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Ugpi’ganjig First Nation and Canada announce new Addition to Reserve and housing to support future housing development

Press Release

From: Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

March 3, 2023

Today, Ugpi’ganjig First Nation and the Government of Canada announced the completion of an Addition to Reserve and recently completed housing projects in the community. Chief Sacha LaBillois was joined for the announcement by Parliamentary Secretary Jaime Battiste, on behalf of both the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations, and the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services Canada, and the Honourable René Arseneault, Member of Parliament for Madawaska—Restigouche, on behalf of the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion.

Ugpi’ganjig First Nation, previously known as Eel River Bar First Nation, has added 22.72 hectares (56.14 acres) of land for the use and benefit of its community.

In addition, a federal investment of $5.4 million under the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI) through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has allowed for the construction of 27 new homes in the area. Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) provided $350,000 towards the construction of these homes.

In addition, ISC provided more than $5.6 million for a multi-phased subdivision infrastructure project. Phase 1 of the project brought services to the 27 new homes on the lots. Construction is underway for Phase 2 to provide the necessary infrastructure for an additional 21 lots for future housing developments.

Every person deserves a safe and healthy place to call home. This Addition to Reserve provides Ugpi’ganjig First Nation with a greater land base. These housing projects will help address the community’s short- and long-term housing needs. Together, these projects will support community growth for years to come.


“Ugpi’ganjig is proud to announce that we have successfully completed the Addition to Reserve (ATR) process for the Cormier/Arseneau properties where we currently have residential housing. The ATR process is an essential step in our community’s efforts to reclaim our traditional lands and assert our sovereignty. We have worked tirelessly to ensure that this process is carried out in a manner that respects our inherent treaty rights and reflects our cultural and community values. The finalization of this process represents a significant victory for our community and a step toward reconciliation. As we move forward, we remain committed to working with our neighbours and partners to build strong, healthy, and sustainable communities for our future generations. We will continue to advocate and respect for our lands, inherent treaty rights, and we look forward to creating new opportunities for economic development, housing and self-determination. We would like to thank our elders, community leaders, and all those who have contributed their time, expertise, and resources to make this day a reality. We are proud of our community and the resilience and determination that have brought us to this point. We look forward to a bright and prosperous future for Ugpi’ganjig.”

Chief Sacha LaBillois
Ugpi’ganjig First Nation

“Today’s announcement demonstrates the planning and hard work by Ugpi’ganjig First Nation and the Government of Canada to support the community’s long-term development. This Addition to Reserve and these housing projects will lay the foundation for additional housing on the reserve for years to come. I wish Chief Sacha and Ugpi’ganjig First Nation great success in their continued development.”

Jaime Battiste
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations and MP for Sydney—Victoria

“Everyone deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Through the Rapid Housing Initiative, we are quickly creating new affordable housing units right across the country, including right here in Ugpi’ganjig. By working closely with our partners, like Ugpi’ganjig First Nation, to create more affordable housing, we are working hard to improve the quality of life for those who need it most. This is one of the many ways the National Housing Strategy continues to ensure no one is left behind.”

The Honourable Ahmed Hussen
Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion

“This investment will continue to help Canadians access safe and affordable housing that meets their needs while also creating jobs for the local economy here in Ugpi’ganjig. Our government remains committed to working with our partners to develop and implement solutions to housing both in Ugpi’ganjig and across Canada.”

René Arseneault
Member of Parliament for Madawaska—Restigouche

“Today, we recognize Ugpi’ganjig First Nation’s hard work in finalizing this Addition to Reserve. This announcement reaffirms Canada’s commitment to working alongside First Nation communities to support their unique visions of self-determination. I wish Chief LaBillois the best and look forward to seeing the positive role this Addition to Reserve will have for Ugpi’ganjig First Nation.”

The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations

“Access to land and housing are fundamental to healthy and prosperous communities. With 27 newly built homes, more than 50 acres of land added, and a multi-phased subdivision project underway, I extend my congratulations to Chief LaBillois and Ugpi’ganjig First Nation who are working hard to ensure a strong future for generations to come.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Indigenous Services

Quick facts

  • Ugpi’ganjig First Nation is a Mi’kmaw community with a registered population of approximately 823, with 343 people living on the reserve.
  • The community’s main reserve, Indian Ranch, is located approximately 2.4 kilometres south of the Town of Dalhousie, New Brunswick.
  • A reserve is a parcel of land where legal title is held by the Government of Canada for the use and benefit of a particular First Nation.
  • An Addition to Reserve is the addition of a parcel of land to a First Nation’s existing reserve land or an addition that creates a new reserve.
  • Land can be added adjacent to the existing reserve land or separate from the existing reserve land, and it can be located in a rural or an urban setting.
  • Phase 1 of the subdivision development project was completed in 2020. ISC provided $3.6 million for the installation of electrical lines, new water and sewer lines, and the construction of new roads to service 27 lots. ISC provided more than $2 million for Phase 2 of the project, which is expected to be completed in 2023.

Associated links


For more information, media may contact:

Aïssatou Diop
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations

CIRNAC Media Relations:
Phone: 819-934-2302

Andrew MacKendrick
Director of Communications and Issues Management
Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Indigenous Services

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada



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