The first in a series of new signs demarking the official Treaty boundaries in the province will be popping up on Highway 11 between Regina and Saskatoon. The joint project between the provincial Government and the Office of the Treaty Commissioner is the first of its kind in Canada.
“We are proud to be the first province in Canada to officially mark treaty boundaries along major highways, working in partnership with the Office of the Treaty Commissioner to recognize the treaties.” Minister Responsible for First Nations, Métis and Northern Affairs Don McMorris said. “The boundary signage is an additional resource to support Treaty education and reconciliation in our province.”
The signs are emblazoned with images of the Treaty medals that were given to Indigenous leaders at the close of Treaty negotiations. A welcome appears in the Indigenous language of the respective Treaty area and will be seen at locations throughout the province as motorists traverse the border between Treaty 4 and Treaty 6 regions. This aligns with the province's efforts to recognize, acknowledge and revitalize Indigenous languages.
The signs also bear the original Treaties’ wording, “"as long as the sun shines, grass grows and rivers flow,” as indicative of the duration of the Treaties. Signs should soon be set up in east central Saskatchewan along Highways 20, 5, and 6 east and south of Humboldt.
"A sign seems like such a small thing, but it represents something significant. Think about the number of Treaties that cross through where the province of Saskatchewan now lies. Our highways cross these territories and that has to be recognized and acknowledged," Treaty Commissioner Mary Culbertson said. "It is so important to see this project underway, we are starting with one sign, but hope to see this for all our Treaty boundaries."
A public unveiling and ceremony is planned for later in 2022.