On Friday, December 10th, an MOU was signed between Lil̓wat7úl (Líl̓wat), xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations as well as the City of Vancouver and the Resort Municipality of Whistler. The signing of the MOU is a positive first step forward for the four First Nations and the two municipalities, who will now work with the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and the Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) along with other stakeholders to explore the impacts and benefits of hosting the 2030 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The MOU creates a Host Nations Exploratory Assembly for the consideration of a 2030 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games bid.
“In 2010, we had the opportunity to host the world on the traditional territory of the Líl̓wat, Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. Those Games created a legacy for the four Host Nations,” says Tsleil-Waututh Nation Chief Jen Thomas. “From all that we learned from hosting the world in 2010, we know that along with the City of Vancouver and the Resort Municipality of Whistler, we will be able to build off that legacy, making the 2030 Games the first Indigenous-led Olympic Games and the best Games yet.”
Vancouver and Whistler, as the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games co-host cities, have been invited by the Host Nations to participate in these exploratory discussions. The MOU has been formally endorsed by the elected councils of each of the partners and builds on the legacy of the 2010 Games.
The Assembly will work with the COC and CPC to assess the feasibility of 2030 Games concepts for the region that all partners will review. The feasibility analysis will focus on collective benefits and priorities, and on how the bidding process can set frameworks for government partnerships.
As one action addressing reconciliation in sport, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) has called upon the officials and host countries of international sporting events such as the Olympics, Pan Am, and Commonwealth Games to ensure that Indigenous Peoples’ territorial protocols are respected, and local Indigenous communities are engaged in all aspects of planning and participating in such events (TRC Call to Action 91).
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