30 September 2021 – Day for Truth and Reconciliation
As September 30th approaches, the day set aside to reflect on Truth and Reconciliation, it is important that we engage in learning about the true history of Canada, and to think deeply on how we can contribute to healing and change.
Many Indigenous people are grieving deeply and have been for decades. The truths are coming forward, as the children are being found. This brings closure for many and many believe this is allowing our children to finally be free.
There has been little justice taken to date, therefore it brings feelings of despair, pain, anger, and mistrust. There is no way to move forward but for the truth to be acknowledged and to honour and create a space for healing path. Healing takes time and for healing to happen there has to be safety and support. Rekindling and protecting the children’s sacred fire is part of the teaching from our Elders and the action that need to be taken to honor reconciliation, so our children can once again be protected.
From Patti Alvarado
(Unbroken Chain and Indigenous women’s group leader)
In speaking with our Indigenous peoples, the following has been recommended as means to support:
- Consider reading about the 94 Calls to action for Truth and Reconciliation. The following sites offer means of doing so. (The first two are summaries of important reports and the third links to what the government is doing towards each call.)
- Reflect: What can your organization do to answer some of these calls to action?
- On the day:
- Wear an orange shirt- orange shirts are an important representation.
- Put a teddy bear out in front of your house door.
- Display orange hearts (every child matters), or other items showing your support.
- Educate yourself on the history and legacy of residential schools and the impact of colonization on Indigenous peoples. Take the time to listen to our Elder’s stories, build connections, be open to learning, unlearning, and healing.
- Support Indigenous community groups, organizations that support survivors, and intergenerational survivors.
- Provide cultural safety in your workplace: by developing cultural safety policies, training, education, equity in hiring practices, and create and implement anti-racism/anti-oppression policy and oversight.
- You can also read to learn, to develop your knowledge and understanding of what this day truly means. A recommended book is, “She Sings to the Buffalo”.