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Available Expert - Queen’s Dean of Law speaks to appointment of Canada’s first Indigenous Governor General

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Queen’s constitutional law expert and Faculty of Law dean Mark Walters is available to speak to Mary Simon being named Canada’s 30th Governor General, including the significance of being the first Indigenous person to hold the post and the opportunity to rethink the “Crown” in Canada.

“The appointment of an Indigenous person, Mary Simon, as Governor General opens up promising opportunities for reconciliation – including, perhaps, the opportunity to rethink the very idea of the “Crown” in Canada. For many Indigenous peoples, the “Crown” is a treaty partner, though one that has often failed to live up to treaty promises; for others, the “Crown” is the symbol of the Canadian state, a state that often fails to live up to its constitutional obligations of “honour” to make treaties. The Crown seems remote and, well, colonial. Could the concept of “Crown” in Canada be decolonized? What if Indigenous legal perspectives finally helped shape the constitutional idea of the “Crown” in Canada? Perhaps having an Indigenous person as the Crown’s representative in Canada will open promising conversations about this possibility,” says Walters.

To arrange an interview, please contact Media Relations Officer Julie Brown (343-363-2763 or Julie.brown@queensu.ca) at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.  

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