Membership Code

Our Membership Code lays out the rules and ways for becoming a Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Member based on our laws and traditions. Originally developed in 1987, it was updated in 2000 and 2013.

Under our current Code, status under the Indian Act is a requirement to apply for Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Membership. The federal government has since made changes to status eligibility through Bill S-3 to remove sex-based discrimination in status registration rules.

Members have raised concerns that the current Membership Code leaves out some of our grandchildren and children. Bill S-3 provides an opportunity to engage our Members on what changes they would like to see and update our Code.

The project is led by Ts’ixwts’ixwnítway (Member Services), with close support from the Membership Committee and the Membership Appeals Committee, and guidance from Nexwsxwníw̓ntm ta Úxwumixw (Council).

Do you have questions about this project? Phone 604-982-7610 or email membership@squamish.net.

Eslhék’ chat!

Project Name: Eslhék’ chat! (We are close family!)

The artwork created by Alan Williams depicts an eagle longhouse in honour of our traditional cultural teachings passed down through generations. The longhouse surrounds three heads, representing our community caring for the three generations of family: Elders, parents, and youth.

Our Membership Code process emphasizes Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Members’ choice to define our Membership in ways that are inclusive and true to our Sḵwx̱wú7mesh ways. Our project name represents our community’s close relationship, showing we will surround the generations of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh people and come together as the united family our ancestors fought to get here.

“We need to pull together because people are still falling through the cracks.” – Engagement Session Participant

Upcoming Events

Members are invited for an opportunity to shape the new Membership Code, based on our laws and traditions. We approved our current code in 2013, and are now asking Members about updates you would like to see. Join us for one of three information sessions to learn more:

Monday, June 17 | Postponed 
UPDATE June 14, 2024: Due to the recent passing of loved ones in our community, our June 17 online information session has been postponed. We hope to reschedule for another day, and we will keep the community informed.

Wednesday, June 19 | 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
CJMC

Tuesday, June 25 | 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Totem Hall

At the information sessions, Members can learn about what we’ve heard with possible scenarios that could be voted on in a Membership Code Referendum. There will also be time to share your ideas and questions. These information sessions are one of many ways to provide input and learn more.

There will be food, prizes, and fun for the whole family!

Youth Barbecue with Squamish, Musqueam, and Tsleil-Waututh Youth (ages 10 to 30 years old welcome)
Thursday, June 27 | 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Xwemélch’stn Park (Beside the Elder’s Centre, 100 Mathias Road, West Vancouver)
Register here so we can plan for transportation and other supports. Get a chance to win 1 of 3 $100 Walmart gift cards!

Questions? Contact membership@squamish.net or 604-982-7610

What is Bill S-3?

Bill S-3 is the most recent amendment to the Indian Act, which came into force in 2017 and 2019. The changes extend status entitlement to descendants of women affected by sex-based discrimination dating back to 1869.

You may be eligible for status if:

Your mother, grandmother, or great-grandmother:

  • Lost status due to marriage before 1985
  • Was born outside of marriage to a Status father and non-Status mother between 1951 and 1985

Your parent, grandparent, or great-grandparent:

  • Lost status because of their mother’s marriage before 1985
  • Had their name removed from the Indian Register because of their non-Status father

If you think you might be eligible for status as a result of Bill S-3, contact Ts’ixwts’ixwnítway (Member Services) for a Status Application at membership@squamish.net or 604-982-7610.