You can find links and resources here to help you with your own projects or learn more about Indigenous Law.

Introductory Indigenous Law Resources

ILRU Publications

Coast Salish Laws Relating to Child and Caregiver Nurturance & Safety

NIȽ TU,O Child and Family Services (NIȽ TU,O), in partnership with the Indigenous Law Research Unit (ILRU), created a Toolkit on Child and Caregiver Nurturance and Safety centred on Coast Salish knowledge and law. The Toolkit hopes to educate and empower families, children, service providers, and agencies to have a better understanding of how to be in supportive community while respecting and honouring Salish law. It is accompanied by a casebook and two activity books.

Download Toolkit
Download Abridged Casebook
Download Activity Book 1
Download Activity Book 2

Note: The abridged casebook is for public use and distribution. A more extensive casebook for community members is available upon request. Please email for further information.

NAWENDIWIN: The art of being related – Anishinaabeg Kinship-centred Governance and Family law

The Niijkiwendidaa Anishnaabekwewag Services Circle partnered with ILRU over two years to produce this report which shines light on Anishinaabeg kinship-centred governance and family law. The report aims to help Anishinaabeg and other Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members and service providers have a greater understanding of how to work with and empower families and children in a way that honours and respects Anishinaabeg laws.

Download Nawendiwin Report
Download Nawendiwin Casebook

Secwepémc Lands & Resources Law

The ILRU collaborated with the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council to articulate Secwepémc laws relating to land and resources. The final report includes a comprehensive analysis, casebook, and glossary of Secwépemctsín terms used in the analysis. The team also produced a clear language Secwepémc Lands and Resources Law Summary of the legal principles and processes.

Download Secwepemc Lands & Resources Law Final Report
Download Secwepémc Lands and Resources Law Summary

Mikomosis and the Wetiko Graphic Novel, Teaching Guide, and Video

The ILRU-designed graphic novel explores Cree and Canadian legal approaches to danger, harm, and wrongdoing through the lens of a fictionalized historical event and is accompanied by a teaching guide. To make this resource more accesible, former ILRU students recorded a telling of the story with images from the graphic novel included.

See video.
To purchase hardcopies of the graphic novel and teaching guide, see Purchase.

Gender Inside Indigenous Law Toolkit and Casebook

This toolkit and casebook are designed to generate discussions about Indigenous law and critical gender issues. Included is the Skirt Short video to generate discussion about gender, clothing and identity.

Download Gender Inside Indigenous Law Toolkit and Casebook.

See ILRU Gender Project Skirt Short video.

A Toolkit for On-Reserve Matrimonial Real Property Dispute Resolution

A toolkit designed to inform communities and individuals about dispute resolution options, major issues and important questions to consider when developing matrimonial real property laws, including the relevance and applicability of Indigenous legal traditions.

Download A Toolkit for On-Reserve Matrimonial Real Property Dispute Resolution

Accessing Justice and Reconciliation (AJR)

The Accessing Justice and Reconciliation Project (AJR Project) was a collaborative research project involving seven different communities across six different legal traditions. The AJR project also supported the development of the Mikomosis and the Wetiko graphic novel and accompanying teaching guide.


Academic Resources & Publications

Selected Academic Works

  • “Indigenous Law and Legal Pluralism” (Special Edition of the McGill Law Journal). McGill Law Journal, vol. 61, no. 4, 2016.
    Explores the identification of Indigenous law, the (in)ability of Canadian state law to recognize it, and other themes. [Website with access to PDF]
  • Friedland, Hadley, Bonnie Leonard, Jessica Asch, and Kelly Mortimer. “Porcupine and Other Stories: Legal Relations in Secwépemcúlecw.” Revue Générale De Droit, vol. 48, no. 1, 2018.
    Discusses the the purpose, methods, outcomes and limits of the Secwépemc Lands and Resources Laws project produced in collaboration with the ILRU. [Website with access to PDF]
  • Napoleon, Val. “Tsilhqot’in Law of Consent.” UBC Law Review, vol. 48, no. 3, 2015.
    A critical look at the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision: Tsilqot’in v. British Columbia. [5mb PDF]
  • Napoleon, Val, and Hadley Friedland. “Indigenous Legal Traditions from Roots to Renaissance.” Pursuing Justice: An Introduction to Justice Studies, 2nd ed., edited by Margot Hurlbert, Fernwood Publishing, 2018.
    See also this version: Indigenous Legal Traditions: Roots to Renaissance
    (by Val Napoleon and Hadley Friedland)
    Explores past, present and future debates about Indigenous laws, oppression of Indigenous laws through colonization, and contemporary recovery and revitalization of Indigenous laws today. [Website with access to PDF]
  • Snyder, Emily. “Queering Indigenous Legal Studies.” Dalhousie Law Journal, vol. 38, no. 2, 2015.
    Examines sex, gender, and sexuality in relation to Indigenous laws to discuss what it means to queer Indigenous legal studies. [CanLII]

Additional Online Resources 

Curricular Pods

Materials for teaching Indigenous law in the law school classroom.

See: Curricular Pods

Reconciliation Syllabus Blog

This blog is an invitation to law professors across Canada to gather together ideas about resources and pedagogies to support recommendation #28 of the TRC Calls to Action: the call for instructors to rethink both what and how they teach.

See: Reconciliation Syllabus Blog


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