The Winnipeg Police Service has a long and storied tradition. Some of our customs have evolved; others have carried over from the British system upon which we are founded. It is time to recognize and pay tribute to the Indigenous community in our province, city and within our ranks by incorporating Indigenous ceremony into our police customs as members of Treaty One Territory which includes the traditions of community protectors.
On May 19, 2019 the Winnipeg Police Service was presented with a new eagle staff at the Manito Ahbee Festival’s 2019 pow wow.
An eagle staff is a flag to an Indigenous nation – a symbol of the nation’s identity and principles. Each eagle staff is one-of-a-kind to the people who created it, to the people to whom it is given, and to the time and place where it was made. The eagle staff is a sacred symbol that is held in high esteem and used for ceremonial purposes.
In Indigenous cultures, the eagle staff represents various meanings, spiritual entities, nations, clans, languages, medicines and healing. It is believed eagles communicate directly with the Creator. It is an honoured and sacred symbol and as such, respectfully cared for, adhering to teachings provided by our Elders and Knowledge Keepers.
Our Service Eagle Staff honours and protects Winnipeg Police Service members, members who have been killed or injured in the line of duty and those who have passed on. It honours the Indigenous community we are sworn to protect and is a reflection of the respect the Indigenous community has for the hard work and care that the Winnipeg Police Service provides.