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Rotary Club cancels Canada Day parade in Yellowknife –

The discovery of unmarked graves at former residential school sites has changed the meaning of July 1st, said Rotary Club of Yellowknife President Wayne Guy.

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Members of the RCMP were at the front of the Canada Day parade in Yellowknife back in 2016. (Submitted by Marino Casebeer)

The Rotary Club of Yellowknife has cancelled its annual Canada Day parade “out of respect for the Indigenous community.”

In a statement issued early Saturday afternoon, following a meeting by its planning committee, the organization said the event did not meet their ethical standards. 

“The tragic discovery of unmarked graves in recent weeks at former residential schools in B.C. and Saskatchewan has changed the meaning of July 1st this year for many,” wrote the club’s president, Wayne Guy.

He noted that when they first started planning the parade, the COVID-19 pandemic had been their prime concern.

But, in the wake of recent events, the club said it asked itself four questions about the parade, including whether it would build goodwill and better friendships, and be beneficial to everyone involved. 

“It was decided that holding a parade this year would not meet the test,” said the statement.