Reconciliation means honouring Yukon’s final agreements

I would like to take this opportunity to follow up with the comment I made to you on June 2 at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s release of its summary report on Indian Residential Schools.

Open letter to Premier Darrell Pasloski:

I would like to take this opportunity to follow up with the comment I made to you on June 2 at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s release of its summary report on Indian Residential Schools.

The occasion deeply moved me and I had a hard time not crying throughout the whole event. When Rod Snow, from the United Church, stood up at the end and said it was the whole community’s duty to use our talents and resources to reconcile with First Nations so that we can all move forward together in the spirit of fairness, transparency and social justice, I took this to heart.

I have to admit that the Peel watershed was the first injustice that I felt needed to be addressed, and as soon as I saw you available, I approached you with my request.

You respectfully listened as I asked for the first great step that your government could do as an act of reconciliation is to drop your government’s appeal of the Peel case. By dropping the appeal, your government has the opportunity to honour the treaties such as the Umbrella Final Agreement, save both the First Nations and the Yukon people a lot of money, and show compassion, leadership and foresight. You said you would consider my comment.

Later that day, I experienced a very uncomfortable challenge. My 18-year-old niece from Ontario is visiting with us right now, and she asked me to explain to her what had happened to these children as she had never heard of this before. It was gut wrenching, and as I saw the look of horror in her eyes, I felt the full force of the agony of truth and reconciliation. There is no going back.

The Canadian government used the education system to try to destroy the First Nations and now the First Nations want to use the education system to build us all up, to create understanding, to learn how to live at peace with each other and learn to be responsible stewards of this earth.

The education that needs to happen is going to need resources.

It is time that our government stopped impoverishing First Nations with lawsuits. It is time that First Nations were treated as equal partners in developing our natural resources. It is time our modern treaties were given the respect they deserve.

Sally Wright

Kluane Lake

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited internet options beginning Dec. 1. (Yukon News file)
Unlimited internet for some available Dec. 1

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited… Continue reading

Willow Brewster, a paramedic helping in the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre, holds a swab used for the COVID-19 test moments before conducting a test with it on Nov. 24. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
An inside look at the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre

As the active COVID-19 case count grew last week, so too did… Continue reading

Conservation officers search for a black bear in the Riverdale area in Whitehorse on Sept. 17. The Department of Environment intends to purchase 20 semi-automatic AR-10 rifles, despite the inclusion of the weapons in a recently released ban introduced by the federal government, for peace officers, such as conservation officers. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Environment Minister defends purchase of AR-10 rifles for conservation officers

The federal list of banned firearms includes an exception for peace officers

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: The K-shaped economic recovery and what Yukoners can do about it

It looks like COVID-19 will play the role of Grinch this holiday… Continue reading

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Colin McDowell, the director of land management for the Yukon government, pulls lottery tickets at random during a Whistle Bend property lottery in Whitehorse on Sept. 9, 2019. A large amount of lots are becoming available via lottery in Whistle Bend as the neighbourhood enters phase five of development. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Lottery for more than 250 new Whistle Bend lots planned for January 2021

Eight commercial lots are being tendered in additional to residential plots

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21. The Canada Border Services Agency announced Nov. 26 that they have laid charges against six people, including one Government of Yukon employee, connected to immigration fraud that involved forged Yukon government documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Charges laid in immigration fraud scheme, warrant out for former Yukon government employee

Permanent residency applications were submitted with fake Yukon government documents

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Karen Wenkebach has been appointed as a judge for the Yukon Supreme Court. (Yukon News file)
New justice appointed

Karen Wenckebach has been appointed as a judge for the Supreme Court… Continue reading

Catherine Constable, the city’s manager of legislative services, speaks at a council and senior management (CASM) meeting about CASM policy in Whitehorse on June 13, 2019. Constable highlighted research showing many municipalities require a lengthy notice period before a delegate can be added to the agenda of a council meeting. Under the current Whitehorse procedures bylaw, residents wanting to register as delegates are asked to do so by 11 a.m. on the Friday ahead of the council meeting. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Changes continue to be contemplated for procedures bylaw

Registration deadline may be altered for delegates

Cody Pederson of the CA Storm walks around LJ’s Sabres player Clay Plume during the ‘A’ division final of the 2019 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament. The 2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament, scheduled for March 25 to 28 in Whitehorse next year, was officially cancelled on Nov. 24 in a press release from organizers. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News file)
2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament cancelled

The 2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament, scheduled for March 25 to 28… Continue reading

Most Read