Reconciliation Saskatoon releases month-long schedule of occasions
Over the next five weeks, the City of Saskatoon has scheduled a series of events promoting local reconciliation.
After the city signed an official proclamation on June 22, 2015, declaring a year of reconciliation from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, the city, the Office of the Treaty Commissioner and the Saskatoon Tribal Council came together for a month-long events schedule known as ‘Reconciliation Saskatoon’.
This is being done in response to the recommended calls to action in light of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s final report released in December 2015.
The mission of Reconciliation Saskatoon is to get each person in the province to take personal responsibility to do what they can to create a fair society where Indigenous cultures and languages are included in the overall fabric of Saskatchewan.Gilles Dorval, director of Aboriginal relations, says education is going to be paramount throughout the year of reconciliation in Saskatoon. (James Hopkin/CBC)
The city’s director of Aboriginal relations, Gilles Dorval said the first step towards mending fences is education.
“The first educational component we worked on is to define that we do have that black history that we need to acknowledge and then support people in moving forward,” Dorval said.
Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations Vice-Chief Bob Merasty said it’s time to forge a new relationship together.
“It’s about moving from a culture of exclusions over the past century to a culture of inclusion. It’s about closing the gap in all sectors, in health, education and employment,” he said.
The first event is set for May 18 with a reading for reconciliation hosted by the Saskatoon Public Library. The year of reconciliation ends on June 22, with a Walk for Reconciliation at Victoria Park in Saskatoon.
For a full list of events during Reconciliation Saskatoon, visit www.otc.ca.