University of Alberta Students' Union Adopts Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Committee Recommendations

News Staff - Mon Sep 23, 2019

Edmonton, AB - On September 23, 2019, the University of Alberta Students’ Union officially adopted the recommendations of the Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Committee (ARRC). Made up of a diverse group of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students, ARRC is given the delegated authority to advance and promote reconciliation within the Students’ Union.

Consisting of over 60 recommendations, the ARRC Recommendation Report were adopted in a ceremony which took place from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM in the Cascade Room of the Students’ Union Building. This time of celebration included speeches from the Aboriginal Student Council and members of the Students’ Union, traditional dancing, and refreshments.

“These recommendations, which will last for years to come, represent the efforts of myself and many others to change the University and the Students’ Union for the better. They are the hopes and dreams of all the people who have touched the recommendations wishing for a better University,” said Nathan Sunday, founder and chair of ARRC. “Even if the changes seem minimal, small drops of rain can make ripples across the water. It is my hope that, through the realization of these recommendations, we will be able to alleviate some of the challenges and barriers faced by Aboriginal students.”

The Recommendation Report, the first of its kind among student representative associations in Canada, is the result of numerous engagements with Indigenous students and student groups over the last two years. The recommendations direct the Students’ Union in four separate areas: advocacy, governance, education, and operations. The Students’ Union has begun the process of adopting all of the recommendations, acknowledging that this only the first step in reconciliation and building relationships with Indigenous students.

“The committee, its mandate, and the recommendations are the first steps in creating a welcoming campus, rooted in beneficial relationships that cultivate the sharing of diverse knowledge amongst and beyond the campus community,” said Katherine Belcourt, Aboriginal Student Council President. “This would not have been possible without the truth, respect, honesty, wisdom, bravery, and love that everyone has put into the creation of this powerful collection of documents.”

The Students’ Union is the official representative of more than 32,000 undergraduate students at the University of Alberta.

For more information, or to arrange an interview, contact:

Robert Nelson
External Advocacy Advisor
University of Alberta Students’ Union

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