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Minister Wilkinson presents response to the 2020 Minister’s Round Table on Parks Canada

Press Release

From: Parks Canada

The Minister’s response will help to advance efforts to protect nature, strengthen Indigenous leadership in conservation, make protected places more inclusive and accessible, protect built heritage and tell Canada’s diverse stories.

April 15, 2021                           Gatineau, Quebec                   Parks Canada Agency

National historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas play a vital role in shaping our national identity, protecting the environment, fighting climate change and biodiversity loss, as well as providing Canadians with opportunities to experience and enjoy iconic cultural and natural settings. In close collaboration with Canadians, Parks Canada is committed to protecting these treasured places now and for generations to come.

Today, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, responded to feedback received through the 2020 Minister’s Round Table on Parks Canada – a national consultation held every two years to seek advice from Canadians on the work of the Agency, and to share information on progress since the previous engagement.

Through the consultation process, Canadians were encouraged to share their views on five themes: Urban Parks; Ecological Corridors; Diversity, Inclusion, and Accessibility; Indigenous Leadership in Conservation; and, Protecting our Cultural Heritage. Over 13,000 people from across the country participated in the consultation, including representatives of national Indigenous organizations and over 60 stakeholder organizations. In response to the thousands of contributions received, Minister Wilkinson published a report identifying 12 action areas for Parks Canada.

These actions will help Canada move forward in its efforts to protect 25% of lands and waters by 2025 and facilitate Parks Canada’s leadership in natural and cultural heritage conservation and promotion. This includes the Agency’s work on ecological connectivity and urban conservation, as well as supporting reconciliation and the leadership of Indigenous peoples in the conservation and stewardship of natural and cultural heritage. In addition, these actions will help further the protection of historic buildings and heritage places, including through strengthened legislation, and ensure that the stories of Canada’s history are told from diverse perspectives. They will also advance the Agency’s commitment to make national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas even more welcoming and accessible to all Canadians.

Parks Canada expresses its appreciation to all who participated in the 2020 Minister’s Round Table and is committed to implementing the actions outlined by the Minister response. Details on the consultation, what was heard, and the Minister’s response can be found in the 2020 Minister’s Round Table on Parks Canada – Report and Response.

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Quotes

“The Minister’s Round Table on Parks Canada provides a valuable opportunity for Canadians to share their perspectives and help shape the future of Parks Canada and our country’s most treasured places. I would like to thank all who participated in the 2020 consultation. The feedback from Indigenous partners, stakeholders, and thousands of Canadians is helping to shape Parks Canada’s efforts to respond to the dual challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss. The actions outlined in my response will help to protect more nature, strengthen Indigenous leadership in conservation, protect Canada’s built heritage, foster diversity in the stories shared at Parks Canada administered places and make these important places even more inclusive and welcoming to all visitors.”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson
Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

“I would like to thank everyone who participated in the 2020 Minister’s Round Table. The level of participation in the consultation clearly demonstrated how invested Canadians are in the work undertaken by Parks Canada to protect and share our natural and cultural heritage places. Parks Canada is committed to working with Indigenous partners, stakeholders, and other interested Canadians to implement the action areas outlined in the Minister’s response. By working together to ensure that national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas are protected and that they become even more inclusive and accessible, we can make our collective vision for these national treasures a reality.”

Ron Hallman
President & Chief Executive Officer, Parks Canada

Quick facts

  • Under the Parks Canada Agency Act, the Minister responsible for Parks Canada holds a round table with Canadians interested in the work of Parks Canada every two years. The 2020 Minister’s Round Table was held in October and November 2020 and was delivered through virtual engagement sessions and an online engagement portal.
  • The 2020 Minister’s Round Table exceeded past records of engagement. More than 13,000 people participated. Sixty organizations were represented in nine virtual discussion forums. Twenty written submissions and 4,500 emails were received. Over 500 ideas were shared through the online portal and 8,000 people were engaged over social media.
  • Parks Canada protects a vast network of natural and cultural heritage places that includes 171 national historic sites, 47 national parks, five national marine conservation areas and one national urban park.

Associated links

Contacts

Moira Kelly
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
819-271-6218
[email protected]

Media Relations
Parks Canada Agency
855-862-1812
[email protected]

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