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

  • 'Justine did not have to die': Minneapolis police chief addresses shooting of woman who called 911

    World News CBC News
    The fatal shooting of an Australian woman by a Minneapolis, Minn., police officer responding to her 911 call "should not have happened," police Chief Janee Harteau said, adding that the officer's actions "go against who we are in the department. Source
  • Israel limits Muslim access to Jerusalem site amid tensions

    World News CBC News
    Israel banned Muslim men under the age of 50 from a contested Jerusalem shrine on Friday, ahead of expected protests over the installation of metal detectors there. Police reinforcements poured into Jerusalem's Arab neighbourhoods in the morning, particularly in an around the walled Old City where the shrine is located. Source
  • Even after Trump warning, Mueller likely to probe president's finances: reports

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump's growing anxiety about the federal Russia probe has spilled into public view with his warning in a New York Times interview earlier this week that special counsel Robert Mueller would be out of bounds if he dug into the Trump family's finances. Source
  • In South Sudan, a child soldier long thought dead comes back

    World News CTV News
    JUBA, South Sudan -- She had no body to bury, so the grieving mother kneeled in the dirt outside her small hut, recited psalms and simply traced her finger over the uneven earth. It was December 2015, a year after Nyayan Koang’s boy was abducted by government soldiers at the age of just 14 to fight in South Sudan’s army. Source
  • Asian ISIS supporters galvanized by Philippine city siege: report

    World News CTV News
    JAKARTA, Indonesia - The attack by Islamic State group-affiliated militants on a Philippine city has galvanized its Southeast Asian supporters and spells trouble for the region, a top terrorism researcher said Friday as the occupation of Marawi nears two months despite a sustained military offensive. Source
  • Quake damages buildings on Greek island; 2 killed, 120 hurt

    World News Toronto Sun
    ATHENS, Greece — A powerful earthquake shook the Greek resort island of Kos early Friday morning, damaging older and historic buildings and the main port, killing at least two people and causing more than 120 injuries, authorities said. Source
  • Trump legal team looking to investigate Mueller's investigative team

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON - U.S. President Donald Trump's legal team is evaluating potential conflicts of interest among members of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigative team, three people with knowledge of the matter said Thursday. The revelations come as Mueller's investigation appears likely to probe some of the Trump family's business ties. Source
  • South Korea calls for North Korea to respond to talk offers

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - South Korea on Friday urged North Korea to accept its offers for talks as Pyongyang continued to ignore Seoul's proposal for a military meeting to ease animosities along their tense border. Source
  • Coffee recalled: It's not caffeine keeping you up

    World News Toronto Sun
    GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas — A Texas coffee company is recalling one of its roasts because it was making some men a bit too excited. Bestherbs Coffee LLC issued the voluntary recall for its New of Kopi Jantan Tradisional Natural Herbs Coffee after the U.S. Source
  • Parole hearing for Paul Bernardo pushed back

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Schoolgirl killer Paul Bernardo’s bid for parole has been delayed. The notorious sicko began his application for day parole last year. He was scheduled to have a hearing in August, but that has since been pushed back to October, according to various media reports. Source