Not actual treaty talks, as those were held 140 years or so when the Canadian government under Conservative Prime Minister John A. Macdonald, was looking to open up western Canada to settlement. In order to do that, indigenous groups who had inhabited the region for millennia had to be persuaded to give up their lands and settle on reserves.

As James Daschuk outlined in his 2013 book Clearing the Plains, the federal government and its agents in the West used all sorts of dirty tricks to enforce compliance among resident First Nations. The track record of governments since then in honouring the terms of the treaties hasn’t been great either, and all sorts of misconceptions have sprung up over the years, furthering the divide between indigenous people and settlers.

On Saturday June 6 Central Library is hosting a presentation by a speaker from the Office of Treaty Commissioner, who will offer some background about the treaties and the terms they contain. The presentation will run from 2-4 p.m. Refreshments will be provided, and you’re asked to register in advance on the RPL website.