Why the Road is being Renamed
John A. Macdonald played a significant role in the development of Canada's Indian residential school system. Residential schools took Indigenous children away from their families, cultures and languages to assimilate them - so they would no longer exist as distinct peoples.
Residential schools were responsible for the hunger, neglect, abuse and death of thousands of Indigenous children in Canada. Indigenous families today continue to experience this pain, grief, loss and inter-generational trauma.
Saskatoon strives to be a welcoming and inclusive place to live, where every resident feels a sense of belonging. On June 28, 2021, Saskatoon City Council approved beginning the process to rename John A. Macdonald Road, to recognize the ongoing harm in the community experienced by those who attended residential schools. The City of Saskatoon (City) is also committed to raising awareness and understanding of residential schools and their ongoing impacts.
For information on Reconciliation in Saskatoon, please visit the ConnectR website.
What this Means to Local Residents
There is no action for residents to take right now as the name of the road has not yet been changed. It will take time to complete the engagement process before a new name is determined. In the meantime, the City is looking at options to manage potential costs associated with the address name change and to provide support where possible. Property owners and residents will continue to be provided with updates as available, including timing and next steps.
The City has a current policy for naming a street, park or civic facility, but is creating a new process to look at the naming, recognition and celebration of the histories of Indigenous peoples and other diverse communities in Saskatoon. This Legacy Review will provide a way to look at the renaming of other streets, parks or civic facilities in the future and make Saskatoon a safer and more equitable place for all.