‘Can’t erase history’ by tearing down statues, Minister says

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna spoke on the contentious removal of John A. Macdonald

The federal minister responsible for historic sites and monuments says removing statues of former politicians and leaders needs to be decided on an example-by-example basis.

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna spoke on the contentious removal of Sir John A. Macdonald from outside Victoria City Hall during a media conference Wednesday.

“There are parts of our history that might be troubling, but maybe that it’s important to look at how do we tell those stories?” she said.

PHOTOS: Hundreds gather at Victoria City Hall after removal of Sir John A. Macdonald Statue

READ MORE: Sculptor of John A. Macdonald statue speaks out

The statue of Canada’s first prime minister was removed Saturday after a vote of approval by Victoria city council. Mayor Lisa Helps has called it a move towards reconciliation, as Macdonald had a role in residential schools.

McKenna said the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada will look at addressing future concerns when it comes to removing historical figures.

“I’ve tasked them to look at how do you have a thoughtful way of addressing concerns with certain people in our history, but you can’t erase history,” McKenna said.


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