Regina residents call for Cree syllabics on street signs
‘Part of the thing that we do to preserve our language is to make our language visible,' says Solomon Ratt
Some people in North Central are calling on the City of Regina to include Cree syllabics on street signs in the area.
"This is important because it will bring pride to the First Nations people to see the signs in the Cree language," said Solomon Ratt, a linguistics professor with the First Nations University of Canada.
"Part of the thing that we do to preserve our language is to make our language visible."
Ratt said he told the city he would rewrite the signs to include both English and Cree after he was approached by North Central residents for help.
He's thinking of rewriting the street names from Albert Street to Elphinstone Street, and from Dewdney Avenue to 4th or 5th Avenue.
"I've already got the file ready to roll on my computer. Once the city wants to do it … it's just a matter of getting the printers going."
Ratt acknowledged that he's not aware of the costs associated with such a project.
Non-English signs exist in Regina
Bilingual street signs wouldn't be a first for the city. Ratt cited 11th Avenue, near Broad Street, where street signs feature Chinese symbols.
Ratt said he's still waiting for a response from city officials, but he believes the project will happen.
"It's just a matter of a few people going out to city council, and putting their arguments forward," he said.
"It really would be wonderful to see, especially as part of our celebration for 150 years."
CBC News reached out to the City of Regina to find out whether it is considering the project.
In an email, a spokesperson wrote, "the city is working with interested parties."