Canada Day celebrations in British Columbia focus on reconciliation – BC
Thousands of British Columbians gathered across the province on Canada Day, however, the celebrations took on a different tone this year.
After unmarked graves were discovered across the country last summer, the city of Victoria decided it was time to celebrate Canada Day a little differently.
As it happened: Canada Day celebrations, events held across the country
The city’s mayor cruised through the inner harbour, ahead of the opening of Canada Day celebrations in Victoria, in a traditional Aboriginal canoe. It was a new start for Canada Day in the capital.
« It really means a lot to the Lekwungen people that this is happening today, » said Songhees First Nation elected council member Margaret Charlie.
Along with the national anthem, traditional dancers took center stage and a moment of silence took place – a stark contrast to the typical fireworks display.
“It’s about having Western culture and in our case, in these lands, the Lekwungen culture lives side by side. It’s not one or the other, it’s both and I think we really see that today,” said Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps.
Thousands of people gather in Ottawa for Canada Day celebrations and protests under tight security
In other communities in the province, the theme of the truth of reconciliation was prominent.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh was at Canada Day festivities at Edmonds Park in Burnaby.
« We reflect on the injustice the country has committed and we are committed to ensuring that we build a better country, » said Jameet Singh.
While there is still a lot of work to be done according to the leader of the NDP, this Canada Day marks another step on the road to reconciliation, setting a precedent for years to come.
Back to Canada Day festivities in Penticton, BC
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