PRIME MINISTER PART OF FIRST NATIONS PARADE: Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations Days was celebrated in Tofino on Monday

Trudeaus enjoy some Tofino time

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took time out of his family vacation to participate in Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation Days opening ceremonies

NORA O’MALLEY

The Westerly News

 

Enjoying a West Coast holiday with his family, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was back at work for a couple of hours on Monday, speaking to a Tofino crowd about his government’s commitment to First Nations.

“As some of you may know, I’ve made a priority for our government that we renew and rebuild the true nation to nation relationships,” Trudeau said to the crowd at the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations (TFN) Days opening ceremonies on Monday at the Tofino Village Green.

“But it can’t just be done between government and Indigenous peoples, all Canadians have to be involved,” he said. “I just want to thank all of you for being part of this celebration today, for connecting with Indigenous Canadians, for understanding and appreciating the cultural and for understanding that quite frankly as extraordinary a place as Tofino is, you only understand the full depth and spirit of this place when you walk side by side with the people that have lived here for a millennia. And that is really what we are celebrating today.”

TFN Days is a weeklong festival that brings families and communities together with a variety of different events and sport races throughout Tla-o-qui-aht Traditional Territory. Elected Chief Councillor Elmer Frank said it has been 15 years since the last TFN Days was held.

“About three weeks ago we sent [Trudeau’s] office a letter letting him know that Tla-o-qui-aht is reviving Tla-o-qui-aht Days. It was really important for us to send an invitation to our Prime Minister once we found out that he was going to be in our Tradition Territory,” said Frank.

On Monday morning, the day of the parade, Frank received a personal call from the prime minister.

“He called to say, ‘I’ll be there’,” Frank told The Westerly.

Justin and Sophie Grégoire Trudeau and their children Xavier, Ella-Grace, and Hadrien have been enjoying a summer beach holiday around the Tofino-Ucluelet area for the last week.

“I just want to say thank you all for everyone that has been coming up over the course of our vacation. You’ve been wonderfully friendly and not too… much. That’s appreciative as well. I’m so honoured to be able to be welcomed here by all of you and to share in this wonderful celebration,” said Trudeau.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Families, spectators wave goodbye to Navy Task Force from Victoria shorelines

HCMS Winnipeg and HCMS Regina sailing to Hawaiian training exercise, further deployments

COVID-inspired RV sales soaring on West Shore and beyond

Health restrictions, recommendations keep Vancouver Island vacationers closer to home

UPDATE: Pedestrian injured in collision on Hillside Avenue

Traffic impacted between Douglas and Blanshard streets

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Aug. 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Should it be mandatory to wear masks when out in public?

B.C. is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of cases of… Continue reading

Cowichan RCMP use spike belts to end car chase — man in custody

The driver was arrested at the scene a short distance from his vehicle

COVID-19 tests come back negative for remote First Nation

“There are no suspected cases in the community at this time.”

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

Most Read