The Councillor who pushed for a report on the City of Prince Albert’s progress in implementing the Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) calls to action is speaking out.

Ward three Councillor Tony Head said the report prepared by civic administration, which was delivered to executive committee last week, provided 12 relevant calls to action for local governments.

“It (the report) did expand from my initial motion of the four or five we wanted to see, directly implemented by the municipality,” he said.

Head, who is a member of the Lac La Ronge Indian Band and currently the only Indigenous person on city council, explained the report showed the city has made progress in some areas, one example being the Indigenous signage on River Street recognizing the history of various Indigenous peoples in the area.

However, he said it was shocking seeing some of the actions which have not yet been taken. Head added the executive committed voted to receive and file the report. The Councillor said he was hoping to see more done when it came to implementing changes.

“There’s so much more, I guess commitment needed,” he said.

In regards to positive steps the city could be taking to advance reconciliation, Head said education is something which he believes is especially important when it comes to moving forward.

“Having an understanding on how Indigenous people got here today and some of the challenges they are currently facing,” he said.

With the report just coming out last week Head said he has not had the chance to hear feedback from constituents about it. While campaigning for election to council Head said there was lots of talk about how 42 per cent of people in P.A. are Indigenous which is one of the highest percentages in the country.

“I think it is necessary and important that we continue on this path of reconciliation and that we ensure that we’re doing our part,” he said.

Recently the Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS) has come under scrutiny from the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) for their handling of the Tanner Brass case. Head said it is difficult for him to comment on the situation but added there is work which needs to be done when it comes to justice.

“It is more than a travesty here to see in our city and there’s a lot of people that are harmed and affected,” he said.

(Prince Albert City Hall: Photo Courtesy of Michael Joel-Hansen)