About the Yukon First Nations Salmon Stewardship Alliance

“Yukon First Nation ancestors had a lifelong connection to salmon and their aquatic ecosystems. They stewarded a reciprocal relationship based on natural law and respect.”

The Council of Yukon First Nations (CYFN) was successful in its proposal to the Aboriginal Aquatic Resources and Oceans Management (AAROM) program to establish the Yukon First Nations Salmon Stewardship Alliance in 2019.

Working closely with Yukon First Nations and DFO, CYFN drafted a strategic plan and selected a name for the Yukon First Nation Salmon Stewardship Alliance. The strategic plan has garnered the support of most Yukon First Nations when presented at the CYFN Leadership table. The Parties are committed to the vision outlined below. CYFN hired dedicated staff members to lead YFNSSA’s initiatives.

YFNSSA is envisioned to be an ecosystem-centric organization that speaks with “one voice” in advocating for healthy populations of salmon, freshwater fish, and aquatic resources in the Yukon. Our primary goal is to contribute to the restoration of Yukon’s salmon runs. We also strongly emphasize upholding Yukon First Nations traditional practices, recognizing Aboriginal titles and rights, and supporting Indigenous approaches in the Yukon.

The YFNSSA works toward realizing its vision by pursuing five overarching goals:

  • Supporting the protection and restoration of salmon stocks through coordinated, strategic, and Indigenous-led approaches.
  • Developing an ethical space within which traditional knowledge and an Indigenous worldview towards salmon supports a symbiotic relationship with western science.
  • Implementing a collaborative and technical research capacity that supports Yukon First Nations employment, training, and youth mentorship.
  • Developing a coordinated and efficient approach to data sovereignty to ensure that Yukon First Nations protocols, knowledge, research, and data are correctly captured, stored, analyzed, and shared.
  • Fostering increased information sharing amongst all Yukon First Nations and our partners through effective communications, engagement, and outreach.

YFNSSA initiatives to achieve these goals include:

  • Facilitating an Annual Salmon Ceremony and Gathering as an ethical space to support land-based knowledge exchanges, cultural revitalization, and sharing Yukon First Nations in-season management approaches to harvest or ceremony.
  • Developing and implementing a “two-eyed seeing” approach to research and activities that brings together both knowledge systems.