Canada Global (Web News) The National Capital Commission announced on Thursday that a road in Ottawa that is now named after Canada’s first prime minister will likely get a new Indigenous name later this year.
The decision to proceed with renaming the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway was unanimously accepted by the commission’s board of directors on Thursday, and Ottawa Mayor Mark Sutcliffe said, “I strongly endorse this decision.”
Once this procedure is over, Sutcliffe believes that this is something that Canadians and citizens of Ottawa can be proud of.
Three council members from Ottawa wrote to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in June 2021 pleading with him to help the federal government support an Indigenous-led consultation process to rename the parkway, which is currently named for Canada’s first prime minister.
They sent the letter after ground-penetrating radar discovered 200 suspected unmarked graves at the site of a former residential school in Kamloops, British Columbia, claiming that Canada needed to commit to initiatives of racial reconciliation “now.”
When Macdonald was in charge in the 1880s, he approved the establishment of the residential school system. More than 150,000 First Nations, Metis, and Inuit children are thought to have been compelled to attend government-funded, church-run schools, where many of them endured torture and some even passed away. The final one of these closed in 1996.
The National Capital Commission, a federal Crown corporation, announced on Thursday that it will interact with the public and Indigenous communities to debate a new name and to promote sharing and storytelling with the community.
On September 30, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a ceremony and public event will reveal the parkway’s new name.