[STATEMENT] New Office of Shqwi qwal a positive step forward for B.C.

For immediate release
Oct. 30, 2014

VICTORIA B.C. – The B.C. Green Party welcomes the Government of British Columbia announcement of the formation of the Shqwi qwal (pronounced shh-qwee-qwal) for Indigenous Dialogue.

According to the government news release, the Shqwi qwal (meaning “speaker” in Hulquminum) “will develop and support dialogue sessions on education and other topics that will help foster understanding and partnerships between Indigenous peoples and the broader public, private, and corporate sectors. The Shqwi qwal will also support the development of research and public policy papers in this area.”

"I applaud the government action today. There have been many past and present efforts at dialogue between the provincial government and First Nations, but resulting in little progress; this is a significant step forward in a long journey,” said Adam Olsen, Interim-Leader of the B.C. Green Party. “I encourage ministers to make the best use of this new opportunity and have the work of the Shqwi qwal inform government policy decisions.”

Former Grand Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Shawn (A-in-chut) Atleo has been appointed to the Shqwi qwal and will be working with former Snuneymuxw Chief Doug White who is the Director of the Centre. Mr. Atleo’s appointment is significant as he has considerable experience working with First Nations, and provincial and federal governments. The office of the Shqwi qual will be established at the new Centre for Pre-Confederation Treaties and Reconciliation at Vancouver Island University.

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Media contact
Stefan Jonsson
Director of Communications
1.888.473.3686 ext. 3
stefan.jonsson@greenparty.bc.ca

View Government of British Columbia news release

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