Throughout the month of June, Canada honours the history, culture, and diversity of the Indigenous Peoples of Canada. This month is also an opportunity for non-Indigenous peoples to learn from and listen to Indigenous voices in order to contribute to reconciliation with Indigenous peoples across the country.
While efforts of truth and reconciliation are ongoing between settlers and Indigenous peoples in Canada, the nation was reminded of Canada’s shameful past actions with the discovery of 215 children at the Kamloops Indian Residential School located in the Tk’emlups te Secwépemc First Nation in Kamloops, B.C. Several other discoveries have been made in recent weeks and are being investigated. For this reason, this year’s Indigenous History Month is dedicated to the missing children, the families left behind, and the survivors of residential schools.
The Zoryan Institute mourns this discovery and emphasizes the need for widespread education and a better understanding of Indigenous History in Canada. Below, the Institute recommends some starting resources to learn more about Indigenous History, Residential Schools, and Truth and Reconciliation. The Institute has partnered with the University of Toronto Press to make the first two articles free and accessible to the public throughout the month of June. The remaining resources will always be available to the public.
- A National or International Crime? Canada’s Indian Residential Schools and the Genocide Convention, Anthony J. Hall, Genocide Studies International, Volume 12, Number 1, Spring 2018, pp. 72-91
- Questions of Privacy and Confidentiality after Atrocity: Collecting and Retaining Records of the Residential School System in Canada, Tricia Logan, Genocide Studies International, Volume 12, Number 1, Spring 2018, pp. 92-102
- United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
- Digital copies of important and relevant reports for Survivors and their families, researchers, media and the public
- Indigenous Peoples of North America, a Webinar led by Prof. Lorena Sekwan-Fontaine, University of Manitoba, for the Genocide and Human Rights Webinar Series
- Phil Fontaine, Former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, discusses from Truth to Reconciliation: Towards a Just Future for the Indigenous Peoples of Canada
- An interview with Prof. Andrew Woolford, University of Manitoba, sheds light on the immense strife of Indigenous Peoples in North America as a result of settler-colonialism
- An Interview with Prof. Maureen Hiebert, University of Calgary, on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
The Zoryan Institute (Toronto office) wishes to acknowledge the land on which it operates. For thousands of years, it has been the traditional land of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and most recently, the Mississaugas of the Credit River. Today, this meeting place is still the home to many Indigenous people from across Turtle Island. The Institute, its staff, and affiliates are grateful for the opportunity to work on this land.