My name is Scott Richardson and I am the newest edition to the ReconciliAction YEG team. I am honoured to be a part of a blog that has seen so much success over the last year and contributed significantly to fostering important dialogues. I am excited to continue the work my colleagues have begun.
I am a third year law student, originally from Southern Alberta. I am a white settler with deep roots in this province. Growing up, I cannot remember a time in grade school where my classes ever seriously grappled with the issues, legal or otherwise, that Indigenous peoples face in Canada. It was not until law school that I even understood what a First Nation treaty meant.
Fortunately, the exceptional curricula of our Aboriginal law and Indigenous law courses, as well as the inclusion of Indigenous content in all law courses, has given me an invaluable education and corrected many of my misguided assumptions. However, only a privileged few are able to attend law school. This blog will be a means for us to engage with a broader audience and promote more accessible education for everyone.
I am forever indebted to the Indigenous Law Students’ Association (ILSA) for the wonderful opportunities they have afforded me. I have been a member of ILSA since my first year of law school; last year, I coordinated our Speaker Series and I am now the current Vice-President External for the group. After joining, I quickly became introduced to the myriad different issues affecting Indigenous folks, including the economic, political, social, and legal challenges they experience. My exposure to these topics has completely reconceptualised my understanding of Canadian history, our legal and political institutions, and how racism and other systems of oppression operate. It is my hope that what I have learned as a member of ILSA will be reflected in my writing.
To me, true reconciliation requires a fundamental shift in how we think about our identities and relationships towards one another, and how we come to terms with, not only our past, but our present and future as well. I take seriously the project of reconciliation and being able to write for the ReconciliAction blog is not only a privilege, but also a means to help me continue on my own personal path of reconciliation.
Unfortunately, Ms. Martel will no longer be writing for the blog. We are grateful for the work she has done and wish her all the best.
Until next time,
A Member of Team ReconciliAction YEG