Learning to understand and work together was the focus of a recent meeting between the Adams Lake Indian Band and the Village of Sun Peaks.
On July 9, Chief Nelson Leon of the Adams Lake Indian Band, and Mayor Al Raine of Sun Peaks, along with their respective councils, concluded the first Community to Community forum between the two groups. This was a two day forum, with the first day held at the Adams Lake Indian Reserve located near Chase, and the second day held in Sun Peaks.
The meetings included a tour of the respective villages, and a presentation about the key issues at each community. The meetings were facilitated by Erin Vieira and Mike Simpson of the Fraser Basin Council.
The purpose of these meetings was for the elected representatives of the communities to get to know each other better, and learn about the issues facing each community. The meetings were informal and friendly.
Through the dialogue process, many common issues were identified that could be worked on together to improve the relationship between the two. Both groups of community leaders committed to work together on issues that could be resolved in the short term, and more importantly, to continue to meet together to talk about bigger issues.
Their goal is to put together a framework for future discussion, which will allow each community to move forward on unresolved issues, while acknowledging and being respectful of the claims of the First Nations bands and the interests of residents at Sun Peaks.
According to Mayor Raine, “These meetings were the first important steps in understanding each other’s community aspirations, the meetings were very productive and well facilitated.”
Chief Leon added, “It is important that we continue to meet, as there are still many unresolved issues. It was a good start, and we look forward to future meetings.”