Protect Camas/itqwa in Millennium Park
This petition had 670 supporters
I believe the new playground planned for Millennium Park should be moved to a new location where no camas will be destroyed or damaged.
Camas (Camassia quamash), black camas or itxwa in the Interior Salish language, is an essential and meaningful part of our environment and heritage. The protection of this significant cultural and ecological native plant is critical and should be addressed by City Council immediately. There should be no further loss of the current camas populations within the City of Castlegar and in the West Kootenay Region.
I acknowledge that I play a role in knowing the history of the local camas landscape and helping to voice a pathway toward its unblemished and secure future. The current proposed location for the new playground in Millennium Park will destroy countless numbers of camas. I cannot begin to express my gratitude to the generations of Sinixt women and families who, through their diligent and careful cultivation of their staple root food, ensured there would be camas here for us to enjoy and learn from. We owe it to them and their future generations to keep the camas safe and to help the plants thrive.
Camas, or itxwa, and all native plants of high cultural and ecological significance, should be a valued emblem of the City of Castlegar. I agree with the words of Amelia Marchand, Program Director for the Environmental Trust Department (ETD), Colville Confederated Tribes:
...the continued destruction and loss of this iconic Sinixt cultural food should no longer occur. ...all itxwa habitat should be protected in perpetuity.
I believe we all have a responsibility to look after itxwa. The new playground should be moved. Camas should be saved. There is a place to play and flourish for all of us and my community includes a very special native plant called camas.
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