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VANCOUVER, British Columbia, June 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — June is National Indigenous History Month which recognizes the first peoples across Canada, their rich and distinct cultures, languages and diversity. This is a time to embrace important work and conversations about the shared history of Canada and how we all can honour our relations with one another.

This month also marks the 5th anniversary of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) Calls to Action, the formation of which is a direct result of the courage and resilience of residential school survivors. Chief Commissioner Celeste Haldane states, “the Calls to Action are a pathway to shared responsibility of critical change in Canada. I call on every Canadian to find meaningful ways to build positive relationships for the betterment of all, especially for our future generations. Reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples is the responsibility of all Canadians.”

The TRC final report and Calls to Action address the history, injustices and lasting impacts of the Canadian Indian Residential school system. The legacy of residential schools and colonialism is still with us today, part of our shared history, and provides important context to land and Indigenous rights recognition and negotiations currently in BC.

There are over 630 First Nations communities across Canada, and roughly 200 distinct First Nations in BC; 65 First Nations are in the BC treaty negotiations process.

The BC treaty process supports underlying principles and the rights in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (the UN Declaration) especially the right to Indigenous self-determination and self-government, corner stones of modern treaty negotiations. The negotiation of modern treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements is one path to reconciliation and recognizing, protecting and partnering with Indigenous peoples for a more prosperous British Columbia.

In celebration of Indigenous History Month and the anniversary of the TRC work, each day in June, we will highlight Calls to Action through social media. The TRC report calls for all Canadians to commit to concrete actions to address legacies of colonialism and create a more equitable and inclusive society. 

Quick Facts:

About the BC Treaty Commission
The Treaty Commission is the independent body responsible for overseeing treaty negotiations among the governments of Canada, BC and First Nations in BC. It has three roles: facilitation, funding, and public information and education.

CONTACT: FOR MORE INFORMATION

Mark Smith / Director of Process / msmith@bctreaty.ca

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