Procedure for Indigenous ceremonial practices at University Facilities

Adoption Date:October 21, 2022

Approving Body: Provost and Vice-President, Academic Affairs

Responsible Service: Conventions and Reservations




  1. This Procedure is established pursuant to University Policy 124 - Indigenous Ceremonial Practices on or at University Facilities and outlines how Indigenous ceremonial practices can occur at events or on University Facilities.


  1. This Procedure is to be read and interpreted within the context of University Policy 124 - Indigenous Ceremonial Practices on or at University Facilities.
  1. The meaning of the expression "Indigenous ceremonial practices" and capitalized words or expressions used in this Procedure are defined in University Policy 124 - Indigenous Ceremonial Practices on or at University Facilities or refer to a University administrative service or unit.


  1. Those wishing to include Indigenous ceremonial practices at events to be held on or at University Facilities must make their request to Conventions and Reservations at least five business days prior to their ceremony.
  1. A master list of spaces available at University Facilities for Indigenous ceremonial practices is posted on the Conventions and Reservations website. Requested spaces at University Facilities not available on this list are subject to University approval from Facilities and a request for use may be refused if the University Facility is not available or if the request is not made within a reasonable period of time in advance of the event.
  1. Participation in Indigenous ceremonial practices is voluntary and no one should be forced to participate.  A person who does not wish to participate may choose to stay at the University Facilities venue and refrain from participating in the Indigenous ceremonial practice or may leave the venue.
  2. A least two (2) days prior to the event during which the Indigenous ceremonial practices will be conducted, a notice will be issued through Conventions and Reservations software to Protection Services, Indigenous Affairs and building manager(s) in order to recognize the importance of the Indigenous ceremonial practices and that some members of the community in attendance may be sensitive and or allergic to smoke resulting from Indigenous ceremonial practices.
  3. While Smudging or Qulliq Lighting is occurring, doors must be closed and a sign posted on both the door and near the building entrances of the University Facility alerting other users of the University Facility that a ceremony is being conducted and that they may smell smoke. A digital version of the sign is available through Conventions and Reservations.
  1. Those who wish to light Sacred Fires must first receive a permit from the City of Ottawa. Conventions and Reservations can assist with the process for obtaining these permits if requested. Sacred Fires must be in a strategic location, to be determined at the discretion of the Fire Marshall and the uOttawa Fire Prevention Officer. Payment of any fees or charges associated with this process must be paid for by those responsible for the event.
  1. Responsibility for the safe and appropriate use of the sacred medicines rests with the organizer of the event. Information on how to handle medicines can be found on the University’s Indigenous Portal.
  1. Any fees related to the Knowledge Keeper performing the Indigenous ceremonial practices are the responsibility of the persons or group responsible for the event, although Conventions and Reservations can facilitate payment.


Indigenous Affairs Office

  1. Indigenous Affairs, supported by the staff at Mashkawazìwogamig: Indigenous Resource Centre, is responsible for providing guidance for Indigenous ceremonial practices, for the benefit of those on campus who require such support and information.
  1. Information regarding ceremonial practices and reserving space in a University Facility will be available on the Indigenous Portal at or and linked from the Conventions and Reservations website.


  1. Facilities is responsible for maintaining the master list of approved University Facilities where Indigenous ceremonial practices can occur and for ensuring that this list is updated and shared with the Indigenous Resource Centre, the Registrar’s Office, Conventions and Reservations and Protection Services through a web link provided and maintained on the Conventions and Reservations website.

Conventions and Reservations

  1. Conventions and Reservations is responsible for receiving and processing requests from persons or groups wishing to reserve space for an event to be held at or on University Facilities and for maintaining a master list of all rooms available for Indigenous ceremonial practices on its website.