Nov. 16 honours Louis Riel and Métis people. (Métis Nation British Columbia Facebook photo)

Sunrise ceremony at B.C. legislature honours Louis Riel

Nov. 16 marks the 133rd anniversary of the Métis leader’s death

As the sun rose above Victoria, so did a flag outside the B.C. legislature, honouring Louis Riel Day.

Nov. 16 celebrates the contributions of both Louis Riel, a historical Métis leader who died on this day in 1885, and the Métis people.

READ MORE: Métis flag raised at B.C. legislature

“As a proud member of the Métis community, I was honoured to watch the flag rise in front of the people’s house,” said Carole James, Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance. “By proclaiming Nov. 16 as Louis Riel Day, we celebrate the importance of Louis Riel’s personal sacrifice and Métis culture. We are committed to working together to make life better for Métis people throughout British Columbia.”

Métis became a distinct nation in the late 1700s as a fusion of First Nations and European cultures. Riel himself championed Métis rights and culture, ultimately dying for the cause when he was executed by the Canadian government after a rebellion on the prairies. A 2016 census shows nearly 90,000 people living in B.C. identify as Métis. Since then, a press release said, that number has increased by nearly 30,000.

The president of Métis Nation BC (MNBC), Clara Morin-Dal Col, MNBC board members and Métis people gathered at the ceremony. Morin-Dal Col said, “As a celebration of our shared history, Louis Riel Day is an important day for all Métis people in B.C. Proclaiming this day and marking it with a flag raising in front of the legislature recognizes our distinct culture, heritage and history of Métis people throughout British Columbia.”

READ MORE: Island Métis society rights long cultural misstep with Vancouver Island First Nations


@KeiliBartlett
keili.bartlett@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

BCHL: Bulldogs fall to Capitals in third preseason loss

Alberni Valley Bulldogs will be on the road starting Wednesday, Aug. 28

Casual car show will put the drive into food drive

Port Alberni’s Cars and Coffee will wrap up with a food drive in September

Striking Western Forest Products workers could lose benefits in September

Union, forest company at odds over Vancouver Island benefit payments as strike enters third month

Port Alberni bands ‘out of the basement’ and onto an album

Two bands, products of the Alberni Valley’s school of rock, celebrate their CD debut

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

Island murder victim’s mom expresses outrage over mental fitness decision of the accused

Smith vows to keep fighting until justice served for Descoteau

B.C. VIEWS: Pipelines set to roll as federal politicians posture

Projects to drive B.C., Canadian economy in years ahead

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Vancouver Island man dead after reported hit-and-run incident

Oceanside RCMP seek public’s help gathering information

Most Read