Posted on January 31, 2019

Mayor Launches Plan to Reconsider Landmarks Named for Controversial Figures

Aldo Santin, Winnipeg Free Press, January 29, 2019

City hall is asking Winnipeggers to help it develop a policy to deal with the monuments and place names established for historical figures once considered founding fathers but now seen through a modern lens as racists, scoundrels, con men and murderers.

Mayor Brian Bowman held a news conference at city hall Tuesday to announce Welcoming Winnipeg, a local initiative to reconsider such markers in their proper historical context and in relation to how those historical figures dealt with the local Indigenous people.

“I don’t think (for) the majority of Winnipeggers out there right now, this is their No. 1 priority, but for those whose families have been affected by some of the harms that Canada has caused to its Indigenous people, it matters a lot,” Bowman, who identifies as Métis, said during a noon-hour news conference.

The efforts by communities to deal with historical figures has become a hot topic issue across both Canada and the United States. Several southern U.S. communities have been bitterly divided over efforts to remove statues honouring those seen by some as Confederate heroes.