What does September 30th mark?
In Canada, September 30th is observed as National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, also known as Orange Shirt Day. The day was created to acknowledge the history of residential schools throughout Canada and to honour the victims, survivors, families and communities that have experienced and continue to experience the ongoing impacts of the residential school system, directly or through intergenerational trauma.
In June 2021
, the Government of Canada passed Bill C-5 to make September 30th a federal statutory day. This decision was a response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action #80
, which called upon the federal government, in collaboration with Indigenous Peoples, “to establish, as a statutory holiday, a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation to honour survivors, their families and communities, and ensure that public commemoration of the history and legacy of residential schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process.”
The day is a chance to educate and engage people about Canada’s colonial history, the Indigenous Culture and initiatives throughout the country, and the steps we take together to help reconcile our wrongful past and ignite new connections from learning, embracing, and celebrating our differences. Understanding our shared history helps to welcome a more inclusive future and ensure that we continue to move forward from the legacy of residential schools.
How can I support and engage in Truth and Reconciliation?
Taking your first step toward healing and reconciliation may seem difficult or possibly overwhelming. Although we can't demand change overnight, working together can create a significant impact. As social justice movements rise and people come together, we acknowledge that it is everyday individuals who drive our communities forward to achieve the positive change we want to see. Whether it is in a group or individually, small acts of kindness and courage pave the path to the road of reconciliation. This year, start your own journey of reconciliation; we've compiled a list of events and educational experiences around our terminals to help you engage in meaningful opportunities to connect with and appreciate the diverse cultures and history that help cultivate the communities we serve.
Events to honour National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
We understand this can be a difficult time for our employees and their families. We encourage anyone needing to talk or access counselling support services to reach out to the Work-Life Employee Assistance Program (WLEAP). Counselling programs provide employees or their eligible dependents access to confidential counselling sessions. Additional information can be found under the Additional Resources tab on Erb Connect. If you wish to donate to Indigenous Healing and Reconciliation, visit The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation