RCMP Academy observes National Indigenous Peoples Day

June 21, 2021
Regina, Saskatchewan

News release


The finished mikiwahp (tipi) at Depot Division with a blue sky in the background.
Knowledge Keeper Lyndon J. Linklater talks to cadets about mikiwahp (Cree) or tipi protocols taught to him by his elders.
Volunteers learn how to scrape bark off of black spruce trees to prepare the mikiwahp (Cree) or tipi poles.
Commanding Officer C/Supt. Sylvie Bourassa-Muise offers tobacco to Knowledge Keeper Lyndon J. Linklater.

The RCMP Academy believes it's important to continue providing cadets and employees opportunities to gain deeper understanding of Indigenous heritage and the Residential School legacy contributing to the RCMP's Reconciliation journey. To mark National Indigenous Peoples Day, a mikiwahp (Cree) or tipi was installed on base with the help of Knowledge Keeper, Lyndon J. Linklater.

Cadets and staff, took part in the installation process, which first began by stripping the bark off the black spruce poles to prepare the mikiwahp frame. During this time, Mr. Linklater shared stories with volunteers of his background and how he learned the tipi protocols from his elders. After the frame was tied, the poles cured for a week before the canvas was applied. The canvas was sewn locally by Grace Stevenson and features four rows of zig-zag stitching.

Following the installation, a traditional smudging ceremony was performed to cleanse the new space. The door for the mikiwahp faces south as per Cree tradition and to acknowledge Depot being in Treaty 4 Territory. Treaty 4 includes the territories of the nêhiyawak (Cree), Anihšināpēk (Saulteaux), Dakota, Lakota, and Nakoda, and the homeland of the Métis/Michif Nation.

The location of the mikiwahp was selected in collaboration with Mr. Linklater and the Commanding Officer's Indigenous Advisory Committee as it embodies reconciliation.

"Here at Depot, I help teach about our history, our Treaties and our culture. There are many people upset about Canada's history, and truth and reconciliation is a journey that works in two ways. Facing truth is very hard, but so is forgiving. The location of this mikiwahp reflects this and by teaching in a good protocol way, we can grow together. The more we can do things like this as people, the better things will be," says Mr. Linklater.

The RCMP Academy supports teachings within the Cadet Training Program including those that showcase the proud moments of the Force's history while at the same time, truthfully acknowledging those areas the RCMP has committed to reconciliation.

"Teachings from Indigenous partners helps our cadets better understand the legacy of the residential schools and the impact it has on many communities they will police in. We appreciate the teachings and experiences that our knowledge keeper continues to share with us at the RCMP Academy," says Depot's new Commanding Officer, Chief Superintendent Sylvie Bourassa-Muise.

Depot looks forward to more opportunities like this to learn and collaborate with Indigenous communities, peoples and employees.


Contact information

RCMP Depot Division Media Relations


Lyndon Linklater is a traditional knowledge keeper and story teller. His educational background is in Indian Social Work, Indian Studies and some law. He has comprehensive knowledge of First Nation governments and First Nation culture. He is first generation post-Residential School era.

Lyndon is a citizen of the Thunderchild First Nation (Plains Cree) in Treaty #6 and has roots in Couchiching First Nation (Fort Francis, Ontario) in Treaty #3.

Presently, Lyndon works for Remai Modern Arts Museum in Saskatoon as the Indigenous Engagement Coordinator, providing advice to their board and staff, as well as delivering cultural programming to the public.

He also works for the Office of the Treaty Commissioner as a Speakers' Bureau member. He was appointed to this role in 2000. Since that time, he has spoken to well over 75,000 people delivering awareness and enlightenment on Treaty and First Nation awareness.

It was this connection that brought Lyndon to work with the RCMP for over 10 years. Lyndon assists the RCMP to deliver Aboriginal Perceptions Training. Also, he is an Indigenous Advisor to the Commanding Officer of 'F' Division and is the National Indigenous Advisor for Saskatchewan to the Commissioner in Ottawa.

Commanding Officer's Indigenous Advisory Committee offers strategic advice while providing an Indigenous and Métis cultural perspective to the Commanding Officer and the Cadet Training Program at Depot Division. The committee also serves as a cultural resource for all cadets and staff members at Depot.

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