University of Alberta professor Dr. Hadley Friedland has played a significant role in helping McGill University. It was work towards meeting the university’s commitment to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s call for Canadian law schools to educate students on the legacy of Indigenous culture.
The McGill faculty of law launched a week-long intensive course on Indigenous law as part of its mandatory first-year integration workshop. The first of its kind at McGill, the course sets out to introduce first-year law students to Indigenous legal tradition.
Friedland and Val Napoleon from the University of Victoria co-taught the course with McGill professor Hoi Kong.
“The focus was on learning how to learn,” Friedland said. “My objective …was to provide all first-year law students with some common theoretical and practical tools for approaching Indigenous laws, and about resources and methods for engaging with Indigenous laws today.”
After the course comes to an end, students will continue to explore Indigenous culture in a mandatory criminal justice course. In their second year, they will also be introduced to Indigenous property law.