Manitoba

Coat of arms ignores aboriginal people, MP says

Canada's coat of arms should include an aboriginal symbol for it to truly represent the country's history, Winnipeg Centre MP Pat Martin says.

Canada's coat of arms should include an aboriginal symbol for it to truly represent the country's history, Winnipeg Centre MP Pat Martin says.

The current national emblem has symbols representing England, Scotland, Ireland and France, but nothing to reflect the first residents of the country, Martin told CBC News Friday before introducing a motion asking Parliament to consider the idea.

"It looks more like the coat of arms for Narnia than for Canada," he said.

"What really struck me, especially after the apology of residential schools last week, is that there's no reference, whatsoever, to the original peoples of Canada — the First Nations, Inuit or the Métis."

Even the addition of an eagle feather or a medicine wheel would help the coat of arms be more representative, he said.

A vote in Parliament is not required to change the coat of arms — the government could simply decide it is a good idea and do it, he said.

Aboriginal people could be consulted about it over the summer, he said.

The coat of arms was last revised in 1994.

 

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