Two Alberni Clayoquot Regional District directors will be attending the Walk for Reconciliation in Vancouver this week, at a cost of $850 each for added hotel accommodation and meal allowances.
Sproat Lake director Penny Cote and Long Beach director Tony Bennett will represent the ACRD at the walk on Sept. 22. The walk is the finale event of Reconciliation Week, which according to Reconciliation Canada’s website, is being held to promote reconciliation and revitalize relationships between Aboriginal Peoples and Canadians. The directors have already been in Vancouver for a week at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities convention.
ACRD directors unanimously supported participation in the walk, but some weren’t thrilled with the price tag.
“I think representation is very important,” said Tofino director Josie Osbourne at an ACRD board meeting. “But I personally would rather see one person attend, we don’t need two.”
Osbourne was joined by directors Alan McCarthy, Lucas Banton and Bill Irving in voting against sending two ACRD representatives.
Chair Cindy Solda later said ACRD representation at the walk is important because there is a large First Nations community in the ACRD.
“It’s very important we understand what the issues are, what happened in the past and remember what happened,” Solda said. “We need to remember and acknowledge it and not bury it.”