When the Federal Government announced that, in observance of National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, September 30th would become a statutory holiday in Canada, CUPE Ontario saw this is a necessary step in the right direction.
It’s therefore disappointing and revealing that, unlike British Columbia, Manitoba, and Nova Scotia, the Ford Conservatives will not formally recognize the day as a provincial statutory holiday in Ontario.
This is a clear abdication of responsibility to reconciliation because without the opportunity for all Ontarians – not just those working in federally-regulated workplaces – to take time to reflect and to solemnly commemorate the survivors of Canada’s residential schools, our efforts are incomplete.
September 30th must be designated for remembering, for taking part in events teaching the history we cannot deny, and for committing to ending the cycle of ongoing colonialism – a task provincial governments are responsible for as much as the Federal government.
CUPE Ontario’s 280,000 members will therefore continue to urge the Ford Conservatives to reverse their decision and to acknowledge that without space to remember there can be no reconciliation.