N.S. offers help to descendants of black loyalists denied clear title to land

HALIFAX -- The Nova Scotia government says it will offer free support to descendants of black loyalists still trying to get clear title to their land after more than two centuries.

See Full Article

The province provided land to black loyalists in the communities of 1800s, but the Crown didn't give land titles -- though it did for white settlers.

Now under a provincial pilot program, residents of East and North Preston as well as Cherry Brook who have applied to make a claim will get free advice from lawyers and land surveyors.

A release from the province states the resources are expected to help determine issues such as existence of a will, unclear boundaries and "confusion" about land ownership. It adds that clarity of legal title will help community members enjoy free hold on their land and identify ownership for tax purposes.

The Department of Natural Resources has also posted a summer job for a law student who will perform outreach and work with community residents.

Dwight Adams, a member of a community group advocating for the clearing of the titles, says the announcement is a step forward but further funding is needed to mediate disputes.

The hiring of a law student will help, but it won't suffice, he said.

"We could have 30 applications and we could have 30 conflicts and the application process doesn't mean much if we have two individuals claiming the same piece of property," said Adams, adding that the province needs to hire people from within the community to mediate disputes.

The department is working with the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society and Association of Nova Scotia Land Surveyors to provide the free services.

Darrel Pink, executive director of the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society, calls the program a "significant first step" to solving the property problem in the communities.

He says the focus initially will be on properties where there isn't a dispute over boundaries, or the dispute can be easily resolved.

Pink says over time the hope is also to develop a process to resolve conflicts.

"We're talking about 500 properties and we don't know yet how many of them involve conflicting claims," he said.

Pink says one of the challenges is that the legislation governing efforts to establish land titles for the descendants of the black loyalists was passed in 1964, and there is different land registration system in place now.

"It's about trying to figure out what the best approach and we have a very competent group of lawyers willing to work with government ... on how to reconcile these two regimes to make this system effective," he said.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Activists slam punishment of raped girl who had abortion

    World News CTV News
    JAKARTA, Indonesia -- Activists on Monday criticized a six-month prison sentence given to a 15-year-old Indonesian girl who had an abortion after being repeatedly raped by her brother. The district court in Muara Bulian in Jambi province also sentenced the girl's 18-year-old brother on Thursday to two years' imprisonment for having sex with a minor. Source
  • 'Storm before the calm': Iran dismisses Trump's threat to country's leader

    World News CBC News
    Iranians on Monday shrugged off the possibility that a bellicose exchange of words between U.S. President Donald Trump and his Iranian counterpart could escalate into military conflict, but expressed growing concern America's stepped-up sanctions could damage their fragile economy. Source
  • Deadly L.A. market shooting started with domestic feud

    World News CTV News
    LOS ANGELES -- A man's feud with his grandmother turned into a bizarre and deadly confrontation that ended with a supermarket worker dead and dozens of people held hostage in a store kilometres away. Gene Evin Atkins, 28, was booked Sunday on suspicion of murder after an explosion of violence that a relative said may have been brewing for weeks. Source
  • North American International Auto Show to be held in June starting 2020

    World News CBC News
    Organizers of the North American International Auto Show say that starting in 2020 the annual Detroit event will take place in June instead of January. A statement from the show Monday said the new schedule will enable automakers, industry suppliers and others to "deliver dynamic exhibits and experiential opportunities outside of the show's four walls" at downtown's Cobo Center. Source
  • Latest updates: 2 victims and gunman dead in Toronto shooting

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- The latest on a mass shooting in Toronto (all times local): 7:00 a.m. Ontario's police watchdog says a second person is dead after gunman shot 14 people in Toronto's Greektown neighbourhood. Source
  • Prominent S. Korea politician found dead in possible suicide

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of -- A prominent liberal South Korean politician embroiled in a corruption scandal was found dead on Monday, police said, in what appeared to be one of the country's highest-profile suicides in recent years. Source
  • Survivors of duck-boat sinking join hundreds at Missouri memorial

    World News CBC News
    The 17 people killed when a tourist boat sank in a Missouri lake were remembered Sunday during a service attended by hundreds of people in the tourism community of Branson. A church bell at Williams Chapel at College of the Ozarks chimed 17 times for those who died Thursday at Table Rock Lake. Source
  • Archeologists dig up history of men lost to Spanish Flu in Matapédia, Que.

    Canada News CBC News
    For more than 40 years, amateur historian Roger Delaunais has been taking care of a remote grave site in rural Matapédia in the Gaspé region. Delaunais wrote a book about the camp, where 100 years ago, nine lumberjacks died of the Spanish flu during the First World War. Source
  • Three suspects arrested in U.K. acid attack on 3-year-old boy

    World News CTV News
    LONDON - British police have arrested three more suspects in connection with an apparent acid attack on a 3-year-old boy who suffered severe burns. West Mercia Police said Monday that three men, ages 22, 25 and 26, are being questioned in London on suspicion of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm. Source
  • 'A lot more vigorous': Paralyzed Humboldt Bronco in Calgary to work with new physio

    Canada News CTV News
    CALGARY - Paralyzed Humboldt Broncos player Ryan Straschnitzki is drenched in sweat after a workout that more closely resembled military boot camp than physiotherapy. The 19-year-old's two-hour routine at Synaptic: Spinal Cord Injury and Neuro Rehabilitation Centre in Calgary included chin ups, boxing, heavy rope training and pulling himself into a full standing position from his wheelchair just with the use of his arms. Source