Halifax council takes first step in renaming things named 'Micmac'
HALIFAX -- Like the word itself, streets and facilities named "Micmac" could soon become a thing of the past in Halifax.
The regional council is considering the idea of name changes to something more culturally appropriate.
"You can’t get a more Anglicized name than Micmac," said Halifax Regional Coun. Sam Austin. "This is not their name but it is the European interpretation and it has been rooted throughout Dartmouth and Halifax."
That's why Austin submitted a motion at Tuesday's council meeting, requesting a staff report on the renaming of streets that use the outdated term "Micmac."
"The main thing that I want to see that comes out of this is a process to have some proper engagement with the community as a whole, particularly the Mi’kmaw community, because ultimately this is an Anglicized version of their name," Austin said.
Mi'kmaw historian Daniel Paul is supportive of the potential changes.
"It’s long overdue," said Paul. "I’m happy to hear that they’re considering changing their names putting Mi’kmaq Instead of Micmac because that’s the name we use."
Austin’s motion was born out of the Cornwallis task force that recommended the city look at the process of naming streets and facilities in the HRM.
"I believe that when we are using terms that belong to our First Nations people, that we need to see them as they are supposed to be said," said Dartmouth resident Ken Trudeau. "It also honours the reconcillations process."
Austin is also going to ask for a new name for a portion of Micmac Boulevard that acknowledges the Black community that existed there two centuries ago.
Late Tuesday afternoon, Halifax Regional Council unanimously passed Austin's motion. The next step is for city staff to return their report to council.