UBCIC Remembers Beloved Kluskus (Lhoosk’uz) Leader and Trailblazer Chief Roger Jimmie

Statement
October 20, 2021

UBCIC Remembers Beloved Kluskus (Lhoosk’uz) Leader and Trailblazer Chief Roger Jimmie

(Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaʔɬ/sel̓ílwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C. – October 20, 2021) The Union of BC Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Chief Roger Jimmie. A former leader of the Kluskus First Nation, UBCIC mourns not only the loss of an incredibly fearless Warrior in our endless battle to realize a full measure of our Indigenous Title and Rights, but a loving father and grandfather. We offer our deepest condolences to his family, friends, and community members and we remember Chief Roger Jimmie’s incredibly rich and full life.

Chief Roger Jimmie was a survivor and veteran of the Indian Residential School System, having attended St. Joseph’s Mission at Williams Lake. Despite the discrimination and prejudice that was wielded against him and his people, Chief Jimmie was fiercely proud of his Kluskus heritage and fought for Indigenous self-determination and sovereignty, never settling for anything less than what was just and right. He worked with other Chiefs in the Williams Lake area to protest and eventually have the Department of Indian Affairs Office there closed due to its inadequate services and management of the housing and social programs. Chief Jimmie always wanted to uplift his people and when he saw the opportunity for change, he never hesitated to grasp it. It was unsurprising then that he became an integral member of the Constitution Express, the landmark movement organized in 1980 and 1981 to protest the lack of recognition of Aboriginal rights in the proposed patriation of the Canadian Constitution by the Pierre Trudeau government. Led by Grand Chief George Manuel, Chief Jimmie worked with other notable Chiefs, leaders, and activists to lobby the government to ensure that Canada would recognize, not abolish Indigenous rights. Chief Jimmie was part of the delegation of 137 Chiefs and delegates who met in London, England to enlighten British Parliament and champion for a Constitution that would uphold Indigenous dignity and authority. UBCIC thanks Chief Jimmie for his role in paving a pathway to reconciliation and sovereignty and will remember him fondly for the strength and wisdom he used to empower his Nation and Indigenous peoples around the world.

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Media inquiries:

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President of UBCIC: (250-490-5314)
Chief Don Tom, Vice-President of UBCIC: (604-290-6083)
Kukpi7 Judy Wilson, Secretary-Treasurer of UBCIC: (c/o 778-866-0548)

 

UBCIC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

For more information please visit www.ubcic.bc.ca

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