Updated: Apr 20
For immediate release
September 30, 2022
Truth and Reconciliation Requires Action and Partnership
(Toronto – September 30, 2022) –To mark the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) and Caledonia Regional Chamber of Commerce released the following statement: “Indigenous Peoples make up the fastest growing population in Canada and continue to face systemic barriers to their economic and social well-being,” said Rocco Rossi, President and CEO, OCC. “Every sector has a role to play in advancing Truth and Reconciliation and ensuring equitable outcomes across the country.” While today presents an opportunity to amplify Indigenous voices and commit to continuous learning and unlearning, the work does not end here. As a collective, we must recognize the lasting legacy and impacts of colonialism, the inter-generational effects of residential ‘schools’ and the ongoing systemic racism facing Indigenous communities across Canada. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Call to Action 92 calls on businesses to advance economic reconciliation and Indigenous economic inclusion by:
· Building meaningful, respectful relationships with Indigenous Peoples;
· Ensuring equitable employment and economic development opportunities for Indigenous communities; and
· Providing skills-based staff training in intercultural competency and anti-racism.
Today, several community-based organizations are hosting events, conversations, and days of action to commemorate residential ‘school’ Survivors and honour their stories throughout the province. We encourage business owners in Caledonia to take part in these important learning opportunities and reflect on the local and national history that continues to shape the experiences of Indigenous Peoples across Canada.
About the Ontario Chamber of Commerce For more than a century, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) has been the independent, non-partisan, indispensable partner of Ontario business. The OCC’s mission is to support economic growth in Ontario by defending business priorities at Queen’s Park on behalf of its network’s diverse 60,000 members.
· The Bank of Montreal (BMO), together with the First Nations University of Canada, is marking this year’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation by providing an interactive e-learning initiative, nisitohtamowin ᓂᓯᑐᐦᑕᒧᐃᐧᐣ(pronounced: nis-toh-tum-win), free to the public for the next three years. Nisitohtamowin introduces participants to the fundamentals of Indigenous history: the diversity of Indigenous peoples, treaties and nation-to-nation agreements, residential schools, the Indian Act and the ongoing struggle for economic and social justice. More information can be found at www.fnuniv.ca/reconciliation.
Select books by Indigenous authors:
· 21 Things You Might Not Know About the Indian Act by Bob Joseph
· Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese
· Unreconciled: Family, Truth, and Indigenous Resistance by Jesse Wente
· In My Own Moccasins: A Memoir of Resilience by Helen Knott
Mental health supports offered by the Government of Canada:
· Residential ‘School’ Survivors can call 1-866-925-4419 for emotional crisis referral services and information on other health supports from the Government of Canada.
· Indigenous peoples across Canada can also access The Hope for Wellness Help Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for counselling and crisis intervention. Call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat.