National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
September 30, 2022
September 30th marks the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a day to honour all those who attended residential schools as well as their families and communities. Public commemoration of this tragic history and acknowlegement of its ongoing, intergenerational impacts are a vital component of the reconciliation process.
Between 1831 and 1998, there were 140 federally run residential schools in Canada, with the last school closing less than 25 years ago. In response, survivors advocated for recognition and demanded accountability for the intergenerational impacts of harms caused. Their efforts culminated in:
- The Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement
- Apologies by the government
- The establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
- The creation of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation
The Federal Government is working in full partnership with First Nations to continue building nation to nation relationships while supporting self-determination. This is being done while also advancing meaningful reconciliation through the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, with Indigenous Peoples in Canada to advance their rights.
Recently, I visited Chippewas of the Nawash Unceded First Nation and viewed the new water treatment plant, which will improve access to safe clean drinking water for 264 homes and 20 community buildings and end the long-term drinking water advisory.
During the visit, my collegues and I met with council leadership and discussed local priorities, including economic partnerships, such as marketing of medical isotopes in partnership with Bruce Power. This partnership includes the Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON), which is made up of two distinct First Nations, the Chippewas of the Nawash Unceded First Nation and the Saugeen First Nation.
I encourage all those in Guelph and across Canada to take some time and read about this topic. Additional resources can be found at the link below: https://www.canada.ca/en/canadian-heritage/campaigns/national-day-truth-reconciliation.html
To view the Prime Minister's statement, visit Statement by the Prime Minister on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation | Prime Minister of Canada (pm.gc.ca)