Indigenous Reconciliation Planning Initiative in Bruce County
On Thursday, January 20, Bruce County’s Executive Committee approved a commitment to spend up to $150,000 total to support the Bruce County Indigenous Reconciliation Planning Initiative.
This initiative aims to build Indigenous cultural awareness and intercultural capacity and competency across the County, leading to the collaborative development of Bruce County’s own Indigenous Reconciliation Plan.
“Bruce County has and is taking steps to improve relationships with neighbouring Indigenous communities,” said Warden Janice Jackson, “This initiative is in support of, and complimentary to, our current efforts, acknowledging that there is more to be done and there is a need for a thoughtful, coordinated, corporate-wide approach.”
Examples of Bruce County’s ongoing Reconciliation efforts:
- Bruce County and the Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON) reached an out-of-court agreement, settling Bruce County’s involvement in SON’s long-standing legal action in relation to parts of the Saugeen (Bruce) Peninsula.
- Bruce County has collaborated with SON on a funding application in support of engagement on Plan the Bruce: Bruce County Official Plan.
- The M’Wikwedong Indigenous Friendship Centre and Bruce County signed a declaration of friendship and a mutual commitment to improve the quality of life of Indigenous People in urban centres across the Region. Bruce County is also collaborating with M'Wikwedong and Elephant Thoughts in support of M’Wikwedong’s Apatisiwin Program (employment and training); and has an agreement with M’Wikwedong for EarlyON Cultural Services and Housing Services.
- Bruce County is active with the Cultural Action Plan strategic cultural planning tool, the Archeological Management Plan planning tool to manage archaeological resources, the Downie Wenjack Fund Legacy Spaces Program, the Shared Path Consultation Initiative, the Downie Wenjack Fund Secret Path Week, Orange Shirt Day/National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Treaties Recognition Week, Indigenous History Month, awareness and inclusion training for County Staff, and now the Bruce County Indigenous Reconciliation Planning Initiative.
- Bruce County continues to be an equal opportunity employer committed to an inclusive, barrier-free recruitment and selection process.
- Bruce County is relationship building with Indigenous Service Providers and First Nation departments staff.
- At the Bruce County Museum & Cultural Centre (BCM&CC), patrons can explore travelling and permanent cultural exhibits and demonstrations. Archaeological collection material is being transferred to SON and archival assistance has been provided to Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation. Museum staff are working with Saugeen First Nation (SFN) to add SFN veterans to the Bruce Remembers website. The BCM&CC now offers free general admission to all First Nations, Inuit, and Métis.
- At the Bruce County Public Library, patrons can explore promoted indigenous authors, Truth and Reconciliation Commission Reports, recommended reads on Residential Schools, and collections related to Indigenous cultures, languages, and peoples. The Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) presented a virtual storytelling session for children and the Library is auditing the children’s collections for diversity, equity, and inclusion. The Library is also developing a respect and land acknowledgement statement, will engage Indigenous communities, bring in Indigenous presenters, and develop Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion strategies as part of the Strategic Action Plan.