WINNIPEG RECONCILIATION EFFORTS HIGHLIGHTED IN ANNUAL REPORT
WINNIPEG – Significant reconciliation efforts undertaken by partners to Winnipeg’s Indigenous Accord and outlined in an annual report to be discussed at today’s Executive Policy Committee meeting underscore a strong commitment toward advancing reconciliation and implementing many Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Calls to Action, Mayor Bowman said today.
“The Indigenous Accord was an invitation to all residents and organizations in Winnipeg to continue our journey of reconciliation together, and over the last year many have answered that call with not only words of commitment but also tangible actions and progress toward greater collaboration, awareness, empathy, and understanding,” said Mayor Brian Bowman.
Council unanimously approved Winnipeg’s first Indigenous Accord in March 2017. In June 2017, the City of Winnipeg together with 81 organizations and groups attended the first signing ceremony to become the initial signatories to the Accord. As part of their approval, Council directed the Public Service to provide an annual report detailing each signatory’s commitment to reconciliation as well as their goals and progress.
The City of Winnipeg has continued to invite individuals, groups, and organizations to collaborate, formulate, and execute action plans based on commitments and principles to advance reconciliation efforts with Indigenous Peoples by becoming signatories to the Accord. Since the initial signing ceremony in June 2017, an additional 32 organizations and groups have become partners to the Accord.
The annual report outlines significant commitments, goals, and progress over the last year toward Winnipeg’s journey of reconciliation including:
- More than 5,000 City of Winnipeg employees and over 1,600 employees from 31 different Accord signatories participating in greater education and training aimed at building stronger cultural awareness;
- Increased acknowledgement of traditional territories as part of daily announcements and at events, meetings, and gatherings;
- Over 180 policies and practices were reported to have been amended or newly adopted by 32 partner organizations better recognizing Indigenous rights, Indigenous priorities, and improved Indigenous access and inclusion; and
- Over 42,000 students from five school divisions being exposed to age-appropriate curriculum on residential schools, treaties, Indigenous peoples’ history, and contributions to contemporary Canada.
The Indigenous Accord was designed to be a living document, not a single one-time event, and represents an ongoing responsibility adopted by signatories to report the success of their commitments and future goals annually. It was developed by the Mayor’s Indigenous Advisory Circle in consultation with numerous community leaders and organizations, and serves as a guide for implementation of the TRC’s 94 Calls to Action.
“I continue to encourage all individuals, businesses, and organizations to become partners to Winnipeg’s Indigenous Accord,” said Mayor Bowman. “It represents an effective way we can collaborate across our community and track our progress. It is also an important part of our journey of reconciliation and is key to a strong city and province.”
A second annual signing ceremony for the new partners to the Accord is scheduled for June 20, 2018, and the third gathering of Accord partners to share and learn from each other on their reconciliation efforts is scheduled for October 2018.
The complete annual report can be accessed through the City of Winnipeg Decision Making Information System (DMIS). Once reviewed by Executive Policy Committee, the annual report will be submitted to Council’s June meeting.
Individuals and organizations wanting more information about becoming a signatory and partner to the Indigenous Accord can contact the City of Winnipeg’s Indigenous Relations Division at: firstname.lastname@example.org or can visit the City of Winnipeg’s website, www.winnipeg.ca/Indigenous/WIA .