Principles of Reconciliation
On April 19, 2021, Council adopted the 9 principles of Reconciliation, as Mission moves forward to becoming a City of Reconciliation.
Since 2016, when Canada officially endorsed the United Nations Declaration of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the federal government has continually attempted to improve relations with first nations peoples. Subsequently, in 2019, the province of British Columbia officially adopted legislation affirming the commitment to incorporation UNDRIP into legislation; the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (DRIPA) Bill 41, was passed.
These 9 principles will help the City gain a better understanding of how to engage and build relationships with local First Nations communities and commit to treating them as neighbours, peers, and partners within a shared or overlapping territory.
#1 Reconciliation occurs through the development of government to government relationships based on the recognition of indigenous rights.
#2 Local governments are crucial to the implementation of UNDRIP and the TRC calls to action. Advancement of this work can occur while recognizing the sovereign to sovereign (or Crown to Nation) relationships that occur between Federal, Provincial and First Nations governments.
#3 Plans and strategies for the implementation of UNDRIP and the TRC Calls to Action will be ‘co-created’ with First Nations communities, namely Matsqui, Sema:th, Kwantlen, Katzie, Sq’ewlets, and Leq’a:mel through engagement and collaboration, including ‘Reconciliation Dialogues’ and ‘Community to Community Forums’.
#4 Reconciliation promotes a mutually supportive climate for economic partnerships with regional First Nations communities.
#5 Collaboration with First Nation communities will define how best to communicate and engage on economic and land development policy.
#6 Continuous learning about indigenous peoples, cultural, traditions and laws is a requirement of reconciliation.
#7 Cooperation and collaboration will guide the City’s approach to issues that impact First Nations.
#8 Relationships take time, as does exploring what mutual commitment to reconciliation means; we will endeavour to engage our neighbouring First Nation communities to build those relationships around shared interests and common concerns.
#9 Systemic racism exists and that there are many ways of understanding the world and ways in which societies create and implement laws and that valid laws existed here before Canada. The City will question assumptions and remain open when faced with different legal traditions and ways of knowing.
Deputy Chief Administrative Officer