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Toronto observes first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

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TORONTO, ON, Sept. 30, 2021 – Today, Mayor John Tory proclaimed September 30 National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in the city of Toronto, a day to recognize the ongoing trauma caused by residential and day schools, and to remember those who were lost, their families and survivors. It is also an opportunity to commit to the process of reconciliation with First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Toronto and across Canada.

The City also recognizes September 30 as Orange Shirt Day, which began as an Indigenous grassroots effort in 2013 to reflect on the history and harmful legacy of residential and day schools in Canada, as well as affirm that every child matters.

The City’s commemorations are guided by consultations with Indigenous leaders, community members and Indigenous City staff who encouraged a strong focus on public education. As such, today the City’s social media channels will be dedicated to sharing information, supports and resources to educate and encourage the advancement of truth, reconciliation and justice.

What is Toronto doing for National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

In addition, flags at City Hall, civic centres and other City facilities are flying at half-mast for the day and the Toronto sign will be lit orange this evening to commemorate National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

The City also encourages donations to the Indian Residential School Survivors (IRSS) Restoration of Identity Project, led by Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre, which will see the construction of the Spirit Garden in Nathan Phillips Square. This peaceful and contemplative space will honour residential school survivors and all the children who were lost to their families and communities. The IRSS Restoration of Identity Project responds to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Call to Action 82 and aligns with the City’s commitments to Indigenous Peoples. Its expected completion date is late 2023. Donations to Toronto Council Fire’s capital campaign for the Spirit Garden can be made online.

Additional resources, supports and information about National Day for Reconciliation are available on the City’s website .

Toronto Residents Encouraged To Learn More

How To Give

How To Participate in Toronto

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation was proposed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, which under Action 80 called upon the federal government, in collaboration with Indigenous peoples, to establish a statutory holiday 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 City is committed to truth, reconciliation and justice. Its first Reconciliation Action Plan is currently in development, which will build upon the City’s existing Commitments to Indigenous peoples. These commitments and priority calls to action are available here .

SOURCE City of Toronto

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