provinces and territories will be key partners in this work on the indigenous justice strategy, as they are responsible for the administration of justice all across Canada. Accordingly, the Department of Justice will anticipate leveraging existing federal-provincial-territorial partnership fora to engage jurisdictions, while also using the new departmental funding to convene regional dialogues that involve provincial and territorial governments.
Further to reforming the mainstream justice system, this is another area of work that is expected to be advanced under the indigenous justice strategy. The main objective of this initiative is to increase the Department of Justice's capacity to continue to lead negotiations with indigenous groups on the administration of justice in order to ultimately support those indigenous groups in fully achieving their self-determination. This essential initiative responds to a number of key government commitments, including implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, specifically call to action 42, and the National Inquiry into the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls report.
The Minister of Justice's 2022 mandate letter commits to advancing the priorities of indigenous communities to regain jurisdiction over the administration of justice in collaboration with the provinces and territories and to support the revitalization of indigenous laws, legal systems and traditions.
I am running out of time, and I have a lot more to say on this topic, but I will say that after over 150 years of top-down direction for indigenous peoples in our country, it is high time that we really invested in building that people-to-people relationship, ensuring the empowerment of indigenous communities all across Canada and ensuring that self-determination and self-governance are a priority.