The Reconciliation Pole was raised in 2017 to honour victims and survivors of Canada’s residential school system. (UBC)

Reconciliation Pole at UBC vandalized days before second anniversary

The totem pole was raised to honour victims and survivors of Canada’s residential school system

The 55-foot totem pole raised at the University of British Columbia to honour victims and survivors of Canada’s residential school system was vandalized days before its second anniversary.

The incident was described as a “troubling act of vandalism” in an open letter written by Margaret Moss, director of First Nations House of Learning, and Sheryl Lightfoot, senior advisor to the president on Indigenous Affairs.

READ MORE: Totem pole raised at UBC honours First Nations victimized by residential schools

Stakes that were holding the the Reconciliation Pole were removed from the ground and inserted into the back of the pole, according to the letter. On Friday, a campus employee reported the vandalism to campus security. The stakes have since been removed and there is no visible damage to the pole.

On Monday, the Reconciliation Pole celebrated its second anniversary. It was carved from a 800-year-old red cedar tree on B.C.’s north coast by a Haida Nation hereditary chief, James Hart.

“This condemnable act profoundly disrespects everything the pole represents, from the voices of the survivors of the schools, the memories of the children who died in them, the hopes of Indigenous peoples, to the honour of all Canadians who are striving to shake free from the darkness of the past to embrace a brighter future together,” the letter stated.



joti.grewal@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

The wonderfully weird, musically zany Al Simmons comes to the Cariboo

Simmons will play Quesnel’s Billy Barker Days on Friday and ArtsWells on the August long weekend

PHOTOS: Billy Barker Days opens in Quesnel!

The 45th Annual Billy Barker Days Festival features free fun for the whole family until Sunday night

Chiefs honour Tsilhqot’in leader wrongfully hanged in B.C. 154 years ago today

Chief Joe Alphonse says they want his remains returned to his homeland in B.C.’s Cariboo region

Quesnel’s BB Day Society shows love for sponsors

The 45th annual festival will run from July 18 until July 21

Barkerville’s Sixth Annual Indigenous Celebrations takes place July 20

This year’s event will also be the soft launch of Indigenous programming at the historic site

Feds lowered poverty line, reducing the number of seniors in need: documents

Liberals introduced a poverty line that was below the prior low-income cutoff

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs have been sold

Victoria company has purchased BCHL team, but will keep it in Port Alberni

“Does Kirby care?” B.C. First Nation’s group using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

Trudeau announces $79M investment for 118 more public transit buses across B.C.

Contributions from municipal to federal level to fund more buses in a bid to cut commutes

B.C. woman wins record $2.1 million on casino slot machine

‘That night was so surreal … I wasn’t able to sleep or eat for the first two days,’ she said

After B.C. dad’s death, Technical Safety BC wants changes to trampoline park rules

Jay Greenwood, 46, did ‘a series of acrobatic manoeuvres prior to a fall that caused serious injury and cardiac arrest’

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Tax take stays ahead of increased B.C. government spending

Tax revenue $2.1 billion higher than budget in 2018-19

Two toddler siblings found drowned on First Nation in Alberta

The siblings were found drowned on their family’s property, according to RCMP

Most Read