National Truth and Reconciliation Day could become September stat holiday
- EFN Staff | February 07, 2019
September 30th could be recognized as a statutory holiday known as a National Truth and Reconciliation Day. This is to honour and respect the commitment and partnerships between Indigenous peoples and the rest of Canada. On February 5th, the House of Commons heritage committee approved this measure to make this a stat holiday.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed media stating that Canada failed in one of its fundamental commitments to respect and be partners to the Indigenous peoples.
“We broke that relationship. We failed to uphold the honour of the Crown,” stated PM Trudeau. “More than that, we did our best to try and erase Indigenous cultures with projects such as residential schools.” As part of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), there were 94 recommendations that were put forward and one of those Calls to Action was a creation of a statutory holiday to remember and reflect upon the nature of reconciliation and the work that is still needed to do to move forward on a journey that includes Indigenous peoples in full partnership with all Canadians.
“We will be moving forward to create a statutory holiday. The date of that holiday and how exactly its named and framed, will be done in the spirit of reconciliation in full collaboration and consultation with Indigenous peoples,” he added. “We are going through that process right now, we are listening to what the Metis nation, the First Nations and the Inuit have to say and how they would like to see this Day of Reconciliation move forward. When we finish our consultations, we will announce what we are doing.”
The bill has to go through a final vote in the House of Commons to pass it before it possibly becomes law. The heritage committee put the proposed statutory holiday into Bill C-369, which also recognizes June 21st at National Indigenous Peoples’ Day. September 30th is also a day known as ‘Orange Shirt Day’ to commemorate those who attended Canada’s residential schools.