Lunenburg Mayor Requested Statement From Indigenous Leader Saying They Approve Renaming Cornwallis Street To Queen Street, Emails Show



(Photo: Jesse Ward)

Emails obtained by the Lunenburg Barnacle through a Freedom Of Information request reveal that after Lunenburg faced public pushback on their decision to rename Cornwallis Street to Queen Street in November, Mayor Jamie Myra attempted to obtain a statement from an Indigenous leader saying they approved the change.

On Dec. 7, 2023, Myra emailed an individual with a redacted identity who he says is an Indigenous leader, writing it would be “a great help” to “get a written statement from an Indigenous leader” with a message saying: “something like […] The Indigenous community sees this as the first steps in a positive move by the Town to reconciliation and we look forward to working with them on future initiatives.”

In an interview, Myra says he made this request after initially speaking with this Indigenous leader by phone.

He says they said they liked the name Queen Street, and that continuing with Queen – plus installing interpretive panels explaining Queen Elizabeth II’s involvement with treaties – would be a good path forward.

Myra says that after having that conversation, he emailed the Indigenous leader to ask for a statement from another Indigenous leader approving Queen Street, so the Town could proceed with Queen and “we could say we did it under advice.”

He says he has not been able to get this statement. He says his emails with other Indigenous leaders have since been deleted over a period where he was in the habit of deleting his Town emails, a practice which he says he ended after he was told to.

The message in Myra’s email is contrary to how he publicly characterized his outreach to the Indigenous community. 

On the morning of the day he privately asked for an Indigenous leader to provide a written statement saying they approve Queen Street, the Town published a statement by Myra saying, “We are committed to creating a positive relationship with our Indigenous Partners and have asked for their advice on this matter. Until we have had a meaningful dialogue with them, we will take no further action on renaming Cornwallis Street.”

As of today, progress on deciding what to do with Cornwallis Street will not proceed, says Myra, until he hears from the Indigenous community.

For more context, this story ends with a full timeline on the renaming decision.

Council initially decided to rename Cornwallis Street last January, decided on Queen last November

Lunenburg committed to renaming Cornwallis Street in January 2023, with council accepting a proposal from the Anti-Racism Special Committee, now defunct and merged with a regional committee, to end this aspect of the legacy of Edward Cornwallis after public consultation.

A release by the town that month acknowledged “the controversial former governor of Nova Scotia issued a scalping proclamation bounty in 1749 to anyone who killed Mi’kmaw men, women, and children.”

Lunenburg residents, and interested parties from out of town, were invited by the Town to complete a survey in February offering nine possible options for renaming Cornwallis Street. Seven of the options were Mi’kmaq terms, one option was “Reconciliation”, and one option was “Queen”.

The survey results were presented to Council in November, and Council motioned to rename Cornwallis to Queen, based off of a staff report that featured misrepresented data

The data allegedly represented analysis of the survey results in incomprehensible pie charts, sourced at a cost of $2,000 from an events promotion company.

The staff report also excluded 103 public comments that had been submitted alongside the survey results. 

(For our investigation revealing how the data was misrepresented, read our December 2023 story: Lunenburg confirms report informing Council on Cornwallis Street renaming misrepresented survey data and omitted 103 comments)

At Council’s Nov. 28, 2023 meeting Councillors Jenni Birtles, Stephen Ernst, Peter Mosher and Mayor Jamie Myra voted in favour of Queen Street. 

Councillors Melissa Duggan, Susan Sanford and Deputy Mayor Ed Halverson voted against the motion.

Town publicly pivoted to not rename Cornwallis street “until we have a meaningful dialogue with our Indigenous Partners”

Following public reaction to the Town’s decision in December – including Natteal Battiste, a member of the Wasoqopa’q (Acadia) First Nation band council, saying the decision to change Cornwallis to Queen was disappointing – the Town announced in early December they will postpone renaming Cornwallis Street.

The Wasoqopa’q (Acadia) First Nation spans southwestern Nova Scotia from Yarmouth to Halifax. Battiste represents Mi’kmaq communities in the Lunenburg area.

In an emailed comment to the Canadian Press, Battiste wrote, “It would be nice to see the name replaced by either a Mi’kmaq word or person,” and added that would be in the spirit of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

At 10:22 a.m. Atlantic Time on Dec. 7, 2023, the Town published a statement from Mayor Myra on Facebook:

“We have received a lot of feedback from the community, both positive and negative, regarding our decision to rename Cornwallis Street, Queen Street.

While we certainly appreciate resident feedback through our survey, we want to ensure we get this right.

Reconciliation is incredibly important to us as a Council and an organization.

We are committed to creating a positive relationship with our Indigenous Partners and have asked for their advice on this matter. Until we have had a meaningful dialogue with them, we will take no further action on renaming Cornwallis Street.

We are hopeful there is increasing confidence in this Council to take significant steps towards reconciliation.”

Mayor privately attempted to get a written statement from an Indigenous leader approving Queen Street

Then, at 12:18 p.m., Myra emailed two people – one Indigenous leader who has requested they not be identified, and another person whose identity is redacted in the supplied documents.

Despite the Town publishing his statement two hours earlier saying the Town would take no further action on renaming Cornwallis until there is meaningful dialogue, Myra told the recipients “it would be a great help” if the Town could “get a written statement from an Indigenous leader” that approves Queen Street and says that Queen Street is “the first steps in a positive move by the Town to reconciliation.”

Myra’s email reads:

“Good Afternoon [REDACTED],

Thank you for connecting us yesterday.

I am not sure if you saw my CBC interview last evening or my latest statement on the Towns FB page but I really want to make this acceptable to everyone.

What I fear is if we just go back and change our initial decision it will bring unwarranted negativity on the Indigenous community and nobody wants that.

It would be a great help in all this if we could get a written statement from an Indigenous leader stating something like this.

That they understand the Town went through a process to remove the name Cornwallis from a street. Throughout the process they conducting a residential survey where the local residents voted on the new name. Queen St garnered over 36% support so the Town council chose the popular vote.

The Indigenous community sees this as the first steps in a positive move by the Town to reconciliation and we look forward to working with them on future initiatives.

We would love to see the Town continue renaming parks and naming new parks in Indigenous names as it honours our history.

I am hoping if we could get something like that only written in their words and thoughts it would help bring us all together again.

Please let me know if there is anything more I can do on my end.

Also I would love to have a sit down, in person meeting with a high ranking Indigenous leader soon to discuss this and other initiatives in our Town.

Respectfully,
Jamie Myra
Mayor, Town of Lunenburg 
Sent from my iPhone”

Mayor explains context of emails and current status of renaming in interview

Mayor Jamie Myra spoke with The Barnacle on the topic of the Cornwallis Street renaming in a phone call on June 18. This transcript has been condensed for clarity.

Barnacle: I want to follow up on the Cornwallis Street renaming initiative because it’s been about six months since we heard any news. I want to start off by just asking you where that one’s at now.

Myra: Well, you saw the one or two emails I was able to find throughout my emails, that I was having with them back in December, January.

I’ve had about four or five, like phone calls with some people, some of the people that were named in those emails, for example. And we have been working toward some type of a solution. But to be honest, it’s been very difficult to try to get anyone to commit to anything. If, you know, if you understand what I’m saying, it’s, you know, we’ve already made a decision as a town. The town has stated that we are going to remove Cornwallis Street, replace it with Queen Street.

So what I’ve been trying to do was work with the Indigenous community to make this go as smoothly as possible, that everybody seems to be on board and okay with this decision. 

And in conversations over the phone especially, there has been a lot of suggestions made to me by Indigenous leaders and elders of how we could do this and how it would work, and that’s what I’ve been trying to do.

But to get a confirmation, or to get a quote, or to get anyone to agree to do this at a certain time has been very difficult, to be honest, to come up with some type of solution because we’re trying to work with each other as much as possible, both sides have been very busy, and we haven’t really, you know, been able to set up how this is going to be handled properly or right.

To be honest, I just want to make sure, as you know, I walked into this whole situation at like the eleventh hour, and, now I’m just trying to make this work for all of us, that we can all live with our decision. Make sure that it’s an acceptable decision by the Indigenous people. That’s who it’s important for, that’s why we’re doing it. If it’s acceptable to them, then it should be acceptable to everybody, or the majority, right?

I’m trying to work with them to move forward. And we just haven’t been able to come up with an official plan yet to do anything. That’s why we’ve done nothing. Because we’re not going to change the signs in that street until we can satisfy the Indigenous peoples’ request.

And we don’t want to do something quickly. The survey might not have been done the right way back. But it was done. There’s results. The council voted. We voted to go with the one that had the most votes. We ended up doing the elimination rounds and it actually made, which I found hard to believe myself, but it did.

It actually gave Queen Street an even higher percentage, because a lot of people that didn’t have Queen Street as number one had it as number two and three, which I did find hard to believe, quite honestly. I figured if they didn’t pick it for number one and they picked an Indigenous name, they wouldn’t have picked it for any. But they did.

So, you know, technically, if you go by the survey results we picked, the council did pick the right name, but is it the right name for what we’re doing it for? And the only people that can really answer that and work with us properly moving forward is the Indigenous community itself.

Barnacle: Well, if you go by the survey results – I mean, we don’t need to spend too long on that. But if you go by the survey results, only 38% of people picked Queen as a first option of town residents, and everyone else picked something else. It’s just – the structure of the survey…

Anyway, in the email that was released, you had suggested to the recipients they should get an Indigenous leader to provide a written statement saying that they approve renaming Cornwallis to Queen Street. So did you send that email after you had already spoken to these individuals on the phone?

Jamie: That was a suggestion that was made to me by the person’s name that was redacted.

Barnacle: The person whose name was redacted, they are an Indigenous leader?

Jamie: Yes they are.

Barnacle: So there was an Indigenous leader who recommended to you that –

Jamie: It was an Indigenous leader that recommended to me that the best way to do this is this, because they all respected and like Queen Elizabeth II, she was very influential and very involved in the last bunch of treaties that were signed. A lot of them from this area were involved in her last visit to Nova Scotia, I think in 2010 or somewhere around there. So they were very involved, and they met her before. 

So what their suggestion was to me on the phone was – if you make it a memorial type of thing, like it’s Queen Street in honour or memory of Queen Elizabeth II underneath on a little board or whatever – that they would be fine with that, and then put little interpretive panels, say on the corner of Cornwallis and Creighton and Cornwallis and Montague, explaining what Queen Elizabeth II did for all the new treaties and that, and had that all in the interpretive panels on either end of the street, that they felt, quite frankly, that it would be acceptable to the Indigenous community.

Number one, as they said, you’ve done the first thing. You’ve gotten rid of the name Cornwallis, right? So that’s the first big thing. And then if we did it this way, they felt it would be a way that everybody could move on. And then the council would agree that when renaming new streets or new parks, we put more emphasis on renaming them in Indigenous names. Right? So that was the suggestion that was made to me on the phone we should work on.

But then I hadn’t heard anything for quite some time, so I decided to reach out and say what I said. Basically – can you get somebody from the Indigenous community, like an Indigenous leader that’s respected, to send us an email saying: ‘This is what I think you should do,’ because then if we did it, we could say we did it under advice. Right? 

But I never really got that from anybody, I would say, because of how delicate of a situation that is. I’d say not a lot of people on their end of it want to come forward in writing and say these types of things, either, quite frankly, because it’s not their issue. It’s our issue. Right? So they don’t want to, I guess, put their name out there or, you know, be the one to say, ‘Well, that’s fine if he does it.’ 

Because they know they’re going to get pushback within their community. I’m sure, the same as we did, you know? 

So, I’ve been reaching out, I’ve been calling. And then because of scheduling we haven’t been able to meet.

So the latest plan was that [REDACTED] and I, sometime this month, we’re going to sit down. 

[REDACTED] were trying to get me connected with this gentleman from Halifax and try to come forward with a plan that would get this done, quite frankly, over the summer because in my opinion, this has to be cleaned up before the election. Right? 

I mean, this shouldn’t be the new council’s responsibility. So that’s what I’ve been trying to do, but it just hasn’t been able to come together.

Barnacle: Is there a reason the individual you sent the email to did not want to provide a statement themselves?

Myra: They never told me why. I mean, that was a suggestion they made to me, thinking it would be a good way to resolve the issue. And they’ve never told me why they wouldn’t. You know, I’d say they’re waiting. They’re not an Indigenous leader from this immediate band, right? That represents this location. 

So I’d say they want more of a signoff type of thing or approval from, say, Chief Deborah Robinson or whatever. Right. And that hasn’t happened. And I’ve included her in some of the emails I’ve sent and I’ve got no response. […] [Ed. note: Deborah Robinson is Chief of the Wasoqopa’q (Acadia) First Nation. The Wasoqopa’q (Acadia) First Nation did not respond to a request for comment on this story.]

So, you know, so I’m trying. And, you know, I’m trying to make this happen the right way and for the right, you know, and to be done the right way. And everybody can move forward and move forward in a positive manner, I guess, is all I can say. And I’ll be honest, you know, I’m somewhat at an impasse – this is one of the few times I’ve ever had anything coming my way that I don’t honestly know how to handle it. 

At this point, I don’t know how we move forward, because according to the motion, we just change the signs. I mean, it was a decision made by council. We should be changing the signs now. So the one thing we have decided is that we’re not changing any signs until we can hopefully get a more positive dialogue going with some of our local, more local Indigenous leaders to move forward. 

And to be quite honest, I’ve said this right out of the gate – if we do get any kind of a negative response from the Indigenous community that have said, ‘We hate that idea, we think that was terrible, we want you to reconsider’ – I’d be the first person to say I think we should reconsider, right? Because this is about them, not about me, or anybody else.

It’s about making right what was done wrong to the Indigenous community. But on the other side of the coin, we’ve not got an official letter, notice, or anything from anyone from the Indigenous community saying they were upset with our decision, or they didn’t like our decision, or they didn’t agree with that decision – we’ve never received anything since the time we had that meeting.

Barnacle: Yes.

Myra: Which, you know, to me, kind of is a little shocking, because I would think if they were really upset, if they were really upset or really disappointed in that decision, we would have heard from them. I would have thought.

Barnacle: What I find challenging to understand is, in the statement that was first published on December 7th on the town’s Facebook page – the announcement that the renaming would be paused – the message from the town was, ‘Until we’ve had a meaningful dialogue, we’ll take no further action on renaming the street.’ But then the same day, there was an email that was sent out to a liaison to the Indigenous community, basically just asking them to approve a message saying that they approve Queen Street.

Myra: Well, that’s because there was dialogue, but it was my phone call back and forth that wasn’t like the email you saw from me, that I sent. That wasn’t just something I thought of. That was a suggestion made to me how they felt that it could work moving forward if it was done this way.

But all I wanted before we decided to go that route was some kind of a letter in writing from them saying that was okay. That’s all I was asking for, right?

And since we didn’t get that letter in writing, and we really had no more official dialogue between any of them […] and most of that is in phone calls. 

To be quite honest with you, we’ve done nothing. 

I’ve sent, you know, a few requests here and there by phone and, nothing – no responses. 

And then I just delete the email, and away we go, because there’s no responses. Right? [Ed. note: in a chat following this interview, Myra says he no longer deletes emails on his Town email after he was told he is “not allowed to do that.”]

So until we can sit down, I like to hear one of the two things I, I’d like to have a response that we’d like to sit down, and have some great dialogue, and come up with a solution, or a response that they’re not happy with our decision and they’d like us to reconsider.

And then we can also move forward, because we’re not moving forward at this point.

It’s not going to be renamed Queen Street at this point until we can either have dialogue, or we hear from them one way or the other, in my opinion – and that’s not my council. We haven’t decided as a council, officially. They left it with me. Council has agreed to leave it with me til I came back with them and felt comfortable with a suggestion.

The reason they haven’t heard anything on it, or I haven’t reported on it in a meeting, is because I don’t feel comfortable suggesting anything because I don’t have anything to suggest. 

So again, this is one of those things where I’m sort of stumped, to be honest.

Full Timeline Of The Cornwallis Street Renaming Decision

  • Dec. 6, 2022: The Town of Lunenburg’s now-defunct Anti-Racism Special Committee meets and agrees to recommend Council rename Cornwallis Street to Samqwan Street. Samqwan is the Mi’kmaq word for water.
  • Dec. 13, 2022: Council have a meeting and agree to approve renaming Cornwallis Street, but they determine more public consultation is required to select a new name. They pass a motion to direct then-CAO Jamie Doyle to conduct a public engagement process to help determine the new street name, and that the results from the public engagement process be presented at the first regularly scheduled Council meeting in March for Council’s consideration.
  • Jan. 10, 2023: Council holds a meeting with an agenda including a letter from Daniel Paul, renowned author and Mi’kmaq Elder, suggesting Council select “Reconciliation Lane” as a new name for Cornwallis Street. “Reconciliation” was one option initially considered by the Anti-Racism Special Committee.
  • Jan. 24, 2023: The Town publishes a news release announcing a survey to rename Cornwallis Street. They communicate the survey, ending in mid-February, to residents by direct mail and social media posts. Results are expected at the first Council meeting in March.
  • Mar. 14, 2023: At the meeting of Council where then-CAO Doyle is expected to communicate results of the survey, Doyle requests and is granted “an open-ended timeframe” to analyze and report on the 300+ survey results received.
  • May 9, 2023: Mayor Matt Risser resigns for a new career opportunity outside of Lunenburg and Councillor Peter Mosher becomes Acting Mayor.
  • June 2023: After months of silence from the Town on this file, in response to questions from the Lunenburg Barnacle, the Town says the analysis is still in progress and staff “plan to present the survey results to Council in early fall.”
  • June 27, 2023: Mi’kmaq Elder Daniel Paul, who wrote a letter suggesting Reconciliation Lane to replace Cornwallis Street, dies at age 84 following a battle with cancer.
  • July 31, 2023: At The Barnacle’s Mayoral Candidates’ Debate, Jamie Myra says: “If I was elected as Mayor, I’d revisit the Cornwallis Street renaming to ensure the Indigenous community had adequate input into the renaming.

    The entire purpose of a name change was to remove the name and history of Cornwallis. We may need to begin anew with a community-led process to heal the rifts that developed over the failed process.

    My plan as Mayor is to immediately contact and invite the Chief of the Acadia Band, Chief Robinson, to meet with myself and council and establish a new framework with which to address the Cornwallis Street issue.”
  • August 12, 2023: Jamie Myra is elected Mayor of Lunenburg.
  • September 12, 2023: Jamie Myra is sworn in as Mayor of Lunenburg.
  • Nov. 28, 2023: Survey results are shared with Council in a staff report that misrepresents the data and methodology used to analyze the results. Lunenburg Council votes four against three to move a motion directing staff to rename Cornwallis Street to Queen Street. Mayor Myra provides the tie-breaking vote to go with Queen Street.

    Asked by The Barnacle why he voted for Queen Street, Myra says: “Basically, the first time I saw any of the results were two or three days ago. I know during the campaign there was a lot of talk about the renaming of that street. But unfortunately, I didn’t know any of that information, neither did any of the residents, and I tend to agree with Councillor Mosher’s comments that the community had asked to be involved in the process.

    If Queen Street would have been a name that was brought forward by a resident, I wouldn’t have supported that, because it wouldn’t have really been a choice offered by the current council. But this current group offered Queen Street as one of the seven or eight or nine options and it was overwhelmingly supported by the local residents, and in fact, the people that actually live on Cornwallis Street – their numbers are even higher.

    I guess if you ask the public’s input, and you receive an overwhelming response like that, in a democratic process, then I felt that I wouldn’t be doing my residents what they deserved if I voted any other way. Do I feel it’s the most appropriate name? Probably not. Do I feel that name should have been included in the original ballot? Probably not. But I wasn’t involved at the time.

    It was, and overwhelmingly the residents chose that name, so I went with the voice of the people. That’s who we represent, and that’s why I made the decision.”
  • Dec. 4, 2023: Following public reaction to the renaming, Mayor Myra releases a statement through the Town’s Facebook page saying, “At our meeting on Nov.28, Council voted to rename Cornwallis Street to Queen Street. After listening to many comments from residents over the last few days, I felt I should give folks an update.

    All of us on Council have been hearing what people have been saying about the street renaming. We hear you.

    We are currently discussing possible alternate options on which we can all agree. We are working on this as a group. This is not an issue to be used as a political platform. It is much bigger than that.

    If people had been this passionate almost a year ago when Queen Street was included as an option on the survey, we probably wouldn’t be discussing this right now.
    Calling Councillors, staff or residents of our lovely community racist because of this is just not fair or accurate.

    Please give us time to figure this out and hopefully, we can bring something to the table at the December 12 Council meeting.”
  • 10:22 a.m., Dec. 7, 2023: Myra releases another statement through the Town’s Facebook page, saying: “We have received a lot of feedback from the community, both positive and negative, regarding our decision to rename Cornwallis Street, Queen Street.

    While we certainly appreciate resident feedback through our survey, we want to ensure we get this right.

    Reconciliation is incredibly important to us as a Council and an organization.

    We are committed to creating a positive relationship with our Indigenous Partners and have asked for their advice on this matter. Until we have had a meaningful dialogue with them, we will take no further action on renaming Cornwallis Street.

    We are hopeful there is increasing confidence in this Council to take significant steps towards reconciliation.”
  • 12.18 p.m., Dec. 7, 2023: Myra emails a person he says is an Indigenous leader asking them to get another Indigenous leader to share a written statement saying they approve renaming Cornwallis Street to Queen Street.
  • Jan. 24, 2024: With no news on this topic since the Dec. 7 Facebook post, at a Council meeting, Councillor Ed Halverson asks Mayor Myra for an update on outreach to Indigenous leaders regarding the renaming of Cornwallis Street. Myra says: “I’ve sent an email, again, to two of the elders, as recently as a week ago. I understand one of them has some health issues right now, so, I’m just waiting to hear back. So, as soon as I hear back, I’ll let you all know where we are on that. But I’ve had some really good, open, and really actually nice discussions with them just before the holidays. And as we all know, the holidays sort of defer everything, so.”
  • June 2024: Since Myra’s response to Halverson in January, Council has not publicly discussed the renaming and the Town has not published anything regarding the renaming.


Comments

10 responses to “Lunenburg Mayor Requested Statement From Indigenous Leader Saying They Approve Renaming Cornwallis Street To Queen Street, Emails Show”

  1. Martha Keddy Smith

    I had to double check if this was a fox news article
    In a town that is trying to knit itself back together why have you published such an untimely and deliberately provocative article ?
    Is there some campaigning going on here ?

    1. Jesse Ward

      Hi Martha,

      I am glad to share the response here that I shared with you on your Facebook comment on this post:

      Thank you for your feedback. Reconciliation is a sensitive subject and requires respectful handling in reporting. I will share the reasons why I published this piece of accountability journalism:

      – This story is an update on an issue that is newsworthy and important to people in Town, the renaming of Cornwallis Street. There has been no public update on this issue for six months. It is responsible to publish a status update on where the renaming process is at by filing a records request and interviewing the public official responsible for the issue. While the topic is sensitive, it is standard accountability journalism to check in on the status of a municipal issue.

      – The reporting reveals the Mayor says he had been in the practice of deleting emails from his official Town email account, which is newsworthy in itself. Emails on official municipal email accounts are public records under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and deleting official emails constitutes destroying public records.

      – The story explains the Mayor’s strategy towards seeking consultation for renaming Cornwallis Street in his own words in an unedited interview, giving him the opportunity to share his unfiltered perspective on a complex topic. I included this to mitigate bias in the story.

      – It is standard accountability journalism to follow the outcomes of elected officials’ commitments. Prior to his election, the Mayor committed to seeking Indigenous consultation before Cornwallis Street was renamed, and did not hold to this commitment, providing the tie-breaking vote to select Queen Street before pursuing any consultation. This story follows up on that commitment and the outcome of not proceeding with it.

      If you would like to talk about this I’d be happy to meet and discuss this further in person.

      Best,
      Jesse

  2. Paula Rennie

    Sorry Jesse, you lost me on this one. Martha is right – sounds like campaigning.

    1. Jesse Ward

      Hi Paula,

      With respect — when you share reasons you oppose development on Blockhouse Hill with someone, and they do not actually engage with those points or even acknowledge them but instead allege some other intrinsic motivation you have beyond the ones you’ve shared, how does that make you feel? What goes through your mind?

      1. Paula Rennie

        Oh, I’ve definitely been accused by a few misguided souls of an intrinsic motivation: nimbyism (and a few others I won’t mention in polite company). I generally laugh and consider the source.

        I’m wondering about the comments about the mayor’s emails. Is there another side to this story?

        1. Jesse Ward

          In a follow-up chat for the interview in this story, I asked the Mayor why he deleted his emails, in reference to the emails he said he deleted to Chief Robinson of the Acadia Band.

          He said, “At times, I’ll go down through my emails and delete them. I’ve always done that. I don’t, now, anymore on my town email because I was told I wasn’t allowed to do that. I’ve stopped doing that because I’m not supposed to be deleting emails, I guess. I had no idea, because I always delete emails at work and at home, just so I don’t overwhelm my junk box or trash or that, right?”

  3. Martha Keddy Smith

    I’ve heard that there is way more to the disappearing emails story than has been reported even though an explanation was offered .
    Without comments from the indigenous community this is only half a story at best .
    Careless to light a fire and then leave it for a month in my very humble opinion .

  4. Tricia Snell

    Thank you Jesse Ward for reporting with such accuracy and detail on this issue, which is of great importance to me, and to all of us in the Lunenburg community. I have followed this closely, and you’ve presented a very balanced view. I’m grateful for the Barnacle’s journalistic integrity.

    I believe that renaming Cornwallis Street to Queen would be painfully wrong. I was shocked when Mayor Myra cast the deciding vote on this, while referring to a deeply flawed poll as if it was a mandate from the people (and it’s disappointing to see that he continues to make that false argument, referring to “results,” even when so many of us have explained to him how the poll distorted the numbers).

    Of course no Indigenous leader would endorse the “Queen Street” name. The lack of response to Mayor Myra’s emails is obviously an answer in itself. That he now blames Indigenous community members for the holdup or “impasse” as he puts it, adds insult to injury.

    When we met, I was hopeful that Mayor Myra would step up and lead on this issue. Many of us offered support to help get the town back on track with the true spirit of truth and reconciliation. I had doubts then about whether we were getting the straight story, and I am sorry to hear that my instincts were correct.

  5. Paula Rennie

    There is more to this story than meets the eye. I suggest we all be patient and wait for the truth.

    1. Tricia Snell

      Paula, if there’s something more that’s relevant, might you reveal it so we can all know? We need transparency and open conversation.

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