City may recognize traditional land

Vernon may take steps to officially recognize its neighbours.

City staff has been directed to bring back a policy that would possibly see traditional indigenous lands recognized at the beginning of council meetings or in another form.

“The City of Vernon can be a leader in educating the general population about our history,” said Coun. Juliette Cunningham, adding that the country’s history has been sanitized.

The actual wording of the potential policy is yet to be determined.

“We need some consultation with the (Okanagan) band on how this would look,” said Cunningham.

Concerns about the potential policy came from Coun. Scott Anderson.

“There may be legal implications of making that statement,” he said of recognizing indigenous territory.

However, Cunningham disagrees with those concerns.

“It’s a statement, a true statement. Other communities across the country have done this,” she said.

Such statements are made at Vernon School District board meetings.