Smudging/Pipe Ceremonies

Category: Governance
Number: GOV-040-020
Audience: All University employees and external groups
Revised: February 03, 2014
Owner(s): AVP (Facilities Management)
Approved by: VP (Administration)
Contact: Manager, Aboriginal Student Centre - 306-337-3106; Director of Maintenance and Utilities, Facilities Management - 306-585-4419

Introduction

The University of Regina is committed to the recognition and support of diversity and, consequently, its celebration. The University is actively working towards indigenizing its practices. The University recognizes that Indigenous students, faculty, staff and community engage in a variety of traditional ceremonies, including and not limited to smudging, and pipe ceremonies. This policy is meant to provide guidance to the University community in engaging in these traditions while respecting everyone on campus.

Some of the plants used in smudging and ceremony include sage, sweetgrass, cedar; and tobacco.

Policy

The University of Regina recognizes that smudging, the use of tobacco and other medicines are a part of the Aboriginal traditional way of life and are, therefore, permitted on campus in appropriate spaces.

The support of diversity is a shared responsibility at all levels of the University.

Roles and Responsibilities

There are many types or forms of ceremony: individual; as part of engagement with Indigenous pedagogies in a classroom; and for community engagement.

The Individual will:

  • Post notices on their doors
  • Make sure doors are closed
  • Notify neighbouring units
  • Have Facilities Management perform an initial assessment of ventilation/fire systems

The individual instructor/staff facilitating learning reflective of Indigenous pedagogies will:

  • Inform participants of the intention to engage in this way of knowing
  • Post notices on their doors
  • Make sure doors are closed
  • Notify Dean; neighbouring classrooms; and Facilities Management

The Aboriginal Student Centre will:

  • Post notices for events in CW 118
  • Make sure doors are closed
  • Notify neighbouring units and Facilities Management

The Director of Maintenance and Utilities & Facilities Management will:

  • After receiving notification, evaluate the fire and ventilation systems in the requested space
  • Support ceremonies which celebrate and encourage diversity among the University community
  • Note when and where ceremonies are scheduled; inform Campus Security
  • Ensure that staff understands the importance of these ceremonies

Associate Vice-Presidents, Deans, Directors, and Department Heads will:

  • Ensure their staff understands the importance of smudging and pipe ceremonies as part of the Aboriginal traditional way of life

The University Executive is:

  • Responsible for supporting legitimate ceremonies which celebrate and encourage diversity among the University community
The individual instructor/staff facilitating learning reflective of Indigenous pedagogies will:

Consequences for Noncompliance

Failure to comply with this policy may result in activation of the fire alarm system with subsequent evacuation of building and/or occupational health and safety risks to the University community.

Processes

  1. Location
    Smudging/pipe ceremonies will usually take place in the Cultural & Traditional Advisors' office (CW 118). Other campus spaces must be evaluated well in advance of the event by Facilities Management by contacting the Work Control Centre at 306-585-4039 or work.control@uregina.ca. Facilities Management will work with the organizers to ensure fire alarm and ventilation issues will not disrupt the smudging participants or building occupants. Technical support for smudging ceremonies is a core Facilities Management service; no financial charges will apply.
  2. Notification
    • A sign will be posted on the door of CW 118 when a ceremony is going to be held. The sign will be removed when the aroma has dissipated.
    • For ceremonies taking place in other campus spaces, the organizers will post a similar sign and notify neighbouring offices in advance.
    • For smudging of a personal nature, notification to neighbours is required.
    • For smudging and/or pipe ceremony in classes or as a part of other academic experiences, notification should be given to participants; the appropriate Dean, and neighbouring units; and to Facilities Management at 306-585-4039. A sign will be posted on the door; and the door will remain closed.
  3. Air quality
    Event organizers will ensure doors remain closed until the aroma has dissipated. Concerns with air quality should be directed to Facilities Management Work Control at 306-585-4039 or work.control@uregina.ca.
  4. Fire Safety
    Event organizers should know the location of the nearest fire extinguisher, be aware of nearby combustible materials and keep embers in a heat proof container until cold to the touch before discarding.

§  A sign will be posted on the door of CW 118 when a ceremony is going to be held. The sign will be removed when the aroma has dissipated.

§  For ceremonies taking place in other campus spaces, the organizers will post a similar sign and notify neighbouring offices in advance.

§  For smudging of a personal nature, notification to neighbors is required.

For smudging and/or pipe ceremony in classes or as a part of other academic experiences, notification should be given to participants; the appropriate Dean, and neighboring units; and to Facilities Management at 306-585-4039.  A sign will be posted on the door; and the door will remain closed. 

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