REGINA — The Saskatchewan Government has agreed to support a request from the Treaty Commissioner to install signage along highways indicating treaty boundaries in the province.
"This is the start of a much-needed public recognition of the Treaty Territories in Saskatchewan," said Treaty Commissioner of Saskatchewan Mary Culbertson. “It may be a small step, but the signs will be here for a long time.”
Signage will be installed to indicate Treaty 4 and Treaty 6 boundaries, as the two largest treaty territories in the province.
The Ministry of Government Relations and the Ministry of Highways will coordinate with the Office of the Treaty Commissioner to complete the project.
Approval of the project makes Saskatchewan the first province in Canada to mark Treaty boundaries in this way, said the provincial government.
Culbertson said that although the process to reach this conclusion has been long, the Indigenous community is pleased to see it finally come to culmination.
She said that the agreement to acknowledge Treaty territory is the first step to opening conversations about history, education, knowledge and change.
“We want everyone to know they are here because of Treaty,” said Culbertson. “"Acknowledging the territories that we are on and accepting they are the foundation of Saskatchewan and Canada is so important to the Treaty relationship and reconciliation.”
The final design of the signage will be approved by the Treaty Commissioner, according to provincial highway standards.
Manufacturing and installation will be overseen by the Ministry of Highways, and is currently set to begin in early spring of 2022.