Stuart Mackinnon’s motion to learn Indigenous place names passes at park board

Published Sep 17, 2018 7:27 PM

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation has passed Green Party Commissioner and Chair Stuart Mackinnon’s motion to learn the names the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh people traditionally called areas that today fall under the jurisdiction of the board.

“Names form an integral part of culture and heritage,” says Mackinnon. “Part of the colonization of Vancouver was the changing of traditional names. My motion is part of reconciliation in Vancouver, to recognize that these Indigenous people have been here forever and that they had place names long before we were here.”

The park board will now work with the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations to identify traditional place names and determine what next steps will be appropriate. This motion is part of a broader effort towards reconciliation that includes a colonial audit to recognize ways the city’s history erased the Indigenous presence in what became city parks. In particular the audit will look at issues of dispossession, archeological disturbances, the elimination of First Nations cultural activities, and a history of giving priority to non-Indigenous activities in parks.


More information:

Recognition of Traditional Place Names within the Jurisdiction of the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation motion by Stuart Mackinnon

Vancouver begins First Nations reconciliation with ‘colonial audit’ of Stanley Park by Frances Bula

Vancouver park board chair Stuart Mackinnon's motion seeks to advance decolonization efforts by Travis Lupick

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