September 30th is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, this day commemorates the children who never returned home and survivors of residential school systems as well as their families and communities. We acknowledge the land in which we gather is the traditional territory of the Attawandaron, the Anishinabe, the Haudenosaunee, and Lunaapeewak peoples who have a long-standing relationship with the land, water, and region of Southwestern Ontario. The local first nation communities of this area include Chippewas of the Thames First Nation, Oneida Nation of the Thames First Nation, and the Munsee-Delaware First Nation.
This week is an opportunity to listen and learn from Indigenous people including survivors, elders, artists, and leaders from across the country. Reconciliation is a human-centered approach and takes time and commitment. We know that reconciliation is a perpetual journey. The time is now for us to be unified in reflection and acknowledge the resilience, dignity, and strength of survivors, and to remember children that never came home. Indigenous and municipal partners need to spend time together to build a baseline of understanding in our communities. Public commemoration is a vital part of the reconciliation process in Canada and we encourage everyone to take time on this day, and all days, to better understand the history of our country, and to participate in programs created and led by our First Nations, Metis, and Inuit organizers.
At Middlesex County, we acknowledge the historic and ongoing injustices that indigenous people endure in Canada and we affirm our commitment to honouring Indigenous voices, nations, and cultures we will move forward in the spirit of reconciliation and respect. Together we can deepen our collective awareness and use our voices to ensure municipal policies do not marginalize and help to build a more equitable society.
For a list of educational resources and supports, please visit our article Truth and Reconciliation Week 2022 Resources - September 26-30, 2022.