The Union of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq (UNSM) is a tribal organization that has been established for 50 years. It held its first meeting on July 11, 1969, and ratified its constitution on September 13, 1969, during its first annual general assembly. It was formally incorporated under the Nova Scotia’s Societies’ Act on July 3, 1970.
UNSM came into existence to provide a unified political voice for the Mi’kmaq people of the province in the face of a proposed federal government policy to assimilate Canada’s First Nations people into mainstream society.
Faced with the prospect of extinction, a group of Mi’kmaq leaders formed what was then called the Union of Nova Scotia Indians (renamed the Union of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq in 2019) to provide political leadership for the Mi’kmaq nation. UNSM operates under its original terms of the Memorandum of Association that was registered in 1970, and its present By-Law that was adopted in July 1992, and later amended during its 28th annual assembly held in Waycobah in July 1997.
UNSM has a long history of advocating and litigating for Aboriginal and treaty rights, and now adds focus on providing innovative governance capacity services to member bands.
UNSM’s works to provide member bands with modern governance knowledge and best practices. Our goal is that each community can further shape these governance templates and concepts towards their own unique needs. It is exciting and fast moving times for the Union of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq and we are up to the challenges ahead!