Seat 11, Row 7, Section 531.
That is where an orange seat stands alone, surrounded by green in Mosaic Stadium.
Organizers unveiled the “Seat of Truth” on Miyo-wîcîwitowin Day to honour those who didn’t survive the residential school program.
“The seat will always remain empty to that someone that is a non-survivor of the residential school program can join us at all of our best moments in southern Saskatchewan,” said President and CEO of REAL Tim Reid.
“The intent of it is don’t sit there. It doesn’t matter if it’s a Riders game or anything; just leave that seat vacant so that somebody that may have wanted to join us at that one event can join us in their stadium and be part of that moment.”
Mayor Sandra Masters said that seat would serve as a permanent, visual reminder of the truth that must be told so that actions of reconciliation can advance.
“When we’re at the stadium, whether it’s (for) a Rider game or a concert, when we look at this seat, we’ll be reminded that the truth must be understood, and reconciliation is our focus on behalf of all residential school survivors and their families,” she said. “Our Seat of Truth will always remain unseated and unsold. It will remain available for the spirit of those who do not get the opportunity to witness our world today.
“The seat is a reminder of our shared call to action in the spirit of making concrete changes within our community.”
The seat was created by co-chairs of the event, Cowessess First Nation Chief Cadmus Delorme and Reid.