City presses Nova Scotia to hurry up renaming course of for offensive place names

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Councillors in a southwestern Nova Scotia group voted unanimously this week to strain the province to eliminate derogatory place names throughout the municipality’s boundaries.

The problem was put earlier than Barrington’s council Monday when Chuck Smith, president of the Black Loyalist Heritage Society, made a presentation explaining the derogatory and offensive which means behind the phrase “Negro,” which is present in some place names in Barrington.

Barrington Coun. Shaun Hatfield stated the transfer follows a 2018 criticism lodged with the province by a citizen over place names together with Cape Negro, Cape Negro Island, Negro Harbour and Squaw Island.

Smith known as the time period “derogatory” in an interview Wednesday, and stated it’s part of a protracted historical past of labelling for the Black group.

“We as Black people have had so many names put on us,” he stated. “Back in the day, back in the ’60s and ’70s, we were coloured, we were Negro, then we became Black and African Nova Scotian. Those labels, eventually, it kind of wears you down.”

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Barrington’s web site says the world was named by French colonialist navigator Samuel de Champlain, who wrote within the 1600s that he known as the world Cape Negro “on account of a rock which from a distance looks like one.”

Monday’s movement to hunt motion from the province was put ahead by Hatfield, who stated the names must be modified to acknowledge the destructive influence on Nova Scotia’s Black group.

“Regardless of the etymology, these words we all know carry with them pejorative and harmful impacts to people,” Hatfield stated in an interview Wednesday.

The councillor stated New Brunswick set a precedent in 2017 when it formally modified the names of 5 locations within the Saint John space that used the anachronistic time period, changing them with names that honoured historic Black Loyalists and Black group members.

Sue McKeage, communications director for Service Nova Scotia and Inner Companies, stated the province has obtained two purposes to have the names modified, and interesting with residents within the Barrington space is the following step within the course of.

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She stated in-person conferences needed to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, the province is shifting ahead with various strategies, together with a mailing to residents, a brand new web site and a survey suggestions kind.

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“The consultation is expected to continue for several months so we are sure to give all residents a chance to be heard,” McKeage wrote in an emailed assertion. “To date, we have engaged with several stakeholders about the name change, including provincial offices, local municipalities, and other groups.”

To exchange the title, Hatfield stated Cape George was steered in the course of the assembly to honour David George, a Black Loyalist who travelled to close by Shelburne, N.S., to evangelise among the many Black settlers in the neighborhood of Birchtown.

Like Hatfield, Smith stated he thinks the areas must be named after leaders in the neighborhood of Black Loyalists that beforehand lived within the space.

“I understand change is hard, people don’t want to change,” he stated. “But it’s time. It’s overdue.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed March 25, 2021.

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