Brandon University raises new Indigenous flags in symbol of welcome

June 17, 2021

Six new flags are hoisted atop new flagpoles at Brandon University.

Brandon University’s street presence is a little more vibrant, with six new flags hoisted on campus, including multiple Indigenous flags.

“These flags are symbolic of the multiple, overlapping communities that call this land home, and represent a visible sign that Brandon University is a welcoming space for all,” said BU President Dr. David Docherty.

A Canada flag and Manitoba flag are joined by a Treaty Two flag, a Métis flag, an All Nations flag, and a Brandon University flag. Previously, BU only flew the Canada flag on a single flagpole. The new flagpoles were installed last year, and the flags are being hoisted now in time for National Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

“Representation matters, and seeing Indigenous flags flown side by side up there stirs a lot of pride,” said Chris Lagimodiere, Director of the Indigenous Peoples’ Centre at BU. “This continues to add to the Indigenous influence on campus, such as our seven teachings plaques, and each piece that we add makes all of BU a warmer and more inviting place.”

Lagimodiere and Docherty were joined by BU Chancellor Mary Jane McCallum and flag representatives for a series of small-group ceremonies, following Covid safety protocols, to raise each flag in turn. The flags were smudged, and the grounds were cleansed, before being raised. When all six had been raised, an honour song was also performed.

The flags are a permanent addition to the BU campus. The new flagpoles and their location on 18th Street will also bring additional prominence to occasions like the lowering of flags to half-mast for memorials, and to the raising of community flags, like the Pride flag.

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