Oak Bay may talk reconciliation Monday and even pursue a task force toward that end.
Coun. Esther Paterson made a notice of motion during the committee of the whole meeting last week that hits the agenda Monday, Jan. 24.
Her motion arose after a presentation by a relatively new cooperative called ReconciliACTION Oak Bay.
Rev. Craig Hiebert of St. Mary’s Anglican Church explained the activities and mandate of the network, created last year. Groups in the co-operative hope to establish respectful relationships with the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, create local calls to action and support projects such as the Songhees Indigenous Marine Trail, including participation in the discussion around development at Spewhung/Turkey Head.
Paterson’s motion asks that Oak Bay support the Canada Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as the framework for reconciliation.
She will ask council to have staff refresh the history page on the district’s website to “reflect the true history of this area and acknowledge the treatment of the people whose lands we occupy, and to create a website placeholder for notices of events and resources that support strengthening the district’s relationship with the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.”
The motion finishes by asking the mayor to appoint a task force to bring forward recommendations for collaborating with local organizations on building paths to reconciliation, in a manner respectful to First Nations resource capacity.
Oak Bay council meets Monday, Jan. 24 at 7 p.m. Find the agenda and participation details at oakbay.civicweb.net.
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