A sister community agreement was virtually signed by the Tsilhqot’in Nation and New Westminster on Oct. 15. (Tsilhqot’in National Government photo)

A sister community agreement was virtually signed by the Tsilhqot’in Nation and New Westminster on Oct. 15. (Tsilhqot’in National Government photo)

Tsilhqot’in Nation and New Westminster become sister communities

The sister community agreement is written in both English and Tsilhqot’in

Several First Nation communities in B.C’s central Interior have become “sister communities” with a city in the Lower Mainland after several years of relationship building.

The City of New Westminster and Tsilhqot’in Nation committed to work together and support one another after the virtual signing of a sister community memorandum of agreement on Thursday, Oct. 15.

“By becoming sister communities with the Tŝilhqot’in Nation, we are formalizing an important relationship that we have been building over the past three years and more,” Mayor Jonathan X. Coté said in a joint news release.

The signed agreement marks the first such relationship between the City of New Westminster and an Indigenous Nation.

New Westminster already had a sister city relationship with the Tsilhqot’in community of Tl’etinqox (Anaham) that was born through the friendship of city councillor Chuck Puchmayr and TNG tribal chair Chief Joe Alphonse.

Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG) interim vice-chair Chief Jimmy Lulua said the City of New Westminster has stood by their Nation to right the wrongs of the past.

Read More: Tsilhqot’in Nation signs Indigenous protocol agreement with University of B.C.

In July 2019, a Tsilhqot’in delegation joined City leaders to witness the removal of a statue of Judge Matthew Begbie from outside New Westminster’s provincial courthouse. Later that month both parties co-hosted a ceremony to commemorate the wrongful trial and hanging of Tsilhqot’in war Chief ?Ahan.

?Ahan is believed to be buried in New Westminster where he was tried and hanged on July 18, 1865. Five other Tsilhqot’in War Chiefs were ordered to be executed by Begbie the previous year in Quesnel.

“Together we have demonstrated that government and First Nations can form mutually respectful and progressive relationships that advance the goals of both parties and work to achieve reconciliation for Indigenous peoples,” Lulua said.

“The signing of this Sister Community Agreement makes it official, but the principles of this Sister Community Agreement and the Tŝilhqot’in relationship with the City of New Westminster have been strong for years now.”

In 2018, a fire truck was donated by the City of New Westminster to Tl’etinqox.

Read More: First Nations and non-First Nations community forge relationship in spirit of reconciliation


Do you have a comment about this story? email:
rebecca.dyok@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CityFirst Nations

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

Just Posted

The city of Williams Lake has been doing routine maintenance to one of its wells at Scout Island as seen here earlier this week. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Williams Lake residents asked to reduce non-essential water use

One of the city’s pumps is under repair

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
110 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Provincial health officers announced 1,005 new cases throughout B.C.

An RCMP cruiser. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Two people arrested following fight in Lac La Hache: RCMP

Man allegedly sprayed two victims with bear spray.

Mike Dutour can’t wait to get the golf season underway following the Williams Lake Golf and Tennis Club’s announcement it would be opening its front nine this Friday, April 16. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Williams Lake Golf and Tennis Club open for 2021 season

Tee times will begin daily starting Friday, April 16 at 9 a.m.

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Vancouver Police Const. Deepak Sood is under review by the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. after making comments to a harm reduction advocate Sunday, April 11. (Screen grab)
VIDEO: Vancouver officer convicted of uttering threats under watchdog review again

Const. Deepak Sood was recorded Sunday saying ‘I’ll smack you’ and ‘go back to selling drugs’ to a harm reduction advocate

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate persists, 1,005 new cases Friday

Hospitalization up to 425, six more virus-related deaths

Premier John Horgan receives a dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the pharmacy in James Bay Thrifty’s Foods in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. Premier John Horgan gets AstraZeneca shot, encourages others

27% of residents in B.C. have now been vaccinated against COVID-19

The Nautical Dog Cafe at Skaha marina is getting its patio ready in hopes Mother Nature will provide where provincial restrictions have taken away indoor dining. (Facebook)
‘A lot of instability’: B.C. restaurants in layoff limbo

As COVID-19 cases stay high, restaurants in British Columbia are closed to indoor dining

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
RCMP intercept vehicle fleeing with infant taken from Kamloops hospital

The baby was at the hospital receiving life-saving care

Since April 4, 38 flights with COVID-19 cases have departed from Vancouver International Airport, while 23 arrived. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Vancouver the largest source of domestic flights with COVID-19 cases: data

This month alone, 38 flights with COVID-19 cases have departed from Vancouver International Airport, while 23 arrived

Most Read