The Municipality of Chatham-Kent is partnering with Whyte’s Pickles and a local Indigenous artist for the installation of a Truth and Reconciliation crosswalk in downtown Wallaceburg.
The crosswalk will be painted orange in recognition of the tragic history and ongoing legacy of Residential and Day Schools in Canada, it also includes feathers that were custom designed to represent the Seven Sacred Teachings, with the insignia “Every Child Matters”.
The Seven Sacred Teachings – also known as the Seven Grandfather Teachings – are guiding principles on living a good life based on First Nation lessons. They include wisdom, love, respect, bravery, honesty, humility, and truth.
Similar crosswalks have been approved or completed in Timmins, Burnaby, Oakville, Kamloops, Edmonton and several other Canadian towns and cities.
The local artist is Nicholas Riley from Bkejwanong First Nation. He studied graphic design at Fanshawe College and is a graduate of Lambton College Business Marketing program. He designed the logo for the Sarnia Lambton Native Friendship Centre and has since designed logos for the Walpole community, Employment and Training, and Elder Abuse Awareness.
Nicholas’s latest work is featured on the cover of Bkejwanong Dbaajmowinaan, Stories of Where the Water Divides.
The Whyte’s management team stated that “we are honoured to partner in this initiative with the Municipality of Chatham -Kent. We aim to uphold the values of the Seven Sacred Teachings and are deeply appreciative of our team and community members who are First Nation. It is with great pride that we participate in this commemoration and supports the work of local artist Nicholas Riley.”
Rebecca Haskell-Thomas, Coordinator, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ) for the Municipality says, “The orange crosswalk symbolizes our recognition of the harms that have been done. Incorporating the Seven Grandfather Teachings shows us a pathway for moving forward. True Reconciliation requires efforts from everyone in our community and the Municipality’s DEIJ team is proud to work with community members to learn and take action together.
For more information contact:
Manager, Corporate Initiatives & Communications
Municipality of Chatham-Kent
519-360-1998 x 3055