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Truth and reconciliation sharing circles bring action steps forward

(Fort McMurray, AB – October 28, 2019) – On Oct. 23, a diverse group of over 100 community members joined Indigenous elders, Mayor Don Scott, Councillors and other leaders in the region at sharing circles to help move truth and reconciliation forward.

The event encouraged open, honest and meaningful dialogue about truth and reconciliation in the region, including steps the municipality can take to help improve relationships with Indigenous Peoples in Wood Buffalo. Elder Alice Martin brought forward the suggestion of forming a group of Indigenous representatives to advise the municipality and build upon the discussions from the sharing circles. The Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) took this advice and will begin working closely with a new Reconciliation Advisory Circle.   

“A Reconciliation Advisory Circle is the next step and publicly announcing this shows a genuine commitment from the Municipality,” said Elder Alice Martin. “We want to compliment the work the Municipality is doing and in order for it to be meaningful, there needs to be a commitment from the RMWB and from local Indigenous People – it has to be driven by both as an equal partnership and with local people moving us forward.”

The Reconciliation Advisory Circle is intended to bring Indigenous elders, partners and community leaders together to share important perspectives and advice with the RMWB’s Indigenous Relations team to guide truth and reconciliation efforts. Additional details will be announced shortly. 

 “The Municipality is committed to reconciliation and collaborating with our Indigenous partners to build a stronger Wood Buffalo region,” said Mayor Don Scott. “The new Reconciliation Advisory Circle will help our community come together and move the healing process forward.”      

The municipality is also launching a truth and reconciliation newsletter so residents can stay up to date on future updates, events, programs and initiatives. Everyone is encouraged to sign up and get involved in helping move truth and reconciliation forward in the region. To learn more and register, visit rmwb.ca/trc.     

The truth and reconciliation sharing circles are part of the ongoing work the RMWB is doing to address the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) Calls to Action Report. 23 calls to action have been identified that the municipality has the jurisdiction and ability to implement or influence.

To learn more about truth and reconciliation in the municipality, visit rmwb.ca/trc.  

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media@rmwb.ca 

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