Day of Truth and Reconciliation
Today is Canada's second National Day of Truth and Reconciliation. Ninety-five percent of the province I live in is unceded territory, and my little village is smack in the middle of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh land. Our nation was founded on the backs and the bones of the first peoples, and as a nation, we continue to operate under principles that were originally designed to oppress those who lived here first.
As a writer, today I'd like to remind you that every day is a good day to celebrate Indigenous voices, and I invite you to learn more about the rich history of the people and places who were the first to call this country their home. Not sure where to start? Here are some ideas:
Jordan Abel, BC-born Nisga'a poet, writer and professor
Eden Robinson, BC-born Haisla and Heiltsuk writer, teacher and smoker of salmon
Katherena Vermette, Red River Métis Mischif writer, poet and film maker
Cherie Dimaline, Georgian Bay Métis writer of books for teens and adults
Waubgeshig Rice, Anishanaabe writer and journalist
This is just a taster of the wide range of brilliant indigenous writers we are lucky enough to be able to read. Dive into one of their books today!
If you're interested in learning more about the origins of this important day, the National Truth and Reconciliation Commission reports can be found HERE. They make for some horrifyingly eye-opening reading. And if you're considering what YOU can do personally to change the status quo in Canada, have a look at THIS site. In addition to listing the 94 calls to action that came out of the reports, it's monitoring the status of each. As of July, 2022, action had been taken in 75 of the 94 recommendations, but only 13 can be considered complete.
Fascinating and inspiring reading of both the fictional and non-fictional variety to help you raise your own awareness.