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City of Kingston to host special council meeting to decide fate of Sir John A. Macdonald statue

The city of Kingston will meet next week to discuss the fate of the Sir John A. Macdonald statue in City Park. Paul Soucy, CKWS TV

The city of Kingston, Ont., released a statement on Friday evening to announce that a special council meeting about Sir John A. Macdonald‘s statue in City Park, will be held on June 16 at 5 p.m.

This statement follows increased pressure from Indigenous and non-Indigenous residents to take the statue down.

Sir John A. Macdonald statues nationwide have been facing fire, and just recently in Picton, Ont., Prince Edward County city council voted 13-1 for the removal of a statue there.

Click to play video: 'Picton reacts to removal of Sir John A statue' Picton reacts to removal of Sir John A statue
Picton reacts to removal of Sir John A statue – Jun 8, 2021

A group of Kingston community members have vowed to camp out at the local statue’s site where they also hosted a sacred fire, until the city removes the statue.

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Read more: Indigenous group calls for removal of Kingston’s Sir John A. Macdonald statue

The History and Legacy of Sir John A. Macdonald Working Group is an organization that say they work to re-define, and re-work the way Kingston views Sir. John A. Macdonald’s past to include the problematic parts as well. The city says that the meeting will be a place where the working group’s suggestions, as well as input from community members, will be heard.

Prior to this special council meeting, on June 14 from 4-6pm, the Working Group will meet to organize feedback and suggestions before bringing them to council.

“Public correspondence in relation to the special Council meeting can be sent to ourhistories@cityofkingston.ca and, if received before noon on June 14, will be included in the report to council for the June 16 Special Council Meeting. Correspondence can also be sent, at any time, to the Clerk’s Department of the City of Kingston,” reads the city’s statement.

Click to play video: 'Kingston artist hopes to inspire others as he addresses Sir John A. Macdonald’s legacy' Kingston artist hopes to inspire others as he addresses Sir John A. Macdonald’s legacy
Kingston artist hopes to inspire others as he addresses Sir John A. Macdonald’s legacy – Jun 9, 2021

Kingston Police Services shared a thread on Twitter Friday evening to also alert the public that they are aware of the gathering at Sir. John A Macdonald’s statue.

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“Kingston Police want residents to know we are aware of Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members situated in City Park who have placed a covering over the statue of Sir John A. Macdonald.

“We have spoken to and continue to have a dialogue with organizers, who state their intent is to peacefully and non-destructively make their presence known while they continue talks with the city of Kingston Working Group and the Mayor’s Office on future plans for the statue, ” read the statement in part.

Read more: Kingston artist pushes for Indigenous art next to Sir John A. Macdonald statue in City Park

Kingston police also say that they’ve received numerous calls from citizens passing the park who have mistakenly thought the attachments to the statue meant it was being forcefully taken down.

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Members of the public are welcome to attend the Working Group Meeting as well as the special council meeting.

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